Harry Reid ties Romney comment to tax attack

September 19, 2012

In a long floor statement Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) excoriated Mitt Romney's leaked comments on government dependency, again suggesting that the Republican presidential candidate himself may have dodged taxes. 

Romney, he said, "only wants to be president of half the United States of America" -- a response to Romney's remark that 47 percent of Americans are "victims" who cannot be shaken from their dependence on government. 

Reid said that Romney was disparaging toward -- and hoping to raise taxes on -- the elderly, the disabled, young students and members of the military. 

"The 47 percent are ordinary, hard-working Americans who deserve respect – especially from a man who wants to be their president," Reid said. "They’re not avoiding their tax bills using Cayman Island tax shelters or Swiss bank accounts, like Mitt Romney." 

Reid went on to suggested that Romney is not paying any such taxes. "For all we know, Mitt Romney could be one of those who have paid no federal income taxes," he said.

The Senate Democrat had previously claimed to have evidence that Romney paid no taxes for 10 years. He has since backpedaled and now publicly speculates that Romney did not pay taxes.

The Romney campaign has denied suggestions that the candidate hasn’t paid taxes in a single year.

 

Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.
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Rachel Weiner · September 19, 2012