Romney on not releasing more tax returns: ‘I’m not a business’

at 09:57 AM ET, 08/09/2012

The man who once said “corporations are people” apparently doesn’t believe the inverse.

When pressed on why he’s not releasing more tax returns in an interview with Bloomberg Businessweek, Mitt Romney justified it by saying: “I’m not a business.”

Bloomberg asked Romney whether, if he was investing in a company, he would want to see more than two years of financial reports, likening that process to the American people electing a president. But Romney suggested the standards aren’t the same for people and businesses.

“I’m not a business,” he said. “We have a process in this country, which was established by law, which provides for the transparency which candidates are required to meet. I have met with that requirement with full financial ­disclosure of all my investments, but in addition have provided and will provide a full two years of tax returns.”

This is the candidate who, almost exactly one year ago, got into a somewhat-heated exchange with a heckler in Iowa in which Romney made that case that “corporations are people” — that is, what happens to corporations affects the people who work for them.

“Of course they are,” Romney said at the time. “Everything corporations earn also goes to people.”

In the Bloomberg interview, Romney also discussed a 1984 photo of he and his Bain Capital colleagues with money stuffed in their suits. The image has been used frequently by Romney's opponents to paint him as an out-of-touch rich guy.

“Oh, that was a moment of humor as we had just done what we thought was impossible: We had raised $37 million from other people and institutions who entrusted us with their funds, and we thought it was a miracle that our group had been able to be so successful in fundraising,” Romney said.

Romney also reflected on the Bain investments that didn’t pan out and the people who lost their jobs because of it.

“I have never believed in my own ability to succeed at everything,” he said. “I recognize I’m a human being like everybody else, and I make mistakes, and fall short time and again. That being said, I will work as hard as I can to deliver the results which people entrust me to achieve.”

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