Fact Check Harry Reid, Please!

So, media fact-checking organizations, when you see this

WASHINGTON – Sen. Harry Reid caused a stir this week when he told an interviewer that Mitt Romney hasn’t released more of his tax returns because “he didn’t pay taxes for 10 years.” On Wednesday, Reid doubled down on the charge.

In an interview published Tuesday, Reid said an investor in Bain Capital, the former private equity firm of the Republican presidential candidate, told him in a phone call that Romney had paid zero taxes.

What do you think of the Senate Majority Leader’s allegations?

How likely is it that one of the most prominent figures in America today filed tax returns for ten years, but somehow didn’t pay any taxes during that time?

How likely is it that the Internal Revenue Service didn’t notice this phenomenon for ten straight years? How likely is it that an IRS employee would open the envelope with the Romneys’ returns, but no check for the amount owed, and shrug their shoulders and move on to the next envelope?

How likely is it that as Romney became more and more prominent as a CEO, as an Olympic organizer, as governor, and as a presidential candidate that no one at the IRS would notice a glaring ten year period where he paid no taxes, even though he presumably would owe some considerable sum?

How plausible do fact-checking organizations finds the notion that when you invest in Bain Capital, the first thing they do is reveal the multi-year personal tax evasion of the CEO? Has any investor ever gotten a chance to look at the tax returns of the CEO of their money management firm?

Okay, with all of that in mind…  how likely is it that Harry Reid is no longer in touch with reality?

UPDATE: Oh, and according to the candidate, at some point, Romney was audited, perhaps more than once: “From time to time I’ve been audited.” So Romney has been audited, but somehow the IRS audit missed a ten-year period where he didn’t pay any taxes?

So, we know Romney released his return for 2010. Which means any “ten year window” would have to be 1999-2009 at the earliest.

His campaign said that Romney has not been audited in the past ten years – meaning the audit occurred before 2002.

Either the IRS audit of Romney from 2001 or earlier completely missed a ten year period of Romney “not paying any taxes for ten years” … or Harry Reid is full of crap.


Tags: Harry Reid , Mitt Romney

The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.