Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Romney's Tax Returns Shed Light On His Giving

One of the big issues that had surrounded GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney was his tax returns.  Romney was under intense pressure to release them and he said they would be available in April.  After a loss in the South Carolina primary last week, he decided he would hasten that schedule.

The NonProfit Times took a look at Romney's tax payments and found that he had given more to charitable organizations ($7 million) than he paid in federal income taxes ($6.2 million).  During a recent Republican debate in Florida, Romney said that the American public would be satisfied that he had paid his fair share during the past two years.  Let's take a deeper look and see exactly where Romney's money went:
  • The largest charitable contribution noted was a $1,525,000 donation to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Romney is a noted member of the Morman faith, and he has donated at least $4.1 million to the church over the past two years.
  • For 2010, available tax returns show Romney's itemized deductions totaled $4,519,766.  His total income was $21,661,344, with an adjusted gross income of $21,646,507.
  • None of his income came from wages.  They came instead from capital gains, stock dividends, and interest payments.
  • Romney had an effective tax rate of 13.9 percent.  Note that, according to the nonpartisan Tax Foundation, the average effective tax rate for millionaires is 25 percent.
In President Barack Obama's annual State of the Union address last night, he stated his belief that millionaires and billionaires pay a lower rate than average Americans.  He announced the so-called "Buffet Rule," where individuals who make more than $1 million would pay 30 percent in taxes.  If that rule were in effect in 2010, Romney would have had to pay a lot more in taxes.

Read the full article on Romney's tax returns in The NonProfit Times.

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