Romney should open tax returns

opinions

January 18, 2012 - 12:00 AM

Mitt Romney should make his income tax returns public. Not to satisfy his Republican opponents, but to let the American people see how much the super-rich contribute to maintain the society that allows them to get super rich.

The public will first see that the tax returns for a man who accumulated a quarter of a billion dollars or more running a private equity firm contain enough pages to make a fair-sized book; hundreds of pages full of complexities, all of which will need quite a bit of explanation to be intelligible to you and me.

More than likely, the public also will learn that a sizeable amount of Mr. Romney’s income is taxed at the 15 percent capital gains rate rather than the 39 percent rate that upper bracket ordinary income draws.

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