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Ear to the Ground

Romney Releases Tax Return, Clinton Visits ‘The Daily Show,’ and More

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Posted on Sep 21, 2012

The Full Return: Mitt Romney clearly wants everyone to stop talking about secretly videotaped comments he made denigrating 47 percent of Americans at a fundraiser back in May. How else to explain why he would choose to, finally, release more tax returns? The 2011 documents, released Friday, show that Romney paid about $1.9 million in taxes on an income of roughly $13.7 million last year, meaning he was taxed at the low rate of 14.1 percent. In 2010, documents showed he paid an even lower rate, 13.9 percent. In short, Romney made an exorbitant amount of money in 2011, but still paid lower taxes than many hardworking Americans who earned way, way less. (Read more)

What About Reid’s Source? For weeks now, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has been hammering Mitt Romney on his tax returns, claiming the Republican presidential nominee wouldn’t release them because a reliable source had told the Nevada senator that they would show Romney paid zero income taxes the past decade. However, documents released Friday disclosed that Romney paid an average rate of 13.66 percent for a period of about 20 years. That clearly indicates that Reid’s alleged source was wrong. (Read more)

Obama Chides Challenger: During a speech Friday at a campaign stop in Virginia, President Obama mocked Mitt Romney for the Republican’s controversial “47 percent” remark. “I don’t see a lot of victims in this crowd today. I see a lot of hardworking Virginians,” the president said. Obama also hit back at Romney for the comment during an appearance Tuesday on David Letterman’s show and at a forum Thursday sponsored by the Spanish-language network Univision. (Read more)

Cain Disses Romney: Herman Cain, the man with the 9-9-9 plan, claimed Friday that he would be leading President Obama if he were the Republican presidential nominee. He explained: “The reason is quite simple: I have some depth to my ideas.” Like, for example, his 9-9-9 plan, which may or may not have been lifted from a video game. (Read more)

Clinton Stops by ‘Daily Show’: Bill Clinton visited with Jon Stewart on Thursday night, discussing among other things his Democratic National Convention speech and criticizing Mitt Romney for his lack of specific policies. (Read more)

Ryan Booed: It’s not just Mitt—Romney’s running mate Paul Ryan appears to be having a tough time of it as well. The GOP’s vice presidential nominee was met by a chorus of boos at AARP’s annual conference Friday after telling the crowd he would repeal Obamacare. (Read more)

Akin, McCaskill Debate: The Missouri Senate race has garnered increased attention in the wake of the Republican candidate’s controversial remarks about “legitimate rape” and pregnancy. During the first debate between Todd Akin and Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill, the Republican candidate deflected questions about the comment, claiming he has “answered this question repeatedly.” McCaskill, however, pounced on Akin’s statements, saying they are proof that her challenger is a “fringe” candidate. “This election’s going to be quite a contrast for Missourians,” McCaskill said. “But not because we’re at opposite ends. I’m right in the middle. It’s just he is so far out on the fringe, and that’s where the contrast comes.” McCaskill’s chances of being re-elected have improved significantly since Akin spoke of “legitimate rape,” and polls now show the Missouri senator with a solid lead. (Read more)

Swing State Movement: The latest polls reveal that Obama leads in every swing state with the exception of Florida. Swing states leaning toward the president include Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Colorado, North Carolina and Michigan. One poll also indicates that Arizona might be in play for Obama as well. (Read more)

Video of the Day: “Saturday Night Live’s” prime-time show “SNL Weekend Update Thursday” featured a sketch that mocked “Fox & Friends” and also Mitt Romney for his “47 percent” remark—two things that clearly deserve to be made fun of.

—Posted by Tracy Bloom.

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