Romney’s Bain Problem is a Transparency Problem

The internet blog-o-sphere and social media sites erupted yesterday after a couple of articles from Mother Jones and The Boston Globe, reported on Romney’s dealing at Bain Capital, and other financial dealings. Mitt Romney now faces growing transparency questions as to why he hasn’t released his tax returns during his Bain Capital years, his history of outsourcing jobs, and how long he was he really at Bain.

Mother Jones an organization that specializes in investigative political journalism helped to spur the political news free for all with their article highlighting Romney’s investment in a Chinese firm known as Global-Tech that outsourced American jobs. While Romney’s campaign rhetoric called to “stop China from stealing American jobs” it seems that Romney invested heavily in companies that did just that. With Romney acting as “sole shareholder, director, President, and C.E.O” of a company called Brookside Capital he invested somewhere in the area of 14 million dollars into the Chinese company Global-Tech, the primary corporate strategy of Global-Tech involved outsourcing production abroad. While Brookside later downsized its involvement with Global-Tech, Romney remained involved. Mitt Romney actually split the investments into two companies sharing the stake in Global-Tech. The second Sankaty High Yield Asset Investors LTD, is a Bermuda based corporation of which Romney was sole operator. This Bermuda corporation has been mentioned in political attacks as of late, for issues of non-disclosure.

The Boston Globe’s reveal yesterday added to the Bain hype, their findings ran counter to the Romney statements that he left Bain Capital in 1999. The had SEC filings from as late as 2002 that contradict this statement making Bain Capital a trending topic on Twitter for much of the day. Bain Capital has been a topic of several Obama political ads, specifically how Bain Capital’s dealing left businesses bankrupt and hundreds of American’s out of work. These SEC dealings show that Romney was paid a salary by Bain Capital and was listed as the sole stockholder of the company. While Romney can claim he can’t be tied to these instances of bankruptcy and job loss he now finds himself between a rock and a hard place. Either he was indeed the acting entity of Bain Capital and shares in the responsibility of Bain’s actions or he lied to the SEC and his investors.

Both Democrats and Republicans are now pressing Romney for more transparency about his financial dealings, which means releasing back tax returns and putting forth detailed rebuttal of these Bain attacks. Prominent Republican’s from Haily Barbour, Rep. Walter Jones, and RNC Chair Michael Steele see the value in Romney releasing years of tax returns. It will show he has nothing to hide, and could end the negative speculations stirring through the democratic and independent voters. Romney’s delay on this issue is only going to increase the perception that he is involved in shady dealing and will allow¬† people more time to paint him in a negative light. Character and trust is vital in Presidential campaigns, these stories are detrimental to Romney’s character and he should work towards transparency to answer them.

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