Tax Roundup, 9/24/2012: Mitt files! And USA bucks trend of lower corporate rates.

September 24th, 2012 by Joe Kristan

Mitt Romney filed his extended return on Friday. In addition to remininding us laggards that the extension season will end three weeks from today, it shows us that the Republican nominee has a lot of money.  Who knew?

The strangest item may the candidate’s voluntary walking away from a charitable contribution deduction.   He did that to ensure the “effective rate” on his adjusted gross income  was at least 13%.  Of course, he has three years to change his mind and amend his return.

The return has one thing in common with the Obama 1040s: self-employment income.   While the Obamas began taking retirement plan contributions based on that income, perhaps because they secretly read the Tax Update, the Romneys do not.  They could still set up a SEP plan, amend their returns, and take a 2011 deduction against his director fee income.  They may be too busy for that right now,  but if you have an extended return with self-employment income, it’s not too late for you!

The campaign also issued a letter from PWC summarizing his taxes over the past 20 years, debunking the foolish innuendo that Harry Reid peddled that Romney had zero-tax years.

The TaxProf has a Romney return roundup.  More coverage:

Going Concern:  Mitt Romney’s 2011 Tax Returns Reveal He’s the Richest Unemployed Dude You’ve Ever Seen and Footnotes: Romney Tax Returns, Romney Tax Returns and Romney Tax Returns.

Kay Bell,  Romney will file an amended 2011 tax return on Nov. 7 … if he loses

Anthony Nitti,  Reactions to Romney’s 2011 Tax Return and Romney Forgoes Full Charity Tax Break for 13% 2011 Rate

Janet Novack,  On 2011 Federal Income Tax Return, The Romneys Decide Horse Losses Are Personal and Romney Paid At 14% Federal Tax Rate In 2011, Pegs 20 Year Average At 20%

Peter Reilly,  Romney Accountant’s Letter – Exercise In Obfuscation ? and Mitt Romney Passing On Nearly Two Million In Charity – Stupidest Thing I Ever Heard


Related: TaxGrrrl, Ryan’s Amended Returns Offer More Questions Than Answers



Meanwhile, in news that matters:  Sweden to Lower their Corporate Rate to 22 Percent, 18 Points below Ours (William McBride, Tax Policy Blog).


More coverage of the Iowa guy who filed as a South Dakota resident:  Linda Beale, Tax Home–where the heart is, but not necessarily where the taxes are lowest and Russ Fox,  Home Is Where the Family Is.


Jack Townsend,  Restitution in Tax Cases

Jason Dinesen,  “Consumer Reports” Highlights Identity Theft

Jim Maule,  Raising the Tax Shame Noise Level

Nanette Byrnes, Essential reading: GOP retreat on taxes likely if Obama wins, and more

Martin Sullivan,  The Critical Question. “If the Obama wins, will the Republicans comrpomise or double down?” Maybe we should ask the Ben Bernanke.

Russ Fox,  Las Vegas Attorney Accused of Tax Evasion and Structuring

And it wouldn’t be a weekend without a new Buzz from Robert D. Flach.


Quote of the day:

Wind energy tax credits, like all government-sponsored tax incentives, don’t work. They violate every principle of sound tax policy. The wind tax incentives place the risks on the public and promise the rewards to a chosen few. As the insurance company ad said, even a caveman could see that. Nevertheless, there is a bipartisan crescendo building to ensure the wind energy suppliers continue to receive their credits.  (David Brunori, Tax Analysts (subscriber link))


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