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View Diary: Car Crashes and the VP debate. THAT is the Republican "education" Plan. Find a millionaire. (22 comments)

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  •  Mitt didn't know the Nixons? (0+ / 0-)

    Ryan revealed that the Romneys and the Nixons attended the same church. Mitt Romney was probably the church's most prominent member, having run for the Senate against Ted Kennedy, and no doubt the richest. The Nixons' tragedy was well-publicized in 1995 (see here:, so there is little doubt that their plight was well-known to the members of their church. Ryan makes it seem as though the Nixons were complete strangers and that Romney came out of the blue to offer his help*.

    Churches of all religions tend to coalesce around tragedies such as these. And, as the richest and most prominent member of the Mormon church in Boston, Mitt Romney would have been seen as derelict in his obligations to the church if he did not reach out and offer help to the Nixons.

    Also, Ryan is misleading on Romney's quantitative generosity. Romney donated 30% to charity only in 2011. He donated 15% in 2010 and, according to a summary released with his 2011 returns, averaged around 13.45% over the last twenty years (at least 10% of that amount must have been tithes to the Mormon Church). Without the 30% in contributions in 2011, Romney's effective tax rate would likely have been in the single figures. Is there any doubt that avoiding a single-figure effective tax rate was the guiding principle behind his being more than doubly generous in 2011? (As others have pointed out here, Romney's generosity also doesn't extend much beyond the Mormon Church).

    Finally, yes, Romney doesn't personally boast about his generosity. Instead, he has surrogates do it for him, including his wife. It's strange, now that he's running for president, how all of these people have suddenly appeared  to attest to his generosity. I am sure modest Mitt had nothing to do with reaching out to them and reminding them how he helped them out and asking whether they would mind telling the world how generous he is.

    * I hate to get nitpicky about a person's donations to people in need, whoever they are. But, how much did Rob and Reed's college tuition end up costing Mitt Romney? Rob and Reed both attended the university where their father was and has been Chair of the Accountancy Department. Both graduated with degrees in Accounting. Rob went on to receive an MS at Brigham Young. As a Mormon with a severe disabilities, I imagine Rob would have been eligible for countless scholarships. Surely, tuition assistance was extended to both Rob and Reed at Bentley University, given the prominence of their ordeals (a book was written about them) and given their father's position at the University. In other words, Mitt Romney probably didn't have to shell out very much. If he had offered, in 1995, to cover Rob and Reed's medical expenses and expenses related to their disabilities, that would have been a far more impressive offer.

    I pick on Mitt Romney because, given all that we know of him, he is rarely ever motivated by anything other than profit, political expediency, or personal ambition.

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