- Posted August 1, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
The Romney Roundup - Overnight Edition - July 31/August 1
In case you missed it, here is the latest Roundup of news about presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
Those Tax Returns: Mitt Romney's campaign said Monday they would not release any more of the candidate's personal income tax information, despite an acknowledgement from Romney that he had been audited in the past.
"Mitt Romney has paid his taxes in full compliance with U.S. Law, and he has paid 100 percent of what he has owed," Romney spokesman Ryan Williams wrote.
Williams later told CNN that "The audit did not result in a fine or penalty."
Overpay Tax Unqualified For Presidency: Mitt Romney says that if he paid more taxes than were required, he wouldn't be qualified to be president.
The U.S. presidential candidate tells ABC News that American voters expect candidates to pay "only what the tax code requires." He says he hasn't calculated what percentage of his income was paid in taxes but says that he's been audited.
On Iran: "The number one national security threat, of course, to our nation is a nuclear Iran," he told CNN's Wolf Blitzer, speaking in Jerusalem about the nearby nation.
On Afghanistan: Romney tells ABC News in a Sunday interview that he supports Obama's plan to pull U.S. troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2014. But he doesn't agree with Obama's plan to order 23,000 troops out by Sept. 30, a timeline some military experts warn could complicate next year's efforts to stabilize the war-torn country.
The former Massachusetts governor says his position could change depending on the counsel of military commanders. He says he's leaving open the possibility of keeping combat troops in Afghanistan beyond 2014 should conditions change.
On Palestine: “As you come here and you see the GDP per capita, for instance, in Israel which is about $21,000 dollars, and compare that with the GDP per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, which is more like $10,000 per capita, you notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality,” the Republican presidential candidate told about 40 wealthy donors who ate breakfast at the luxurious King David Hotel.
Romney said some economic histories have theorized that “culture makes all the difference.”
“And as I come here and I look out over this city and consider the accomplishments of the people of this nation, I recognize the power of at least culture and a few other things,” Romney said, citing an innovative business climate, the Jewish history of thriving in difficult circumstances and the “hand of providence.” He said similar disparity exists between neighboring countries, like Mexico and the United States.
The reaction of Palestinian leaders to Romney's comments was swift and pointed.
“It is a racist statement and this man doesn't realize that the Palestinian economy cannot reach its potential because there is an Israeli occupation,” said Saeb Erekat, a senior aide to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
“It seems to me this man lacks information, knowledge, vision and understanding of this region and its people,” Erekat added. “He also lacks knowledge about the Israelis themselves. I have not heard any Israeli official speak about cultural superiority.”
Poland's Solidarity: Solidarity, the trade union movement which led the Polish struggle against communist rule, distanced itself on Monday from a visit to Poland by U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney, saying he supported attacks on unions in his own country.
"Regretfully, we were informed by our friends from the American headquarters of (trade union federation) AFL-CIO, which represents more than 12 million employees ... that Mitt Romney supported attacks on trade unions and employees' rights," Solidarity said in a statement.
"Solidarity was not involved in organizing Romney's meeting with Walesa and did not invite him to visit Poland."
An OOPs! Moment: Mitt Romney's traveling press secretary "lost his cool and cursed at reporters who attempted to ask questions of the Republican presidential candidate in a public plaza near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Warsaw," CNN reports.
Said aide Rick Gorka: "Kiss my ass, this is a holy site for the Polish people. Show some respect."
Gorka than told a reporter to "shove it."
Politico reports Gorka subsequently called two reporters to apologize.
Polish-American Group Formed: In the wake of his visit to Poland, Mitt Romney on Tuesday announced he was forming Polish Americans for Romney.
"Polish Americans share the love of individual liberty that makes our country exceptional, prosperous, and free," Romney said in a statement announcing the group shortly after he departed Poland following a two-day trip. "This community has made tremendous contributions to America spanning business, science, and more."
German Media: So far, German newspapers have not been impressed with his performance, citing embarrassing verbal blunders and superficial political posturing.
On Monday, German newspapers criticized Romney's visit to Israel as a shallow effort to win over Jewish voters in the US.
China Voices Criticism: Mitt Romney, whose trip abroad to boost his foreign policy credentials has been riddled with gaffes and setbacks, has now been criticised by China over his Jerusalem comments.
A commentary by the official Xinhua News Agency said Mr Romney's statement that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel could worsen an already tense Middle East situation.
It said that Mr Romney's "hawkish remarks" ignored the sensitive nature of Jerusalem. It said the comments disregarded the Palestinians' claim to the war-won eastern sector of the city, which was annexed by Israel in 1967 in a move that is not internationally recognised.
VEEP Update - No, Not Yet: Smartphone users will be the first to know who Mitt Romney has chosen as his vice presidential pick, the Romney campaign said Tuesday as it unveiled a new smartphone app.
Mitt’s VP app, available for Apple and Android devices, promises “an exclusive notice of his VP selection before anyone else,” according to an email to supporters from campaign adviser Beth Myers. It will unveil “America’s comeback team,” the Romney campaign’s name for the GOP ticket.
On the site for the app is this pitch: “It’s a question everyone’s asking: who will be Mitt Romney’s VP? There’s no telling when that answer might come. But when it does, be the first to find out and access exclusive content with the Mitt’s VP app."
From the Cornfield, in case you missed it earlier or didn't see it on your favorite news channel or news website or newspaper, this is the latest Romney Roundup.