Mitt Romney Finally Releases Tax Returns; Does He Pay Enough?

| by Mark Berman Opposing Views

Former Republican presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney finally released his tax returns on Tuesday, admitting that failing to do so was a "mistake." And now we know why he tried to keep them secret -- it can be argued that he is not paying his fair share.

In 2011 Romney made an estimated $20.9 million and will pay around $3.2 million in taxes. That may seem like a lot, but that is only a 15.4% tax rate.

2010 was even worse (or better, depending on your perspective) -- a 13.9% rate, paying $3 million on $21.65 in earnings.

Seven million dollars in charitable donations, including $4 million to his Mormon church, lowered Romney's taxable income.

Now it should be pointed out that Romney is not doing anything illegal; almost all of his earnings were from interest and dividends on his massive holdings, which are taxed at 15%. Income from regular wages -- the type of income earned from an actual job, which Romney does not have -- can be taxed as high as 35%.

In contrast, President Obama and Newt Gingrich, both of whom work for a living, paid tax rates of 26% and 31% respectively, reports the Miami Herald.

At Monday's debate Romney said his tax bill is "entirely legal and fair."

Yes, it certainly is legal -- no one is arguing that. But fair? Is it fair that Romney and other mega-rich people pay taxes at a lower rate than everybody else?