Romney attends fundraiser in Bay Area
SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT (KGO) -- Friday evening Mitt Romney arrived in the Bay Area and on his way here, he released his tax returns for last year. They show that he and his wife Ann earned $13.7 million and paid $1.9 million in taxes. That puts his tax rate at 14.1 percent.
Romney arrived at SFO around 5:30 p.m. and went to a fundraiser at the Strawberry Hill Estate, a historic home in Hillsborough. When he walked off the plane, Romney was accompanied by former President Ronald Reagan's Secretary of State, George Shultz. Shultz came out from San Francisco to meet Romney and attend the fundraiser. The cost to attend the event was between $1,000 - $50,000 per person.
As Romney heads to the mansion there is a lot of talk about his 2011 tax returns. The Romney campaign is following a long standing practice in politics of releasing bad news late on a Friday.
"He's putting it out in the darkest hour in terms of news coverage and there's a reason for that because it's clearly not a number that's easily defendable," said ABC7 political analyst Bruce Cain, Ph.D.
Cain's take is backed by the last time ABC News polled the question, six months ago, 66 percent of Americans said Romney is not paying his fair share in taxes.
"14.1 percent is not a lot, given that I'm in the 28-30 percent bracket myself," said one man.
"We all pay more than that, us 99 percenters," said one woman.
Republicans are sitting on a 1:10 cash on hand advantage over Democrats and a lot of that money is coming from big-money donors, like those that will be at the fundraiser in Hillsborough. The problem for Romney is that campaign finance laws require most of the big donations to go to the Republican Party rather than the Romney's campaign.
The president is getting a lot more money from small donors that are giving directly to him. And so the Obama campaign controls that cash and they've been outspending the Romney campaign on political advertising in the all-important swing states.
Romney's campaign is expected to increase advertising in the final weeks, but our political analyst says at this stage that's not the biggest battle.
"Most of this campaign, I think, from here on out is going to be devoted to the grassroots efforts of getting voters to the polls," said Cain.
We expect to see more money from the campaigns going into getting out the vote. The president will be in the Bay Area on Oct. 8 for his fundraiser.
hillsborough, mitt romney, taxes, 2012 presidential race, elections, fundraiser, politics, mark matthews
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