Do political candidates need to fully disclose their past finances?
Should political candidates be required to fully disclose their past finances and if so, how many years back do we need to go?
In a world where they are all crooks and most of them do not even pay their taxes; I would say yes. They should have to go back at least 7 years.
When you enter into the public arena, especially when you run for an office as important as the President, you should be required to not just meet the minimum requirements, but also undergo a thorough background check that includes your current and past five year financial information.
Quite Frankly, pages.....Anymore these days.....IMO, Political Candidates should be required to fully disclose their I.Q......................Good question, though I'm much too concerned about we "working stiffs," and our viability ...the survival of the average American citizen...and the future "Whatever the hell it is" we are dumping on our poor children and grandchildren.
It just occurred to me.......Perhaps the perfect candidate for POTUS would be the most incredibly brilliant and moral homeless man/woman we can find!!!
I'd vote for him/her!
I think that while currently they are not required to release their tax returns, doing so has been and always will be a sign of good faith for the people. That being said, I think that disclosing their personal finances is not at issue. However, if they base their platform on their financial abilities as a businessman, they should be required to prove those abilities, not just make that statement and support it solely with the fact that they are millionaires. If that money was increased by ill gotten gains, we don't want to put someone like that in office to handle OUR money. We have a right to choose what kind of person we want to put in charge of our money and to choose the one who will most likely spend OUR money the way WE would in their position. Therefore, we have a right to know how they manage large amounts of money.
Romney's father ran for president in 1968, and upon releasing 12 years of his taxes voluntarily, he said of it's necessity, "One year could be a fluke, perhaps done for show." Voters need transparency in order to make an informed decision. Obama has released all of his. Romney needs to come clean about the Caymans.
Romney need to MOVE to the Caymans.........Hi Chris! LOL
Hey, if he becomes president, I need to move to the Caymans. Maybe I can spend some time with HIS bank accounts and some rum runners.
But, you don't hold the Dems in Congress to the same criteria, do you?
They also have investments in overseas accounts and investments in overseas companies. Some have unpaid taxes etc...Can you be consistent in your "outrage"?
Sure can, Mitch. You're the one assuming partisanship. Hold 'em all to account, I say. Congress is a millionaires club these days. Vote the bums out.
Chris, I agree to hold them all accountable regardless of party...but, I don't care if they are millionaires...financial success is not a negative in of itself.
Romney should release all his personal records as soon as Obama does. Until then, this is just another partisan talking point, meaningless but for the purposes of this campaign.
Obama has released all of his tax records...
I didn't limit it to tax records alone. That's what the partisan point talkers want to do. I'm not one of them.
What has President Obama not released that seems to legitimize Romney not releasing his tax records?
You know perfectly well Obama has buried records just as has Romney, and you know perfectly well what they are. Don't you ever get sick and tired of this deceptive, false campaign pretense? I suspect everyone else does.
Wait, we're being deceptive manipulators or manipulated sheep because we want to know what the possible next President paid in taxes in the last ten years? To have transparency at least equal to Obama's? These are inquires necessary for Democracy.
Why do you care what he paid in taxes?!? Who cares? If he hasn't been prosecuted for tax fraud then he's probably following the law, so why should we care? I'd rather know our presidential candidates beliefs and background than what he pays in taxes.
Transparency is key to trust! Yes, they owe it to their electorate!
It is too late to force anything this election cycle--it would have to be a voluntary act by the candidates.
For future elections, I think seven or even 10 years of financial records should be made available, this would include tax returns, audits of any companies where the candidate is a board member, officer, or holds 10 percent or more the company stock either personally or through a family trust. Now once submitted and reveal, who is going to evaluate them. As a former news reporter, I can tell you that I am not qualified to take a apart the audit report of a major company, investigate family trusts and so on. So, we could have a lot of information, but no objective means of making sense out of it. For all of his faults, I think Jimmy Carter put all of his assets in a blind trust when he was elected president. I am not sure I would want to to do that and not sure I should expect anyone else to do so.
The bottom line is we need more information, we just have to determine a fair way of coming up with an evaluation of that information that will not be biased for or against the candidate or his party. I do not have the answer to that question.
I certainly appreciate your honesty Larry and I do agree that 7 to 10 years of financials is something that should be considered for future candidates.
Why should ANY person seeking public office have to release personal financial records? What is the value?
What is the value of releasing financial records? Honestly, you think that's nonsense? Wow, it is amazing how some want to turn a blind eye all in the name of party unity. Shocking is the best description for the answer given!
Full transparency would be great, but it can't be one-sided. Candidate A can't unhypocritically demand B's tax returns without releasing his own buried college records, for instance. New requirements must be adopted after a campaign, not during.
@Attikos - I'm curious, what are you looking for in Pres. Obama's college records? He was Harvard's 1st black pres. of the Harvard Law Review based on his grades. So now not only a birth certificate, but also his education are in question?
I'm not gunning for anything in particular. I support transparency, however, not campaign season fishing expeditions, and if one side is to expose its secrets then so is the other. Or neither. It has to be fair. Well, it should be.
Yes, they absolutely should be required to release their financial information back at least 7 years. We need more transparency in our government. Probably anyone running for public office should have to release records, and anyone in office should be required to release statements annually.
By the way, here's an interesting link showing what Romney has released, and what Obama has released, as well as some other figures.
http://www.taxhistory.org/www/website.n … axReturns/
Absolutely. If they are going to be digging into my personal income, I would need to dig into theirs. I need to trust that the person I'm voting for or voted for, is equipped to handle their own personal finances if they are going to handle the country's finances as well.
I don' think so. They should disclose wealth, gross income, all school papers etc. But if there are any deductions related to family members' disease, or information that also would shed let on business partners' legal activities I don't see that the public has the right to know.
I think that any candidate running for any political office should be held to a "higher standard" than average citizens. If they don't agree, then they should not seek office. As the office sought becomes higher, the bar for what is expected should move higher. Whether legally mandated or not, any candidate for POTUS should voluntarily comply with any standards already in place for people that would work for them (the "higher standard"). If POTUS appoints someone to a Cabinet position, the financial disclosure requirements for the appointee are much higher than what candidate Romney is willing to provide for himself. If "doing the right thing" is the common sense guideline, don't ask your current or future subordinates to do something that you won't do yourself. For national elective office, there should be a willingness to provide true full disclosure (actual documentation, not just "summaries") for a period that covers at least ten years prior to seeking elective office. Requirements would obviously apply to all candidates including incumbents.
This would be a very good thing, despite the fact that it's a big of a privacy violation.
That would be ideal. By doing so one is able to know whether the individual is trustworthy or not. Look at us in Greece; we learnt the hard way.
It is not a written law to fully disclose all and every bit of your past finances, however it is tradition to do so. Not complying is a red flag to the general public. Transparency is critical to a functioning democracy.
Political Candidates should be required to disclose their finances, and I'd assume 3-4yrs
I don't think so. Personally, I think we spend way too much time searching for dirt and listening to candidates bash each other. Instead, we should be drilling them on their beliefs, positions and future actions. That way we could easily punish them when they turn out to be liers. I think America has forgotten that it is ran not by the politicians but by the people who elected them to speak on their behalf.
Yes, I think it is important for the candidate to public all his/her financial situation.
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