Criminal Investigation? Mitt Romney’s Disclosure Form Under Scrutiny
MoveOn.org (with the support of its over 7 million members) has sent a legal analysis to the Department of Justice (DOJ) urging investigation into possible criminal misrepresentation that Romney made in his Federal Financial Disclosure Filings in 2011. MoveOn’s document was examined and seconded by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW). MoveOn.org says they have substantial evidence that Romney was still involved with Bain after February of 1999. If MoveOn is right, Romney could be prosecuted under the federal False Statements Act for a felony. Did Mitt Romney lie to the SEC? Why does he not deserve as much scrutiny as President Obama?
I can hear my Republican friends saying (yes, I do have Republican friends) that MoveOn.org is a left wing, biased organization that is pulling some shenanigans right before the election. They are partisan, but it doesn’t make them wrong. A good friend of mine recently said, “People’s minds are made up, they already know who they’re going to vote for.” Again this is true, but maybe there are people out there who read what the other side is saying and keep an open mind. We can only hope.
So let’s take a look at some facts. There has always been political slander and pandering but it’s at an all-time high and heavily weighted in favor of the GOP. The right wing media (FOX) is still talking about Obama’s birth certificate and college transcripts. Romney makes jokes about not being asked for his birth certificate. Yet no president or contender has ever been so disrespected by the public and its politicians as Obama. Has a politician ever shoved a finger in another president’s face or yelled out while the president was talking and called him a liar? There have been issues about presidents’ faith before but never have they been accused of secretly being another religion. Obama has posted his tax returns for the last 12 years (again, something no other president has done), yet Romney refuses to show his. Now he did release a summary of his tax returns for 20 years, but they’re incomplete and seem pretty shady.
Why is Romney not held accountable to the same standards? And don’t get me started on the flip-flopping. Yeah, politicians in general don’t always live up to their promises and people are allowed to change their minds, certainly if new information is presented, but Romney takes it to a whole other level. And what is the GOP’s response when their statements are confronted with facts? “We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers.” Would Obama get away with that? Granted, Newhouse was saying that the fact checkers were biased but fails to back up her claims. The unemployment numbers finally dropped below 8% and the Republican’s scream conspiracy. Maybe if Obama didn’t have to work with an obstructionist party it would have gone down sooner, but to shit all over everything the man does, especially when it’s an undeniable positive for the country, is just… well… shitty. There’s only so many times you can cry wolf Republican’ts. But I guess when you control the narrative…
Romney says he left Bain in February of 1999, even though he still owned 100% of the company through 2002. Marc B. Wolpow, who came to Bain in 1990 from Drexel Burnham, the infamous junk bond company, says: “I reported directly to Mitt Romney . . . You can’t be CEO of Bain Capital and say, `I really don’t know what my guys were doing.’ ” According to the MoveOn document: On May 2, 2000, a group of Bain entities filed a Form 13D with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The Form stated that, “Bain, is the sole managing partner of the BCIP entities. Mr. W. Mitt Romney is the sole shareholder, sole director, Chief Executive Officer and President of Bain Capital and thus is the controlling person of Bain Capital.” Basically these forms say Bain did some deals and Mitt was in on it. He would have had to be included on whether or not to do the deal, had votes, talked about pricing, tried to see if there was a way to export jobs, etc… because he was the CEO. Let me say that again, HE WAS THE CEO. According to financial disclosure forms that Romney had to file as Governor of Massachusetts, in 2001 and 2002 he made $100,000 a year from Bain. Where do I get a job making $100 grand a year for doing nothing?
Now Romney says he was too busy ‘saving’ the Olympics to be involved with Bain but hesigned documents related to Bain deals after February of 1999. You could argue that he signed these documents because he was just following through on some stuff that was related to his time at Bain. The thing is, Romney was identified as the sole “controlling person” of Bain and its entities which contradicts that his titles, after February of 1999, were just for show. Bain was living in Delaware (’cause corporations are people too, right Mitt?) during the time of the filings. According to the MoveOn document, Delaware law stipulates that directors and officers of the company have duties of care and loyalty including reasonable oversight and making informed business decisions. There is an exception, saying that the company can specify that a particular director/officer not have any duties; “it does not seem possible, however, for the sole director of a company to be relieved of the basic duty to exercise oversight over corporate affairs and operations, since such a structure would effectively mean the corporation had no directors—a clear violation of Delaware law.” Romney signed the filings as thesole shareholder which gives “him alone the ultimate power to make those acquisitions, to vote the acquired stock, and to dispose of it.”
Sorry for all the legal jargon, it’s putting me to sleep too, but it’s important to know for a couple of reasons. It kind of looks like he lied to the SEC (which is a federal crime) and to the public. It’s not surprising that the SEC might have missed this little mistake. The SEC is funded by Congress, which has been underfunding them as of late. The Dodd-Frank act increased the SEC’s workload significantly. At the same time, trading volume doubled, the number of investment advisers climbed 50% and the assets they managed jumped 60%. Maybe if the SEC was allowed to keep the fines it imposes on those who break the law it might actually be able to do its job. In some years, the agency has taken in almost twice the regulatory fees as Congress has provided it in funding. But let’s get back to how Mittens can bold face lie to the American people without repercussions.
An evangelical blogger, with some help, chronicles 533 lies told by Romney in 30 weeks. It’s gotta be that magic underwear he has. How did he get them again? Oh yeah, he was born with them. No, I’m not talking about the Mormon underwear. I’m talking about that gold plated, self-cleaning, minty fresh, you’re fired, dolla dolla bills y’all. Because again, that’s what it always boils down to. Whether he’s buying voting machine’s that favor the GOP or talking heads on FOX or using it to clean up his OOPS moments, it always boils down to the money. And he’s got a lot of it.
It’s worth noting that while MoveOn.org is a partisan organization Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, while funded by George Soros, is not. CREW was also involved in ousting Rupert Murdoch in the UK as unfit to run an international company. They are working in conjunction with MoveOn to get ethics complaints to the House Ethics Committee.
So, will any of the above make a difference come election time? Probably not. Can I tell as many people as possible about the goings on of Baron Von Pantsonfire? Damn straight I can.