Letter: Mitt Romney declined salary while Gov., Obamas spend taxpayer money on vacations


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  • freedomingood provo, Utah
    Aug. 10, 2012 6:49 p.m.

    Rights are pretty much whatever we decide to make rights.

    "Healthcare is not a right", really? I should have the right to skip the Doctor and treat myself. What right do you have to keep me from healing myself?

    I don't see conservatives as proponents of people self-administering all available drugs and remedies as was largly the practice in 1776.

    If we require everyone to go through a doctor, then everyone has the right to see and afford a doctor.

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 10:18 p.m.

    Charity is not a "right". Health care is not a "right". Redistributing wealth is not a "right" of the government.

    How many people have stopped reading the Constitution simply because Obama tells us that he is a Constitutional scholar?

    He doesn't know the difference between "general welfare" and "private welfare". He hasn't read Ariticle 1, Section 8 (and if he has read it, he ignores it, just like he ignores his duty as President to execute the laws of this nation - including DOM and deporting illegal immigrants).

    Obama has increased the deficit by $5 TRILLION, much of which is "private welfare" 47% of Americans are receiving government aid or one kind or another.

    Those who know nothing about running a business will tell you to raise taxes. What other President has raised taxes with true unemployment running at over 15%? What other President has instituted class warfare as part of his campaign? What other President tells people to covet things that they do not own and will not work for?

    Raising taxes will decrease the amount of money available for charitable contributions. Obama doesn't care. He thinks giving is something for others to do.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 9:11 p.m.

    By the way, the photo with this story shows a beautiful, happy family that sets a great example for all Americans/

  • Hank Pym SLC, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 7:56 p.m.

    To Mike R (9:52 a.m. Aug. 9, 2012)...

    Turnabout being fairplay. Care to disclose yours?

  • Mister J SLC, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 7:53 p.m.

    Why would Willard need public servants salary when he accounts in the Caymans, Bermuda, Switzerland, etc...?

  • freedomingood provo, Utah
    Aug. 9, 2012 7:10 p.m.

    Fine Mike, I say tax the megachurches instead. They sure haven't been much of a force in helping the poor or keeping people employed for the hundreds of billions they take in every year. They may as well help pay down the debt.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 6:17 p.m.

    He should not get the nomination if no tax returns.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 4:26 p.m.

    "If you think that 2% or 5% is enough, then why would you support Obama's demand that the rich give 38% of their profits to the government so that the GOVERNMENT can give charity to the poor?"

    What exactly are you talking about?

    Taxes? Those are charities.

    Health care? That certainly isn't charity but a right. We need a single payer system ASAP. Our current health care system is completely failing. 30+ million aren't insured, folks are going bankrupt, we pay twice as much as anybody else, etc.

  • Grundle West Jordan, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 2:54 p.m.

    Oh...one more thing...This nonsense about tax returns, school transcripts, and birth certificates?

    There is a vetting process for candidates. They have to prove their "fitness" for office in several venues. The constitution demands that the president must be a natural born citizen of the US so the birther issue, first raised by the Clintons, is ridiculous. Election law asks for disclosures and both candidates have met the requirements. Romney and Obama have been in the public eye for some time and so far...No earth shattering revelations.

    Do you people who raise such noise about tax returns think that the IRS has NOT looked into Romney's tax situation? Of course they have!

    Let’s move on and discuss the real issues here...like the economy!

  • Grundle West Jordan, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 2:46 p.m.

    Those that like Obama/Romney...like him and will find any justification for doing so.

    Those that dislike Obama/Romney...dislike him and will find any justification for doing so.

    Instead...We can look at what works (I know...it takes effort!) and vote for the person that most closely aligns with what works.

    For some it is social issues, for other economic, and for others, something else.

    What really drives our banter back and forth here is the clash of our values. My values are better than your values and on it goes...

    For me, it is about wealth creation (not wealth distribution!) When there is wealth creation, everybody benefits. Black, white, young, old, gay, straight and so on. The free-market system has created more wealth than any other system in the history of this planet.

    So...When I look at the candidates, I look for the potential of wealth creation.

    You might look for something else.

    I hear there is a poll being taken this November than is wholly voluntary. The direction our country will lean in for the subsequent four years will be determined by this poll.

    I look forward to it!

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 1:56 p.m.

    @Mike Richards
    Did you seriously just ask how many years of tax returns Obama released onto to later detail Obama's charitable contributions from 10 years worth of tax returns? I think you may have your answer there... and I'd be plenty happy with Romney disclosing only as many years as Obama.

    "then why would you support Obama's demand that the rich give 38% of their profits to the government so that the GOVERNMENT can give charity to the poor?"

    In case you haven't noticed, we have trillion dollar deficits. Setting tax rates equivalent to what they were under Clinton when we last had a balanced budget seems to be the reasonable assessment of what "doing our part" is.

  • Curmudgeon Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 1:36 p.m.

    Hey, let's give Romney a break. He must be hiding his tax returns so he won't have to reveal how much he donates to charity, which according to Jesus is supposed to be a secret:

    "Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: That thine aalms may be in secret . . . ." Matt. 6:1-4

    It couldn't be that he wants to hide his astute use of tax loopholes, his foreign bank accounts, or the fact that he actually paid no taxes during most if not all of the last 10 years. Nah, not that.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 1:03 p.m.

    It is great to make that wonderful gesture to "donate" your salary when you make 250 million per year. That doesn't necessarily impress me. I will judge Romney on other matters. I can say that he does give a lot to his church, which does great work and he should be praised more for that. He has donated to other charitable efforts and should be praised for that. With President Obama, he takes vacations like all Presidents. This requires some amount of secret service protection and I guess some expense to the government. So what, other past presidents have been granted this same privilege. This is not an issue. I would be more impressed if he donated more to charity. Oh well. I guess he could donate his salary to the government or a charity but based on last year's term, he is one of the rare Presidents where the majority of his actual salary was being President.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    Aug. 9, 2012 12:51 p.m.

    Hey MIke Richards 9:52.

    Did you get that information from the tax returns that Obama made public? I'll bet you or someone else did. Wouldn't it be nice if.... Oh well, it's just a dream.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 9, 2012 12:33 p.m.


    If you think that 2% or 5% is enough, then why would you support Obama's demand that the rich give 38% of their profits to the government so that the GOVERNMENT can give charity to the poor?

    Obama has called for an end to the Bush tax cuts. That means that people like him will pay at least 5% MORE to the government than they are now paying. That means that unless they show more charity than they do know, charitable organizations will be hurt, which means that those organizations will have even less to give to the poor - which means that more people will have their hands out to Washington for assistance - which means that Obama will have to raise rates again!

    Do you see the progression?

    When Obama does what he's demanding that we do, he will give 50% or more to charity, after all, we're paying his rent. We're paying for his meals. We're paying for his transportation. It doesn't take $450,000 a year to clothe a family of four. He can open his wallet and show us what it means to care about the poor.

  • freedomingood provo, Utah
    Aug. 9, 2012 11:56 a.m.

    So thanks Mike,

    You have shown me that Obama gives to charity. Quite a bit more than the national average of 2%. What's your point?

    All you have been claiming and can claim is that supposidly republicans deduct on average more charitable giving on thier taxes. That hardly means they help the needy around them more than liberals. Giving money to a megachurch preacher that sells you the gospel of prosperity and bigotry is hardly charitable.

    Most acts of true charity don't come with a receipt.

  • Henderson Orem, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 11:31 a.m.

    Funny. I never recall a letter written by Frank describing his outrage for Bush's vacation days, lack of a birth certificate, or scholarly information.

    Why did this stuff suddenly become important when a black Democrat became President?

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Aug. 9, 2012 10:58 a.m.

    When Pres. Obama goes on vacation they pay for their own living quarters. What taxpayers pick up is the tab for the security that accompanies them, as with every other President.

    I think it is very important for every Pres. to get away from the "bubble" of Washington. I'm sure, too, they never truly get away from their job.

    Now if we want to compare how many vacation days various Pres. have taken we could do that. (Reagan and George W. Bush hold the record for most number of days).
    If we want to compare the costs and distances we could do that too--adjusting for inflation of course. But really, don't we have more important issues to focus on?

  • embarrassed Utahn! Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 9:57 a.m.

    ....and Senator Mike Lee commends and brags about Utah's Super Patriots with extra genes.

    In my opinion, the attitude held by Mr. Overfelt is very commonplace here.

    There is nothing patriotic about this letter and many others I've read here.

    Super Hyper-Partisanship and staying in line with the neighbors is the norm, in my opinion.

    Learn about patriotism.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 9, 2012 9:52 a.m.

    In 2000, with income of $240,505, Obama gave $2,350 to charity. (1%)

    In 2001, with income of $259,394, Obama gave $1,050 to charity. (0.4%)

    In 2002, with income of $238,357, Obama gave $3,400 to charity. (1.4%)

    In 2003, with income of $207,647, Obama gave $2,500 to charity. (1.2%)

    In 2004, with income of $1,655,106, Obama gave $77,315 to charity. (4.6%)

    In 2005, with income of $983,826, Obama gave $60,307 to charity. (6%)

    In 2006, with income of $4,139,965, Obama gave $240,370 to charity. (5.8%)

    In 2007, with income of $2,656,902, Obama gave $172,050 to charity. (6.4%)

    In 2008, with income of $5,505,409, Obama gave $329,100 to charity. (6%)

    In 2009, with income of $1,728,096, Obama gave $245,075 to charity. (14%)

    By all standards, Obama is one of the "rich guys". Just how much did he give to help the poor that he wants you and me to support?

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 8:14 a.m.

    Mike Richards,

    President Obama released his tax returns from 2000 - 2011. That's documented, easy to find with a few search terms on google. If the DesNews would allow it, I'd post the URL, but they don't.

    Mitt Romney's father released 12 years' returns when he ran for president.

    Mitt Romney is the only presidential candidate in US history to have offshore bank accounts. I think we have a right to understand why.

    When the other people you mention campaign for president, we can ask about their tax returns then, too.

    Right now, the focus is appropriately on Romney and his unprecedented refusal to provide tax returns so voters can see if he's walking the walk, or just talking the talk.

    His refusal to provide tax returns causes most Americans to suspect that he's hiding something.

  • Gildas LOGAN, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 8:08 a.m.

    I didn't know that Mr Romney had waived his government salary. That makes me like him better. It is at least one thing he has in common with Ron Paul.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Aug. 9, 2012 7:53 a.m.

    What is absurd is that Democrats demand more from Romney than they demand from Obama. How many years of tax returns has Obama released? How much truth has he released about the real estate deal with Tony Rezko? Why did he tell us that Bill Ayers was just an acquaintance?

    As far as that goes, how did Harry Reid amass more than $10 million on a salary that is less than $200 a year? Where did Nancy Pelosi get her $58 million? How about Diana Feinstein? How did her net worth jump from $26 million in 2003 to $99 million in 2005?

    If all the Democrats can do is point fingers and blame Bush, they're just proving that they are incapable of doing anything except "passing the buck".

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 7:47 a.m.

    Thanks for the laugh, Frank.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    Aug. 9, 2012 7:44 a.m.

    I don't begrudge any president their "vacations" (they are nearly all working vacations anyway). It is the toughest job in America and possibly the world. I want a commander in chief who is well rested and able to make critical decisions with all of his or her faculties.

  • liberal larry salt lake City, utah
    Aug. 9, 2012 7:11 a.m.

    It looks like Bush is the "vacation king" having spent approximately 125 million dollars flying from the White House to his ranch in Air Force One.

    Speaking of transparency I would really like Romney to release his water bills. They keep asking us to conserve water, and I got to thinking that Mitt must use a gigantic amount of water in his 4 or 5 homes! (Now that he has sold his 11 acre mega mansion in Park City, he may be down to only on 3 or 4 homes.) Since won't release his tax returns it's time for us to call for the release of his water bills!

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 6:38 a.m.

    This is absurd. Will you demand any president, Bush, Reagan, etc., reimburse the government for protection and other things related to the office, including when they take a break. You want a different standard for Obama. And speaking of different standards, have you ever seen college applications, transcripts, and other things for any other leader? So why this for Obama? It is either desperation of his opponents, or it is racism. Probably both.

  • freedomingood provo, Utah
    Aug. 9, 2012 6:27 a.m.

    You don't really get the idea of equivelency. See Obama HAS released his tax returns, Mitt only one year.

    Obama HAS posted his birth certificate online and before that it was certified by the state of Hawaii- Mitt has not done that has he? No.

    Mitt has not released HIS school records so why are you asking for Obama's when Mitt hasn't offered his up? Mitt allready has some catching up to do.

    Catch up. We know a lot about Obama's school life. We know Romney was forcfully cutting off the hair of his classmate. The same classmate got kicked out of school later for smoking a cigarette but not Romney. Nothing happened to him for assaulting someone.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 6:22 a.m.

    What if the returns show he deducted his Olympic time as a charitable deduction. Was his not taking a salary an earlier attempt to shield his offshore tax deals? Maybe he could lead the top one percenters to further reduced taxe rates if his tax methods are disclosed.

  • embarrassed Utahn! Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 4:56 a.m.

    I don't know how much President Obama spent on vacations, but I'm sure it wasn't as much as he deserved.

    This President is a great man that I'm extremely proud to call My President!

    Please be respectful of our president and most importantly, enjoy his next term!

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Aug. 9, 2012 4:55 a.m.

    Too Funny Frank.

    Just so I understand, Should College Transcripts and SS apps be required for everyone, or just Obama?

    Do you want the same from Romney? If not, please explain the disconnect.

    Lastly, can you tell me how much Taxpayer money Obama has spent on vacations?

    Once you do that, can you then tell us the same figure for Bush, Clinton and Bush 1.

    That would be helpful to determine if it is out of line with other presidents and if you really have a valid point.

    I assume that you know, right?

    I honestly don't know how much each spent, but, then I'm not sending in letters about it to a newspaper.

  • Happy Dem Taylorsville, UT
    Aug. 9, 2012 2:24 a.m.

    How ridiculous. Duh! The presidents do get a salary and can use that for vacations. Besides look at the hundreds of vacations and time off that Bush took. I'd like to see you work under as much stress as the presidents and not take time off.