Romney's spokesman, Eric Fehrnstrom, said that Romney would not be responding because "he values his privacy and his wife's privacy." A few minutes later, pressed on whether he benefited financially in Utah by filing as a resident there and a nonresident in Massachusetts, he said: "That's as far as I'm telling you, that's it. That's the answer I'm going to give you, and that's all I got" (Boston Globe, 6/8/02, "Tax Benefit Unclear and Candidate Mum").Of course that pattern of behavior now looks very familiar. Also according to now-familiar type: Romney's response to being subject to scrutiny. During his testimony before the Massachusetts Ballot Commission, his attorney drew the waterworks. The Boston Globe's Stephanie Ebbert reported on June 19, 2002 ("Romney Taxes Show No 'Domicile')":
A defiant Romney - who was on the stand for nearly 2 1/2 hours yesterday - grew emotional during questioning by his lawyer, when asked about Democrats' suggestions that he has not been truthful about his personal information and residency.It's hard to pass on such legacy when you're caught out lying. From the same Globe story:
"Well, it really makes me feel sick, to tell you the truth. There's nothing . . . ," he said, then paused for about 10 seconds and looked down, appearing to tear up.
"There's nothing more important to me than my reputation for integrity," he continued. "I inherited a great reputation from my mother and father, and I plan on giving one to my kids."
Romney acknowledged under oath yesterday that he filed income taxes as a part-time resident of Massachusetts in 1999 and a nonresident in 2000.Change your story and status retroactively; stonewall and cry persecution when called out for it. Sound familiar?
In April, after he announced he would run for governor, he amended the returns to claim Massachusetts residency, he confirmed under oath. When the Globe first raised the issue, Romney initially said he had filed as a resident of both states. He later revised that position.
Democrats also yesterday introduced an affidavit from a Utah reporter who wrote in 2000 that Romney had told her he had declared his Utah house "his primary residence for tax purposes." Deseret News reporter Lisa Riley Roche provided an affidavit stating that the article was, to her knowledge, a "fair and accurate representation" of what Romney told her in an interview. Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom said Romney had been talking about his status as a Utah resident for income tax purposes, not property taxes.