AUGUSTA - Yesterday Angus King’s campaign released a deceptive summary that overstated the amount of taxes paid over the last seven years. Tax returns released later last evening show that the millionaire former governor actually paid a lower tax rate than GOP Presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
Records show King’s effective tax rate on nearly $4 million in income over seven years was 15%. His lowest rate was 12%, in 2010. By comparison, Mitt Romney’s campaign reports that the presidential candidate paid 20.2 percent over a nine-year period, with a low year of 13%.
On September 22, King’s campaign sent out a press release attacking Charlie Summers’ call for lower taxes on investment. In the release, King’s campaign criticizes Romney’s tax rate:
“This comes on the heels of Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney’s release of his personal financial records showing he is taxed at a much lower rate than many working Americans.”
King’s campaign circulated a memo yesterday afternoon, claiming that King’s effective tax rate was 22.2 percent. This is not accurate. King’s memo computes his rate based on net income after deductions and loopholes, artificially lowering his gross income and effectively raising his perceived tax rate. His taxes paid should have been divided into his Adjusted Gross Income (AGI), not his net income after loopholes.
“I stopped being surprised by this kind of behavior from King a while ago,” said Maine Republican Party spokesman David Sorensen. “This is the latest incident in an evolving pattern of Angus King trying to mislead Mainers. From taking his opponent’s words out of context in his attack ad to doctoring a newspaper article on his website to citing false informationabout his governorship, there seems to be no limit to the lengths Angus will go to in order to get himself elected.”
The Maine press, which apparently failed to check King’s summary numbers, reported the false rate of 22.2 percent extensively. King released the summary several hours before releasing the actual returns to the general public—well after initial stories ran with the incorrect rate.