CNN Edits Out Confirmation of Harry Reid’s Romney Tax Returns Source

Last night on Anderson Cooper’s 360 Degrees, CNN Senior Congressional correspondent Dana Bash confirmed that a second source claims Harry Reid’s source is a “credible person” who has the “authority and ability to know about Romney’s tax returns.” Bash’s confirmation of a second source was cut out of CNN’s online video in order to make room for a he-said she-said debate on the issue between Paul Begala and Mary Matalin.

Bash’s confirmation was largely ignored by Cooper, who was busy making false equivocations of Reid’s allegations to Michele Bachmann writing letters to governmental agencies calling for investigations of American citizens.

Here’s Dana Bash confirming a second source in the ten year no taxes allegation (it was cut out of the online video), transcript via CNN, emphasis mine:

BASH: It’s very personal and it is very Harry Reid. Look, first of all, let me just back up and say you pointed out the interview he gave with the “Huffington Post.” Again evidence, it’s a friendly outlet. They did it — he did this very strategically.

In terms of the personal, that is Harry Reid. I mean he — when he wanted to go after Alan Greenspan, he called him the partisan hack. When he went after President Bush, he called him a liar and a loser. He apologized for the loser part, not for liar.

But this is — when Harry Reid doesn’t like somebody, he goes for the jugular. And that is what he is doing now. He is an old boxer and he still likes to be a political street fighter. He knew full well that he was going to be questioned over and over again on who his source was. And he said — he’s told people close to him who I have spoken today that he didn’t care. He’s not telling going to tell who his source is.

But I did speak, I just have to tell you, that I did speak to one source who’s very close to Senator Reid who claims to also know who this Bain investor is that Reid spoke with, and insists that this is a credible person and this person if we knew the name we would understand that they would have the authority and the ability to know about Romney’s tax returns. Whether we’ll find it out ever, who knows. But they’re doing this on purpose so that this is the discussion.

Here’s the video where CNN, while claiming a lack of partisanship even after their rash of tea party hires and rather desperate attempt to emulate Fox News, chose not to include Dana Bash’s rather pertinent news re a second source, but instead chose the he-said she-said debate of meaningless talking points between Republican strategist Mary Matalin and Democratic strategist Paul Begala:

It’s ironic that Republican strategist Mary Matalin was busy claiming that Reid was putting the burden of proof on the accused – sort of like Republicans have been doing for years now, but more to the point, Mitt Romney as a candidate for President should have released his tax returns of his own volition.

Romney shouldn’t have to be forced into it. Romney is not the accused victim here — he made a decision to run for President, a job where every other candidate releases their tax returns, and he thought he could get away with not disclosing his tax returns. Romney made a choice to run for President knowing that he would not disclose his returns. He didn’t even disclose the one year he has given us thus far until he was pressured into it during the primaries.

Cooper, who isn’t to blame for CNN’s editing choices and is normally excellent, started off the Reid segment with this false equivocation, “For weeks, we’ve reported on Michele Bachmann and her four Republican House colleagues who are making unfounded allegations about Islamic radicals infiltrating the U.S. government. Making claims about relatives of Huma Abedin, a top aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Well, the standard should be no different for Democrats, independents, libertarians or anyone. Extraordinary allegations require extraordinary proof, or frankly any kind of proof. Michele Bachmann and company don’t even have ordinary proof, and neither so far does Senator Harry Reid. ”

Just to set the record straight, the two are not the same. Extraordinary allegations are one thing, McCarthy-esque calls for a government sanctioned witch hunt are another. This is not a fine point, but a rather glaring discrepancy. There is a reason Republicans were up in arms with Bachmann over the Huma Abedin allegations, and it had nothing to do with her making extraordinary allegations as she has done repeatedly in the not too distant past. She once called for an investigation of all Democrats in Congress on national TV, but she didn’t write to a government agency to actually put her witch hunt into motion as she did with Abelin.

Asking a government agency to investigate Americans based on nothing but their ethnicity is not the same thing as suggesting that Mitt Romney, who has refused to release his tax returns as every other candidate has done since his own father, isn’t releasing them because he didn’t pay taxes for ten years.

See, one thing is crazy and the other is plausible. Also, one thing is a call for an investigation ala McCarthy, and the other is a politician playing politics. For examples of unsourced allegations made by elected representatives, Cooper can see elected Republicans accusing Obama of gun running, of not having provided a valid birth certificate, of not having gone to Harvard, and calling for his impeachment over things that never happened just for starters. How about the very recent unproven charges against AG Eric Holder, with House Republicans charging him with contempt with no proof?

How does Cooper find an equivalency between Bachmann’s Abedin and Reid’s ten years of unpaid taxes? Did Reid, with no evidence, use his power as a government official to write the IRS and demand an investigation of Romney?

No, Reid didn’t do anything of the sort. Harry Reid is playing politics here, and he’s playing hardball. He knows Mitt Romney refuses to disclose his tax returns, so Romney can’t defend himself. Whose choice was that? It would be one thing if this was over an issue that was not the voters business, but Romney’s tax returns have historically been our business.

Romney claims special privilege, and so he has to pay the cost. The cost is that people are going to spend their time, as many pundits have, wondering WHY he will not disclose them. The best and most generous assessments have been that he didn’t do anything illegal, but probably didn’t pay much in taxes – he probably took advantage of every legal tax loophole out there. Mind you, this is the generous assessment.

But when a candidate will not disclose the most cursory of information, he can hardly be outraged when people speculate as to why. Romney left himself open to attack on this matter, and Reid isn’t going to let go.

Whether or not Dana’s second source who claims, “if we knew the name we would understand that they would have the authority and the ability to know about Romney’s tax returns” is accurate is another question – but it appears as if Romney may have a leak in the upper echelon of the Mormon church. And what if both the second source and Reid are right? It’s hardly a new concept that Romney probably didn’t pay much in taxes. His 2010 return was amended and even then he didn’t even pay 15%.

We now have two people claiming that the Reid source is solid. Why won’t Mitt Romney release the tax returns? President Obama had to release his long form birth certificate at the incessant request of “confused” Republicans who couldn’t read the first one or the Hawaiian papers, for heaven’s sake. These folks are hardly standing on solid ground as they play outraged and I’m unclear as to why Mitt Romney should be granted special privileges regarding disclosures.

Updated: 7:53 to correct the spelling of Huma Abedin’s name.

29 Replies to “CNN Edits Out Confirmation of Harry Reid’s Romney Tax Returns Source”

  1. I’m actually beginning to believe that Romney is not serious about being elected–not serious enough to give up even one drop of ‘private’ information about himself, and not serious enough to spend even one single dollar of his own.

    Last time around, he put in $46 million of his own money; I think this still galls him, him of the penny-pinching ways. I think he may be using the election to hit up a bunch of rich peers to pay back his failed 2008 campaign’s losses.

    He won’t bend to public will to know; that means he won’t be president. Pure and simple. AND HE DOESN”T CARE.

  2. CNN, get rid of the Paul Begala’s and Mary Matalin’s. Seriously.. we don’t need them. They just spew talking points half of the time and lie the other half. I know it gets you called “lefties” when you stick to the facts, but we really need some reality based journalism again in the U.S. When we have is constant dribble and not enough fact checking.

  3. So, a CNN correspondent says, “But I did speak, I just have to tell you, that I did speak to one source who’s very close to Senator Reid who claims to also know who this Bain investor is that Reid spoke with, and insists that this is a credible person and this person if we knew the name we would understand that they would have the authority and the ability to know about Romney’s tax returns,” and you’re touting this as some kind of confirmation? Please. Being partisan is fine. Everyone is these days, but at least be intelligent about it. Confirmation would be if the person Senator Reid allegedly received the information from were named so that that person could himself/herself be questioned as to its authenticity. A news correspondent’s having spoken with someone supposedly “close” to the Senator who merely repackages his allegation and claims to know the source, also without naming the source, is pure b.s.

    Obviously, Romney hasn’t released any more financial data (tax returns and otherwise) because he knows it would be politically damaging to him to do so. Just as obviously, he isn’t about to release said information under pressure from the media, and there is no law to compel him to do so. Has he skated completely on paying his taxes? I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if he has. But articles like this do nothing to prove Reid’s assertion, and in fact may drive some swing voters the other way, since this is looking more and more like a witchhunt every day whether it actually is or not.

  4. Lol you concern trolls crack me up. A second source isn’t news and people shouldn’t report it because it might lose independents to Romney if there us a source confirming Reid? Did I get that right pretzel twist?

    Sarah never claimed the source was right either. You should check your eyes.

  5. Romney refusing to release his tax returns as has been done by every Presidential Candidate since his father ran then whining EVERY SINGLE DAY that he’s being unfairly picked upon is BS.

    The fact is, if you lay a great big juicy untold story in front of people, people are going to talk.

  6. I think the things you cited in your post are the reasons that have contributed to CNN’s sharply declining ratings. I must applaud you for your search for truth in news reporting because although I vote for democrats most of the time, you and I share the same thirst for truth about politics and our politicians. I don’t view truth as a left or right issue because truth has no political affiliation. Something is either true, or it’s false, and facts are facts.

  7. Were people questioning whether or not she had been molesting children before you posted that on the internet, and is she refusing to release proof positive that she hasn’t.

    Don’t expect the rest of the world to be as naive as you. It’s insulting.

  8. Harry Reid is a hero! He is trying to save America! Reid, a dead serious ‘Scorpio’…would never mention this information lightly…he must have true/solid facts.
    Harry Reid was a Boxer in his youth and he knows full well….how to go in for the kill when the chance/timing is right.
    The more time RMoney denies this issue…the more doubt American Voter’s will have voting for him!

  9. I don’t care whether Romney releases more of this tax returns and financial statements or not. The latest Pew Poll shows that it has had a negative impact on his favorability rating. He now has an unfavorable rating over 50%. I think he could have weathered the storm had he released additional tax returns and financial statements because it would have shown him as someone who doesn’t feel the need to conceal things from the American people. I also think that by taking a stubborn stance on these two things, he made himself appear secretive and not a person who really believes in transparency. Most people don’t like intransigence in a presidential candidate, and they can immediately spot the hypocrisy in a candidate who accuses the other candidate of not being transparent while he/she is concealing things from the public him/herself. The present set of bad circumstances in which Romney finds himself can be attributed to his own decisions. He ignored the calls from members of his own party to release more tax records and financial documents because of his own arrogance in believing that he could draw a line in the sand, refuse to reveal to the people what most of them want to know, and get away with it. Even a majority of independents think Romney should release more tax records and financial documents.

  10. Either Romney thinks something will force him into the presidency (Diebold?), or there is something more going on here.

    What if he was acting like a placeholder for another candidate, one with much to hide but trying to stay under the radar as long as possible (in hopes it doesn’t come out until it’s too late). Maybe Jeb Bush, or someone else who hasn’t been even vetted yet. He’ll catch all of the lightning and then when the new person comes along, they’ll use the excuse “Romney was eviscerated and now they’re trying to do it to ______”.

    I wouldn’t put that sort of nasty planning past the Republicans. I’m sure they’ve read Machiavelli and studied all sorts of unethical (and unlawful) ways of winning.

    As far as CNN, I don’t have much of an opinion of their reporting anyway. Ignoring important facts HAS been a common practice with our News providers anyway – for generations.

  11. I was a constituent of Leader Reid for a few years. I have nothing but the utmost respect for him. He and Romney are of the same faith, LDS, but unlike Romney, Senator Reid adheres to total honesty. He would not falsely accuse anyone. He is a hero! Most of the talking heads have beaten the Democrats down for not fighting back or standing up to the Republicans, and now that Leader Reid has, he is being labeled wrongly by the likes of CNN, and any one else of the Republican bend.

    Thank you, Senator Harry Reid for being a real fighter! You got em against the ropes they have to lie to hide their tracks but it isn’t working!


  12. Very interesting comment Walkaway!
    Many are saying RMoney won’t make it past the Convention…and what better way to introduce Jeb Bush…with less time for people to be reminded of the previous Bush Damage and Horror.

  13. Even the items you appear to cite as more valid comparisons are off the mark. The examples in the 6th paragraph after the video such as the birth certificate are complete nonsense whereas Reid said he had an authoritative source about a legitimate concern. The others are products of conspiracy theories.

  14. I could also say I heard you had brushed your teeth with Fels Naptha to insure you would never make a gratuitously libellous remark like that again, and that wouldn’t make it true…yet

  15. Watch Rachel Maddow tonight. She said she has some block-busting news on this issue, romney’s taxes. Tonight she is leading off with this. Maybe Sarah is coming on her show. The video won’t be cut. Rachel normally has things on that you won’t hear else where.

  16. All references to child molestation in this thread are demeaning and offensive to the real victims of abuse. There is no comparison between allegations of child molestation and tax returns. The comments have been removed, and the next person who goes there will be banned.

  17. I used to watch CNN all the time. Then I started noticing a distinct shift in their reporting. I still watched just to make sure in my own mind just what I was witnessing, then I saw all the new programs and hires they had chosen. I watched once and that was enough for me to realize I was watching seriously biased programs where they were not before. I do not pay any attention to this programming anymore. Now especially with the above-mentioned editing.

  18. Funny thing just popped into my mind. Anybody here old enough to remember “Deep Throat”? LOL think about it….

  19. I don’t think it necessarily will be Bushie-3…but
    I do agree that they will throw someone out there who can’t be vetted and it will blow up in their face like Herman Cain. Remember, we have a 24/7 news cycle that blows lids off faster that a wack-a-mole game.

    I think they “try” to will insert someone with more “charisma” as that is how they’ve ALWAYS plan to whoo the masses; they need a charismatic with a dumb-down message a “pretty face” in order to sway votes and sweep the country with fervor…and, then steal via Diabold! Sure, Mitt is “pretty” but he has no personality…opps. Palin had personality but no brains, etc. (go down the list)

    They’ve already shown us all their “cards” (white only) and intend to hold them close in case of a brokered convention. Most of the “pretty boys” know this election is over and won’t do it…it will be someone like a mob boss, like Christie as he is supposedly “wildly popular”. They need a “Stalin” type to appeal to the masses as the 1% is already in the bag as well as the 15-20% fundametalist/bagger vote.

    All we can do is watch and wait what “the board” behind the curtain decides to do.

  20. …”Reid just happens to be the highest-ranking member of the Mormon Church in the history of this nation. It is likely that Senator Reid’s source shares the Mormon religion with Reid and Romney. That message will not be lost on Romney…”

    I swiped this from the link because I think this is a, rather, the most valid posit.

    I’ve said a dozen times that Romney won’t release due to his Mormon connections that tie accounts to their non-profit and shady Bain investments; again, speculation. It is obvious that the “church” does not like the spot-light on Romney when it comes to “da money”…secret is thy name.

    Reid knows this…as soon as I heard that soft-spoken Reid made the accusation it was an “ah-ha moment”; this was a Mormon-mono-Mormon message from Reid to Romney:

    “Ya’ have to ask yourself, are ya’ feelin’ lucky, punk?…”

  21. Watching the clip of Cooper and Matalin trying to defend Mitt Robbed-me is PATHETIC….I’ve never watched CNN much and now I realize ” I HAVE’NT MISSED MUCH “….it’s a DAMN SHAME that Cooper calls himself a ” JOURNALIST ” or does he ???

  22. As they say….” that dog won’t hunt “…..If the MORON CLUB comes up with a different candidate it won’t matter….you have subtly been drawn into the narrative thats being put out by the ” SO CALLED MEDIA “…..” they won’t have time…blah blah blah….WTF

  23. Obviously, there is something in the returns that Romney doesn’t want American voters to see. Illegal? Probably not. Unethical? Absolutely. Did he get amnesty for his Swiss bank account? Was he paid by Bain while he was “retroactively retired?” What tax rate did he pay? How did he get $100 million in an IRA? Remember, this is a guy who promoted the Viet Nam war but avoided service. This is a guy who used to be a moderate Republican, but now panders to the Tea Party.

  24. .We hear nothing from McCain. Supposedly he was given 23 yrs of tax returns. We how do we know what he gave McCain was right also. If Mittens lies to us what makes you think he told the truth to McCain.

  25. I’m too lazy to read all of the wonderful comments, so excuse me if someone has already pointed this out but…

    Here’s the difference between Reid’s and Bachmann’s accusations: Bachmann made allegations that cannot be disproved since it’s impossible to *really* prove that you have no connection to the Muslim Brotherhood. How do you prove a negative? On the other hand, Reid accused Romney of *not* paying taxes which can *very easily* be disproved using nothing more than official documents that are in Romney’s possession.

    So, politics aside, the accusations are fundamentally different. Anyone with even a loose grasp on basic logic can see that difference. Only a partisan hack would fail to notice this.

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