The Washington Times - January 17, 2012, 03:55PM

Responding to the call for former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney to release his tax records, President Obama’s spokesman noted Tuesday that the practice is “a very standard tradition.”

“It’s not for us to call on someone to release his tax records, but it is an established tradition for presidential candidates to release their tax records,” said White House press secretary Jay Carney. “Then-Senator Obama did, released multiple years of his tax records, and obviously has released his tax records, as tradition dictates, since he’s been president.”


Obviously enjoying the dilemma faced by Mr. Romney, the front-runner for the Republican nomination, Mr. Carney further noted that Mr. Romney’s father George “initiated” the tradition of candidates releasing their tax records when he ran for president in 1968.

After hedging in a debate Monday night, Mr. Romney said Tuesday he would release some of his tax returns during this tax season.

Mr. Romney also said that he pays a tax rate of close to 15 percent. The president’s spokesman said the revelation “illuminates” a tax imbalance in the country that Mr. Obama is trying to correct.

“Everybody who’s working hard ought to pay their fair share … and that includes millionaires who might be paying an effective tax rate of 15 percent when folks making $50(,000) or $75,000 or $100,000 a year are paying much more,” Mr. Carney said. “He thinks we ought to fix that.”