Republican presidential nominee-in-waiting Mitt Romney and wife Ann Romney have made public their federal tax information for 2010 and 2011. But despite calls for more transparency, the multimillionaire says information for those two years is all he's going to release.
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"The law requires us to put out a full financial disclosure and that I've done," Romney told CNN this week.
To date, Romney has released his 2010 federal tax return and an estimated 2011 return. He said the completed 2011 information would be released "as soon as the accountants have that ready."
"And that's what we're going to put out," Romney said. "People always want to get more and we're putting out what is required plus more that is not required. And those are the two years that people are going to have and that's all that's necessary for people to understand something about my finances."
The Romneys' effective tax rate is certain to be news because it is will below both the tax rate for the top federal tax bracket, 35 percent, and the average effective tax rate for the wealthiest American taxpayers, which is around 22 percent. The relatively low effective tax rate is also likely to make his opposition to the Buffett Rule vulnerable to further political attacks from President Barack Obama and the super PAC supporting his re-election campaign, Priorities USA Action.
Democrats have pounced on the issue. Former President Bill Clinton told NBC's "Today" show that he was surprised at Romney's decision. "I am a little surprised that he only released a year's worth of tax returns. That's kind of perplexed me," he said. "That struck me as a little odd."
Obama has made public his tax information covering 12 years.
"Mitt Romney is the most secretive candidate we've seen since Richard Nixon," an Obama campaign spokesman told Fox News. "Mitt Romney provided John McCain 23 years worth of returns when he was being vetted for vice president but he's only shared with the American people one year worth of returns."
Romneys's announcement was also met with some skepticism in the Republican Party, however. Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley told ABC News he thinks Romney should release far more information to the public and prove that he has "nothing to hide."
"I just believe in total transparency. In fact, I was asked today that question -- do you think that Governor Romney should release his tax returns? And I said I do. I said, I release my tax returns. I may be the only public official in Alabama that does, but I release mine every year and I just believe that people should release their tax returns. And if you get them out and just get past that, it just makes it so much easier."
Bentley told ABC News Romney will continue to be hammered by his Democratic opponents unless he releases provides more information about his finances.
"They're doing everything they can to hurt Governor Romney and tax returns will be one of those things. So the best thing to do is just get everything out in the open and just say, 'Hey I have nothing to hide and I'm going to release my tax returns.'"
[Mitt Romney photo from Getty Images News]