WASHINGTON - A coalition of community, labor and good
government organizations is calling on the U.S. Office of
Government Ethics to investigate presidential candidate
Mitt Romney for noncompliance with the Ethics in Government
Act and compel him to either disclose his investments or
letter sent today to Don W. Fox, general counsel of the
Office of Government Ethics, states that Gov. Romneyhas not
even attempted to meet the requirements for a federal blind
trust with respect to his substantial equity holdings. The
only way for this law to be enforced in a meaningful way is
for your Office to act promptly to demand that candidate
Romney disclose his stock holdings, or divest them if
disclosure is not feasible."
The letter was sent by Citizens for Responsibility and
Ethics in Washington, People for the American Way, Public
Campaign, Public Citizen, SEIU, UAW and The Social Equity
Group, and it follows up on a
previous letter sent to the Office of Government Ethics
on Aug. 23, 2012, that urged the office to act.
"The American people have a right to know about Governor
Romney's potential conflicts of interest, such as the
profits his family made from the auto rescue," said UAW
President Bob King.It's time for Governor Romney to
disclose or divest.
"The company Romney founded, Bain Capital, continues to
devastate American workers and communities by closing
profitable U.S. facilities and shifting work to China to
make even more profits. A current example happening today
is Bain closing a profitable Sensata plant in Freeport,
Ill. While Romney was opposing the rescue of one of
the nation's most important manufacturing sectors, he was
building his fortunes with his Delphi investor group,
making his fortunes off the misfortunes of others.
These are all examples of the Romney economy we can
expect if Romney becomes president," King added.
"When I first hired in everything was going well," said
Heath Lindsay, a former Delphi worker from Dayton.I bought
a home, got married, and had a child. When the bankruptcy
happened, my pay was cut in half and we lost our home
to foreclosure. My pension was terminated in 2007 and
was turned over to the PGBC [Pension Benefit Guarantee
Corporation]. I am eligible for a 401(k), but I can't
afford to contribute to it. When my wages were good, we
could get by but I am the sole provider for my wife and
kids and life is a lot harder now," Lindsay added.
The groups believe that Romney's undisclosed stock holdings
create serious conflicts of interest. They point to the
auto loans as a key example. The Nation recently reported
the Romney family personally profited by at least $15.3
million from the auto loans of 2009. Yet Romney's June 1,
2012, Public Financial Disclosure Report to the Office of
Government Ethics did not reveal this windfall because he
did not disclose the underlying holdings of his private
equity and limited partnership funds.
Romney profited from his family's investment in Delphi
Corp. at the expense of the Delphi workers. Other
unreported investments that could create conflicts of
interest include controversial holdings in Sensata and
"Mitt Romney is hiding his investments because he doesn't
want the American people to know what a Romney Economy
would look like," said Tom Woodruff, executive vice
president of SEIU.Governor Romney has invested in companies
that outsource good jobs to China and cut wages, benefits
and pensions for workers here in America. The American
people need to know how many other companies like Sensata,
Global Tech, and Delphi Governor Romney has invested in."
With the presidential election less than a week away, the
letter urges the Office of Government Ethics toact now to
ensure Mitt Romney is in full compliance with the law's
disclosure requirements so that the public has the
necessary information to evaluate candidate Romney's
position on matters in which he stands to benefit
personally should his legislative agenda become law.