Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
The Huffington Post has more evidence today contradicting Mitt Romney's continued insistence that he ended his active role with Bain Capital in early 1999. Mitt Romney Bain Capital Document Lists Him As 'Managing Member' In 2002:
A corporate document filed with the state of Massachusetts in December 2002 -- a month after Romney was elected governor -- lists him as one of two managing members of Bain Capital Investors, LLC "authorized to execute, acknowledge, deliver and record any recordable instrument purporting to affect an interest in real property, whether to be recorded with a Registry of Deeds or with a District Office of the Land Court."
In August 2011, Romney told federal authorities, [in a public financial disclosure form], that he "retired from Bain Capital on February 11, 1999 to head the Salt Lake Organizing Committee [for the 2002 Winter Olympics]. Since February 11, 1999, Mr. Romney has not had any active role with any Bain Capital entity and has not been involved in the operations of any Bain Capital entity in any way."
Bain Capital Investors is a Bain Capital entity.
Previously reported evidence shows that Romney was listed as the CEO, chairman and president of the company after 1999 in documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission; took a six-figure salary; signed corporate documents related to major and minor deals and attended board meetings for at least two Bain-affiliated companies. The state document was filed two and a half years after Romney now says he retired from the company, demonstrating his deep and ongoing connection to the firm.
The mountain of evidence that Romney had a connection to the firm after 1999 leaves him with two possible explanations, neither of them politically appealing: Either Romney was officially in charge of the company but took no actual responsibility for it, or he was involved then and is either lying or shading the truth now.
As the documentary evidence makes clear, Mittens Romney was at Bain Capital until 2002. He testified under oath at trial in 2002 that he was still active in business in Massachusetts in order to maintain that he had remained a resident of Massachusetts to meet the seven year residency requirement to run for governor. Old Romney Testimony Undermines Today's Bain Claims.
Now it is a matter of convenience for him to disassociate himself from Bain Capital or any Bain Capital entity after February 1999. Romney retired "retroactively" to 1999 -- back dating his retirement date. This is situational ethics -- Romney will say anything depending upon who is asking the question and why. Top Romney Adviser: Mitt 'Retired Retroactively' From Bain:
Mitt Romney adviser Ed Gillespie said Sunday that the candidate "retired retroactively" from his job at Bain Capital, which Romney maintains that he left in 1999 despite evidence suggesting he remained involved with the company until 2002."
[He took a leave of absence and in fact, Candy, ended up not going back at all and retired retroactively to February 1999 as a result," Gillespie said.]
Gillespie said Romney may have been listed as "part-time" after 1999, but that he had no role in the firm's day-to-day affairs, a point the campaign has attempted to make repeatedly in order to separate him from Bain's activity related to outsourcing during that period.
This point is legally irrelevant. It is a distinction without a difference (except in the mind of the Romney campaign). He remained the legally responsible party for Bain Capital and its corporate entities until 2002. He cannot arbitrarily relieve himself of all legal responsibility by simply back dating his retirement date to February 1999 to retire "retroactively." Mittens Romney may think he has a hot tub time machine, but reality doesn't work this way.
Romney lied in his 2011 public disclosure form, and that is a felony. The position his campaign has taken is nonsensical and indefensible. It is Mittens Romney who owes everyone an apology.
UPDATE: The Boston Globe went back and examined the trial testimony from 2002 -- you know, real reporting. Account of Romney's Bain departure has evolved:
It was not until August 2001 that Romney announced he would not return to full-time management of Bain Capital at the conclusion of the Olympics.
Until then, Romney planned to pick up where he left off, just as he had after two previous leaves of absence — one from 1991 to 1992 to save Bain and Company from near-bankruptcy and another from late 1993 to 1994 to run for US Senate.
“When I left my employer in Massachusetts in February of 1999 to accept the Olympic assignment,” Romney testified before the state Ballot Law Commission on June 17, 2002, “I left on the basis of a leave of absence, indicating that I, by virtue of that title, would return at the end of the Olympics to my employment at Bain Capital, but subsequently decided not to do so and entered into a departure agreement with my former partners.”
Romney also testified that “there were a number of social trips and business trips that brought [him] back to Massachusetts, board meetings” while he was running the Olympics. He added that he remained on the boards of several companies, including the Lifelike Co., in which Bain Capital held a stake until 2001.
Romney’s lawyer at the hearing said that Romney’s work in the private sector continued unbroken while he ran the Olympics.
“He succeeded in that three-year period in restoring confidence in the Olympic Games, closing that disastrous deficit and staging one of the most successful Olympic Games ever to occur on US soil,” said Peter L. Ebb from Ropes & Gray.
“Now while all that was going on, very much in the public eye, what happened to his private and public ties to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts? And the answer is they continued unabated just as they had.”
The Romney campaign declined to comment on the record about whether the business trips and board meetings were related to Bain Capital obligations.
UPDATE: POLITICO went back and examined the trial testimony from 2002 also, Mitt did business in Mass.:
In a June 17, 2002, appearance before the Massachusetts State Law Ballot Commission, Romney said that during his Utah-based Olympics service, there were “were a number of social trips and business trips that brought me back to Massachusetts, board meetings, Thanksgiving and so forth.”
* * *
Romney told the Massachusetts election panel in 2002 that he remained active in a number of companies while in Utah, including Marriott and Staples, the office supply giant he helped create through investments from Bain.
During his ballot commission testimony, when asked whether he continued to serve on boards while working on the Olympics, Romney answered: “Yes.”
“I immediately resigned from the board of Sports Authority located in Florida, feeling it could present a conflict of interest with my Olympic responsibilities and of course the travel could be challenging as well. I remained on the board of the Staples Corporation and Marriott International, the Life Like Corporation. And I remained as a corporator of the Belmont Hill School,” he said.
Asked specifically about the Staples board, Romney said there were four to five meetings a year and he returned to Massachusetts “for most of those meetings. Others I attended by telephone if I could not return.”
The Massachusetts testimony does not directly contradict Romney’s claims that he was not involved in Bain Capital as a manager following his departure to lead the Olympic committee.
But it does directly contradict his claim in his 2011 public disclosure form, and that is a felony as well as a lie.
UPDATE: David Corn at Mother Jones picks up this point from Romney's 2002 trial testimony. Romney's Account of His Departure From Bain Undercut by...Romney Testimony:
Romney even signed a federal financial disclosure form, under the penalty of perjury, declaring that he had not been involved "in any way" with Bain after he left for Utah. Yet evidence has emerged that undermines this claim and that suggests Romney may have made a false statement on this disclosure form (which would be a potential felony punishable by a $50,000 fine and up to a year in jail). Now there's another indication that Romney's break with Bain wasn't so clean—and this is according to Romney himself.
* * *
[D]uring that 2002 hearing—in a remark that has not been previously reported—Romney said that after he departed Bain in February 1999 he went through a transition period regarding his work in Boston.
When a lawyer challenging his eligibility asked Romney, "Did you remain more or less continuously in Salt Lake City from February '99 to the end of the year," Romney answered:
Actually, there was some transition away from my work in Boston for the first few months and then I pretty much stayed there after.
Trying to clarify this, the lawyer, after referring to this "transition," asked, "So from February through the end of the year you were pretty much full-time out in Utah, right?"
Romney replied: "Well again, the beginning of the year was a good deal of time back and forth, but towards the last half of the year it was pretty much exclusively in Utah."
* * *
The problem for Romney is, he's now insisting—and he signed a federal form declaring—he had no participation in Bain (besides owning the company and its various entities) once he headed to Utah.
* * *
[T]the issue is not whether he was running Bain after February 1999, but whether he participated at all in any of its activities and transactions.
Romney's mention of a "transition" period for his "work in Boston" is another contradiction for him to explain. . . Any transition time for Romney at Bain would undermine his central claim about his last days at the firm.