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Friday, September 30, 2016

Nobody with the bad manners to ask the question would be likely to get the opportunity at the upcoming presidential debate, but someday—especially if Mitt Romney enters the Oval Office —someone will ask about his son Tagg’s privte equity firm.

Like the businesses operated by the first President Bush’s sons three decades ago, Tagg Romney’s Solamere Capital is rife with potentially embarrassing conflicts of interest. Founded in 2008, by eldest son Tagg and his father’s chief fundraiser Spencer Zwick, Solamere is a “fund of funds” representing more than a dozen private equity outfits, including Mitt’s Bain Capital.

What Solamere’s partnerships and investments also show is the stunning reliance of these rugged millionaire individualists on government contracts and programs. Their financial addiction to federal funds is almost amusing, especially given Romney’s infamous remarks about the “47 percent” who supposedly pay no taxes and depend on government largesse to meet all their needs.

Reporter Lee Fang closely scrutinizes those issues and Solamere’s incestuous connections with the Romney presidential campaign in the current issue of The Nation, with the support of the Investigative Fund (where National Memo editor-in-chief Joe Conason serves as editor-at-large).

Consider the man who  hosted the $50,000-a-plate fundraiser where Romney made those comments in his huge, luxurious Boca Raton home. Marc Leder’s Sun Capital private equity firm is a partner in Solamere—and also owns part of the Scooter Store, a company that markets motorized wheelchairs, which Medicare beneficiaries buy with federal funds. Unfortunately the growth of the motorized scooter industry has relied heavily on as much as $500 million annually in improper and even fraudulent Medicare billing.

The Affordable Care Act—which Mitt Romney has vowed to repeal—contains a section requiring stringent reform of the motorized wheelchair benefit to prevent fraud. Would President Romney restore that reform to save Medicare funds even if his son’s business would suffer?

Another health sector suffering from rampant fraud is pediatric dentistry, with scandals in several states that involve very expensive, totally unnecessary treatments of poor children that are paid for by Medicaid—and earn huge profits for “dental management companies” owned by private equity firms.  If Solamere is earning huge profits from dental mismanagement, would a Romney administration’s Medicaid agency crack down—or turn a blind eye?

Aside from exploiting Medicare and Medicaid, the private equity industry sees major profit opportunities in education—and in particular the for-profit colleges whose dubious practices and educational failures have become controversial in recent years. As Fang recalls, Mitt Romney himself promoted a for-profit institution called Full Sail University during a town hall event in New Hampshire last year, claiming that it could help students “hold down the cost of their eduation.”

Full Sail is actually the third most expensive college in the country—and happens to be owned by TA Associates, a private equity operation associated with the Romney financial empire. Would a Romney administration continue the current efforts to reform the for-profit colleges? Or would it coddle an industry that is becoming notorious for ripping off students and leaving them in debt and unemployed, after sucking down their federal loan funds?

Fang’s reporting may provide an instructive preview of the years to come in a Romney administration, with various Bush-like sons cashing in on White House connections. But the story of Solamere also suggests the hollowness of Romney’s anti-government rhetoric. More and more, the most apt description of private equity is “no, you didn’t build that.”

  • nobsartist

    how come romneys are all on the millionaires welfare program?

    I yearn to be led by someone who grew up in Bloomfield Hills in a house with a swimming pool fed by a waterfall in the living room.

    • CPANY

      I hope that the waterfall mechanism breaks and the entire house is destroyed.

  • Romney, like most people in his income bracket, are subsidized by ridiculously low tax rates, loopholes and, sometimes, by subsidies to companies that don’t need them. He also benefits from foreign tax shelters and tax exemptions that benefit those rich enough to invest abroad.

    • Romney Greedy Ass He Still Has 8 Million Dollars In Stock In Bain That Is Still Shipping Jobs Out Of America, And They Made The American Workers Train The China Workers For The Jobs!!! Now That Really Low Down!!!!

  • nobsartist

    In view of the fact that he does a lot of business in China with the RED CHINESE ARMY, I will bet that he has a huge amount of money stashed in Chinese banks protected from the IRS.

    • And I think he needs to answer that question from the audience today.
      Why he opposes China too much but at the same time doing business with
      China.

      • Yes And That Fact Is Romney Has 10 Companies (Sweatshops) In China He’s Heavily Invested In!!

    • CPANY

      A short while ago, Apple got itself enmeshed in a patent dispute over one of its gadgets. The other company is Chinese. Apple was producing those gadgets in China. The case was heard in China and the Chinese court embargoed the shipment of those gadgets until the case was settled.

      I loved it. Apple exported American jobs to save money and the beneficiaries of Apple’s action screwed Apple. Be it ever thus.

  • joeykay

    Neither one of them Romney or Obama belong in the White House.Obama and Bush have brought our great nation down the only way to recover is for the people to stand together and start over but thats easier said then done .We have to get a whole new gouverment in the people we did trust well thats another story but either way we are headed for really big trouble

  • Mimi2kool

    The wealthy are different from the rest of us. The very wealthy are practically from another planet, so far out of touch are they with the lives of the average American. They criticize middle class, working class, and the poor while failing to own how much they are able to stack the deck in their own favor. They benefit from the tax code more than anyone, yet put down the rest of us. Does anyone really believe that rich people want to pass on opportunity to everyone else? In reality, they want to keep what they have and help themselves to what we have too. Their greed and lack of ethics is truly astounding. Romney is just the lastest standard-bearer for the wealthy, who want a government that acts only in their own best interests.

    • FredAppell

      In their diluted world view people who aren’t wealthy or trying to achieve wealth have no self worth. They believe the measure of person is by how much money that person makes. I’m sure that in the end it won’t matter because at the end of life everyone is equal although the wealthy might disagree with that too.

      • Sandra

        Re. ‘at the end of life, everyone is equal although the welathy might disagree with that too.’ yes, they will, their coffins will be the most expensive as will be the service along with the best dressed mourners. God help American if this man wins on November 6th. GW Bush was and is a rank amateur compared to this evil, America will be completely destroyed. Ryan gave a hint when he stated in his video that went viral, that they want to turn America into a tax haven. Someone ought to ask him at whose expense though we all know the answer.

      • adler56

        That measure isn’t used to determine how successful Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan and other rich blacks are given the racist nature of all Republicans.

        • vjChristian

          Stop the racism talk and if you are decent at all, you will take the time to look around and see the rich are getting richer…therefore someone has to be getting poorer…RIGHT!!!! the poor gets poorer.

          • adler56

            that’s been true since ronnie raygun- what’s your point?

      • That Only Works On The Brainwash Dumb And Stupid People Out Here!! We Are No Different From One Another Just The Color Of Our Skins And Money But There’s No Different!!! peteserb You Are Just Another Teabagging Troll I Will Not Waste My Time Talking To Your Dumb Ass So BYE FOOL!!

        • peteserb

          You may not think we’re no different but we are. I don’t have the number of police mug shots you do. I don’t back corrupt politicians, I love my country and I don’t need a handout to be happy with what I do. how many times will you vote next month?

          • Same Many Times Your Mother Going To Vote!!!!

          • amarquez647

            Dear Peteserb
            When was the last time you saw your psychiatrist? We all live under the heavens, walk on the earth. Like every creatures we needs fresh air, clean water, and food. We live, love, and feel lose. You are presumptuous to accuse someone you never met of villainy. I believe you to be a pusillanimous sanctimonious dastard. I hope that my statement is erroneous, that you put pen in without engaging your cerebrum. Or maybe you’re myopic and can’t see the beauty of others

          • puzzled21

            Then you obviously are not a Republican.

          • Hey Pete why is it that you right wingers feel the need to launch some kind of dumb attack – number of mug shots, corrupt politicians, need a handout, voting many times. Argue the facts not your typical bs comments. I’m voting to re-elect President Obama and I don’t have a mug shot, served the US in Vietnam, never had a handout and will vote my usual one time next month. So either bring facts to this site or just shut up

    • CPANY

      Kool Mimi, you are one hundred percent right.

      I’ve read a lot about the Russian and French revolutions. While there were some differences, the biggest similarity is that when the populace exploded into full scale rebellion, the rich were taken completely by surprise.

      Anyone with even modest intelligence could see it coming. For one thing, to keep order, the authorities frequently imposed death sentences for even the pettiest of “crimes.” We haven’t regressed to that point yet, but we’re getting there, fast. The deterioration of our society, heralded by the diminution of the middle class, will result in social revolution.

      I predict that when it happens, the rich will for the most part be arrested in their beds, blissfully ignorant of what was going on around them until the last second.

    • That is exactly what I was thinking when I listened to part of Ann Romney’s speech on CNN yesterday. Her efforts to identify with mainstream America were so feigned they bordered on the ridiculous. The sad part is that a lot of people are buying it. The con job the GOP is selling us reminds me of Robert Redford’s movie “The Sting”, a world of illusions and deception that has nothing to do with the realities of our lives, our problems or hopes.

      • FredAppell

        That’s true, I just saw footage of that speech on MSNBC and her speech wasn’t fluid at all. It appeared that she was struggling to find anything good to say about her husband.

    • Wonder Why They Eat, Shit And Suck Air The Same Way We Do?? What Makes Them So Different???? MONEY And They Are Buying They Way Thru Life!!!

  • jarheadgene

    WATCH the denial and B. S. come flooding in from the defendants of this GOP nonsense. Anyone still voting GOP now is one of these below.

  • bcarreiro

    Its nice to be successful but by all means to stay successful is another story.
    Greed overpowers Love!!!

  • WhutHeSaid

    Aha!

    Now the Tea-Party’s ‘Scooter Connection’ has been unmasked. We all know how those bitter old coots love their Medicare and Hoverounds — even while they eschew government assistance for anyone else and lie about paying too much in taxes. We need to stamp out this dirty little practice at least as much as we need to persecute Big Bird.

    Go get ’em, Eric!

  • Ant Duke

    Is there no end to their greed and contempt for the public…?

    • frivolous01

      The short answer to that is ‘no’.

    • CPANY

      No, there isn’t.

  • Romney is a good businessman and being so, he is the opposite of a good public servant. The people of his home state hate him. His capacity as a public servant was tested when he served as governor and he failed. He is a very successful businessman but always a loser when it comes to public service. Again this time!!!!

  • Lovefacts

    When FDR passed his landmark legislation, including taxing the rich, his fellow super rich said he was a traitor to his class. FDR’s famous reply was: “Better to be a traitor to my class than to my country.” Sadly, I don’t think Romney or his friends could say that, and Romney’s tenure at governor proves this.

    There is no way Romney will level the tax code. He doesn’t have it in him to sacrifice for the country. Even if he cuts all itemized deductions, it won’t hurt him or his friends. Most of them fund thier houses via their trust accounts, treating them as investments. But they’ll fight to the death to preserve the deferred interest credits and every other deduction where money is made from money, not work. They’ll also fight to preserve the tax bennies for outsourcing and not for returning jobs back to America.

  • morgan520

    Does this stuff get reported anywhere else besides here?? Cause it puts a whole new spin on the election and people need to do their research before voting!

    • grammyjill

      no

      • morgan520

        Well it should cause everyone needs to know

        • grammyjill

          I write letters to my local paper to inform people.

  • msrita

    Those boys are funny looking. That combo did not work well. YUK

  • Ant Duke

    From a global or foreign point of view we are sitting on tenterhooks that Obama has got a left hook up his sleeve for tonight! It’s frightening that all the good done by your president could be undone by a psychopath. What astounds me is that Rmoney and his gang of fascists don’t seem to realise that the WHOLE WORLD is having a torrid time and in comparison to the US jobs, inflation and market health, Obama deserves a Nobel Culture prize for his performance whilst ‘dancing with wolves’ in the Capitol. It also seems that the CNN scenes of economic mutilation caused by the previous administration are by and large forgotten by conservatives!

    • FredAppell

      You are right. President Obama should be proud of his accomplishments. The one that sticks out the most for me is the auto bail outs. The GOP claim that his only interest was to help the unions in exchange for their support falls flat. That Bill saved tens of thousands of non union jobs as well. I believe the GOP agenda has nothing to do with the economy. It is actually more cultural instead. They are willing to sacrifice the economy for the long gains.

      • Ant Duke

        Imagine the Bain pillage of the industry if Obama had pulled the plug! And the tax free profits sitting on a beach, sipping a martini somewhere south…

  • Melvin Chatman

    I wonder how THESE PEOPLE can sleep at night – I’d like to have some of what ever they’re taking!!
    Remember RUSH got some one time and it “Twisted” him up worse – maybe he got the “Cheaper Brand”

  • So much for moochers and slackers living off of hardworking tax payers’ dollars, huh? I wonder how many low to medium income Romney supporters are feeling knowing that Romney’s millionaire sons, their billionaire backers, and Romney himself is thriving on the dole of werlfare? Like Bush and his sons, Cheney and his affiliations with billionaires providing lackluster service for government contracts and subsidies, and nearly sucked America dry from nepotism and sweetheart deals, Romney/Ryan will only be an extension of that diabolical corruption, and they too will get away with it the same as Bush/Cheney. I remember the campaign of Govenor Bobby Jindal of Louisiana where an elderly woman warned Louisianians about the butcher tactics of Jindal in the Bush administration who was cutting medical funding that would have provided needed treatment for her husband suffering from cancer. Denied the basic treatment, her husband died, and it was all connected to cuts to Louisiana’s medicare funding by Jindal. Jindal won the election by a landslide and proceeded to o just what the woman warned Louisianaians about, and is dismantling the public school system as the state moves toward the voucher system. We need to pay more attention to those lone voices crying out in the wildness, sounding the warning calls. VOTE!!!!!!!!!

  • patuxant

    This is very interesting. However, it doesn’t surprise me. Yet another reason why Romney won’t release more of his taxes. Un—freaking–believable!

  • patuxant

    Maybe someone out there needs to give us middle/lower income folks some lessons in how to get out of paying anything and writing everything off except of course, what you give to your church with the golden dome, which by the way you have to in order to stay as one of the flock. HAHAHAHA! LMAO!!

  • keefert55

    Dear Mr. Romney, If you should be elected, what would you do when you” get tough with the Chinese”, they call their loan? Payable immediately!!!

    • FredAppell

      In 2011 the Tea Party was saying we should default on the debt to China. The Tea Party would have roasted Obama alive if he had done that. Conservatives are always preaching about personal responsibility but they were willing to screw our largest creditor. Can you imagine the fall out from that?

  • keefert55

    I would like to ask Mr. Romney. With such strident political factions at work within the Republican party, Karl Rove, Grover Norquist(who both will obliterate you if you disagree with them or and their thugs), Eric Cantor and the venrable elder statesman, Mitch McConnell,”we will strive to make Barack Obama a one term presiden”, even at the peril of the American economy how does he plan to miracuously plan to reach across the aisle. We face four more years of gridlock if he is elected with a Congress with a 14% approval rating and earning $172,000 annually and guarantedd benefits for life. Just like you and I , right?
    Fire them all Mitt so they can claim bankrupty and dodge their tax obligations. Great leadership example.

  • emadis41

    How they got felthy rich? Open Casino or syphone taxpayers money. They are against SS, Medicare and Medicaid, but if they benefit from it, then keep this funds coming.
    Medicare is essential for every retiree, especially when they loose their jobs and it become harder to get another, who would hire a 68 old who will stay on the job for 2 or 3 years? Mr. Romney and his gambling mogols supporters would like to get there hands on SS and Medicare funds which in the $trillions. they like the red states handling of Medicaid, which waste lots of money on fraudlant claims (one Dentist here in TX is accused of defrauding Medicaid of $31 million).
    meanwhile they attack the people they defraud.

  • curious11

    Press Obama, why is your admin looking to establish masters and doctoral degrees in energy research in lawless Uganda, instead of educating our studnts here in the US. Also why did it cost taxpayers $1.4 Billion in 2011 alone to pay for your family of 4 uppity upkeep?

    • johninPCFL

      The State Department works with colleges and universities to establish and maintain campuses all over the world. The American University in Lebanon was once a famous example. The campus location was negotiated by the State Department and it was operated by Havard University for many years. It closed when Reagan ran out of Lebanon.

      $1.4B? Really? Yeah, that is the entire cost of ALL white house operations, including security and all of the cabinet operations, for the year. Just for comparison, that’s about a day of military operations cost (the last appropriations bill was for $630B for the year.)

      • Shhh! They don’t deal in facts!

    • old_blu

      *ROLLS EYES*

    • DukeDacat

      Go back to Faux Noise you creepy TROL

    • There must be a breach in Farts News! Another one has escaped! Catch it! CATCH IT!!!

    • 345_719

      Bull Crap!!!

  • FredAppell

    This is way off topic but according to NPR there is evidence to suggest that the Benghazi attack was perpetrated by a militant group reacting to the video. The GOP assertion that it was al-Qaeda is false. An American journalist was being interviewed and he stated that he personally had spoken to a Libyan journalist who spoke to the very militia that committed the attack. Hillary Clinton is taking personal responsibility for the lack of security in Benghazi. So sorry GOP, you won’t be able to hammer President Obama on this topic anymore.

  • Bud

    I supported Obama last time around. Thought he was the best of the two. I am sorry that I voted for the worst president this country ever saw. He has lied about all his campaign promises. NEVER kept a one of them. He hates America and the change he was referring to was to make us a socialist/communist country. He throws out the race card as soon as someone disagrees with him. He has the nerve to put his face on our flag in place of the stars. He has played golf more times in the last four years then I have in the last ten. Yes I am a golfer! I am sorry that I fought for this country so that we could have the likes of him destroy it by bankrupting our economy. And that BS about the unemployment rate dropping ,just for the election, that is already been proved wrong by his own dept. This man couldn’t tell the truth if he was facing God Himself. Oh wait a minute you people don’t believe in God, sorry I forgot. You all are pathetic losers that belong in a country that likes the same things you do, say take your pick of Europe. And for you extremist go join the Muslims and live in peace! (tongue in cheek)

    • Justin Napolitano

      I make it a rule to not respond to morons but in your case I will make an exception. You are a Republican hack and are getting paid to post your nonsense so bug off and push your crap somewhere else.

      • FredAppell

        He is definitely a fraud. Everything he says is strait out of FOX News.

    • One has escaped! Catch it! CATCH IT!!!!!!

    • 345_719

      You for sure don’t know what you are talking about. You fought for this country? and now youare supporting a draft dodger. Crawl back in your hole Ass holl!!

  • MITT THE FLIP FLOPPERS REAL NAME IS ” WILLARD” NAMED AFTER HIS FATHERS BEST FRIEND THE OWNER OF THE MARRIOT ( MORMON) HOTELS. I AM NOT PARTICIPATING IN THEIR HOTELS. CAN YOU IMAGINE WITH A NAME LIKE THAT HE HAD TO ESTABLISH A KNICK NAME ???? HIS MITTS WERE BEST KNOWN FOR GETTING RID OF THE LITTLE WORKER IN OUR AMERICAN FACTORIES AND BUSINESS AND SENDING WORK OVER TO CHINA AND INDONESIA AND OTHER SWEAT SHOPS. AND THE BUD WRITER, I GUESS HE IS HAVING MIORE THAN ONE……..

  • HEY,,,” BUD, ‘ COULD YOU KEEP PROMISES IF YOU DID NOT KNOW THE DEBT THE PAST PRES AND HIS V.P. PUT US IN ALONG WITH ALL THE WARS?????I AM SURE IF WE HAD HAD ANOTHER G.O P VICTORY, WE ALL SWOULD OF BEEN LOOSERS. do you know how much Bush cost us in wars, and chaney cost us with Halliburton. Did you know that Cheney and Gongrich are spending fortunes in their PAC’c against Obama. Go do something conxstructive and look up all the billionairs and their political PAC”S and all the fortune 500 co’s trying to destroy the vote and our couontry. And while your at it see if you can invest your money overseas like the big boys do.!!!!!!!! Have another.

    • FredAppell

      Interesting how each donor can manage to scrape up millions of dollars for their super PAC’s but they bitch about paying more taxes. Man, I feel like i’m living in bizarro world.

  • Canistercook

    And Obama who went to an IVY League law school is a member of the poor! Some people put on a good act while enriching themselves!

  • montanabill

    Lee Fang is associated with Joe Conason. Now I know that it was a well researched and impartial report with absolutely no skewing of the facts, he said with his voice dripping with sarcasm.

  • Bulimbo

    The American Dream of a few is an American Nightmare for many!!!!

  • jwuor111

    Throughout his campaign trips Mitt Romney has not come clean about key issues like “The Obama care,The 47% , medicare, S. S and students loan. His victory is a great nightmare for so many Americans. Here is a man,who claims to love his country, at the same time he’s been taking money from this country sending it abroad to avoid tax payment.I don’t know about others but this man will be the worst president ever.

  • anybody that votes for this romney charactor is out and out selfish oh that is the rich

  • Sounds like romney’s claws are deeper into control of govt largesse than the Carlyle Group or Halliburton. This guy is a worthless piece of slim, not worthy of the POTUS. He is one scary dude on what damage he can to in just a year or two to feather his nest and that of his equally corrupt sons. and what will Ann be subsidized for? More free ponies?

  • Romney is for Romney and his billions, and his overseas investments that put Americans out of work. His real name is Williard, named after the Marriot hotel magnate, who was his fathers best friend. It is also a Mormon Hotel. As long as he has money and his family and friends have the best, the hell with us miuddle class, 47 percentile. His plans,,,,,, for us, HOGWASH. SOME WHAT LIKE HITLER, WHO WALKED THE FOLKS TO SLAUGHTER WITH POWER, DECEIT, VOTE HIM OUT………….. ROMNEY AND HIS FAKE STORIES, FOLKS DONT FALL FOR IT. WE ARE ON THE MEND, OBAMA INHERITED BUSH’S DEBTS, WARS, AND JOBS MOVED OUT UNDER THE G.O.P. reign…….. Oh and dont forget and put 2 stamps if you mail absentee.

  • Dont forget, The Romney’s, the Rockafella”s, Vanderbilt”s and the rest of the mangates are running America. Do you think they all want us to prosper, you are wrong…. The oil companies, the insurance companies and most Hospitals are draining us all, and who is behiend most, you gessed it, ”

  • rOMNEY IS INDEED THE SKETCHEY DEAL…………………..

  • Yeah, but Mitt.himself doesn’t have hands on. He is completely unaware of what’s going on. Just ask him. He’s just a hardworking businessman that knows all the answers.