Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant — which, by the way, is also the name of my old electroclash band — is reporting that Mitt Romney and Bain Capital subverted around $100 million in taxes by diverting money through the Netherlands in a delicious-sounding tax dodge called the Double Irish with a Dutch Sandwich…
The alleged tax route went as follows: Bain bought Irish pharmaceutical company Warner Chilcott in 2004, which was originally registered in Bermuda but had moved to Ireland in 2009 to avoid Barack Obama's tax crackdown. Two years ago, Bain registered its interest in Warner Chilcott with the private Dutch company Alter Domus. Under Dutch laws if a Dutch-registered company owns more than 5 percent of a company it is exempt from paying capital gains tax.
The total value of avoiding that tax is thought to be around 80 million euros, or $100 million. De Volkskrant reports that Romney himself was able to personally gain from the move, largely due to the fact that the majority of his income from Bain after 1999 came from capital gains. The tax system described by the article is so well-known it has its own name, a 'Double Irish With a Dutch Sandwich.'
Personally, as a, um… not "expert" exactly… What's the opposite of "expert"? A "moron," I think. Personally, as a moron on such matters, I feel as though this — being technically legal (I assume) and prohibitively confusing – probably wouldn't have affected Romney's campaign all that much. Especially since nobody really cared about the Cayman Island tax dodges that we already knew about. But, then again, I'm also the guy who said that nobody was going to care about Romney's "47 percent" comment. So, like I said, "moron."
At any rate, Romney lucked out in that this news didn't drop until the day before the election, and by now the majority of Americans appear to have already come up with plenty of other reasons not to vote for him.
Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: Mitt Romney, Netherlands, Taxes