After months of refusing to explain how he would implement his tax plan, Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney on Tuesday told a debate audience that he would just "pick a number" to determine how many deductions Americans could take.
"You're absolutely right about part of that, which is I want to bring the rates down, I want to simplify the tax code, and I want to get middle-income taxpayers to have lower taxes," Romney explained to a woman who wanted to know how he would pay for his proposed tax cuts. "That's part one. Now how about deductions because I'm going to bring rates down across the board for everybody, but I'm going to limit the deductions and exemptions and credits for people particularly at the high end. Because I'm not going to have people in the high end pay less than they're paying now."
"And so in terms of bringing down deductions, one way of doing that would be to say everybody gets -- I'll pick a number -- $25,000 in deductions and credits," the candidate added. "And you can decide which ones to use, your home mortgage interest deduction, charity, child tax credit and so forth. You can use those as part of filling that bucket -- if you will -- of deductions."
"I will not under any circumstances reduce the share that's being paid by the highest-income taxpayers and I will not under any circumstances increase taxes on the middle class."