SEARCH

Entries in Financial Disclosures (10)

Friday
Jun012012

Romney Net Worth $250 Million, Same as 2011

ABC/ Ida Mae Astute(WASHINGTON) -- Presumptive GOP candidate Mitt Romney is worth as much as $250 million, according to the candidate’s personal financial disclosure filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission.

While the forms indicate that the candidate could be worth anywhere between $83 and $255 million, a campaign aide offered a more specific range of $190 million to $250 million. This is the same net worth that was reported for the candidate in his 2011 filings.

A review of the documents by ABC News found that Romney earned nearly $190,000 in speaker’s fees in 2011, for four speeches including those at Emory University in Atlanta and at Barclay’s Bank in Washington, D.C. Last year, Romney reported earning $370,000 for eight speaking engagements but maintained a far less hectic schedule as he was not campaigning full time.

Romney made anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 in royalties from his book, No Apology: The Case for American Greatness, a decline from last year, when he reported earning between $100,000 and $1 million from the book. As he has done in the past, Romney donated all profits from No Apology to six charities, including the Joey Fund (for cystic fibrosis), Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Sabin Children’s Foundation, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Jimmy Fund, and Homes for Our Troops.

The documents show that Romney was paid $260,000 in a director’s fee for his spot on the board at Marriott. Additionally, Romney was paid between $201 and $1,000 in royalties for a reprint of an oped in The New York Times.

He owns between $250,000 and $500,000 in gold, and the same amount in horses, which are known to be a therapy tool for his wife, Ann, who suffers from multiple sclerosis.

Assets that were sold on behalf of Romney last year include stock in the popular yoga and athletic clothing store Lululemon, software companies Microsoft, Google and Apple, as well as sportswear giant Nike.

“Governor and Mrs. Romney’s assets are managed on a blind basis,” said spokeswoman Andrea Saul. “They do not control the investment of these assets, which are under the control and overall management of a trustee. The trustee is Brad Malt, a partner at Ropes & Gray law firm.”

At least $1 million of Romney’s fortune is invested in his son Tagg’s company, Solamere Founders Fund.

In addition, the Romneys still maintain a trust for their children and grandchildren valued at roughly $100 million, the campaign said.

The documents also note that while Romney receives money from investments in Bain Capital, the private equity firm he helped to found and has since become a point of criticism by the Obama campaign.

“Since February 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,” the documents note.

The investments and profits Romney enjoys from Bain Capital were made as part of his retirement agreement, according to the disclosure forms.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr052012

Obama Campaign Seizes on Report on Mitt Romney’s Assets

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Obama re-election campaign Thursday night has seized on a report that suggests Mitt Romney is using ethics exceptions to avoid disclosing some of his financial investments. Obama’s team has gone as far as using the president’s Twitter handle to lob attacks on the GOP candidate.

The account linked to the president’s name tweeted a link to the report, published by the Washington Post, that said that Romney has “taken advantage of an obscure exception in federal ethics laws to avoid disclosing the nature and extent of his holdings.”

“By offering a limited description of his assets, Romney has made it difficult to know precisely where his money is invested, whether it is offshore or in controversial companies,” the article said.

In addition, the Post reported that in 48 accounts from Bain Capital, the firm Romney founded in Boston and touts daily on the trail, he did not reveal his assets.

While the Romney campaign maintains that the candidate followed the law, the Obama campaign released a statement accusing Romney of “exploiting a loophole in order to shield his assets and investments from public review.”

“Mitt Romney has put his personal financial assets in a black box and hid the key, attempting to play by a different set of rules than any candidate in recent history,” said Obama’s campaign manager, Jim Messina.

“Gov. Romney provided 23 years worth of tax returns to the McCain campaign so they could determine if he would make a suitable vice president,” wrote Messina. “He must meet that same standard now so that the American people may judge whether he would be a suitable president, and whether there are any conflicts of interest that could cloud his judgment.”

The release from the Obama campaign also recommended a Twitter hashtag to highlight the report, “WhatsRomneyHiding,” that has since been used by several members of the Democratic National Committee.

In a written statement to ABC News, Romney campaign spokeswoman Andrea Saul said, “President Obama will do anything to try and distract Americans from his failed record of chronic unemployment, lower incomes and higher gas prices.”

“The PFD completely and accurately describes Gov. Romney’s assets as required by the law applicable to candidates for president,” said Saul. “If [the U.S. Office of Government Ethics] had at any point considered any part of the filing insufficient, it would have made this clear.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Feb212012

Romney Spends Big Bucks on Media Buys, Contact with Voters

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(NOVI, Mich.) -- Mitt Romney raked in $6.5 million during the month of January, but public records show that the campaign has only a fraction of what it made at the start of the year still left in the bank after a month littered with expensive primaries.

Romney began January with more than $19.9 million in cash on hand, but by the close of business on Jan. 31 was down to $7.7 million, having spent more than $18 million, according to financial disclosure forms made public Monday.  Romney has still not given any of his personal fortune -- estimated to be anywhere between $190 million and $250 million -- to his campaign, and the campaign has no debt.

But January held four of the major primaries -- Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida -- and the cost that comes with running a campaign in four major states is evident in Team Romney’s financial disclosure forms, which were posted online on Monday.

Romney won in both New Hampshire and Florida, and a review of the financial disclosure forms by ABC News reveal that much of the money spent over the course of the month was spent on reaching or communicating with voters -- at a final price tag of more than $10 million.

Placed media set the Romney campaign back more than $8 million in January alone, with online advertising costing $755,000. The campaign spent more than $600,000 on direct mail, $494,000 on polling and more than $14,000 on robocalls and telemarketing.

The money spent on placed media included items in New Hampshire newspapers the Nashua Telegraph and The Union Leader, the South Carolina paper The State, and The Villages Daily Sun, the newspaper at the ritzy retirement community known as The Villages near Orlando, Fla.

The bulk of the media work was done by American Rambler Productions, according to the public records, which includes some of Romney’s most senior advisors, including Stuart Stevens, Russ Schriefer and Eric Ferhnstrom.

Romney’s National Finance Chair Spencer Zwick said in an e-mail statement announcing the month’s fundraising that the campaign “exceeded” its goals.

“We have exceeded our fundraising goals and are on track with spending plans,” Zwick said. “We are the only campaign who has the organization and resources to go the distance of a long primary process. We know there is a long road ahead and we will remain steady.”

By comparison, despite his high burn rate, Romney still out-raised his GOP counterparts. According to public records, former Speaker Newt Gingrich raised $5.59 million in January and spent more than $5.91 million, leaving him with $1.79 million on hand and $1.73 in debt. Former Sen. Rick Santorum raised $4.51 million, spent $3.32 million and has $1.47 million with no debt.  Ron Paul raised $4.48 million, spent $5.23 million and has $1.65 million on hand with no debt.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jan262012

Romney Failed to Disclose Swiss Bank Account Income

ABC News (BOSTON) -- Mitt Romney's campaign is amending the financial disclosure form he filed in 2011 to acknowledge that a Romney trust earned interest income from a Swiss bank account, a detail that had been missing from the report.

"An amendment is being filed to address this minor discrepancy," a campaign official told ABC News in an email Thursday in response to questions about the apparent omission.

"The inescapable fact is that by releasing over 600 pages of information regarding his finances, Mitt Romney is clearly coming down on the side of disclosure," said Andrea Saul, a campaign spokeswoman, in a subsequent statement. "Any document with this level of complexity and detail is bound to have a few trivial inadvertent issues. We are in the process of putting together some minor technical amendments, which will not alter the overall picture of Gov. and Mrs. Romney's finances as disclosed in August."

The discovery that the Romneys had $3 million in an account with the Swiss bank UBS came only after the Republican presidential candidate released his tax returns for 2010 on Tuesday. The campaign had maintained that it was not necessary to disclose the Swiss account because Romney's money manager, Brad Malt, had shuttered it in early 2010.

Several Republican election lawyers told ABC News Thursday that the account still needed to be disclosed because a Romney trust earned about $1,700 in income on the account during 2010. The campaign's decision to amend the forms was first reported by the Los Angeles Times.

At the same time, questions from ABC News about undisclosed income that appeared on Newt Gingrich's tax return have led Gingrich to announce that he, too, will be amending his financial disclosure report. Gingrich's returns showed he received $252,500 in wages from Gingrich Holdings Inc. in 2010, but those wages do not appear anywhere on his presidential disclosure report.

"An internal account review found the need to amend the reporting," said a Gingrich campaign official. "It was done immediately."

Romney also decided to amend the report from his 2007 run for president, a decision first reported by The New York Times. That form identified a UBS money market account, but did not clarify that it was held by his wife's trust. UBS has branches in the United States, so it would not have been readily apparent that the account was in Switzerland. Those who track the finances of presidential candidates said they found the failures to disclose these key financial details distressing. Bill Allison, editorial director of the non-profit watchdog group the Sunlight Foundation, said the whole purpose of the disclosure reports is for candidates to provide an honest look at their finances to voters.

"Obviously, if you don't give them the information before the vote, it defeats the whole purpose of disclosure," Allison said.

Melanie Sloan, executive director of the non-partisan group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, said she, too, was dismayed -- noting that while in Congress, Gingrich had been called out for failing to include information on his disclosure reports.

"You'd think someone once sanctioned by the House of Representatives...would be a little more careful with his financial disclosure forms," she said.

The discovery that Romney's vast holdings included an account in Switzerland, a country long notorious for helping the very wealthy hide their assets, came during his release of his tax return earlier this week. Malt, who oversees Romney's blind trusts, acknowledged during a conference call with reporters that he decided to shut down the Swiss account because he worried it could create a headache for Romney's campaign. "It might or might not be consistent with Governor Romney's political views," he said. "The taxes were all fully paid…it just wasn't worth it. And I closed the account."

That suggests, Allison said, that the campaign had a motivation to exclude any evidence of the Swiss account from the candidate's forms. The Romney campaign called the omission an oversight.

Allison noted that there is generally no penalty for a candidate who leaves something off a disclosure report, and then goes back to amend the report if the missing information is discovered.

"Nobody is going to get into trouble for this," he said. "That is the problem with the disclosure system."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jan192012

Romney Says He’ll ‘Probably’ Release Multiple Years of Tax Returns

EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images(CHARLESTON, S.C.) -- Mitt Romney suggested Thursday for the first time that he would “probably” release his tax returns not only from 2011 but from previous years as well, but garnered boos from the crowd when he seemed to waver on the decision.

“When my taxes are complete for this year, and I know that if I’m the nominee, the president is going to want to insist that I show what my income was this last year, so when they’re completed this year in April, I will release my returns in April for this year, and probably for other years as well,” said Romney during a GOP debate in Charleston, S.C., sponsored by CNN.

But when pressed if he’d follow the path of his father, George Romney, who released 12 years of taxes during his 1967 presidential bid, arguing that there might be a “fluke” in just one year’s results, Romney responded, “Maybe.”

“I don’t know how many years I’ll release,” said Romney, as the crowd booed. Romney paused and smiled.

“I’ll release multiple years, I don’t know how many years,” said Romney. “But I’ll be happy to do that. I know there are some who are anxious to see if they can make it difficult for a campaign to be successful...I’m not going to apologize for being successful.”

Just two days ago Romney had said he would release only his 2011 returns.

“In prior races for president the tradition has been that the nominee releases his tax returns in tax season, in April,” said Romney. “And I know that if I’m the nominee, people will want to see the most recent year, and see what happened in the most recent year and what things are up to date and so they’ll want to see the tax returns that come out in April, so rather than sort of have multiple releases of tax returns, why, we’ll wait until the tax returns for the most recent year are completed, then release them.”

During the debate Thursday night, former Speaker Newt Gingrich suggested that if Romney had nothing to hide, he wouldn’t wait to release his returns.

“He has to decide, if there’s nothing in there, why not release them, and if there is something in them, better to know now,” said Gingrich.

Sen. Rick Santorum said he didn’t think Romney’s returns are a “big deal.”

Romney went on to justify his delay in releasing his returns by suggesting that it would give Democrats fodder for attack.

“Because I want to make sure that I beat President Obama,” said Romney. “And when we release things drip by drip, the Democrats attack. I pay my full taxes, I’m honest with people, I pay a lot of taxes, I’ve been very successful, and when I have my taxes ready for this year, I’ll release them."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jan182012

Romney Parks Millions in Cayman Islands

Joe Raedle/Getty Images(BOSTON) -- Although it is not apparent on his financial disclosure form, Mitt Romney has millions of dollars of his personal wealth in investment funds set up in the Cayman Islands, a notorious Caribbean tax haven.

A spokesperson for the Romney campaign says Romney follows all tax laws and he would pay the same in taxes regardless of where the funds are based.

As the race for the Republican nomination heats up, Mitt Romney is finding it increasingly difficult to maintain a shroud of secrecy around the details about his vast personal wealth, including, as ABC News has discovered, his investment in funds located offshore and his ability to pay a lower tax rate.

"His personal finances are a poster child of what's wrong with the American tax system," said Jack Blum, a Washington lawyer who is an authority on tax enforcement and offshore banking.

On Tuesday, Romney disclosed that he has been paying a far lower percentage in taxes than most Americans, around 15 percent of his annual earnings. It has been Romney's Republican rivals who have driven the tax issue onto center stage. For weeks, Romney has cited a desire for privacy as his reason for not sharing his tax returns -- a gesture of transparency that is now expected from presidential contenders.

"I can tell you we follow the tax laws," he said recently while on the campaign trail in New Hampshire. "And if there's an opportunity to save taxes, we like anybody else in this country will follow that opportunity."

But tax experts tell ABC News there are other reasons Romney may not want the public viewing his returns. As one of the wealthiest candidates to run for president in recent times, Romney has used a variety of techniques to help minimize the taxes on his estimated $250 million fortune. In addition to paying the lower tax rate on his investment income, Romney has as much as $8 million invested in at least 12 funds listed on a Cayman Islands registry. Another investment, which Romney reports as being worth between $5 million and $25 million, shows up on securities records as having been domiciled in the Caymans.

Official documents reviewed by ABC News show that Bain Capital, the private equity partnership Romney once ran, has set up some 138 secretive offshore funds in the Caymans.

Romney campaign officials and those at Bain Capital tell ABC News that the purpose of setting up those accounts in the Cayman Islands is to help attract money from foreign investors, and that the accounts provide no tax advantage to American investors like Romney. Romney, the campaign said, has paid all U.S. taxes on income derived from those investments.

"The tax consequences to the Romneys are the very same whether the fund is domiciled here or another country," a campaign official said in response to questions. "Gov. and Mrs. Romney have money invested in funds that the trustee has determined to be attractive investment opportunities, and those funds are domiciled wherever the fund sponsors happen to organize the funds."

Bain officials called the decision to locate some funds offshore routine, and a benefit only to foreign investors who do not want to be subjected to U.S. taxes.

Tax experts agree that Romney remains subject to American taxes. But they say the offshore accounts have provided him -- and Bain -- with other potential financial benefits, such as higher management fees and greater foreign interest, all at the expense of the U.S. Treasury. Rebecca J. Wilkins, a tax policy expert with Citizens for Tax Justice, said the federal government loses an estimated $100 billion a year because of tax havens.

Blum, the D.C. tax lawyer, said working through an offshore investment vehicle allows the investor to "avoid a whole series of small traps in the tax code that ordinary people would face if they paid tax on an onshore basis."

Wilkins agreed, saying the "primary advantage to setting those funds up in an offshore jurisdiction like the Cayman Islands or Bermuda is it helps the investors avoid tax."

"It helps U.S. investors avoid U.S. tax," said Wilkins, "it helps foreign investors avoid taxes in their home country, so it's not illegal or improper to set those funds up in a foreign jurisdiction, but it makes it more attractive to investors because it helps them avoid paying taxes on that income."

Bain's presence in the Cayman Islands is not something the firm advertises. The Los Angeles Times first disclosed Romney's offshore accounts in 2007, during his initial run for the presidency. ABC News found references to the firm's accounts in the Caymans in the footnotes of securities filings. When ABC News went to the office address listed for Romney's Bain funds, lawyers in the Caymans were not eager to answer questions.

Asked if he could confirm the existence of the Bain accounts, David Byrne, the chief marketing officer for the law firm Walkers, listed on documents as Bain's Caymans' representative, said he could not. "No, I can't at all," said Byrne. "Unfortunately, I can't comment at all on that."

There is now less secrecy than there was even two weeks ago surrounding Romney's tax rate. The money he made through Bain investments was taxed as capital gains at a 15 percent rate, instead of the higher tax rates borne by most Americans. Newt Gingrich told reporters Wednesday that his income was taxed at 31 percent.

The so-called "carried interest" rule has been the source of extensive debate in Washington, with opponents criticizing the allowance to tax those earnings at 15 percent a glaring loophole that benefits only the wealthiest Americans. Under the carried interest rule, income that is determined to be capital gains -- like the profit reaped by hedge fund managers -- is subject to the lower 15 percent rate.

Wilkins said Romney's arrangements reminded her of the now-famous remarks by billionaire financier Warren Buffet, who revealed in 2007 that he was paying taxes at a lower rate than his receptionist.

"Well, I think it's the issue that is sort of on the front page every day, when we look at the Occupy Wall Street movement and that people are really losing patience with the idea that a lot of multinational corporations have and a lot of wealthy people have that while they benefit from everything this country has to offer...they don't seem to be willing to pay their fair share," she said.

Romney, who left Bain in 1999, has confirmed that his earnings largely come from investments, and the tax rate he pays is consistent with that "because my last 10 years, my income comes overwhelmingly from some investments made in the past, whether ordinary income or earned annually. I got a little bit of income from my book, but I gave that all away. And then I get speaker's fees from time to time, but not very much."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jan122012

Elizabeth Warren’s Financial Disclosures Reveal Strong Personal Wealth

Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images(BOSTON) -- Elizabeth Warren, the Senate candidate from Massachusetts who’s running on her history as an advocate for middle-class consumers, earned more than $700,000 total in consulting fees, book royalties and a law professor salary from 2010 to 2011.

According to her personal financial disclosure report submitted to the U.S. Senate’s Office of Public Records, Warren earned a $429,981 salary as a professor at Harvard Law from 2010-2011. The report also shows that Warren earned an additional $136,946 in royalties for books she wrote, along with $133,938 in consulting fees.

Warren, whose campaign recently raised $5.7 million in the fourth quarter of 2011, is hoping to unseat Senator Scott Brown this fall. Warren has been positioning herself as an enemy of big banks and a strong advocate for the middle class. She’s even been quoted as saying that she “created much of the intellectual foundation” for the Occupy Wall Street movement.

The race has already received a great deal of attention, with conservative groups such as Crossroads GPS, backed by Karl Rove, already running ads against Warren in Massachusetts. On Thursday the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, a powerful lobbying organization that represents many American businesses, announced their intentions to be “significantly involved” in the race.

Senator Brown’s campaign, along with the conservative groups targeting Warren, will almost surely use the numbers from this disclosure report against her throughout the course of what is shaping up to be a tight race.

A financial disclosure report from summer of 2011 showed that Brown received a $700,000 advance for his book Against All Odds, a personal memoir released in February 2011, which made The New York Times bestseller list.

ABC News emailed Warren’s campaign for comment, and they did not respond.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov042011

Rick Perry Discloses Nearly $230,000 Owed for Travel

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In an amended report submitted to the Federal Election Commission Friday, Rick Perry disclosed that his campaign owes almost $230,000 in new travel-related debts as a result of failing to follow campaign finance rules when paying for chartered planes.

According to the amended FEC report, the Perry campaign owes a total of $227,676.07 to eight different companies for travel-related expenses. The largest debts are owed to companies and individuals with strong Texas ties to Perry. Javaid Anwar, the head of Midland Energy in Texas, is owed $66,362.50. Perry owes $454,365.16 to Friedkin Aviation, owned by Dan Friedkin, whom Perry appointed as the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission. Brian Pardo, a Texas businessman and Perry donor, is owed $22,931.15.

The story was first reported by The New York Times.

Perry’s amended report was prompted by a New York Times piece last month that revealed the Perry campaign underpaid Pardo for the use of his private planes during the last fundraising quarter.  The campaign paid only for the seats used by the campaign, not the equivalent of the full cost of a chartered flight as required by campaign finance regulations.

Upon publication of the story, the campaign told the Times it would reimburse the individuals and companies for the full price of the flight.

Perry faced additional plane problems last month when the Wall Street Journal learned the Texas governor used the same plane that was used in a drug smuggling ring, though the campaign was unaware of the plane’s previous flights.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Aug122011

Romney Worth as Much as $250 Million

James Devaney/WireImage(WASHINGTON) -- Mitt Romney’s net worth is somewhere between $190 and $250 million, according to the candidate’s personal financial disclosure filed Friday with the Federal Election Commission and obtained by ABC News.

The details of Romney’s worth were first reported earlier Friday by The Boston Globe, but were later detailed by Romney’s own campaign.

“Governor and Mrs. Romney's assets are managed on a blind basis. They do not control the investment of these assets. The assets are under the control and overall management of a trustee,” said Romney for President Communications Director Gail Gitcho in an e-mail statement.

The Romney’s finance disclosure report -- one that is required for all presidential candidates -- show investments in a variety of areas. The long list of companies Romney invests between $50,000 and $100,000 include Apple and rival Microsoft, General Electric, Google and sports giant Nike.

The report also confirms what many already knew: Romney’s wealth far exceeds those of his GOP contenders as well as President Barack Obama.

ABC News’ own analysis of Romney’s financial records show the former Massachusetts governor earned $113,000 in a director’s fee for his spot on the board at Marriott International.

A total of eight speaking engagements -- speeches were delivered to bankers and students, primarily -- garnered Romney more than $370,000.

The filing also shows that Romney has somewhere between $250,000 and $500,000 in a Bank of America account and has the same amount in gold.

He earned between $100,000 and $1 million from his book No Apology, earnings that were all donated to charity.  The charities that divided the earnings equally were the Joey Fund, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Sabin Children’s Foundation, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Dana Farber Cancer Institute Jimmy Fund and Homes for Our Troops.

The report also shows that Romney owns between $250,000 and $500,000 in horses. His wife, Ann Romney, has often credited horse therapy with helping her cope with her Multiple Sclerosis.

At least $1 million of Romney’s fortune is invested in his son Tagg’s company, Solamere Founders Fund.

In addition, the Romneys still have a trust for their children and grandchildren valued at roughly $100 million, the Romney campaign said.

Mitt and Ann Romney are not beneficiaries and, therefore, not required to disclose this. But it exists in addition to the other money.

Four years ago, the Romneys cited the trust when asked if they were forfeiting their children's inheritance by dumping their own money into the campaign. They said "no" because of this trust, which still exists. This time, Romney so far has spent none of his own money on his presidential campaign.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jun212011

Newt Gingrich Had Second Line of Credit at Tiffany

ABC News Radio(NEW YORK) -- Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign acknowledged Tuesday that Gingrich had a second line of credit at high-end jewelry store Tiffany's for as much as $1 million.

As first reported by the Washington Post, Joe DeSantis, spokesman for the Gingrich campaign, said Gingrich's personal financial disclosure filing due 30 days after his declared candidacy will reveal “the Gingriches had a $500,000 to $1 million line of credit at Tiffany's, that it has zero balance, and it has been closed.”

DeSantis said all debts to Tiffany's had been paid and offered no information regarding when the line of credit was obtained, when it was closed or what it was used to purchase.

Sources told ABC News the Gingrich campaign was worried about what the next filing would reveal.  The Gingrich campaign asked for a 45-day extension on the personal financial disclosure filing from the FEC, which lasts until July 25.  The filing will encompass personal financial disclosures since June 2010.

Reports of Gingrich's first line of credit with Tiffany's emerged on May 17, six days after Gingrich announced his candidacy via Twitter.

Gingrich defended the Tiffany's account he and his wife held on CBS' Face the Nation on May 22, saying they are “very frugal.”

“Well, go talk to Tiffany's. All I'm telling you is we are very frugal. We, in fact, live within our budget. We owe nothing,” Gingrich said. “I'm a guy running for president who pays out of his bills in after-tax income at no cost to the taxpayer and who currently owes nothing except one rental property in Wisconsin. I am debt free.”

On Monday, two top fundraisers for the Gingrich campaign finance team resigned.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio