The Obama campaign is offering Mitt Romney a truce of sorts: if he releases five years of tax returns, the Obama campaign will not request the release of any more.
Politicians and pundits on both sides of the aisle have been calling on Romney to be more transparent with his tax returns. Romney has released his 2010 returns and is expected to release his 2011 returns. He and his wife have steadfastly maintained that those releases are all that are legally obligated, and they will not release any more.
Obama campaign manager Jim Messina made the offer to Romney campaign manager Matt Rhoades in a letter Friday. Messina says he is taking the step because Romney "apparently fears the more he offers, the more our campaign will demand that he provide."
Though Romney is adamant that there is nothing nefarious about the tax returns he refuses to disclose, his refusal to release them has opened him up to criticism that he is hiding something. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has been the most high-profile, accusing Romney of avoiding paying taxes for 10 years.
Romney blasted Reid for what he calls false charges, and has demanded that Reid identify his source, who Reid says is an "extremely credible source" from Bain Capital. John McCain, whose campaign reviewed several years of Romney's tax returns when considering him as a running mate, backed Romney up, saying that while he didn't review them all himself, there was nothing that suggested Romney didn't pay taxes some years.
Thursday, Romney opened more than usual on the campaign trail regarding his wealth, stating that he has paid at least 13 percent of his income in federal taxes every year for the past decade.
There is no word whether his campaign will take Obama's team up on their offer.