By Meghashyam Mali - 07/17/12 12:09 PM EDT
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) has released a new ad raising the pressure on Republican candidate Mitt Romney to release more tax returns — this time using conservative pundits and GOP politicians to make the case.
The video is one of a slew of new ads hitting Romney, who has refused to release more than two years of returns, unveiled on Tuesday.
It then features video clips of prominent commentators from the right criticizing Romney’s decision.
“The cost of not releasing the returns are clear. Therefore, he must have calculated that there are higher costs in releasing them,” says George Will, in a clip from Sunday’s “This Week” on ABC.
“There’s obviously something there, because if there was nothing there, he would say, 'Have at it,' " says former George W. Bush strategist Matthew Dowd.
“If he had had 20 years of great, clean, everything’s-fine [returns] it would all be out there,” Dowd continues.
“And more Republicans are calling for Mitt Romney to be straight with the American people and release his tax returns,” the ad’s narrator resumes, as the screen displays images of other GOP leaders who have criticized Romney.
“Put out as much information as you can, even if you don’t release 12 years' worth of tax returns — at least three, four, five,” says former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, in one clip.
Other clips include critical comments from commentator Bill Kristol, former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour and current Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley.
The video then cuts to a clip of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) during his 2008 presidential campaign, appearing at a rally with Romney.
“But what did the one Republican who had 23 years of Mitt Romney’s tax returns do in 2008? He chose Sarah Palin,” says the ad.
The video then flashes a clip of McCain announcing that his running mate would be then-Alaska Gov. Palin.
“What does John McCain know that the American people don’t?” the ad concludes.
A report in Vanity Fair last week detailing Romney’s offshore financial holdings spurred renewed Democratic calls for Romney to allow greater public scrutiny of his finances.
Romney has released his 2010 tax records and an estimate of 2011 taxes but has refused to provide additional returns, calling the pressure campaign an attempt to distract voters from the president’s economic policies.