(AUSTIN, Texas) — Texas Gov. Rick Perry called for people seeking higher elected office to be as transparent as possible when it comes to releasing information like tax returns.
“I’m a big believer that no matter who you are or what office you are running for, you should be as transparent as you can be with your tax returns and other aspects of your life so that people have the appropriate ability to judge your background and what have you,” Perry said Tuesday at the Texas State Capitol. “I certainly think it is inappropriate for the president of the United States to not keep his college transcript and his law school transcripts public, that he should make those available. I’m all about transparency.”
In his broad transparency call, Perry made no direct reference to presidential candidate Mitt Romney, whose unwillingness to release more than two years of tax returns has come under scrutiny recently.
Asked if he thought Romney should release more, Perry avoided the subject and turned the conversation to President Obama, who famously has refused to reveal who paid for his education, nor any of his grades or papers while he was enrolled in higher education.
“I think the president ought to release all of his transcripts, yes sir, I think anyone running for office if they get asked, within reason, to give people background about what they have been doing, including tax returns, should do that,” Perry said. “That’s my feel on it. There are places that require it to be completely transparent. I think it is odd that the president of the United States refuses to allow his transcript.”
Perry was among the first presidential candidates to call on Romney to release his tax returns last October and again in a debate in January, when Romney had yet to release his tax documents to the public.
The Texas governor, who has released 20 years of his own tax returns, also refused to debate his 2010 gubernatorial candidate Bill White unless he released his tax returns, which he did not.
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Eric Bradner, Jeff Zeleny and Shimon Prokupecz, CNN
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