The Romney campaign has claimed that the former Massachusetts governor cut all ties with Bain Capital when he left to run the 2002 Winter Olympics in February of 1999, but a press release from July of 1999 seems to contradict this account. “Bain Capital CEO W. Mitt Romney” is “currently on a part-time leave of absence to head the Salt Lake City Olympic Committee for the 2002 Games,” the release, uncovered by Daily Kos’ Jed Lewison, states. The document announces the departure of two Bain managing directors. In 1999, Romney himself had stated that he would “stay on as a part-timer with Bain providing input on investment and key personnel decisions.” ...Think Progress
... Opinion polls suggest that Romney has been hurt by the Obama Bain attacks in key swing states and some Republican strategists have fretted openly that Romney has not responded forcefully enough. ...WaPo
... Quite conceivably, there is an innocent explanation. Perhaps Romney retained his formal titles until signing a formal severance agreement but didn’t actually do anything, or perhaps a lowly lawyer made a mistake in filling in the forms. ...
... Where the story goes from here is far from clear. Some experts on corporate governance have suggested that Romney’s distinction between management and ownership is a credible one; others have queried it. If I were Romney, I would be pushing my former colleagues at Bain Capital to back up my story in public interviews, not just by releasing anonymous statements. But therein lies the problem for Romney that I wrote about yesterday: the opacity of the private equity industry in general, and of Bain Capital in particular. Rather than providing a detailed explanation, supported by documentation, of Romney’s residual ties to the firm between 1999 and today, Bain has grudgingly dribbled out a bit of information here and there, adding to the suspicion that he is trying to hide something.
In coming out swinging on the networks on Friday evening, Romney did what he had to to: he put the Obama campaign on notice that he’s not going to play the role of a piñata. But he didn’t put the Bain story to bed—not by a long shot. ...John Cassidy, New Yorker