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Pawlenty defends Romney on tax returns, mum on VP announcement

Tim Pawlenty tells CBS News that GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney has released enough personal tax records. The former Minnesota governor said President Barack Obama’s campaign is trying to draw media attention away from a poor record on the economy by talking about Romney’s tax returns, Pawlenty said.

“The press is taking the bait,” Pawlenty said. “There is no indication that Mitt Romney has done anything wrong with respect to his taxes.”

Romney has released his 2010 tax returns and has said he will release 2011 records when the documents are properly prepared. Reporters have noted that previous candidates have released many years’ worth of returns.

Simply put, Pawlenty said Romney has made a lot of money and paid a lot of taxes, the AP reports.

Romney on Tuesday told the National Review Online that he didn’t intend to give the the Obama campaign more tax records than was necessary. “I’m simply not enthusiastic about giving them hundreds or thousands of more pages to pick through, distort, and lie about.”

Pawlenty, believed to be among Romney’s top choices for a running mate, also told CBS he wouldn’t talk about process or timing of a vice presidential announcement.

Here’s the Pawlenty interview with CBS:



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