by Benjamin J. Kirby
First, go down to your salt mine and find the biggest grain of the stuff you can.
Okay, with salt in hand, imagine this: Mitt Romney drops out of the presidential race. Could it happen? Apparently, per the HuffingtonPost, this unprecedented, history-making notion has crossed the man's mind.
Mitt Romney has been determined to resist releasing his tax returns at least since his bid for Massachusetts governor in 2002 and has been confident that he will never be forced to do so, several current and former Bain executives tell The Huffington Post. Had he thought otherwise, say the sources based on their longtime understanding of Romney, he never would have gone forward with his run for president.
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While Romney may personally prefer to drop out before releasing more returns, people who know him note that he doesn't always do what he wants. Torn between his longtime desire to be president and his equally strong belief that he should not be forced to release more returns, Romney may turn, as he has with so many big decisions, to strict numbers-based analysis. If he plummets in the polls and the risk of defeat presses itself on him, the sources say, his calculation could change.
All of this, a David Nir at DailyKos says, begs the question: what in the hell is in those returns that Governor Romney doesn't want you to see?
And of course, this all swings back to the question of just what exactly is Romney hiding in all those 1040s? If it's something so devastating that he has to drop out rather than reveal his returns, the whole political world would be rendered speechless.
Uh, yeah, "speechless" is putting it mildly.
Just a quick addition to what has already been reported at the HuffingtonPost and DailyKos: if Romney is determined to A.) never release the returns, and B.) stay in the race, that situation may be worse than he imagines, because he's essentially inviting the Obama Campaign to build the frame that he won't. What's in those returns? Could be anything -- and the Obama people will be all too happy to tell you. That, versus nothing from the Romney people, will win every time.
This is getting much, much worse for Romney and his campaign. And it's not going away.