Santorum Releases Tax Returns
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By SAMUEL P. JACOBS,
Reuters
February 16, 2012

Republican U.S. presidential candidate Rick Santorum released tax returns on Wednesday showing he and his wife earned around $1 million annually in the last few years.

Santorum issued returns for the last four years, the most of the current Republican candidates who have tried to outdo each other in showing transparency about their taxes.

The former Pennsylvania senator and his wife earned $659,000 in 2007, $952,000 in 2008, $1.1 million in 2009 and about $923,000 in 2010, according to the tax returns posted online by the Politico news organization.

"For me, I felt very successful in, you know, making money. I also was very successful at paying taxes. I think our effective tax rates were somewhere between 25 and 28 percent," Santorum told CNN on Wednesday evening.

Santorum and his wife paid about $167,000 in taxes in 2007, some $262,000 in 2008, $310,000 in 2009, and $263,000 in 2010, Politico reported.

Former private equity executive Mitt Romney, by far the richest man in the 2012 White House race, released tax records in January indicating he will pay $6.2 million in taxes on a total of $42.5 million in income over the years 2010 and 2011.

Rival Newt Gingrich earlier revealed that he and his wife Callista paid $995,000 on an income of $3.1 million in 2010.

According to the disclosures, Santorum's tax rate exceeds Romney but falls short of Gingrich.

Since losing his Senate seat in 2006, Santorum has secured a number of lucrative jobs, including working for a law firm, national media outlets, and serving as a consultant to health care and energy companies.

During his final year in the Senate, Santorum collected a congressional salary of $165,200. Since then, Santorum told CNN, he has earned "a little over $3 million dollars."

Santorum said he bought a "much bigger" house for his large family with seven children and its value dropped by 40 percent. He used his earnings to pay down the mortgage on that and also on expenses for his disabled daughter and on college for two others children.

Throughout the campaign, Santorum has called upon his humble roots to appeal to voters.