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The elusive truth about Mitt Romney's time at Bain Capital

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“Romney is named as one of two managing members of Bain Capital Investors LLC in annual reports filed in Massachusetts, as late as 2002, adding a new corporate entity to a growing number of Bain-related investments and funds that list the Republican presidential candidate as controlling the company three years after he said he left it,” Bloomberg News reported Friday. “Separate documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), reviewed by Bloomberg News, also show Romney in 2000 as the sole stockholder of Bain Capital Investors Inc.”

That may be true, Romney supporters reply, but it does not mean he played any part in running the firm’s day-to-day operations – including decisions that may have affected jobs in the United States.

The Boston Globe, which has led the way in reporting the story, noted Saturday that Romney’s account of when he left Bain has “evolved” over the years.

Until his run for governor of Massachusetts in 2002, the Globe reported, “Romney had characterized his departure from Bain Capital more as a ‘leave of absence’ in which he would be a ‘part-timer,’ and not as an absolute separation from the thriving business he built and solely owned.... Financial disclosure forms Romney filed in Massachusetts indicate he earned at least $100,000 as a Bain ‘executive’ in 2001 and 2002, separate from investment earnings.”

Some fact-checking organizations find little evidence that Romney played any direct role in cutting or outsourcing US jobs.

“None of the SEC filings show that Romney was anything but a passive, absentee owner during that time," FactCheck.org asserts. “It should not surprise anyone that Romney retained certain titles while he was working out the final disposition of his ownership, for example.”

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