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Romney Responds to Reid's Wild Tax Claim: 'I Have Paid Taxes Every Year -- and a lot of Taxes

(TheBlaze/AP) -- Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney says he has "paid taxes every year -- and a lot of taxes."

Romney on Friday rejected claims by Harry Reid, the Democratic leader of the Senate, and other Democrats that Romney has used loopholes to avoid paying taxes for a decade on his income.

(RELATED: 'Put up or Shut up': Romney Calls Harry Reid Out on Sean Hannity's Show as Reid Doubles Down)

Campaigning in Reid's home state of Nevada, Romney told reporters at a presser those claims are "patently, simply false." He said Reid needs to stop spreading rumors.

"And by the way Harry, I understand what you're trying to do. You're trying to deflect the fact that jobs numbers are bad, that Americans are out of work, and you're trying to throw anything up on the screen that will grab attention away from the fact that the policies of the White House haven't worked," Romney continued. "So, Harry Reid is simply wrong."

Reid told the Huffington Post on Tuesday that an investor with Bain Capital called his office and gave him the tip. Though he refuses to identify the source of such explosive allegations, Reid promises it is an "extremely credible" source.

Reid even went as far as saying that Romney's father, George, "must be so embarrassed about his son."

The Republican presidential candidate has released his 2010 tax return and an estimate of his 2011 taxes, but has refused to release information for prior years. He says his political rivals will exploit the information.

In 2010, Romney paid 13.9 percent tax on income of $21.6 million.

Reid indicated Friday that he will not be backing down from his attacks on Romney's tax records. He even called him 'the most secretive presidential candidate since Richard Nixon.'

"Forget about president -- Mitt Romney couldn't get confirmed as a cabinet secretary," Reid said in a statement. "The contents of the one year of returns he has released would probably be enough to tank his nomination anyway: secret overseas bank accounts in Switzerland and the Cayman Islands, tax avoidance tricks and a lower tax rate than middle-class families pay."

Reid went on: “In short, Romney’s message to Nevadans is this: he won’t release his taxes, but he wants to raise yours.

Watch the video of Romney's remarks via Mediaite here:

This story has been updated.

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