General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler all have come begging at the federal trough for a series of bailouts. In recent weeks, Democrats have made it clear what they will demand in exchange for the bailout cash: more attention to fuel-efficient cars, fewer gas guzzlers, more research into alternative-fuel-powered cars, and other green efforts.
It’s also obvious what the Democratic Congress won’t demand of Detroit—they won’t call on the Big Three to significantly renegotiate the absurdly generous pension plans the unions demanded and irresponsible past CEOs agreed to.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
My November 21, 2008 Washington Examiner column:
At the same time, however, Emanuel was on the payroll of Goldman Sachs, receiving $3,000 per month from the firm to “introduce us to people,” in the words of one Goldman partner at the time. This is certainly a noteworthy relationship, but it’s one that has almost entirely escaped scrutiny.
Corporations and partnerships are and were at the time prohibited by law from contributing to federal candidates out of the corporate coffers. So, while Rahm tapped Goldman employees personally for six figures in gifts to Clinton’s candidacy—more than any other firm—Goldman, as a company, was helping keep Clinton’s top fundraiser well-fed.
When you look at the explanations Goldman and Emanuel gave for Emanuel’s employment—he was advising on “local political races” or “introduc[ing] us to people”—it’s easy to suspect that Goldman was using firm money to fund the Clinton campaign by paying the campaign’s top fundraiser for nebulous “consulting” work—all while the campaign was in debt and delaying paychecks to campaign staff.
Friday, November 14, 2008
Studying Emanuel’s brief stint—between his “public service” jobs in the Clinton White House and the U.S. House of Representatives—as a corporate dealmaker provides insight into the functioning of the “revolving door” Obama seems to deplore.
Emanuel left the Clinton White House in late 1998 with a job offer in hand from investment banker Wasserstein Perella & Co. Emanuel, with no experience outside of politics and no MBA, took a high perch as a managing director at Wasserstein Perella, and proceeded to get very rich.Surely Emanuel’s work ethic, focus, and effectiveness were critical to his job success, but looking at the deals he worked on, it’s unarguable that government connections were what made him the best man for the job.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Just as [Rahm] Emanuel has helped Wall Street, Wall Street has helped Emanuel. This past election cycle, more than a third of Emanuel’s campaign contributions from political action committees came from financial sector PACs.
His top source of campaign funds this year was the subprime-rattled UBS (the Swiss bank’s PAC and employees gave, corporations cannot give campaign contributions), who benefited from the housing bailout which Emanuel supported and has already shown an interest in expanding.
Hedge funds and private equity firms are also close with Emanuel. Over his career, Emanuel’s best source of funds has been the private equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners. Hedge funds, facing a new slew of regulations, handouts, and rules, dramatically increased their contributions this year, and Emanuel was also their favorite House member.
The $96,900 Emanuel pulled in from hedge funds places him above any Senator besides presidential candidates. In fact, Emanuel garnered from hedge funds more than the top 11 Republican lawmakers, combined.