News Presidential Financial Contributions: Romney vs. Obama

1. Sep 1, 2012

Pythagorean

from opensecrets.org:
http://www.opensecrets.org/pres12/index.php

edit: to be in compliance with PWA, I'm supposed to say something. Mostly, I just think its important that we know what kind of people are supporting which candidates, because they likely see the candidate as contributing to their company's philosophies in their policies.

An interesting point is that ontheissues puts Obama at strongly supporting topic 16 (stricter laws on campaign financing) and he has no PAC. Romney is almost half PAC and opposes topic 16 overall (though he wanted to abolish PACs in 1994).

Last edited: Sep 2, 2012
2. Sep 1, 2012

3. Sep 4, 2012

4. Sep 4, 2012

skippy1729

From the OP's reference site:

Barack Obama (D):

Goldman Sachs $513,943 Morgan Stanley$ 90,123
MF Global $897,232 Also some interesting pie charts there. Largest sector of Obama money is from Lawyers and Lobbyists at$34,850,000.

So, what is the point of the exercise. Cherry picking?

5. Sep 4, 2012

Pythagorean

There's no need to be hostile, the point of the exercise is to inform voters before the election. We have to be careful and declare our interpretations. I am willing to listen to any evidence you present. I trust Romney and the banks the least, so I may inherently see something a certain way, but I'm willing to listen to reason. For the record, I see Obama as the lesser evil and I don't think my vote counts for much anyway in my state.

I've ever heard of it. Why don't you tell me about it? It looks like Romney smear, but I've only just googled it. Is it linked to Obama? What's the difference between them and a PAC?

I'm not able to find that information. In the list I see:
http://www.opensecrets.org/pres12/contrib.php?cycle=2012&id=N00009638

Do you have any specifics? is that connected to this chart?

http://www.opensecrets.org/industries/index.php

6. Sep 4, 2012

7. Sep 4, 2012

skippy1729

The WH links to Priorities USA Action are discussed here (and many other places):

http://nation.foxnews.com/debbie-wasserman-shultz/2012/08/12/dnc-chair-makes-mind-numbing-claim-fox

Obama Spokesman Ben LaBolt: “Campaign And White House Officials Have Participated In And Will Continue To Participate In” Super PAC Events. “And the Obama campaign made clear that it still fully supports the political action committee. ‘We have been crystal clear in expressing our support for Priorities USA Action and its mission: re-electing the President,’ campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt said. ‘Campaign and White House officials have participated in and will continue to participate in their events across the country.’” (Steven T. Dennis, “Cabinet Members A Super PAC No-Show,” Roll Call, 7/10/12)
At Least Four Of Obama’s Cabinet Members Answered His Call To “Help Fill The Coffers” Of Super PACs. “At least four Cabinet members appear ready and willing to answer President Barack Obama’s call to help fill the coffers of Democratic outside spending groups, which have to date been badly outgunned by better-funded Republican organizations.” (Michael Beckel, “Fundraising Activities Are Limited, But Star Power Brings In The Bucks,” iWatch News, 2/13/12)

Interior Secretary Salazar, Energy Secretary Chu, Education Secretary Duncan And U.S. Trade Rep. Kirk Will Attend Fundraising Events For Democratic Super PACs.“Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, Energy Secretary Steven Chu, Education Secretary Arne Duncan and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk have all indicated they would be open to participation in activities designed to help the nascent Democratic super PACs, like ‘Priorities USA Action,’ raise money.” (Michael Beckel, “Fundraising Activities Are Limited, But Star Power Brings In The Bucks,” iWatch News, 2/13/12)

“Officials Tapped To Participate Include Health And Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Education Secretary Arne Duncan, White House Senior Adviser David Plouffe And Mr. Messina, A Campaign Official Said.” (Laura Meckler, “In A Shift, Obama Campaign Moves To Support Outside ‘Super PAC’” The Wall Street Journal, 2/7/12)

8. Sep 4, 2012

9. Sep 4, 2012

Pythagorean

@Skippy

Thanks, I've never heard the term 'bundlers' before. According to opensecrets, it's not just towards Obama's campaign, but also towards the Democratic party. It's interesting that opensecrets puts Obama's PAC at 0. Is opensecrets bias or can they somehow justify that? That's kind of confusing to me why there would be that conflict.

Debbie Wasserman Shultz has been caught lying before, Anderson Cooper grilled her for it:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/vi..._wasserman_schultz_over_romney__abortion.html

Anyway, what do you think is the motive of the "lawyers" you mentioned? You seemed to present it as a mark against Obama? Not sure what your motive was, but the information alone doesn't make Obama the greater evil. Tell me more.

Yes, Goldman-Sachs donated over one million in 2008 (my second post). What their shifting support seems to demonstrate is that they don't like the 2010 Dodd-Frank regulatory overhaul that Obama supports and they stand to benefit more from Romney's policies than Obama's this election. That's troublesome to me. Aren't these people that have a lot of accountability for the economic crisis?

Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
10. Sep 5, 2012

skippy1729

In general, the motive of the lawyers is that Republicans favour tort reform and Democrats oppose it. While in my personal experience I tend to view lawyers as the scourge of the earth, I have mixed feelings on tort reform. If it is done it must be done carefully. There are always unintended consequences to any "reform". Although the president holds many policy positions that I disagree with I will give him a pass on his choice of profession.

11. Sep 5, 2012

mheslep

Yes I was curious why you left off your list all the other big banks that donated much larger amounts to 2008 Obama.

The Obama administration has been in office nearly four years with any number of actions to their credit which business may or may not like, of which Dodd-Frank is only one. I doubt the banks were very fond of a government czar appointed to set executive pay, or some sinister threats from the White House. But I expect the top of the don't-like list for the banks is the current economy.

I think most businesses in the US stand to benefit more from a Romney administration.

Why?

I don't think the banks were the primary problem; I think the Dodd Frank authors have a lot of culpability. But that aside what makes you think the thousands of pages of Dodd Frank will fix future problems?

12. Sep 5, 2012

Pythagorean

The way you're practicing Derrida's deconstruction on my post, it makes it difficult to be productive. See why this tactic is used (and shouldn't be) here. Particularly, see the chapters: "not a method", "not a critique", "not an analysis", and "not poststructuralist". As a specific example, you ask "why", when I've given the motivation in the following sentence. But through deconstruciton, you blinded yourself to context.

As for the lists I used, opensecrets defined the criteria: "top 5 contributors". It's the first piece of detailed information on the front page of their "presidential elections" coverage. When you do a piece of analysis, you define the criteria, and carry it to all cases. You don't change criteria for one case unless you have a good justification for it. It might even be seen as questionable. I want to see, for each each election, who wants the candidate to win the most. Top 5 contributors is ideal for that (and probably why it's the first piece of contirbutor-specific information opensecrets presents, no?). Of course, as skipper pointed out, we also have bundlers... but they're not as straightforward since their funds go towards Democratic party in general and names can be lost in the bundle so you have to be extra careful about your point when posting that information.

Banks:
I didn't say the banks were the primary problem, but they definitely have a lot of accountability, given their practices (I'm focusing on Goldman-Sachs here; namely because they were the top contributor to Obama, a democrat last election, but have shifted focus this election):

Why don't you tell me more though, about the culpability of the authors of Dodd Frank? And why do you think it won't fix future problems (as it's intended to do, by disallowing undue risk)? I'm no expert, I'm genuinely curious. I trust rule-makers to do their job. I have good faith that the authors actually want to restrict the banks from the above practices mentioned. Why do you have bad faith?

13. Sep 5, 2012

mheslep

What I did above was to challenge what I see as unwarranted assumptions which is nothing at all like Derrida deconstruction. Yes having to go back and support those assumptions will slow things down.

I have no problem with the general proposition that money in politics often corrupts and buys influence, but I do have a problem with what I see is a one sided narrative you are placing on top of it. For instance, you ask about my "bad faith" assumption w/ regard to Dodd Frank, which is to ask why I do not accept it on faith as a good thing, while your earlier posts are a series of bad faith assumptions on your part about the banks.

14. Sep 5, 2012

Pythagorean

Except for that my "unwarranted assumption" was in the following sentence, where you could have focused your attention and which I would have listened to a reasonable response to (and I gave you an opportunity to describe the problem with Dodd's authors where you had left a vague reference to their character) yet you focused instead on guessing my motives and trying to assay my character.

And you do so again in this post. I never denied bad faith, I openly admitted it (post #4) as well as provided evidence and reasoning for it (post #12). Yet you still focus on me instead of the real content. It makes me feel like you aren't really interested in having a real discussion. As I told skippy, I'm completely open to reason and argument... but you're not presenting that; you're presenting vague references and innuendo and trying to guess my motives.

15. Sep 7, 2012

Pythagorean

Huffington Post on why we need regulation like Dodd Frank, especially because of behavior still being committed by JP Morgan:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/...oss-2-billion-financial-crisis_n_1510217.html

more from reuters on JP Morgan's strategies:

The main problem here is derivatives abuse (which played a lead role in the subprime crisis of 2008). The Volcker Rule is an especially important aspect of the Dodd-Frank legislation in this aspect. And of course, Romney wants repeal the Volcker rule, which may explain why his top 5 contributors (accoring to opensecrets) are banks that are known for their derivatives abuse.

16. Sep 7, 2012

mheslep

Not at all. Just the narrative you're telling.

17. Sep 7, 2012

lisab

Staff Emeritus
mheslep, if you have an argument against Dodd Frank, the best way to make your point is to go ahead and tell us what it is, specifically. Much more effective than the approach you're taking, IMO.

18. Sep 7, 2012

mheslep

Most of that article by Devine is about support or lack thereof for implementation of the Volcker rule. I see only one point from one source explaining *why we need regulation like DF* in the article:

Is that how you read it?

I read elsewhere the JP Morgan CEO, Dimon, says no, Volcker would not have stopped the loss.

I recommend this as to the why, and why not:
"http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303822204577464661833507038.html"

Last edited: Sep 7, 2012
19. Sep 7, 2012

Pythagorean

Are you able to find a free version of the article or else take some excerpts or summarize the main points?

20. Sep 7, 2012

mheslep

Its free if you copy the URL text above instead of clicking it which engages the PF api.viglink.com strangeness.

Edit: I take that back. Google the story title "Q & A: The Volcker Rule", and access it via the google hit link. That seems to work. For now.

Last edited: Sep 7, 2012