While some hedge funders appear to be sticking by President Obama, mostly because he ate a fancy meal with them, others are still desperately searching for a viable Republican alternative who won't even occasionally use semi-mean language in public about the lords of high finance. That's why they're still trying to convince New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to run, because he only says mean things about all middle class people, all the time.
Politico reports that "fifty of the most prized donors in national politics, including several hedge-fund billionaires who are among the richest people in the world," gathered in Manhattan yesterday with Christie in yet another vain attempt to get him to run. Christie's decision not to run has been clear for months now. But loudmouth venture capitalist and Home Depot founder Ken Langone was still able to get him to the meeting, most likely by promising him several platters of sandwiches.
Christie once again turned down their pleas in clear language. But what's more interesting are the childish reasons these robber barons gave for hating Obama:
Several of them said: I'm Republican but I voted for President Obama, because I couldn't live with Sarah Palin. Many said they were severely disappointed in the president. The biggest complaint was what several called "class warfare." They said they didn't understand what they had done to deserve that: If you want to have a conversation about taxation, have a conversation. But a president shouldn't attack his constituents – he's not the president of some people, he's president of all the people. Someone mentioned Huey Long populism.
Okay. At first we thought that these preeminent financiers were using this thin-skinned line — that the president has said "fat cats" once or twice in public, during a horrible economic depression caused by Wall Street excess, and that hurts their feelings — as a cover for their real reason to want a Republican in office, which is that a Republican would institute zero new regulations on the financial world instead of the Obama administration's one or two new regulations. But now it sounds like these people are actually so puerile and historically inept as to think that Barack Obama saying "corporate jets" or "millionaires and billionaires" sidles him right there with Huey Long as the personification of dangerous leftist populism.
"But a president shouldn't attack his constituents – he's not the president of some people, he's president of all the people." It's hard to believe that a group of fifty Wall Street billionaires could earnestly think that they're unfairly represented in our political system, or being targeted in any meaningful way, while begging the politician who's most famous for screaming insults at "the people" to become president instead. But maybe they do. Maybe they are that sensitive and out of touch! Good heavens.
[Via Digby; image via AP]