Private Equity Hypocrisy

Obama Attacks Private Equity While Raising Money from Private Equity

President Obama’s reelection campaign today lashed out at presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney for his business experience in the "corporate buyout" industry of private equity, launching a new ad and website critical of Romney’s private sector career.

The attack comes on the very day that Obama plans to attend two New York City fundraisers sure to be well attended by Wall Street types. One of those fundraisers will be hosted by Obama supporter and private equity mogul Hamilton "Tony" James, the president and chief operating officer of the Blackstone group.

James donated the maximum amount of $35,800 to Obama’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee. His hosting of today’s fundraiser was first reported by the New York Times last month.

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The Obama campaign’s inconsistent message on private equity echoes similar inconsistencies when it comes to the financial services industry.

Obama’s campaign has also criticized Romney for depositing some of his fortune in Swiss bank accounts, but that has not stopped the president from playing golf with and accepting more than $500,000 in contributions bundled by Robert Wolf, the chairman of Swiss bank UBS Investment and UBS Americas.