Wall Street executives are praising Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden’s choosing Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) as his running mate against President Trump, feeling they dodged a bullet from a progressive insurgency.
In interviews with the Wall Street Journal, CNBC, and Bloomberg, executives on Wall Street expressed relief that Biden picked Harris for vice president on the Democrat ticket, calling her a “normal Democrat” who is a “safe” choice for the financial industry.
Morgan Stanley Vice Chairman Tom Nides told Bloomberg that across Wall Street, Harris joining Biden “was exceptionally well-received.”
“How damn cool is it that a Black woman is considered the safe and conventional candidate,” Nides said.
Peter Soloman, the founder of a multinational investment banking firm, told Bloomberg he believes Harris is “a great pick” because she is “safe, balanced, a woman, diverse, what’s not to like?”
As the Journal notes, many on Wall Street see Harris is another conscious decision by the Democrat establishment to stave off populist priorities to reform Wall Street:
To some Wall Street executives, Ms. Harris’s selection signals a more moderate shift for the Democratic Party, which its progressive flank has pushed to the left in recent years. [Emphasis added]
“While Kamala is a forceful, passionate and eloquent standard-bearer for the aspirations of all Americans, regardless of their race, gender or age, she is not doctrinaire or rigid,” said Brad Karp, chairman of law firm Paul Weiss, who co-led a committee of lawyers across the country who supported Ms. Harris during the primary. [Emphasis added]
Marc Lasry, CEO of Avenue Capital Group, called Harris a “great” pick for Biden. “She’s going to help Joe immensely. He picked the perfect partner,” Lasry told CNBC.
Executives at Citigroup and Centerview Partners made similar comments about Harris to CNBC and the Journal, calling her a “great choice” and “direct but constructive.”
Founder of financial consulting firm Kynikos Associates Jim Chanos was elated in an interview with Bloomberg over Harris joining Biden on the Democrat ticket:
“She’s terrific,” said Chanos, founder of Kynikos Associates. “She’s got force of personality in a good way. She takes over a room. She certainly has a charisma and a presence which will be an asset on the campaign.” [Emphasis added]
Harris is no stranger to praise from Wall Street executives. In the 2019 Democrat presidential primary, Harris won over a number of financial industry donors, even holding a fundraiser in Iowa that was backed by Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.
While criticizing “the people who have the most” in Democrat primary debates, Harris raked in thousands in campaign cash from financial executives from firms such as the Blackstone Group, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, and Wells Fargo.
This month, the New York Times admitted the “wallets of Wall Street are with Joe Biden” in a gushing headline about the financial industry’s opposition to Trump:
Financial industry cash flowing to Mr. Biden and outside groups supporting him shows him dramatically out-raising the president, with $44 million compared with Mr. Trump’s $9 million.
Harris’s views on trade and immigration, two of the most consequential issues to Wall Street, are in lockstep with financial executives’ objective to grow profit margins and add consumers to the market.
On trade, Harris has balked at Trump’s imposition of tariffs on foreign imports from China, Mexico, Canada, and Europe — using the neoliberal argument that tariffs should not be used to pressure foreign countries to buy more American-made goods and serve as only a tax on taxpayers.
Likewise, the Biden-Harris plan for national immigration policy — which seeks to drive up legal and illegal immigration levels to their highest levels in decades — offers a flooded labor market with low wages for U.S. workers and increased bargaining power for big business that has long been supported by Wall Street.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.