Obama’s top ‘fat cat’ strays
Last Updated: 1:05 AM, September 28, 2011
JP Morgan honcho Jamie Dimon, once a “fat cat” ally of President Obama, seems to have strayed to Republican contender Mitt Romney.
Dimon, a lifelong Democrat who was rumored to be on Obama’s short list for treasury secretary before he settled on Tim Geithner, met privately with Romney on Tuesday morning before a fund-raiser at Brasserie 8¹/2 hosted by Highbridge Capital, a JPMorgan-owned hedge fund.
Dimon, who was spotted “in a discreet one-on-one” discussion with Romney, cannot publicly endorse a candidate because he sits on the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. But he donated to Democratic candidates in 2008 and privately supported Obama.
Jamie DimonWhile Dimon’s spokesperson declined to comment, a JP Morgan insider tells us that Dimon has not attended an Obama fund-raiser and has not made any contributions to his campaign during this election cycle. And Dimon has met privately with many of the Republican presidential candidates.
Political insiders are buzzing that a defection would signal further Wall Street hostility toward Obama, who famously called them “fat cat” bankers in 2009. Dimon responded, “I don’t think the president of the United States should paint everyone with the same brush.”
One insider said, “There is not a person on Wall Street, with the exception of the genetic Democrats, who would get anywhere near supporting Obama. The hostility to the administration is huge. Dimon will continue to look bipartisan, then work behind the scenes to get a Republican elected.”
There were few big Wall Street names openly linked to Obama’s fund-raisers in New York. And we’re told ticket sales for Obama’s Friday event with Warren Buffett have been slower than expected, with staffers calling and e-mailing supporters to shift tickets at up to $35,800. Obama’s team insist they are expecting a “packed house,” but didn’t get back to us about Dimon last night.