Journalism in the Public Interest

Obama’s New Chief of Staff a Top Banker With Strong Chamber Ties

Proponents of financial deregulation may have a strong ally within the White House, now that President Obama has named Bill Daley his new chief of staff.

The prospect of Daley taking the key White House position had earned praise from Wall Street insiders who cited his ability to “bring people together” and “success in getting things done,” according to Fortune.

As the brother of Chicago’s outgoing mayor Richard Daley, a former Commerce Secretary and a current JPMorgan Chase executive, Daley shared certain commonalities with his predecessor: Rahm Emanuel also came to the White House by way of a Chicago connection, worked under Bill Clinton, and—as a former investment banker—brought his own ties to Wall Street.

In addition to those things, Daley has strong ties to the Chamber of Commerce, which opposed the financial reform bill that was a cornerstone of the administration’s agenda last year. From Kevin Connor, co-director the Public Accountability Initiative, a nonprofit research organization:

From 2005 to 2007, he co-chaired a Chamber of Commerce committee on financial (de)regulation. The “Commission on the Regulation of Capital Markets in the 21st Century” eventually became the Chamber’s Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness, which played a prominent role in attacking derivatives regulation and consumer protections last year. The Hill called the group one of the “loudest voices on financial legislation”—and they weren’t exactly singing the praises of reform efforts.

Daley also signed on to a March 2009 Chamber manifesto on “Restoring Confidence in US Capital Markets,” the Chamber’s opening PR move in the financial reform debate.

The new chief of staff has publicly opposed the concept of an independent consumer financial protection agency—a key part of Dodd-Frank. In 2009, he criticized a pro-business Illinois Democrat for her position on financial reform, telling the Chicago Tribune that “she did not have a knee-jerk aversion to the concept of a federal consumer protection agency, in spite of all our brilliant arguments.”

News of Daley's selection broke this morning. The president had told the New York Times yesterday that the announcement would come in “due course,” after White House lawyers finished vetting the candidate.

This will be great for those of us who were still hopeful that the Obama administration would come down on the big banks.  Now he’s hired a JP Morgan Chase insider as Chief of Staff!  Happy New Year to all those suckers awaiting those loan modifications from Chase, or remotely thought we might finally see some bankers go to jail!  I swear, I thought I voted for a Democrat!

OMG.  Now Dimon is even deeper in Obama’s pockets.  Just we we don’t need.  :(

Unless, just maybe, this COULD be a good thing for homeowners in some way.  Daley worked with Dimon. Daley is aware of Dimon’s unethical treatment of homeowners.  JUST MAYBE (I know it’s a stretch) this is just the move Obama needed to make to actually help.

Again, I know it’s a stretch, but think about it.

John Milligan

Jan. 6, 2011, 5:33 p.m.

Excellent Choice!  Obama is right on and starting to really leverage the Center!

Apparently in this country, the most developed in the world, we are unable to find more than a handful who are qualified enough to occupy leadership positions in govt.

W. Daley of J.P. Morgan, will succeed R. Emmanuel as WH Chief of Staff. The latter will run for Chicago’s mayoral seat to be vacated by W. Daley’s brother, R. Daley. Now all that is needed to complete the circle, is for the latter Daley to take the former Daley’s place at JPM.

Is anyone really surprised?  Michelle Obama started off working in his brother’s office, Mayor Daley. It’s all the “Chicago connectin” and of course Obama’s close ties with the banks and all.  CROOKS ALL!
I hope the GOP hacks all the entitlement programs and comes down on the bank abuses, dispelling the reputation as always bending over backwards for the banks, and business in general.  There has to be a happy medium.  Consumers have been getting the shaft for too long!


Jan. 7, 2011, 3:33 a.m.

OK so Obama’s New Chief of Staff is a JP Morgan Chase Banker With Strong Chamber Ties,
OK That is it we are F…..ed !!

Trying not to think about it.  I’ll still keep fighting for this stupid modification and I WILL win, regardless of who Dimon has in his back pocket.  I still believe what goes around comes around and this pretty much put the final nail in Obama’s coffin when it comes to re-election.

Obama just thumbed his nose at the American public.  Nice job.

Once again, unless there’s a method to Obama’s madness that we’re unaware of,  Who knows?  This move definitely shows where his loyalties lie, and it doesn’t look like they’re with us - at least not on the surface.

If we thought a politician was going to solve our problem than we have drunk the corporet fasciast koolaide. Chase Bank is a bank and the fact that we are as a people willing to but into the idea that a person that worked in the banking business can solve our problems is a further sign that we have adopted the values of business as the priority over what is better for the people of the United States. This has happened in the past and was the beginning of Corporate Fascism practiced by Hitler and Mousalini before WW2. “Whats past is prologue” keep some powder dry, you will need it after these false leaders fail. Time is short.

I’m with you Maureen!  As a progressive PROUD liberal, I supported Obama and was thrilled to see him elected.  So it is with a heavy heart that I have to accept this (latest) betrayal from him.  I really thought this would be a fantastic presidency and the PEOPLE would finally get a fair shake after Bush and company nearly destroyed America’s good name, our position as a respected world leader, and then our economy!  This is just more than I can stomach.  I feel almost as hopeless as I did during the Bush years.  I can’t even watch the Republicans try to dismantle health care (tho the Senate will not) after all Obama’s concessions to them.  The people that despise Obama get what they want.  The people who support him get the shaft.  What’s that about?  Howard Dean actually argued in favor of Daley’s appointment on Rachel Maddow last night, if that makes anyone feel any better.  We can only hope he’s right.

go to msnbc dot msn dot com slash id slash 26315897 and click on Previously, then Jan 6th show, 4th segment Dean on Daley

Perhaps the “professional left” would be more supportive if the white house bothered to explain the reasoning behind moves like this, which seem like a slap in the face to all those who voted Obama 2008.

Sad choice for its symbolism. Obama is already surrounded by Wall Streeters and his policies reflect it. Why more of the same? Where are the voices for the middle class?—not just to create jobs but to increase pay levels so that those with jobs can actually live a middle class life.

We need a new Presiden in 2012t, one that finally is with the people (not act like if he is) and i don’t care if its Progressive, Dem, Rep, Independent or whatever but one with the people and for the people, not one with the Banksters and for the Banksters!,

At least I have the satisfaction of having voted my conscience…I voted for Ralph Nadar.

Nice. What I thought all along. He’s a puppet just waiting to cash out after re-election. There is probably an offshore account somewhere in all this. America is so far gone.
Thanks for this information.

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