Stephen Schwarzman, the Blackstone Group’s chairman and CEO, is backing Mitt Romney in his presidential bid, according to Bloomberg News.
Schwarzman will be hosting a fundraiser for Romney at his Park Avenue apartment next month, the story says. Schwarzman is also expected to persuade his Wall Street friends to back Romney in his bid for the president, Bloomberg says.
A source is telling me that all of this, including the fundraiser, is true. Should I be surprised? Not really. Schwarzman has never hidden his displeasure with President Obama. Obama has long called for increasing the tax rate on carried interest. During the summer of 2010, Schwarzman compared the Obama administration’s proposed tax changes to Adolf Hitler’s invasion of Poland.
Schwarzman and Romney also have private equity in common. While Schwarzman co-founded Blackstone, Romney started Bain Capital in 1984. Under his leadership, Bain invested in companies including Domino’s Pizza and Staples. He was elected governor of Massachusetts in 2002 but didn’t seek reelection in 2006.
It will be interesting to see if Romney, with Schwarzman’s backing, can change his reputation as a flip-flopping candidate. The Democratic National Committee today released an ad campaign that targets Romney for his reversals on several topics, which include abortion and even Ronald Reagan himself.
Officials for Blackstone declined comment.