House Republicans in several tight races want voters to know that Democrats are the party of Wall Street.
The only problem: big banks are helping foot the bill for the ads.
The National Republican Congressional Committee’s ads in New York and North Carolina blast Democratic candidates for supporting the Wall Street bailout and allowing executives to pocket big-time bonuses, and in one case feature a banker burning money with his lit cigar.
At the same time, the NRCC has taken in a record haul from investment, securities and commercial banks. So far this cycle, the industry has contributed $7.1 million — that’s up more than $2.7 million since the 2010 election, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
Goldman Sachs and its employees are the top private-sector giver to the Republican Party committee, contributing $388,450 this cycle. Goldman Sachs declined to comment.
The levels of cynicism at work here are impressive. The Wall Street types, for example, clearly know who their friends are and who will protect them, and are saying so through their money. The Republicans in turn clearly know that their rich friends aren’t very popular with voters, who understandably blame Wall Street for creating the biggest financial collapse in some 80 years, and for managing to walk away with their own fortunes intact while millions of innocent people lose their jobs, homes, careers and futures. And together the GOP and its Wall Street sponsors conspire to blame it all on the Democrats, who are hardly blameless but whose biggest failure in the wake of the crisis was to fail to press hard enough for real reform.
– Jay Bookman
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