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- Sarah ten Siethoff is New Associate Director of SEC Investment Management Rulemaking Office
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- SEC Fines Constant Contact, Popular Email Marketer, for Overstating Subscriber Numbers
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- SEC Names Valerie Szczepanik Senior Advisor for Digital Assets and Innovation
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- NYSE Says SEC Plan to Limit Exchange Rebates Would Hurt Investors
- Deutsche Bank faces another challenge with Fed stress test
- Former JPMorgan Broker Files racial discrimination suit against company
- $3.3Mn Winning Bid for Lunch with Warren Buffett
- Julie Erhardt is SEC's New Acting Chief Risk Officer
- Chyhe Becker is SEC's New Acting Chief Economist, Acting Director of Economic and Risk Analysis Division
- Getting a Handle on Virtual Currencies - FINRA
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NEWSLETTERS & ALERTS
Elizabeth Warren Disgracefully Attacks Wrong Man
Senator Elizabeth Warren, furious about President-elect Donald Trump’s appointments of finance industry insiders, took to Facebook a little over a week ago to fire off a message to her nearly 2.5 million followers.
As you'll read, Ms. Warren appeared to be suffering from the same affliction that Mr. Trump’s critics accuse of him: a knee-jerk, fact-free reaction to something she had read in the news.
Warren took aim at an individual she described as a “hedge fund billionaire” who is “thrilled by Donald Trump’s economic team of Wall Street insiders.” That hedge fund manager was Whitney Tilson, who runs Kase Capital. Ms. Warren called him out by saying, “Tilson knows that, despite all the stunts and rhetoric, Donald Trump isn’t going to change the economic system.” Then she added, “The next four years are going to be a bonanza for the Whitney Tilsons of the world.”
There’s one rather glaring problem with Ms. Warren’s attack: Mr. Tilson happens to be one of the few financial executives who publicly fought Mr. Trump’s election and supported Hillary Clinton. A lifelong Democrat who was involved in helping to start Teach for America, Mr. Tilson also happened to be one of the rare Wall Street executives who had donated to Ms. Warren and actively sought new regulations for the industry. Recently, he gave Mrs. Clinton $1,000 so he could see Ms. Warren speak at a campaign fund-raiser. (He’s also far, far from a billionaire.)
“I’ve donated money to her, attended her events, and did everything in my power to stop Donald Trump,” Mr. Tilson told me, talking about Ms. Warren and expressing dismay that he somehow became the target of her derision. “In addition, I agree with her 100 percent that large swaths of the financial industry have run amok and prey on vulnerable Americans, and thus strong regulation, including a muscular Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, is sorely needed,” he said.
MAKING MATTERS WORSE. Mr. Tilson’s wife, Susan Blackman Tilson, was one of the students in the first Harvard Law School bankruptcy class that Ms. Warren taught, in fall 1992. The student has remained loyal to her professor; Mrs. Tilson wrote in a letter to Ms. Warren last week that she had been “cheering from the sidelines as you rose to national attention for your excellent work on behalf of consumers.”
Both of the Tilsons, in fact, sent letters to Ms. Warren last week seeking to set the record straight and asking her to remove her Facebook post. An aide for Ms. Warren responded by email: “She asked me to relay to you that she is removing the word ‘billionaire’ from the post, as you have indicated that is factually inaccurate. The senator has decided, however, not to remove the overall post.”
Mr. Tilson could only say that he felt “personally betrayed,” having “really stuck my neck out by very publicly supporting her, the CFPB, and a tough regulatory approach to banks - none of which wins me many friends - and this is how she repays me.” Despite all of that, he still supports her – up to a point - because he shares her belief that “banking should be boring.”
However, Elizabeth Warren’s ad hominem attack on Mr. Tilson only serves to undermine her credibility and some of the good work she wants to achieve. - Disgraceful.