Giving a preview of how he would govern as president, Mitt Romney hosted a series of “policy roundtables” with top dollar donors Thursday at the JW Marriott hotel in Washington, DC. Once again demonstrating that he is much more concerned with helping the very rich than the very poor, the panels were open to all interested parties — who were willing and able to raise $10,000 for his campaign, each.
The roundtable topics included education, energy, financial institutions and markets, defense/homeland security/foreign policy, health care, and infrastructure. Unsurprisingly, the panels were chaired and hosted by a few prominent Republican politicians and several wealthy investors and industry insiders. They roundtable leaders and industry finance chairs included:
— L.E. Simmons (energy), who has has “guided the investment of over $1.6 billion in private equity capital used to build energy service and equipment companies.”
— Patrick Durkin, managing director of Barclay’s Capital and a top Romney lobbyist-bundler.
— Richard Breeden, a hedge fund manager and a former SEC chairman under President George H. W. Bush.
— Tom Farrell, president and CEO of Dominion Power.
— Former Sen. Jim Talent (R-MO) (infrastructure), now a “distinguished fellow” at the right-wing Heritage Foundation.
— Former HHS Secretary and ex-Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt (R), now head of a “health care intelligence business.”
If the number $10,000 seems familiar, perhaps it was because he offered to make a bet with then-primary opponent Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) for that amount in a disagreement over his previous positions on federal health insurance mandates. Now, Romney is asking the wealthiest 1 percent to make a similar-sized bet on him. And, according to one of the event’s co-chairs, the event raised $1.5 million for Romney’s campaign.