Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has joined Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) in voicing his opposition to President Obama’s nominee for Undersecretary of Domestic Finance for the Treasury Department, Antonio Weiss.
In a press release, Sanders urged President Obama to withdraw Weiss’s nomination because of his history the firm which has helped clients shelter money offshore to avoid paying their full share of U.S. corporate taxes
Weiss is, as Warren described, “the head of global investment banking for the financial giant Lazard. He has spent the last 20 years of his career at Lazard – most of it advising on mergers and acquisitions.”
“The Wall Street crash of 2008, caused by the greed and illegal behavior of major financial institutions,” said Sanders, “created the worst recession in modern history. We need an economic team at the White House which will hold Wall Street accountable and fight for the needs of working families, not more Wall Street executives.”
“The American people are disgusted with Wall Street bankers who find loopholes in the tax code to help profitable companies shelter profits in offshore tax havens in order to avoid paying their fair share of U.S. taxes,” the senator continued. “We need economists in government who have a history of helping create jobs, not helping corporations avoid taxes.”
Sanders’ opposition to Weiss’s nomination only further exhibits the senator’s concerns about Wall Street influencing politics. He previously voted against confirming Ben Bernanke, former Federal Reserve Chairman; Timothy Geithner and Jack Lew, former Treasury Secretaries, and Gary Gensler, former Commodity Futures and Trading Commission Chairman.
In her piece, Sen. Warren said that it’s time for “the Obama administration to loosen the hold Wall Street banks have over economic policy making” noting that making sure the economy works for American families is “a lot more important” than making sure it works for big banks.