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Would Obama Be Good for Business? February 14, 2008

Posted by tkcollier in Business, philosophy & politics.

Is Obama Good for Business?
But Obama has also taken several steps that aren’t typical of his fellow liberal senators. He has stocked his Capitol Hill staff with employees whose résumés include McKinsey, the old Andersen Consulting, and other nonpartisan business advisory firms. He joined forces with conservatives on bills designed to improve ethics and transparency in Washington. He voted for a bill in 2005 that made life harder for trial lawyers—a traditional Democratic constituency—by allowing defendants to shift cases more easily to federal court, which can be less favorable to plaintiffs. And he pushed an outside-the-box proposal that would help Detroit automakers pay legacy health-care costs on the condition they reinvest the subsequent savings into hybrids and other fuel-efficient cars.

Some of the names that might fill in the org chart in an Obama Administration are also telling. Obama—whose own father was a Kenyan economist with a PhD from Harvard University—has cultivated a group of economic advisers. They’re generally careful technocrats, and are led by University of Chicago professor Austan Goolsbee. Among the others: Jeffrey Liebman and David Cutler of Harvard and Christina and David Romer of the University of California, Berkeley. Goolsbee has shown a preference for making economic initiatives easier to understand and use, an effort Obama calls “iPod government.”


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