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Obama Co-Chair Is Venture Capital Vampire

From the website, Complete Colorado:


By Todd Shepherd
May 24, 2012

President Obama continues to hammer presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney on his record with Bain Capital. In a fundraiser on Wednesday in Denver, the President continued to push the "Venture Capital Vampire" theme saying, "What Gov. Romney doesn’t seem to get is that a healthy economy doesn’t just mean a few folks maximizing their profits through massive layoffs or busting unions."

We wonder if former Denver Mayor and Clinton Transportation and Energy Secretary Federico Peña happened to be in the audience, and if he agreed.

Peña has been a partner at private equity firm Vestar Capital since 2000. And while President Obama has been giving private equity a bad name, both Peña and Vestar managing director James Kelley have made recent contributions to Obama’s re-election efforts.

Furthermore, Peña’s record as a venture capital investor dates even back to his 2008 days, when he also served as an Obama National Campaign Co-Chair…

So let’s examine the recent "humanitarian" record of Vestar Capital.

In March of 2011, Vestar acquired 100% of Del Monte Foods through a leveraged buyout.

Just two weeks ago, Del Monte announced the closure of a plant in Kingsburg, Califoria, effectively slashing 1,000 jobs. "I am extraordinarily disappointed by Del Monte to make this decision," Kingsburg Mayor Bruce Blayney told the Kingsburg Recorder. "This is a major blow to the local economy."

Roughly eight years ago, Vestar purchased the Solo Cup Company.

According to this 2007 report, Solo Cup Co. (with Vestar as a parent firm) shuttered three U.S. factories. As early as 2010, with Vestar still as the parent company, Solo Cup announced plans to shut an eighty year old factory, ending more than 540 jobs.

In 2002, Vestar acquired frozen food giant BirdsEye Foods.

Roughly four years later, Vestar laid off approximately 500 workers at BirdsEye. "Some of them were employed at Birdseye for 15 to 30 years," according to KGO Ch. 7 in San Fransico…

If the President intends to make this election about Romney’s record at Bain, then Mr. Peña and James Kelley must come clean about layoffs at Del Monte, Solo Cup Company, and Birdseye foods. If not, Mr. Peña might not be available to stand on the campaign stage with the President at his next Colorado rally.

Federico Pena was Obama’s National Campaign Co-chair in 2008. And he is likely to hold that title again this year.

So if "vampire capitalists" are destroying this country, why is Federico Pena co-chairing President Barack Obama’s national re-election campaign?

And why is Obama holding $35,800-a-head fundraising dinners at private equity firms like Blackrock? And why did Obama raise far more cash from hedge fund and private equity "vampires" than any other candidate in 2008 and so far this go around, too?

This article was posted by Steve on Friday, May 25th, 2012. Comments are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Obama Co-Chair Is Venture Capital Vampire”

  1. BannedbytheTaliban says:

    Venture capital should love Obama. After all, it is his policies that have bankrupt so many companies and created so many opportunities for them.

  2. MZmaj7 says:

    It is true that Obama far outstripped everyone else in 2008 fundraising from hedge funds and venture capital. But not so this year, according to OpenSecrets:

  3. Tater Salad says:

    “I will be a One Term President if I do not fix this economy within 3 years”! We can not agree more Mr. President. Either you can resign or not run again because if you do, you will be defeated. Move over Jimmy Carter, we have found your replacement for the worst of the worst Presidents and it is ………….YOU!

    1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCN5-ovvFL0

    2. http://tpartyus2010.ning.com/video/video/show?id=3180617%3AVideo%3A170754&xgs=1&xg_source=msg_share_video

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