How independent is Barak Obama really?
April 26, 2007 • 7:33AM

LPAC also conducted an audit of the First Quarter report filed with the Federal Election Commission on April 15 by Sen. Barak Obama. As in the case of Sen. Hillary Clinton the financial industry, including hedge funds, comprises Sen. Barak Obama's second largest base of support, just behind the legal industry. Obama raised $25 million in the first quarter of 2007; contributors of one-third of that amount, did not list their employer. Of the $16 million which is documented, investment banks, private equity firms, and hedge funds contributed a minimum of $1.12 million from at least 140 financial institutions. This figure represents contributions from individual employees in financial firms organized by fundraisers in those firms, who also raise money outside those firms, contributing to a far larger influx.

In a discussion paper on the 2008 Presidential candidates, LaRouche raises the critical question, "Who owns the candidate to be chosen?"

There is no hard-and-fast division between investment firms, leveraged buy-out firms, and hedge funds. Hedge funds are believed to represent more than half of the trading volumes on all major stock exchanges worldwide — believed to, because hedge funds have successfully fought back all efforts of the U.S. Congress to require even their registration, let alone regulation, or taxation of offshore profits. Further, nearly every major money management firm has hundreds of millions of assets run by hedge fund managers. And, it is the hedge funds which have been the biggest buyers of initial public offerings (IPOs).

Hedge fund contributors to Obama include: The Blackstone Group, which manages $78 billion in assets, and contributed $42,000. Blackstone recently purchased the Peter Cooper apartments on New York City's Lower East Side — the last, high-quality, rent-controlled housing complex in Manhattan — and plans an IPO to put the apartments up for sale, with market-rate rents. Others hedge fund contributors include Bain Capital, $6,900; Centerbridge Partners, formed by ex-Blackstone employees, $7,100 (Centerbridge has been involved in the "financial locust" bidding to take over Chrysler Corp.); and Fortress Investment Group, $6,900. Fortress, where candidate John Edwards worked as a "senior advisor" from October 2005 until December 2006, has recently purchased a low-income housing project in Dresden, Germany, to put up for sale with market-level rents; Grosvenor Capital Management, a $13 billion hedge fund, $9,200; Ivory Investment Management, $4,600; Soros Fund Management, $6,200; Tiger Management, $9,200; The Carlyle Group, which manages $56 billion, and will launch its own hedge fund in May; York Capital Management, a $33 billion hedge fund, $18,400.

In addition, Wall Street investment firms and buy-out specialists made these contributions: Bear Stearns, $10,500; Credit Suisse Bank, $44,200; Goldman Sachs, $120,000; Chicago-based investment firm Henry Crown & Co., $24,600; Lazard (managed by forced bankruptcy buy-out specialist Felix Rohatyn for decades), $12,700; Lehman Brothers, $33,800; Merrill Lynch, $30,000; Morgan Stanley, 30,600; UBS, the Zurich-based bank, $141,000; William Blair & Co., investment firm, $10,000; among many others.