Romney, Bain Capital Founder And Hedge-Fund Favorite, Loses Presidential Bid

Nov 7 2012 | 10:37am ET

In a race that proved somewhat less close than pundits expected, Bain Capital founder Mitt Romney's seven-year bid for the presidency ended in defeat last night with the re-election of President Barack Obama.

Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, fell short by just over 2.5 million votes, or 2.2%. The president carried all of the highly-watched "swing states" save one, North Carolina, which flipped into the Republican column, along with Indiana; Obama won both states in 2008.

Indeed, despite pessimism about the economy, Americans returned the status quo to Washington by healthy margins. In addition to Obama's re-election, Republicans comfortably held on to the House of Representatives, with a number of seats still undecided. And Democrats improbably increased their lead in the Senate, staging unexpected wins in Indiana, Missouri and North Dakota, and will likely hold on to their seat in Montana, where Sen. Jon Tester remains in the lead with 85% of the vote counted.

Romney conceded defeat just before 1 a.m., about an hour-and-a-half after the networks called Ohio—and with it, the election—for Obama. Obama's Ohio victory was rendered moot when swing states like Colorado, Iowa and Nevada went for him; the final electoral college tally will be a blowout, with the richest swing-state prizes, Florida, Ohio and Virginia, all in the president's column.

The result will no doubt be a bitter pill for Wall Street—and the hedge fund community—to swallow. Hedge funders, many of whom dug deep to secure Obama's election four years ago, switched sides this time around, embittered by Obama's embrace of the Dodd-Frank financial regulation reform law and what they saw as his unfair attacks on their wealth and Wall Street. Many members of the hedge fund elite held what they had hoped would be victory parties last night, including John Paulson, and several others were at Romney's concession speech in Boston, including Julian Robertson, Skybridge Capital's Anthony Scaramucci and possibly Elliott Associates' Elliott Singer, who was invited.

Down-ballot races aren't likely to have made those men any happier. Democrats easily won the open U.S. Senate seat in hedge fund haven Connecticut, with Rep. Chris Murphy outlasting the lavishly self-financed campaign of Republican Linda McMahon. To the north in Massachusetts, Harvard University law professor Elizabeth Warren ousted Republican Sen. Scott Brown; Warren is famed for championing strict consumer financial regulations. And Democrats also held on to Murphy's House seat in northwestern Connecticut in a close race; indeed, Republicans were swept out of the House in Romney's home region of New England: With the defeat of two Republican congressmen in New Hampshire, all of New England's 21-member delegation are Democrats.


In Depth

Steinbrugge: Top 10 Hedge Fund Industry Trends for 2017

Jan 3 2017 | 9:03pm ET

Each year, Agecroft Partners' Don Steinbrugge predicts the top hedge fund industry...

Lifestyle

'Tis the Season: Wall Street Holiday Parties Back In Fashion

Dec 22 2016 | 9:23pm ET

Spending on Wall Street holiday parties has largely returned to pre-2008 levels...

Guest Contributor

DarcMatter: The Top Trends in Alternative Investments for 2017

Jan 13 2017 | 8:22pm ET

The $7 trillion alternative investments industry is poised for continued growth...

 

From the current issue of

Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Mary Jo White will step down as chair of the nation’s Wall Street overseer in January, setting the stage for a potential conservative shift in the regulator’s leadership under the incoming Donald Trump administration.