Ocasio-Cortez Sides With Buffett on How Errant CEOs Should Pay

Billy House
Ocasio-Cortez Sides With Buffett on How Errant CEOs Should Pay

(Bloomberg) -- Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Saturday leveled another attack on corporate politics, influence and greed -- this time embracing comments made recently by the U.S.’s third-richest person, Warren Buffett.

The freshman New York Democrat retweeted a CNBC article about how the Berkshire Hathaway chairman recently told shareholders that if a bank needs a government bail-out, the responsible CEO and his or her spouse should lose their net worth.

“It still blows my mind that the CEOs who crashed our economy + caused millions of people to lose their homes not only escaped handcuffs; but got bonuses, too,” Ocasio-Cortez, the New York freshman Democrat and self-avowed Socialist, told her 4.2 million Twitter followers.

“Many still have influential roles in shaping the economy today,” she added. “But we’re the crazy ones for wanting to tax ’em, right?”

In the CNBC story she retweeted, originally published on May 4, the day of Berkshire’s annual meeting in Omaha, Buffett was quoted as responding to a shareholder’s question regarding the Wells Fargo scandal in 2016 involving the creation of fake accounts.

The uproar lead to the departure of then-CEO John Stumpf and several other executives. The story pointed out Berkshire is one of the largest shareholders in Wells Fargo.

“If a bank gets to where it needs government assistance, the responsible CEO should lose his net worth and his spouse’s net worth,” Buffett was quoted as saying. When a situation like that arises, “it’s the shareholders who pay,” he added.

Buffett’s comments were reportedly met with cheers at the shareholders meeting.

To contact the reporter on this story: Billy House in Washington at bhouse5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Joe Sobczyk at jsobczyk@bloomberg.net, Ros Krasny, Virginia Van Natta

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