Warren Calls On Buttigieg to Disclose His McKinsey Clients

Misyrlena Egkolfopoulou

(Bloomberg) -- Senator Elizabeth Warren called on her Democratic rival Pete Buttigieg to disclose the names of his consulting clients while working at McKinsey & Co. and “open the doors” of his fundraisers to the press.

Speaking to reporters at a Democratic National Committee fundraiser in Boston on Thursday, Warren also urged Buttigieg to release more details about the financing of his campaign. Buttigieg has moved into the top spot in many recent Iowa polls as Warren has slid.

“The mayor should be releasing who’s on his finance committee, who are the bundlers who are raising big money for him, who he’s given a title to and made promises to,” Warren said. “And he should open up the doors so that the press can follow the promises that he’s making in these big-dollar fundraisers.”

The Buttigieg campaign released the names of 23 bundlers for the first quarter to the Center for Public Integrity in April, but hasn’t made any disclosures since then.

While Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, has raised money by holding fundraisers with donors from Wall Street and Silicon Valley, Warren has eschewed such events and relies on grassroots fundraising from mostly small-dollar donors.

Warren has largely shied away from criticizing other 2020 candidates by name, but she called on Buttigieg to release the clients he worked for as a consultant for McKinsey for nearly three years starting in 2007. Buttigieg says he signed a nondisclosure agreement when he left the firm in 2010, though he has released his tax returns covering his time there.

“I think that voters want to know about possible conflicts of interest,” Warren said.

Warren was responding to a question about an article published by the New York Times Editorial Board on Thursday that called on Buttigieg to release the names of his clients at McKinsey.

Warren, who worked in the private sector during her tenure as a law professor at Harvard, has released the names of clients that she defended as a bankruptcy lawyer, but not her tax returns. In response to her comments, the Buttigieg campaign demanded that Warren release them.

“If Elizabeth Warren wants to have a debate about transparency, she can start by opening up the doors to the decades of tax returns she’s hiding from her work as a corporate lawyer - often defending the types of corporate bad actors she now denounces,” Lis Smith, Buttigieg’s senior communications adviser, wrote on Twitter.

(Michael Bloomberg is also seeking the Democratic presidential nomination. Bloomberg is the founder and majority owner of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Misyrlena Egkolfopoulou in Washington at megkolfopoul@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Wendy Benjaminson at wbenjaminson@bloomberg.net, Max Berley, John Harney

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