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Paul Singer, Major Mitt Romney Donor, Urges Candidate To Propose Alternative To Dodd-Frank

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Mitt Romney hasn't put forth a specific proposal countering Dodd-Frank, but Paul Singer, a major Romney donor, says the candidate should get serious about proposing tougher financial regulations.
Mitt Romney hasn't put forth a specific proposal countering Dodd-Frank, but Paul Singer, a major Romney donor, says the candidate should get serious about proposing tougher financial regulations.

Paul Singer, the billionaire manager of the New York-based hedge fund Elliott Management and a major donor to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, wants the presumptive Republican nominee to propose a serious alternative to the Dodd-Frank Act.

The Financial Times reports Singer wrote in a recent investor letter distributed to the campaign that the Obama administration's 2010 financial regulation reform law is "ill-conceived" and could cause a "black hole." He wrote that in Dodd-Frank's place, the government should force banks to be more transparent about risks and to hold a larger share of their assets in cash.

"Private reward and public risk is not what conservatives should want," Singer told the Financial Times in an interview. "The fixes are essential. If they do not occur, the next financial crisis could be similar to the last one, but perhaps more sudden and intense."

A spokesman for Elliott Management declined to comment when reached by The Huffington Post. The Romney campaign could not immediately be reached for comment.

Romney has repeatedly said he plans to repeal the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010 if elected president, but he has failed to propose an alternative. His website only says he plans to replace Dodd-Frank with a "streamlined, modern regulatory framework." Romney has been similarly vague on financial regulation reform in his public appearances.

A document titled "Regulation" on Romney's website does not offer a concrete alternative to Dodd-Frank. But the PDF does acknowledge a need for "greater transparency for inter-bank relationships, enhanced capital requirements, and provisions to address new forms of complex financial transactions."

Singer arguably is one of the most influential Republican donors in the country. He made headlines in June when the New York Times' Frank Bruni reported that Singer helped start a new super PAC devoted to encouraging Republican candidates to support gay marriage, which Romney opposes.

Singer has been unsparing in his criticism of Dodd-Frank as well as the financial system in its current form. He told the Wall Street Journal last year that the remaining big banks are "a random collection of survivors" that outlasted the financial crisis by "accident." He added in that interview that Dodd-Frank has not addressed an underlying weakness in the financial system: "the opacity of financial institution financial statements."

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