THE BLOG
08/17/2006 02:58 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

DNC Paging Steve Rattner

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Who is Steve Rattner?

He's no John Kerry, that's for sure.

... In Connecticut, Democrats chose Ned Lamont, and we need to stand with
Ned as he challenges the broken policy in Iraq. I mean really stand with him
- put our money where our mouths are. No half hearted endorsements. It's gut
check time for Democrats. Connecticut chose a Democrat who will go head to
head with Don Rumsfeld and fight for a policy that makes Iraqis stand up for
Iraq.

I spent a long time talking with Ned on the phone on Saturday. I was reminded
what a small world this is. My Dad knew Ned Lamont when Ned was a young man
and they shared a passion for the sea. My father was Greatest Generation tough,
and he cared so much about America's role in the world. After volunteering
to fly DC-3's during World War II, Dad was a foreign service officer because
he knew America had to win the peace as effectively as we'd won the war. My
father had misgivings about the Vietnam War even before I served. Knowing
him and what he stood for, if my father was alive today, I know what he'd
think of the foreign policy failure of this administration and the mess in
Iraq. He'd want to see us change course, and he'd support the courage of guys
like Ned Lamont who want to restore America's proper place leading the world
and fixing the mess in Iraq. ...

Really
Stand with Ned
, by John Kerry

I've been working on this story since earlier this morning. Here's what I've got so far.

Steve Rattner believes in Joe Lieberman, and backed him during the primary and I've heard he's still backing him today. Why does this matter; I mean, besides the fact that the voters chose Ned Lamont? For starters,
he's Maureen White's husband. Who is Maureen White? She's the former "top fund-raiser"
for the DNC
.

Maureen White resigned the DNC big money job several months ago. She's now supposedly
hooked up with Senator Hillary Clinton to steer her presidential packets full
of money into the right trough. Like Hillary needs help in that department. Mind you, I've moved significantly towards Hillary since I saw her get booed at Take Back America; mainly because I've seen Hillary move since it happened, culminating with her Rummy smackdown. I tried to reach Senator Clinton's offices,
but got only answering machines. Hillpac stated White isn't involved with them at all.
But you certainly can't blame White for wanting to help a powerhouse politician like
Hillary. Regardless of what you think of Clinton, it sounds like a much better
job than working at the DNC; a lot more glamorous, anyway. I've got emails and
calls out to find out Ms. White's official role with Senator Clinton, if she has
any (see update below). I've heard rumors, but that's it so far. Frankly, I'm not even sure how many people know about White's role, assuming my sources are right and she has one. It could be on the hush-hush. If she's working on '08 you can see why.

But back to Maureen's husband,
Steve.

Steve Rattner is a big money guy. When I use "big money" for White
and Rattner, I'm talking about huge piles of it. Here's what Rattner's bio says:
Steven Rattner is
a Managing Principal of Quadrangle Group LLC
focused on the firm's
$2.9 billion media and communications private equity business. Prior to the
formation of Quadrangle Group in March 2000, Mr. Rattner was Deputy Chairman
and Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Lazard Frères & Co. LLC. Mr.
Rattner founded Lazard's Media and Communications Group and has been involved
in many of the largest and most important transactions in these industries.

If you're interested, here are some of Rattner"s
writings
.

White and Rattner are devout Democrats, so what's up with Rattner and Lieberman today?

Rattner was one of the many last minute primary donors Lieberman had at the end of the primary campaign. Check out this post from Matt Stoller on August 7th, which outlines the last minute money that came in from Mark Ratner (one t) for Joe Lieberman. The New York Times article below came out on August 10th, clearly stating that Steve Rattner (2 ts) was giving money to Lieberman, a significant sum, in the final days of the campaign.

Indeed, several prominent Democratic donors said Wednesday that regardless
of their party allegiances, they would support Mr. Lieberman this fall.

"Part of the political process includes being willing to evaluate candidates
on the merits," said Steven Rattner, a prominent party donor who gave
Mr. Lieberman $4,000 in the final days of the primary. "I don't
agree with Joe about everything, but on balance he's been a terrific
senator and he has stood up for the kind of principles that we Democrats stand
for."

Feeling
'Very Good' About Giving Himself Another Chance

I called Mr. Rattner's New York office to get a statement. According to Joy,
who answered the phone in his office, Rattner is traveling but will get back
to me. What I want to know is if he will continue to contribute
to Joe Lieberman's campaign, which is absolutely his right, but is positively wrong and an insult to Connecticut voters. Because that's exactly what I'm hearing, that Rattner is actively engaged in fundraising for Lieberman,
even after the Connecticut voters have spoken and chosen Ned Lamont.

I wonder how his former DNC fundraising wife, Maureen White, feels about it?
I'm trying to track her down to find out. Again, I hear rumors that she's involved
with Hillary Clinton, but I cannot confirm that right now.

As a blog reporter, just one of the hats I wear, I want to get the facts right. I'd love to wait until I
have all of them before telling you what I've heard, but people don't always return the
calls of independent blog reporters, because we're not tied to some corporate facade that gives people the fantasy that the person to whom he/she is speaking is reputable. So,
unfortunately, people take a long time to get back to me. As a Democratic
Party activist I also want to find out if big money Democrats are secretly funneling
money to the man who lost to Ned Lamont, Joe Lieberman.

So how 'bout it Steve? If you're a good Democrat shouldn't you honor the Democratic
Party choice of the voters of Connecticut? Somebody should ask his wife about
it too. It wouldn't hurt to ask Hillary what she thinks about it either.

When someone returns my call or information finally gets to me, I'll let you
know what's up. If they ignore my requests, well, I've learned in and of itself that is an
answer.

- Taylor Marsh

UPDATE I: I've heard back from someone closely connected to Clinton's Senate reelection campaign. Maureen White has "no official role" with the campaign, but is "just a member of the finance committee".