Monday, March 21, 2016

Ted Cruz Names Phil Gramm His Economic Advisor

Here's Murray Rothbard on Phil Gramm when Gramm ran in 1996 for the Republican presidential nomination. From The Irrepressible Rothbard:
Gramm is first of all the brightest of the candidates: unlike Gingrich, he is an intelligent academic, having taught economics at the Distinguished Friedmanite economics department of Texas A&M. 
Unlike other candidates, when Gramm sells out principle, which he will do often, he knows he is selling out and why, which I guess is a virtue...Since he bends to the political winds...he is the likeliest of all the major candidates to be an opportunist [in favor of free markets and small government, when he

Here's former Citigroup chairman, Sandy Weill, in his autobiography, The Real Deal: My Life in Business and Philanthropy:
...Phil Gramm..appeared uninterested in serious reform and never missed a chance to remind me that there were no important banks, brokers or insurance companies domiciled in his state of Texas. In other words, financial services companies were far from his natural constituency...Just as we were about to cross the goal line, one last obstacle arose. Senator Gramm, ever the savvy horse trader, took exception to a provision of the bill which forced banks to invest in poor areas, a long-running political football in Washington. One afternoon he called and threatened, "Call your friend Clinton and get him to change the provision or else I'll fire my rockets and blow your bill apart."...Gramm called again the next day to repeat his demand, and this time the president and Texas senator found some way to compromise.
On November 12, President Clinton signed into law the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, and in a stroke, modernized the structure of financial services. 


1 comment:

  1. I agree with Murray's assessment of Gramm. Generally the smartest guy in the room (especially if the room is full of politicians). What should be fun is the assured dust-up which will come over his wife, Wendy, also a Texas A&M economist, who found herself on the board of Enron -- and the audit committee-- after a relatively impressive stint and de-regulatory run as head of the CFTC. She is now with Mercatus/George Mason.