Yesterday, former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers echoed Patriotic Millionaires Chair Morris Pearl in an aggressive attack against billionaire David Rubenstein for his inexcusably corrupt stance on the carried interest tax loophole.
At a panel during the Skybridge Alternatives Conference, Summers called out Rubenstein, the co-CEO of The Carlyle Group who benefits directly from the carried interest, for his instrumental effort to keep this loophole open. Earlier this year, the New Yorker detailed Rubenstein’s feeble argument for keeping the carried interest loophole open: the idea that tax loopholes allow for “patriotic philanthropy.”
“There’s nothing patriotic or philanthropic about subverting the fabric of our democracy,” Pearl wrote in his response, “the carried interest loophole is the poster child for the problem of money in politics…If Americans are to have any faith in our government, leaders must close this loophole immediately.”
Voicing the same opinion as Pearl, Summers directly told Rubenstein “rarely has a policy persisted for so long in the face of such weak arguments in its favor.” Robert Rubin, another former Treasury Secretary chipped in with the egregious invulnerability of the carried interest loophole.
Looks like the former Treasury Secretaries are beginning to sound a lot like Patriotic Millionaires- or rather, sound like the majority of the country who wishes to see this indefensible loophole closed.