Monday, October 22, 2012

Mitt May Win Where It Counts

It's looking more and more like the Presidential election in 15 days may be decided by Ohio, and as I've said before, Ohio may be decided by Hamilton County and Cincinnati.  But it turns out Hamilton County may be really decided by the voting machine company Hart Intercivic...a company that has numerous ties and direct donations to the Romney campaign and Romney's son, Josh.  Hart Intercivic is owned at least in part by capital firm HIG, and from there, the story gets ugly, according to Forbes writer Lee Ungar.

Numerous media sources, including Truthout, are reporting that Solamere Capital—the investment firm run by Mitt Romney’s son, Tagg, and the home of money put into the closely held firm by Tagg’s uncle Scott, mother Anne and, of course, the dad who might just be the next President of the United States—depending upon how the vote count turns out, in our little tale, in the State of Ohio—have shared business interests with H.I.G. either directly or via Solamere Advisors which is owned, in part, by Solamere Capital, including a reported investment in H.I.G. by either Solamere Capital or Solamere Advisors.

Lee Fang, in his piece for The Nation exploring the government related activities of various companies in which Solamere has an interest writes-

“Meanwhile, HIG Capital—one of the largest Solamere partners, with nearly $10 billion of equity capital—owns a number of other firms that are closely monitoring the federal government. ”

While the Cincinnati scenario is —at this point—fiction, the rest of this story is all too true, including the part where the voting machines to be used in Hamilton County will be those provided by Hart Intercivic.

And while I am not suggesting conspiracies or that anyone would get involved in any foul play here, most particularly the GOP candidate for President, how is it possible that so many people could exercise so much bad judgment?

Gosh, that's an excellent question, you would think.  At best case, Josh Romney's involvement in HIG and Hart Intercivic represents a massive conflict of interest, especially given HIG's direct contributions to the Romney campaign as Hart Intercivic's partial owner.

Tony Tamer, H.I.G.’s founder, turns out to be a major bundler for the Mitt Romney campaign,  along with three other directors of H.I.G. who are also big-time money raisers for Romney.

Indeed, as fate would have it, two of those directors—Douglas Berman and Brian Schwartz— were actually in attendance at the now infamous “47 percent” fundraiser in Boca Raton, Florida.

All this seems awfully convenient.   We'll see where things are in the final stretch, but if Ohio comes down to a recount, you can bet this will become the story of the election.  Keep an eye on it.

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