Obama's state dinner guest list includes bank executives

Charlotte ObserverMay 19, 2010 

Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan was on the guest list for Wednesday's state dinner, along with a smorgasbord of other financial heavy-hitters.

Bank of America spokesman Larry Di Rita said Moynihan, who is attending with his wife, Susan Berry, is “honored to have been invited and to be attending.” He declined to speculate on why Moynihan was invited.

American Express CEO Ken Chenault, Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and Sen. Chris Dodd, head of the Senate banking committee, were also on the guest list. Bank of America board member Monica Lozano, publisher of the Spanish-language newspaper La Opinion, was also scheduled to attend.

Moynihan, the CEO since Jan. 1, has culled a reputation for engaging with Washington more than predecessor Ken Lewis and his counterparts at some of the other big banks. As Congress and regulators craft sweeping new financial rules, Moynihan has been making the rounds in Washington and encouraging his senior managers to do the same. He’s said that he’ll vote for Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank, the chair of the House Financial Services Committee, and told the White House he “wouldn’t oppose” the creation of a Consumer Financial Protection Agency.

According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Moynihan has given $40,356 to political candidates and to the Bank of America political action committee since 2005. He has given to Republicans and Democrats, including Dodd but not Obama.

More coverage of the banking industry at CharlotteObserver.com

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