Obama hoping to harness Wall Street anger

Oct. 15, 2011 at 11:57 AM
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WASHINGTON, Oct. 15 (UPI) -- President Obama appears to be trying to harness anti-Wall Street sentiment as the Occupy Wall Street protests spread across the United States.

"We intend to make it one of the central elements of the campaign next year," one of the president's top advisers, David Plouffe, told The Washington Post. "One of the main elements of the contrast will be that the president passed Wall Street reform and our opponent and the other party want to repeal it."

Last week Obama singled out Bank of America for its plan to charge customers a $5 monthly fee if they use their debit cards.

The president and his allies have also attacked Republicans for trying to roll back regulation on the financial industry.

In a Washington Post-ABC News poll, 68 percent of independents and 60 percent of Republicans said they do not trust major financial institutions. Obama hopes to tie former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who is touting his own business experience as a presidential qualification, to the financial industry.

But Obama is also linked to the industry with many senior members of his administration coming from Wall Street.

"The fact that Obama has been so close to Wall Street makes this tough going for him," Van Jones, a former Obama aide, told the Post.

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