Former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson likes the idea of another Bush in the White House.
Paulson, the former Goldman Sachs (GS) CEO who served in George W. Bush’s administration says he likes younger brother Jeb Bush in the 2016 race because of his experience as a governor. “I see him as not a polarizing figure. I see him as someone who I think is going to have some of the answers we need to this inclusive economic growth,” Paulson tells Yahoo Finance in the attached video.
Paulson likes Bush’s stance on immigration reform, an issue many conservatives have disagreed with. Bush believes there should be a path to legal status for illegal immigrants if they “work... don’t break the law, learn English and contribute to society,” he told an audience at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference.
“Some of the really best and brightest students who are job creators, they get advanced degrees at our schools...and get masters and PhDs here, you know, and we send them back,” says Paulson. “There is a lot we can do.”
Other top issues for Paulson heading into the 2016 race: reducing income inequality and lowering the national debt.
Paulson is probably best known for heading up the United States Treasury during the 2008 financial crisis and helping to design the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program—or TARP.
But the former Treasury Secretary has also had a front row seat to China's rise to an economic powerhouse. He's been to China more than 100 times, first as chief executive of Goldman Sachs, then as Treasury Secretary of the United States, and later as head of the Paulson Institute at the University of Chicago.
In his new book, Dealing with China: An Insider Unmasks the New Economic Power, Paulson talks about the importance of U.S. leadership working with its Chinese counterparts.
Is Jeb Bush, the former Florida governor, the candidate to oversee those relations? Paulson thinks Jeb Bush “knows plenty about China and he knows about a lot of global issues.”
But when it comes to China, Paulson says, “My view, the less of a political issue this is, the better. Because there is no candidate who is running for office that’s going to be running for office saying positive things about the working relationship with China. I don’t care whether it’s a Democrat or a Republican.” To the extent candidates talk about China, Paulson says it’s “never positive” on the campaign trail but once they are elected president they have “historically realized how important it is and why it’s in the United States’ interest to have a constructive relationship with China.”
“What I am interested in is candidates, rather than pointing the finger, saying it’s the Republicans fault, it’s the Democrats’ fault, it’s the Chinese fault or whatever,” he says. “They are not going to be divisive or polarizing but come together and be able to work across the aisle because that’s the only way we are going to find those solutions.”
As to whether Paulson would consider a role in another presidential administration? He says simply, “I have spent my time in Washington. “
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