Democratic hopeful Elizabeth Warren is surging in the polls, and that was rattling the nerves of some investors that were attending the Delivering Alpha event last week.
The 2019 conference, put on by Institutional Investor and CNBC, is described as a symposium for financial experts to tackle “critical issues facing investors in the economy,” according to CNBC. So, of course, when a bunch of capitalists are faced with the prospect of a far-left leaning candidate leading the country and imposing policies that could affect their wealth, they get spooked.
“She’s not my candidate of choice,” an anonymous hedge fund manager said during the event.
Warren’s proposed wealth tax, which we have covered heavily here at Money and Markets, is the sticking point for many well-off investors that see Warren playing the role of Robin Hood — robbing from the rich to give to the poor. And Warren is gaining traction as the race for the Democratic primary heats up.
While former Vice President Joe Biden is still leading the most recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal with 31% of votes, Warren has rocketed up from 19% of votes in July to secure 25% in the September survey. The only other candidate even in the double-digits is self-described Democratic Socialist Bernie Sanders with 14%.
And that’s only the beginning. On Saturday, a new survey by Selzer and Co. showed Warren’s first lead in the crucial first caucus state of Iowa, according to FiveThirtyEight. Her 22% of the votes bested Biden’s 20%, but there is still a four point margin of error. Polling since the beginning of August has been a bit of crapshoot, but it shows Warren is competing with Biden, which can’t really be said about the rest of the field.
In a sort of call to action, Vice President Mike Pence warned attendees at the Delivering Alpha event of what Warren’s — or really any Democrats vying to take on President Donald Trump — policies would mean for the U.S. economy that has seen good growth under the current leader.
“When we look at the other side, I have to tell you, it’s not so much who but what they stand for,” Pence said. “Whoever their nominee is, when you look at their policies like Medicare for all and the Green New Deal, their plans to raise taxes, increase regulations, grow government, it would crush the economy.”
And that warning seemed to hit home for many in the crowd. An anonymous financial professional said the thought of Warren running the country was scary. “Regardless of what you think about Trump, he’s been very good for the economy,” he added.