Thursday, June 5, 2008

Can Silicon Valley Deal Makers Take the Credit For Obama’s Success? Or was it Wall Street?

Two stories, the first is from the WSJ's Deal Journal:

We all know what they say: Silicon Valley is a place where reality is suspended–the underdog prevails, inexperience is a virtue, and the search is perpetual for the next “disruptive technology.”

And apparently this is why Barack Obama, the first African-American to lead a major party’s ticket and thus the biggest disruptive technology to ever hit the U.S. political process, has become the adopted son of Silicon Valley. Like any proud parent, Silicon Valley is taking credit for giving him a good upbringing in his political career–at least, if you consider showering him with money as an upbringing.

It is no wonder Obama is loved in Silicon Valley. This is a man who announced his technology platform last year at Googleplex. He hit on every issue that concerned the button-down-and-khaki crowd: immigration for highly skilled workers, Net Neutrality, the works.

According to this month’s edition of The Atlantic magazine, his ability to clinch the Democratic nomination for President is no small tribute to the power of Silicon Valley, both because of the Internet fund-raising technologies and Facebook populism Obama has embraced as well as the general feeling that the Valley loves an underdog. He had fund-raising offices in venture-capital stronghold Palo Alto as well as San Jose, San Bernardino and Santa Ana. Even though Hillary Clinton opened her own Silicon Valley offices on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, she couldn’t match Obama’s fund-raising reach in the deal-making strongholds, according to the Atlantic....MORE

From Reuters:

Wall Street puts its money behind Obama

Wall Street is putting its money behind Democrat Barack Obama for president, despite worries that his administration would raise taxes and take a tougher line on trade and regulation.

The signs Wall Street reads point to Democrats prevailing in the November presidential and general election as voters punish the incumbent Republican Party for a flagging economy and lengthy Iraq war.

And the fact that Obama began raking in a bigger share of the cash as his campaign picked up steam suggests that investors simply want to back the eventual winner.

Illinois Sen. Obama, who captured the Democratic presidential nomination on Tuesday after a lengthy primary battle against New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, has received $7.9 million (4.1 million pounds) n contributions from the securities and investment industries, according to the Center for Responsive Politics....MORE