Donald Trump is the only man to save the world, says Carl Icahn

September 29, 2015

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn is backing Donald Trump’s presidential bid.

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a news conference to reveal his tax policy at Trump Tower in Manhattan, New York

U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a news conference to reveal his tax policy at Trump Tower in New York, September 28, 2015. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

The Wall Street veteran said the property mogul’s strong sense of self was a positive for high office because he wouldn’t be threatened by having smart people, such as Icahn, giving him advice.

“His ego permits him to — where a lot of these other presidents don’t — surround himself with really good people, not just me but others,” Icahn said in an interview with Reuters.

“He needs as many good people as he can get in this environment today. We certainly don’t see that in many of these presidents.”

Trump has said in interviews and speeches that if elected, he would love to name Icahn as Treasury Secretary.

The father of 2 said he’s flattered to be considered for the position but he does not get up early enough in the morning to accept the opportunity. Asked if he’d take on a top economic advisory role, Icahn said: “We never talked about that.”

Icahn made his fortune in the 1980s buying stakes in poorly-performing companies and battling management to turn them around. Currently he is making billion dollar bets on a rebound in energy and commodities.

Like Trump, who also grew up in the New York neighbourhood of Queens, Icahn revels in anti-corporate rhetoric.

In a video entitled “Danger Ahead” released on Tuesday, the 79-year old criticizes Wall Street and the Federal Reserve for what he says is a bubble in the corporate bond market and the super-rich for not paying enough taxes.

“Most of these rich guys — many of them — haven’t done very much,” Icahn said. “People on Wall Street, I know them, they are good friends of mine.”

“But not having to pay full taxes on money that you are earning is an absurdity,” he said, pointing to private equity and hedge fund managers who benefit from the so-called “carried interest” loophole under which their earnings are taxed as capital gains rather than ordinary wage income.

In one section of the video, which includes a clip from the mafia movie “Goodfellas,” Icahn attacks Wall Street for pushing riskier junk bonds on Americans.

“Wall Street does what Wall Street does best, it sells securities,” Icahn said. “I used to laugh with some of these guys who sell these bonds. I used to say, ‘You know, the Mafia has a better code of ethics than you guys.’ You know you keep selling this crap, and you keep selling it.”

‘THE COUNTRY IS BURNING’

Icahn also criticized U.S. companies for parking profits abroad through takeovers and complicated tax structures.

“If we don’t really allow these companies to bring the money back that they are making there (overseas), they are just going to move out of this country,” Icahn said by phone.

“It’s gonna happen more quickly than they think. While Congress is sort of fiddling around, this thing is being done. The country is burning and they’re fiddling.”

Icahn’s video came out a day after Trump, currently the Republican presidential front-runner, unveiled sweeping proposals to simplify the tax code, slash the corporate tax rate and impose a one-time levy on the overseas earnings of U.S. companies.

Trump’s plan on taxing overseas profits resembles proposals put forward by President Barack Obama and two senior senators, Democrat Chuck Schumer of New York and Republican Rob Portman of Ohio.

But Icahn said Trump was the only candidate for the 2016 presidential race who really understands the problems.

“I think he definitely wants to prove that he can turn America around,” said Icahn. “I want to see a businessman who understands we have massive problems.”

10 comments

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Not sure why this greedy man’s views should be considered for a nation future.

Posted by Regular | Report as abusive

Let’s see, we have Dopey as president now, we’ve already had Goofy, Sylvester, and Tweety – why not Trump? At least we’ll be entertained!

Posted by beofaction | Report as abusive

It astonishes me that people think that these billinaires are out to help them. They’ve spent their lives looking out for themselves and if you think Trump is running for President for any other reason than to line his pockets further then you are a fool.

Posted by oakpkdude | Report as abusive

I agree with the other commenters (so far) that we have to be wary of billionaires, but Icahn does represent another voice. I think he has made some good points. I do not think I would ever vote for Trump, but that does not change the fact that he is making some good points.

Posted by Ralphooo | Report as abusive

Trump is a classic Narcissist. He delivers a full frontal assault to anyone who criticizes him, that’s straight from the first page of the Narcissist playbook. In a dysfunctional US government owned and operated by Oligarchs he will fit right in. One thing you can count on a narcissist to do though, is pursue his enemies to the end of the world. Obama the community organizer and statesman is completely outgunned by Putin and ISIS who are prepared to do anything to win. Trump would be a formidable foe. Just don’t think Trump cares anything about the poor because in the world of a Narcissist only those directly associated and reflecting well on the Narcissist are tended to.

Posted by tribeUS | Report as abusive

Carl’s done great with the cards stacked in his favor and will do even better with Donny’s new tax plan to tax the wealthy and their corporations even less. Trump will never be in this thing for the long haul, when his poll numbers drop enough he’ll announce that we don’t deserve him, and drop out.

Posted by Whipsplash | Report as abusive

“Donald Trump is the only man to save the world, says Carl Icahn”
Interesting he has so much faith in Trump who couldn’t save a simple casino operation in Atlantic City from going under not to mention several other bankrupt businesses.

Posted by Whipsplash | Report as abusive

Putin, in a conference with media, was critical of Obama & co. misadventure in Libya (as violation of the U.N. charter which got their ambassador murdered .. and Kadaffi) and again in violation of U.N. charter in Syria (arming terrorists versus the sovereign government) and NOW Putin is IN Syria and bombing U.S. “assets” and in Crimea versus U.S. protests. Now Iran (armed with nuclear weapons and released billions) enters the war on Russia’s side (Kerry’s brilliant deal) and Netanyhahu connected with Putin after being rejected in Washington. China is moving to the Russian camp and the U.S. is viewed as a fumbling dolt in the international arena. Domestically the consequences are not any better: failed economics, failed immigration policies, failed criminal justice, failed in education and healthcare. Eight amateurish years “playing” at President like a Hollywood movie [except therer are consequences and they are real]

Posted by Gitfidl | Report as abusive

If he does what he says he well be canonized as an American Saint and celebrated in all churches around the world.

Posted by Macedonian | Report as abusive

Trump would get my vote for President. He is strong, patriotic and would put America first.

Posted by Pheremone | Report as abusive