NEW YORK (AP) — A prominent New York financier is set to be named a top White House adviser to President-elect Donald Trump, tasked with coordinating the administration’s outreach to the nation’s financial world and key members of the political community.
Anthony Scaramucci, a colorful surrogate for Trump and a top fundraiser during the campaign, will be appointed within the week, according to two people with knowledge of the decision who were not authorized to discuss that matter publicly. His exact title has not been settled, the people said Thursday, but he may move into the Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs, which is currently run by Valerie Jarrett, one of President Barack Obama’s most powerful allies.
Scaramucci may turn the role into something more akin to what it was under George W. Bush, when it was known as the Office of Public Liaison and Intergovernmental Affairs. Scaramucci has deep ties to Wall Street and will be one of the administration’s public faces to the banking and business worlds, but the hedge fund banker and frequent cable TV commentator will also conduct outreach to Silicon Valley and influential organizations in the nonprofit world and politics.
He has deep ties with incoming White House strategist Steve Bannon and senior adviser Jared Kushner, Trump’s influential son-in-law. Kushner and Bannon will likely be two of the three major power centers in the West Wing, along with chief of staff Reince Priebus.
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Scaramucci joins a growing contingent of former fellow Goldman Sachs employees set to join the new administration. Others include Bannon and Treasury nominee Steven Mnuchin. Trump memorably disparaged Goldman Sachs during the campaign, claiming it held great sway over former rivals Ted Cruz and Hillary Clinton, and has complained that hedge fund managers don’t pay enough in taxes.
Scaramucci’s conversion to Trump came after hitching his wagon to two other candidates — first, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, and then former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. When it became clear Trump would win the nomination, Scaramucci fully ingratiated himself with the Trump campaign, becoming one of Trump’s best fundraisers and an outspoken media presence on his behalf.
In the closing months of the presidential campaign, Scaramucci became tight with Kushner. He has been omnipresent at Trump Tower during the transition, at one point escorting secretary of state hopeful David Petraeus around. He has also grown close to Trump, who is said to be a fan of Scaramucci’s TV appearances and envisions him as a visible face of the administration.
For weeks, the former banker has been trying to sell his New York-based SkyBridge Capital investment fund to clear the way to join Trump’s White House.
Scaramucci is also known for his annual Las Vegas financial summit called SALT, which just Thursday sent out invitations for its next event in May. Among the expected speakers are Democratic donor and fellow New York investor Marc Lasry, former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, former British Prime Minister David Cameron, media personality Megyn Kelly and the popular 1990s singer Jewel, according to an invitation.
Associated Press writers Julie Bykowicz in Washington and Jill Colvin in New York contributed reporting.
Reach Lemire on Twitter at http://twitter.com/@JonLemire