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Rubio, Kasich top poll of bankers

Florida Senator Marco Rubio and Ohio Governor John Kasich top a presidential poll of members of Friends of Traditional Banking, a non-partisan grassroots effort, organized by bankers in all fifty states. The same poll showed 94% of bankers believe it is important that the next president supports reforming the Dodd-Frank Act, with 79% saying that it is “very important.”

“Reforming Dodd-Frank will encourage economic growth,” noted one comment in the survey. This urgent need for regulatory relief cut across partisan lines. “We’ve got to find some Democrats that are willing to help repeal Dodd-Frank,” noted another commenter, “Surely some exist somewhere—can we recruit them to run?”

The poll, with 300 respondents and fielded between August 14-18, showed Republicans Kasich and Rubio tied for first with 12.7%, followed by businessman Donald Trump with 11.3%, and a fourth place tie at 10.7% between retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.

“It makes sense that Rubio and Kasich fared well,” noted Friends of Traditional Banking chair John Boyer, who is also chairman of Kanza Bank in Kingman, Kansas. “Rubio has gone out of his way on the campaign trail to slam Dodd-Frank and call for less regulation and lower taxes, and Kasich is also resonating with his experience on the House Budget Committee crafting balanced budgets and as an investment banker,” he said.

The next five in the poll included businesswoman Carly Fiorina (10.0%), former Florida Governor Jeb Bush (7.7%), Texas Senator Ted Cruz (6.3%), former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (4.7%), and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee (4.0%). Clinton notably has eight Republicans more popular than her with this non-partisan group, perhaps showing how frustrated the industry is with Democratic behavior towards traditional banking in the Obama years.

With very little support in the poll was Vice President Joe Biden (2.3%), Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders (2.0%), Kentucky Senator Rand Paul (2.0%), New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (1.7%), South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham (0.7%), former New York Governor George Pataki (0.3%), and former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum (0.3%).

Asked about, but not receiving a single vote among the 300 cast, were three more Democrats and three more Republicans: former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, former Virginia Senator Jim Webb, former Rhode Island Senator Lincoln Chafee, Texas Governor Rick Perry, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, and former Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore.

While Friends of Traditional Banking (FOTB) does not involve itself in presidential politics, the poll served to generate interest in the organization and draw attention to the need for regulatory reform, especially with Dodd-Frank. FOTB has over 15,000 members in all fifty states, chooses two Congressional races each cycle, and encourages their membership to donate directly to those campaigns. Learn more at friendsoftraditionalbanking.com.


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