Run Jamie Run!
Please please please let Dimon 2024 be a real thing.
The 2024 presidential field is finally starting to fill out
with people who will never win. Mike Pence is going to enter the race pretty soon, as is Chris Christie. A governor of a Dakota will be entering the field — and it is not the one that you think! And it’s not really a presidential campaign unless there’s a Kennedy in the race, amirite?!
The hard-working staff here at Drezner’s World will enjoy watching the presidential primary debates, secure in the knowledge that 99% of viewers will be asking each other, “wait, who the fuck is Doug Burgum again? Is he the really rich dude who’s the GOP equivalent of Andrew Yang?!” That said, you know what would make everything so much better? If this Axios story by Alex Thompson is true:
Jamie Dimon, the chief executive of JPMorgan Chase, hinted at a potential presidential run on Wednesday, telling Bloomberg News, "Maybe one day I’ll serve my country in one capacity or another."
Dimon had pretty much ruled out running and said he believes he makes a positive difference in his current job. But the persistent energy and chatter around him as a potential candidate reflects the business establishment's dismay with the current options.
Dimon thinks that government needs more people with business experience who have created jobs and invested in communities.….
The Wall Street Journal reported this week that Wall Street is dreading a rematch between Donald Trump and Joe Biden and that Dimon "recently got an earful from a fellow billionaire who wishes the JPMorgan Chase CEO would run."
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There are so many things I love about this story that I don’t know where to begin. Okay, that’s a lie, I know exactly where to begin:
Dimon thinks the government “needs more people with business experience”?! Does he retain any memory of the Trump administration? You remember, with the president who prided himself on being a businessman, the Secretary of State who was CEO of ExxonMobil, the Secretary of Commerce who ran a private equity firm, the Small Business Administrator who was the former chief executive of World Wrestling Entertainment, and the Treasury Secretary who used to be at Goldman Sachs? I remember all of them beclowning themselves trying to run the executive branch, and hoping fervently that this would kill the dumbass notion that the key to government is to run it like a business. If Dimon does not recall any of this then his mental competency will be an issue during the campaign.
I have no doubt that Dimon’s friends and peers are telling him and telling everyone what a neato candidate and great president he would make. That is because, as I noted in The Ideas Industry, that almost no one can speak truth to money. One almost wonders if these are the same folks who told Elon Musk he would be great at running Twitter or Mark Zuckerberg that VR was the way to go. Wealthy people are constantly being told that they are amazing by everyone around them — it’s surprising that more of them do not blow their money on vanity presidential campaigns to be honest.
Now you might be thinking, “Drezner, you idiot, don’t you remember that Trump won?! And that Dimon is probably wealthy for a reason?! Aren’t you being too dismissive of his chances of winning?” No, I’m not. Trump did not win the nomination because he was a businessman, he won because he was a celebrity. In the last cycle alone, Howard Schultz crashed and burned (through his own money) as an independent candidate. Michael Bloomberg — a guy who, to be fair, had actually won a few local elections — was eviscerated by Elizabeth Warren in a single presidential debate and faded quicker than a cryptocurrency. Andrew Yang beclowned himself repeatedly during and after his presidential campaign.
Why are CEOs such lousy candidates? Thompson quotes Dimon saying that, “I get frustrated because I want all sides to come together to help solve big problems.” Hey, we all get frustrated with that, but any presidential candidate who does not understand the incentives driving politicians is not long for the presidential race.
No, I’m quite confident a Dimon 2024 campaign would not last beyond South Carolina. I am also confident that the very people urging Dimon to run now will be explaining to Axios why he’s a disaster candidate should he choose to run.
Every presidential cycle needs an amusing tragedy, a Marco Rubio-like figure who some in the media puff up to be credible presidential timber and then have to slink of the stage a shell of their former selves. Jamie Dimon would be the perfect presidential patsy in 2024. Make it happen, 2023 screenwriters!