JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon on Wednesday praised former President Donald Trump‘s record and admonished Democrats to be “more respectful” of Trump’s supporters, or else risk hurting President Joe Biden‘s reelection bid.
“I wish the Democrats would think a little more carefully when they talk about MAGA,” Dimon said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” referencing Trump’s supporters by the acronym of his “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan.
Biden has warned that Trump and “MAGA Republicans” pose an existential threat to American democracy. But he has also tried to distinguish between Trump’s most hardline supporters and “mainstream Republicans,” who Biden says make up a majority of the party.
“I think this negative talk about MAGA is going to hurt Biden’s election campaign,” Dimon said from the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland.
Dimon argued that using the phrase “MAGA” incorrectly links Trump’s supporters to the former president’s personality and character.
Democrats “are basically scapegoating them, [saying] that you are like him,” Dimon said. “I don’t think they’re voting for Trump because of his family values,” he said.
The remarks by Dimon, who has donated to Democratic candidates but previously described himself as “barely a Democrat,” came two days after the former president trounced his few remaining Republican rivals in the Iowa caucuses.
In November, Dimon heaped praise on one of Trump’s challengers, former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, who finished third in Iowa on Monday.
Dimon also gave Trump credit for his policy record.
“Take a step back, be honest. He was kind of right about NATO, kind of right on immigration. He grew the economy quite well. Trade tax reform worked. He was right about some of China.”
“He wasn’t wrong about some of these critical issues, and that’s why they voted for him,” Dimon said.
Asked which candidate would be better for his business, Dimon said, “I have to be prepared for both. I will be prepared for both. We will deal with both.”
“And I hope whoever it is will be respectful of other people,” he added.
The White House did not immediately respond to CNBC’s request for comment on Dimon’s remarks.
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