It doesn’t take much to scare off the fat cats: Hedge-fund managers, key financial supporters of Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential bid and the Democrats’ 2006 congressional takeover, are now flocking to Republicans. Big Wall Street names such as Third Point LLC founder Daniel Loeb, SAC Capital Advisors Steven Cohen, and Citadel Investment Group’s Kevin Griffin began directing a majority of their funds to the GOP in the 2010 midterm elections, a pattern last seen in 1996, when the industry was much smaller. "I am sure, if we are really nice and stay quiet, everything will be alright and the president will become more centrist and that all his tough talk is just words," Loeb wrote in an email widely circulated on Wall Street four months ago. But since then, he’s given $468,000 to Republicans and only $8,000 to Democrats. Despite high-profile defections, the party shift is by no means universal: Some financiers say that while they disagree with parts of Obama’s stance toward Wall Street, they still support his other policies.
TURNCOATS JIM YOUNG