Former Wells Fargo Scandal Defender to Host Kamala Harris Fundraiser

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif. Is greeted by supporters as she takes to stage during her first campaign organizing event at Los Angeles Southwest College in Los Angeles, on Sunday, May 19, 2019. ((AP Photo/Richard Vogel)
AP/Richard Vogel

A former Wells Fargo executive who defended the bank to the city council of Vallejo after the fake account scandal will hold a fundraiser for Sen. Kamala Harris’s 2020 presidential bid.

Miguel Bustos is scheduled to hold a fundraiser for Harris’s campaign for president on Saturday night in San Francisco. The HuffPost reported attendees must contribute a minimum of $500 for attendance with a “sponsor” level attendance that includes a photo with the candidate, will set an attendee back the FEC maximum contribution amount of $2,800.

The event comes days after Harris took the debate stage with nine other candidates including former Vice President Joe Biden, in Miami, Florida. Within 24 hours of the debate, Harris’s campaign had hauled in $2 million. 

Candidates are staring down a second-quarter fundraising deadline on Sunday. The Bustos fundraiser for Harris comes just one day before the deadline, and HuffPost noted that it falls in line with the city’s Pride Weekend celebration.

Bustos worked as senior vice president of government and community relations for Wells Fargo from 2013 to 2017, according to HuffPo. During this time, the bank was exposed for fraudulently opening more than 3.5 million bank and credit card accounts for customers without their knowledge from 2009 to 2015. Close to 200,000 customers were charged fees for those accounts. Wells Fargo was fined close to $3 billion, and its CEO resigned.

Bustos defended the bank when the Vallejo City Council considered dropping use of the bank for their accounts after the scandal broke. The report stated he did admit the bank “made mistakes” as he pled for the relationship to remain. The city council eventually left the bank.

Bustos is not new to presidential campaigns. He previously served Vice President Al Gore as policy adviser and Latino liaison. Upon attending the 2013 inauguration of President Barack Obama, he told NBC Latino, “It meant the world” to be there, specifically saying it was important to him “as a gay Latino.” It was his second inauguration, having attended an inauguration for President Bill Clinton.

Campaign spokesman Ian Sams defended Harris’s record investigating Wells Fargo while serving as California’s attorney general. He pressed that she took on “bad corporate actors on behalf of consumers.” The report identified the investigation as one that looked into the bank for violating “state privacy laws by failing to ‘timely and adequately’ disclose it was recording phone calls with members of the public.”

Michelle Moons is a reporter for Breitbart News — follow on Twitter @MichelleDiana and Facebook.


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