Rep. Dean Phillips (D-MN), a vulnerable frontline House Democrat, is invested in a questionable fund in the Cayman Islands, his latest personal financial disclosure forms show.
The investment, revealed on his disclosure forms with the U.S. House and first reported by Business Insider, poses potential issues for the battleground district Democrat who now represents a seat Republicans held for a decade until the 2018 midterm elections.
Phillips, one of Congress’s wealthiest members, took the seat in the 2018 midterms and held it in the 2020 elections. But Republicans consider this district, rated by the Cook Political Report’s Partisan Voting Index as a Democrat-plus-1 voter registration advantage, a true battleground and one they can flip in the upcoming 2022 midterm elections. That’s why, according to the last report from Business Insider’s Dave Levinthal, this Cayman Islands investment is particularly intriguing from Phillips’ latest personal financial disclosure report.
“One investment stands out, if only for its name: ‘CD&R Fund X Private Investors, Cayman LP,’ in which Phillips disclosed investing between $250,000 and $500,000. (Lawmakers are only required to list the value of such assets in broad ranges.),” Levinthal wrote. “During 2019, the investment generated between $15,001 and $50,000 in ‘partnership income,’ his disclosure states. No further details are listed.”
Levinthal’s report does not include an interview with Phillips explaining the investment, or any quotes from the congressman himself. It does, however, include a statement from Phillips’ communications director Bryan Doyle who aims to explain away the controversial holding. Doyle’s statement notes Phillips is a member of the House Ethics Committee, the panel divided equally between Republicans and Democrats which oversees members’ behavior and complaints against them, and says he does not accept lobbyist donations, PAC money, or donations from other members of the House for his campaign.
“Congressman Phillips receives no special tax benefits for this investment, which was made by financial professionals at J.P. Morgan in 2017, not at his direction. As a member of the Ethics Committee, Dean adheres to the highest ethical standards, which is why he does not accept PAC money, federal lobbyist money, or donations from other members of Congress,” Doyle said.
Doyle’s statement continues by claiming that Phillips has not initiated any investments since he was elected to the House.
“He has not initiated any investments — directly or by proxy — since becoming a member of Congress in 2019, and is in the process of placing all eligible investments into a blind trust, which is currently under review at the Ethics Committee,” Doyle said. “The only aspect of his financial life that he plays an active role in is as the owner of Penny’s Coffee, a local chain of coffee shops in the Twin Cities area.”
While Doyle’s statement to Business Insider downplays this Cayman Islands investment, Doyle has not responded to a request from Breitbart News to interview the congressman himself about the matter. One would assume that if this investment was truly legitimate and there were no issues with it that the congressman himself — rather than a staffer — would be able to publicly defend his actions and personal financial decisions.
While Phillips is not publicly defending himself at this time, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), the GOP campaign arm charged with electing a House GOP majority, is ripping Phillips for the Cayman Islands holdings.
“Dean Phillips supports raising taxes on hardworking Americans but stashed his cash in the world’s most notorious offshore tax haven,” NRCC spokesman Mike Berg said in an email.
This Cayman Islands holding could get complicated for Phillips politically if he decides to vote for Democrat President Joe Biden’s forthcoming so-called “infrastructure” plan which would according to administration officials raise taxes on Americans to pay for an aggressive environmentalist green remodeling of the U.S. economy. Voters may want to know why he has at least some of his own money sheltered there in the Cayman Islands while he votes to raise taxes on Americans — assuming he votes for the plan.