Jamie Dimon is arguably the most powerful person in corporate America. Dimon has built a banking empire at JPMorgan Chase and his advice is sought by presidents, prime ministers and central bankers.
Now that he’s conquered the business world, Dimon is signaling an openness to at least explore an eventual second act in politics.
Normally, Dimon is quick to shoot down speculation that he could run for office. But in an interview with Bloomberg Television released on Wednesday, Dimon didn’t rule it out.
Asked if he’s ever considered a public office position, Dimon said: “I love my country, and maybe one day I’ll serve my country in one capacity or another.”
Dimon, 67 years old, stressed that he’s focused on running JPMorgan, a role that has become even more complex amid the banking crisis and the ongoing debate over the debt ceiling.
“I love what I do,” Dimon told Bloomberg, adding he’s “quite happy” in his current job. He noted JPMorgan does a “great job helping Americans, for helping countries around the world.”
Of course, it’s far from clear that a Wall Street CEO would have any success in politics, especially given skepticism on the left and the right of corporate power in general and big banks in particular.
Since becoming CEO in 2005, Dimon has vaulted to the top of the business world. He often takes public stands on major issues, including voting rights, respecting the peaceful transfer of power and the debt ceiling.
Dimon steered JPMorgan through the 2008 financial crisis, the Covid-19 pandemic and now the banking crisis. During each period of stress, JPMorgan has emerged even stronger.
All of this explains why Dimon’s name has been mentioned in the past as a potential Treasury secretary or even a presidential candidate.
In 2016, Dimon said he’d “love to be president” but added it’s “too hard and too late” for him to do that.
Two years later, the JPMorgan boss even said he could defeat then-President Donald Trump in an election.
“I think I could beat Trump,” Dimon said at the time, adding, “I’m as tough as he is, I’m smarter than he is. I would be fine. He could punch me all he wants, it wouldn’t work with me.”
Dimon quickly walked that back, saying in a statement that he should not have made those comments and he was not running for president.
But if he did eventually enter politics, would it be as a Democrat or a Republican?
In 2019, Dimon told CNBC he considers himself “barely a Democrat,” adding, “my heart is Democratic, my brain is kind of Republican.”
Asked in April by CNN’s Poppy Harlow if that’s still the case, Dimon said it is.
“I think we can do a better job of lifting up all of our citizens….Free market capitalism, properly regulated, has lifted billions of people out of poverty,” Dimon said. “I’m usually led by my heart, but my brain part is saying if we’re going to spend money, we should spend it wisely.”
Dimon added that energy policy must be a sophisticated, comprehensive policy and “Republicans probably have that a little bit better.”
This week’s interview with Bloomberg took place at JPMorgan’s annual Global China Summit in Shanghai, where Dimon was among the business leaders meeting with officials in communist China.
Dimon stressed that “business can be a force for good” and described himself as a “red-blooded, full-throated free enterprise capitalist” who would follow the US government.
“Everyone knows I am a patriot,” Dimon said.