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Stephen Schwarzman Hosting Private Party for Romney, Amid Criticism

Tuesday, 17 Jan 2012 | 3:47 PM ET

Blackstone Co-Chairman Stephen Schwarzman is hosting a party for Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney Tuesday evening at his Park Avenue apartment in New York City, a person familiar with the event said.

Mitt Romney
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Mitt Romney

The private event is for the very biggest New York-based fundraisers of Romney and will follow a bigger event earlier in the evening at the Sheraton hotel in New York, the person said.

The main topic of conversation at Schwarzman’s apartment is sure to be how the GOP favorite should counter attacks from President Obama about Romney’s record at the helm of private equity-firm Bain Capital during the 1980s, ironically brought to the fore recently by fellow Republican candidates like Newt Gingrich.

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Helping him strategize tonight along with Schwarzman will be a few current partners atBain Capital, along with Jets owner Woody Johnson, the person said. Schwarzman, who runs the largest private equity firm at work today, has received similar criticism of his practices and pay in the past, although he’s not running for President.

Romney’s challenge will be to convince the American public that his work at Bain through leveraged buyouts made Corporate America more efficient and created jobs. The White House is likely to paint Bain and the private equity industry as a vehicle for Romney and others to pay themselves handsomely at the expense of jobs that were cut or outsourced.

A group backing Newt Gingrich has been running advertisements in South Carolina, the site of Saturday’s primary, that paint Romney as a money hungry capitalist that destroys jobs. Spokespeople for Blackstone and the Romney camp did not immediately confirm the Schwarzman event was taking place.

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