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With Politics Done, Obama to Focus on 'History Books': Ross

Wednesday, 7 Nov 2012 | 10:51 AM ET
Scott Ellis | Bloomberg | Getty Images

With control of Congress unchanged, billionaire investor Wilbur Ross expects President Barack Obama to start thinking about his legacy during his second term by reaching across the aisle to build consensus.

"The first term for a president is mostly about politics," the investor told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Wednesday. "I think the second term, logically, should be about the history books."

Ross said that the real question after Tuesday's election will be how Obama begins working to forge greater compromise between his positions and those of the Republican leadership in Congress.

"I'm optimistic that he will be looking toward the history books," Ross said.

Ross added that there's no reason for the president and the Congress not to interact constructively on the nation's most pressing issues, even during the so-called lame duck period.

Will President Obama Mend Fences?
Wilbur Ross, Chairman & CEO of WL Ross & Co., discusses whether President Obama will reach across the aisle and gather bipartisan support in Congress and on Wall Street.

Ross said he expects that as politicians begin working on straightening out the country's fiscal problems, broad tax reform will likely be on the table. That will likely includes capital gains and carried interest, he added.

Currently, executives at investment firms like hedge funds pay capital gains tax rates on the income they earn from their investment activities, not the higher ordinary income tax rates.

"There have been a number of proposals gradually to phase [investment taxes] out and bring it up to other high rates over a several-year period," he said. "I wouldn't be surprised if something like that happened."

Investment Firms to Watch

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FIG
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OZM
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APO
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OAK
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