Obama’s new French economic adviser has ‘faith in redistribution’

The French economist selected by President Barack Obama to serve as one of his top second-term global development advisers reportedly has “faith in redistribution,” supported far left-wing political theories and leaders, and provided the intellectual framework for French Socialist President Francois Hollande’s electoral victory, records reveal.

Obama announced his intent late last month to appoint French economist and MIT professor Esther Duflo to the President’s Global Development Council, a new governmental advisory board that Obama created by executive order last year. Obama announced bond investor Mohamed A. El-Erian as his pick to chair the council.

The council “will be comprised of no more than 12 individuals from  a variety of sectors outside the Federal Government, including, among others, institutions of higher education, non-profit and philanthropic organizations, civil society, and private industry,” according to a 2012 White House press release. “The Council will inform and provide advice to the President and other senior U.S. officials on U.S. global development policies and practices.”

Duflo, who is 40 years old, is the Abdul Latif Jameel professor of poverty alleviation and development economics at MIT and the co-founder and director of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab, which was initially funded by Saudi billionaire Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel.

Duflo’s appointment by Obama might have directly political motivations.

During Socialist Francois Hollande’s successful 2012 French presidential campaign, his three voter mobilization strategists, all former Harvard or MIT students, applied theories they first learned from Duflo, whose experiments “when applied to electioneering, had quantified the ability of a single door knock to deliver a vote.”

The tactics behind Hollande’s “campaign operation aimed at nonvoters” were first employed by Obama’s 2008 campaign and were most fully realized during Obama’s 2012 campaign, when a powerful voter database enabled Obama staffers to register new voters based on demographic and behavioral trends.

These tactics helped “alter the very nature of the electorate” in 2012, according to the New York Times, “making it younger and less white.”