The banker behind Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 plan

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Herman Cain has so far been willing to name just one advisor who helped him craft his catchy 9-9-9 tax plan.

“One of my experts that helped me to develop this is a gentleman by the name of Rich Lowrie out of Cleveland, Ohio,” Cain said at Tuesday’s Washington Post-Bloomberg debate. “He is an economist, and he has worked in the business of wealth creation most of his career.”

But according to Lowrie’s LinkedIn page, “economist” might be a bit of a stretch.

Lowrie holds a bachelor’s degree in accountancy from Case Western Reserve University and spent much of his career working in the investment banking industry. He now leads a wealth management group of Wells Fargo Advisors in Cleveland.


From 2005 through 2008, Lowrie served on the board of advisors of Americans for Prosperity, a nonprofit advocacy group with ties to the billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch.

Lowrie did not immediately return a request for more information.

In a recent interview with The Washington Examiner’s Byron York, Lowrie, Cain’s chief economic advisor, described how the 9-9-9 plan first came to be.

“I was with Mr. Cain and I asked him, ‘How bold do you want to be?’ and he leaned toward me with his big, booming voice and said, ‘BOLD.’”

At Tuesday’s debate, Cain, the former Godfather’s Pizza chief executive, said he also has “a number of other well-recognized economists that helped me develop this 9-9-9 plan. It didn’t come out of a pizza box, no.”

Pressed to name his other advisors, Cain again referred to Lowrie.

“He’s been my lead economist on helping to develop this,” Cain said.