Rattner: Scandal ‘unbelievably painful’

Quadrangle co-founder Steve Rattner said in an online interview that his involvement in the New York state pension pay-to-play scandal investigation has been the most painful event of his career.

Quadrangle co-founder Steve Rattner’s involvement in New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo’s investigation into the state’s pension kickback scandal has been “the most painful thing that’s ever happened to me professionally by a wide margin,” Rattner said in an interview Friday.

Earlier this year, Quadrangle reached an agreement with Cuomo to pay $7 million to settle its case. At the time the settlement was announced, the firm accused Rattner of behaving in an “inappropriate, wrong and unethical” manner when Rattner hired political operative Henry Morris to solicit the New York State Common Retirement Fund for a commitment.

Rattner is mentioned in court documents, but has not been accused of wrong-doing and has denied allegations.

Steven Rattner

Rattner left Quadrangle last year to take up a high-profile post with the administration of US President Barack Obama, heading up a team restructuring the US auto industry. He served on the post for about six months, before stepping down amid reports that he was somehow involved in pay-to-play situations.

“It’s certainly fair to question my integrity, it’s just unbelievably painful,” Rattner told the Business Insider in a video interview.

Rattner is reportedly close to a settlement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission under which he would pay about $6 million and be banned for two years from the securities industry, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

In the interview moderated by Business Insider founder Henry Blodget, Rattner said he would have done things “differently” while at Quadrangle, but did not mention Morris or any specific situations related to the scandal.