Countrywide won influence with discounts?

~ The Rebel ~ 2012/07/05 21:35:20
- The former Countrywide Financial Corp., whose subprime loans helped start the nation's foreclosure crisis, made hundreds of discount loans to buy influence with members of Congress, congressional staff, top government officials and executives of troubled mortgage giant Fannie Mae, according to a House report.

The report, obtained by The Associated Press, said the discounts - from January 1996 to June 2008 - were not only aimed at gaining influence for the company but to help mortgage giant Fannie Mae. Countrywide's business depended largely on Fannie, which at the time was trying to fend off more government regulation but eventually had to come under government control.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee also named six current and former members of Congress who received discount loans, but all of their names had surfaced previously. Other previously mentioned names included former top executive branch officials and three chief executives of Fannie Mae.

"Documents and testimony obtained by the committee show the VIP loan program was a tool used by Countrywide to build goodwill with lawmakers and other individuals positioned to benefit the company," the report said. "In the years that led up to the 2007 housing market decline, Countrywide VIPs were positioned to affect dozens of pieces of legislation that would have reformed Fannie" and its rival Freddie Mac, the committee said.

Some of the discounts were ordered personally by former Countrywide chief executive Angelo Mozilo. Those recipients were known as "Friends of Angelo."

Read More: http://www.gopusa.com/news/2012/07/05/report-count...

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  • ed 2012/07/05 22:58:07
    crooks every last one of them
  • Schläue~© 2012/07/05 22:04:51
    The main reason Dodd bailed out of Congress soon to be followed by Bawney Fwank after he picks out shim's weddin' dress.
  • cutter's falls 2012/07/05 21:52:07
  • NPC 2012/07/05 21:38:06
    Am sure this story is probably factual and true. Anything and everthing that can happen in the real estate mortgage broker business happened from 1999 to 2007 before the mortgage backed securities crashed the Market we have now.
  • ~ The Rebel ~ 2012/07/05 21:36:40
    ~ The Rebel ~
    The Justice Department has not prosecuted any Countrywide official, but the House committee's report said documents and testimony show that Mozilo and company lobbyists "may have skirted the federal bribery statute by keeping conversations about discounts and other forms of preferential treatment internal. Rather than making quid pro quo arrangements with lawmakers and staff, Countrywide used the VIP loan program to cast a wide net of influence."

    The report said that until the housing market became swamped with foreclosures, "Countrywide's effort to build goodwill on Capitol Hill worked."


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