I don’t understand people like Democratic Senator Kent Conrad of North Dakota. He says he was steered to troubled Countrywide Bank by his pal Jim Johnson, recently fired as an advisor to the Obama campaign. Johnson went through the revolving door from Ginny Mae, the government sponsored mortgage investment organization, to CEO of Countrywide Bank, to becoming a campaign advisor to Barack Obama. Both Johnson and pal Kent Conrad got special financial treatment as members of the FOA, the Friends of Angelo (Mozilo). Apparently, they believed it was alright for them to do that since the Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, Chris Dodd, also took advantage of his special relationship to Countrywide Bank CEO Angelo Mozilo.
Demonstrating what a nice guy he is, Kent Conrad gave $10,500 to Habitat for Humanity—the amount of gain he says he had from the special point arrangement he’d got on his loan. With regard to another loan he received for his investment in a 10-unit apartment complex, Senator Conrad says he’ll refinance that one with another bank since that Countrywide loan departed also from established bank policies.
Barack Obama doesn’t see anything wrong with any of it, in spite of firing Johnson, and in spite of his sharp campaign trail criticisms of Countrywide and its sub-prime loan business. That’s judgment you can count on and change you can believe in.