John Ransom

Rep Darrell Issa (R-CA) alerted members of the House Oversight Committee that four members of the House received VIP loans from sub-prime mortgage powerhouse Countrywide, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The loans contained artificially low interest rates along with other artificial sweeteners for the members. These loans were not available to the general public.

In a letter issued to members by Issa, who is chairman of the committee, he referred to the loans as possible ethics violations and "possible wrongdoing by Members of Congress."

Issa issued a subpoena to Bank of America, which the government forced to take over Countrywide during the TARP bailouts. Bank of America, which has been harassed and threatened by the Obama administration, likely gleefully turned over the documents to Issa about Countrywide’s VIP program. 

Already the VIP loan program, run by Countrywide as an attempt to secure favor with top public officials, has killed the career of at least one member of Congress.

Senator Christopher Dodd, widely know for his misguided attempt at reforming the financial services laws- called Dodd-Frank- received loans from Countrywide for two houses that Dodd claimed as a primary residence.

And if you can figure out how you can divide two houses into one primary residence and get a whole number, then congratulations! You’re a Democrat.

They’ll probably ask you to write the next budget for the country or come up with a loan guarantee program for the DOE or count Democrat votes in Cook County, IL or file Geithner’s tax returns.

From the Los Angeles Times:

The oversight committee received about 100,000 pages of documents related to the VIP loan program after issuing a subpoena in February to Bank of America, which now owns Countrywide…. The VIP program also was known as "Friends of Angelo," a reference to Countrywide's former Chief Executive Angelo R. Mozilo.

The LA Times reports that Countrywide made 173 loans to employees of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, “which purchased many of the company's loans.”

Additionally about 30 Senate employees were given loans under the VIP program according to the Wall Street Journal.


John Ransom

John Ransom is the Finance Editor for Townhall Finance.
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