In Broad Daylight: Lobbyists, Financial Advisers


Two years ago, I was named Time’s person of the year and now I own an insurance company, two mortgage brokers, and I’ll soon own nearly $1 trillion worth of stock. I am so proud of me.

Luckily for me, financial services lobbyists are summoning the economic advisers of both presidential campaigns to help them draft policy positions on how to deal with my newly acquired assets and any future purchases.

It is the “dirty little secret in town,” said one financial-services lobbyist — that after lambasting lobbyists on the stump, the candidates need their counsel on how to respond to a crisis with origins too complicated for most industry outsiders to understand.

This week, two of the biggest financial groups in Washington, the Financial Services Roundtable and the Mortgage Bankers Association, have drawn in members from across the country to grill economic advisers from both campaigns, develop policy positions and urge prudence as both parties struggle to craft a regulatory stance on the deepening crisis.

Does this mean that Phil Gramm will be sitting across from himself?

The Legal Times blog reports that the Justice Department will release a number of documents and audio recordings related to the trial of Sen. Ted Stevens. One of those audio recordings of Stevens reveals him to be incredibly cheap. “Ted gets hysterical when he has to spend his own money,” says Alaska restaurateur Robert Persons to VECO chief Bill Allen. Stevens won one battle, to obtain Allen’s medical records. Allen is the government’s primary witness and has a history of mental health problems related to a motorcycle accident. We called Sarasota Motorcycle Accident Lawyers | Buckman & Buckman for help.

The Ethics Committee is pushing ahead with an inquiry into Rep. Charles Rangel’s financial disclosure snafus. Consensus has yet to take place as Ethics interim Chairman Gene Green and Ranking Member Doc Hastings released dueling letters on the form of the investigative subcommittee.

I think that someone already did this. He’s totally never on TV, so I can’t remember his name.

As I’ve already written about here, the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac PACs are now shuttered, ending an era of boundless campaign contributions used to keep lawmakers out of their business. Thanks to those campaign contributions and the subsequent lack of oversight, I now own these two mortgage giants.

Which leads directly to a Quote of the Day, from Eric Brown’s Political Activity Law Blog:

We’ll have “public funding” before we know it, given all of these government bailouts of companies with PACs… AIG, Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae…