Senator Conrad Backtracks… Admits He Was Given Preferential Treatment On Mortgage

Two influential Democratic senators and a former Clinton official were caught in loan sleaze this week.

Nutroots favorite Senator Chris Dodd (D-Con.) on right, and Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND), on left, received special loans that saved them thousands of dollars.
Not only that, but Countrywide also contributed $21,000 to Sen. Dodd’s campaigns.

Democratic Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND) admitted today that he was given preferential treatment on a loan he received from Countrywide Financial Corp. but that he didn’t know about it… Right!
Bloomberg reported:

Senator Kent Conrad said he was given preferential treatment on a mortgage from Countrywide Financial Corp. and will write a $10,500 check to charity.

“It appears Countrywide waived one point on my mortgage,” Conrad, a North Dakota Democrat, said in a statement today in Washington. “Although I did not ask for or know that I was receiving a discount, and even though I was offered a competitive loan from another lender, I do not want to have received preferential treatment.”

Conrad said he also received a loan from Countrywide on an eight-unit apartment building in Bismarck, North Dakota, even though the lender typically serves properties that have four units or less. He said he had decided to refinance that loan with another institution.

Conrad and Senator Christopher Dodd, who oversees the U.S. mortgage industry as chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, were among those who received loans through Countrywide’s “V.I.P.” program, which waived points, fees and borrowing rules for prominent people, Portfolio magazine reported June 12. Dodd has denied receiving preferential treatment.

Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND) is chairman of the Budget Committee and a member of the Finance Committee.


The senator has changed his tune from yesterday when he said he was given a competitive rate:

“From what we have been able to determine, it appears that we were given competitive rates. In fact, I was offered financing on basically the same terms from another lender. Contrary to the article, I also paid thousands of dollars in mortgage fees.

Say Anything blog says he’s lying and explains:

Conrad’s feigned shock at the idea that he got preferential treatment on this loan is laughable. He himself called up the CEO of Countrywide Mortgage to ask for a loan. If all you want is a routine loan you don’t call up the CEO.

2 Influential Democrat Senators Caught in Loan Sleaze
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