Report: Dodd, Conrad Knew of Special Loan Treatment
When the news broke that they’d received special deals on loans furnished by Countrywide Financial Corp., Sens. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) and Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) both denied wrongdoing, saying they had no idea they’d gotten preferential treatment. Today, The Associated Press reports a different version of the tale, citing statements from a Countrywide employee claiming that both of the powerful Democrats were aware of the deals they were getting. In a conversation between Countrywide’s Robert Feinberg and GOP investigators on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, The AP reported, Feinberg contends that neither Dodd, who chairs the Senate Banking Committee, nor Conrad, who heads the Budget Committee, were in the dark about their special treatment.
Asked by a House Oversight investigator if Conrad, the North Dakota senator, “was aware that he was getting preferential treatment?” Feinberg answered: “Yes, he was aware.”
Referring to Dodd, the investigator asked:
“And do you know if during the course of your communications” with the senator or his wife “that you ever had an opportunity to share with them if they were getting special VIP treatment?”
“Yes, yes,” Feinberg replied.
Both Dodd’s and Conrad’s offices refute Feinberg’s statements, The AP reports, meaning that, at least for now, this remains a he-said-she-said story. Still, the accusations don’t look good on the resumes of guys who are in the business of being popular — particularly for Dodd, who’s got a tough reelection contest less than 16 months away.