Bloggers push results in Dodd mortgage action – Updated

Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Countrywide) has announced that he will refinance his mortgages through a third party and switch them to a different broker.

Dodd maintains that he was not a friend of Angelo, and has been wrongly accused of requesting favorable rates from Countrywide. I assume that the Senate Ethics Committee investigation continues. Guess he still does not get that he is held to a higher standard, especially when you are the chairman of the United States Senate Banking Committee.

Dodd has been pressured by this blog, Glenn Renoylds at Instapundit and Kevin Rennie at the Hartford Courant.

From the AP

Sen. Chris Dodd says he’ll refinance two mortgages that he received through a VIP program from Countrywide Financial Corp.

Dodd told reporters in his Hartford office Monday that the mortgages for his homes in Washington and East Haddam, Conn. will be refinanced with a different company.

The chairman of the Senate Banking Committee says a third party will be involved in choosing the new bank.

Dodd has acknowledged receiving mortgages in 2003 through a VIP program at Countrywide, which was sold to Bank of America Corp. earlier this year and has been the focus of allegations that it gave favorable loan terms to lawmakers.

Dodd says he’s moving the loans in part because he was wrongfully labeled a friend of Countrywide’s former CEO, Angelo Mozilo. Dodd says he never sought special treatment.

Malkin and Hot Air are on it.

Our previous articles…

Oh heck, just click here to run a search at our site.

Update: Here is video from an interview with Alan Cohn at WTNH. Thanks to commentor Rick-WH for the tip.

UPDATE (Jim):

Senator Chris Dodd announcing today he intends to refinance his two “Countrywide” mortgages made me think a bit.

HARTFORD, Conn. — Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd said he’ll refinance two mortgages that he received through a VIP program from Countrywide Financial Corp. Sen. Dodd told reporters in his Hartford office Monday that the mortgages for his homes in Washington and East Haddam, Conn., will be refinanced with a different company. The chairman of the Senate Banking Committee said a third party will be involved in choosing the new bank.

“I just wanted to put this behind us,” said Sen. Dodd, speaking to reporters in his Hartford office.

My guess is it was more a question of having to refinance … or face a likely pretty hefty bump in his current two mortgages. Let’s take a look at what we know:

Senator Dodd received two loans in 2003 through Countrywide’s V.I.P. program. He borrowed $506,000 to refinance his Washington townhouse, and $275,042 to refinance a home in East Haddam, Connecticut. Countrywide waived three-eighths of a point, or about $2,000, on the first loan, and one-fourth of a point, about $700, on the second, according to internal documents. Both loans were for 30 years, with the first five years at a fixed rate.

The interest rate on the loans, originally pegged at 4.875%, was reduced to 4.25% on the Washington home and 4.5% on the Connecticut property by the time the loans were funded. The lower rates save the senator about $58,000 on his Washington residence over the life of the loan, and $17,000 on the Connecticut home. The former employee says the float-downs were free. Senator Dodd’s wife, Jackie Clegg, said in a brief interview that two other lenders they checked with offered comparable interest rates. The senator’s office said Thursday afternoon that it is preparing a response.

Dodd’s current 4 and quarter rate would likely be readjusted to something a good bit higher than 5% … depending of course on the terms of the original mortgage (for instance there might be a cap, or not)… which of course we don’t know because he has not released his papers. Current fixed rates range between 5 and 7% depending on the bank, the location of the home, and of course if you are a member of the Democratic Congress. Given the $800,000 in mortgage loans … that’s a lot of dough he’ll have to fork over.

Call me cynical but to me it looks like this refinance is matter of personal necessity rather than some sudden quest for a more ethical loan agreement.

What’s more, there are plenty of people facing similar circumstances on their own homes these days. Some just can’t find a bank willing to refinance, and others, Democrats remind us frequently,  are losing their homes because their rates are being bumped into the “unaffordable” range. My guess is is neither will be a problem for Connecticut’s senior Senator.

Oh and one more time …Where in the world are Chris Dodd’s Mortgage Papers?

5 replies
  1. Rick-WH
    Rick-WH says:

    Call me skeptical, it looks like, smells like a well planned cover up.

    Why announce this today – the morning after the Super Bowl; simultaneously with a big bump in the state deficit to $ 1. 1 billion for this year along; the same day as Governor Rell's "fireside chat" about the deficit.

    Sorry, I don't buy it….and we still don't have the documents or other pertinent facts.

    More than ever, I would not buy anything – not even a toaster -from Senator Dodd.

    After the press conference, he spoke to Alan Cohn of WTNH- 8, along with his wife.

    Watch for yourself, then sound off. [Video included in the post above]

  2. Wayne SW
    Wayne SW says:

    Hey Dodd, your decision to get a "do over" on your mortgage does not give that me tingley feeling in my leg.  How could a "do over", undo the original?  Analogies can be effective when comparing a scenerio to make the issue crystal clear. 

    Dodd, your "do over" is like a robber returning the loot he stole and claiming that after the merchandise was returned that there was no crime.

    Hey Dodd, perhaps if you returned "ALL" the donations you received from Countrywide and other Financial Institutions and resigned your Senate Seat, I would burn my Dump Dodd Tee shirt.

  3. Bill
    Bill says:

    Color me cynical, but could this action be the result of mortgage rates being lower now than when the questionable Countrywide deal was executed?

  4. Dimsdale
    Dimsdale says:

    It's the John Kerry School of Obfuscation ploy: release a few select (read it: scrubbed) documents to some select reporters that they can't duplicate (plausible deniablity due to reporter's memory) and pretend that the documents were "released."

    If the documents cleared Dodd, he would have released them long ago.  They don't.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] the way for a complete list of our Chris Dodd posts … click here and just keep scrolling. And here’s the one not on that […]

Comments are closed.