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?

News Flash: STDs are a stimulus too

Barney “Fannie and Freddie Are Not A Problem” Frank, noted banking expert and mortgage specialist, explains to Obama adviser George Stephanopoulos how all that money for STD prevention ($335 million) is a stimulus.

As a bonus, FFANP Frank explains how tax cuts never saved a firefighter’s or police officer’s job. Only Government spending can do that. True, FFANP, true. But only thriving businesses that are not downing in tax liabilities can generate the revenue to send to Washington, so Washington can send it back to the cities topay for the city jobs with the money generated by the business. Whew, I should get an Obama fist pump for that.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5bDLioq3A7s

Ya know … it acutally makes more sense than Nancy Pelosi on birth control. I think.

Contraception and abortion needed to … reduce global warming?

Jonathon Porritt, the chairman of a government watchdog group on environmental issues, is insistent contraception and abortion be the centerpiece of the fight against global warming.

Not windmills. Not batteries. Not solar. Not alternatives. Cutting population growth should be the centerpiece through contraception and abortion through government regulation.

Porritt is chairman of the Sustainable Development Commission whose members report directly to the prime minister. Porritt is also an adviser to the royal family and an patron of the Optimum Population Trust (OPT), who notes on their home page they are opposed to any form of coercion in family planning.

The also state…

The Optimum Population Trust believes that Earth may not be able to support more than half its present numbers before the end of this century, and that the UK’s long-term sustainable population level may be lower than 30 million.

The population of the UK is currently about 61 million people. They think we need to “remove” half of the entire population within 92 years? Wow, they certainly may be against coercion in family planning, but my guess is they don’t have any issues with brain washing.

Since organizations like the Sustainable Development Commission and OPT work directly with the UK government, I’m wondering if they have gotten into the school system yet? Are teachers members and supporters of the OPT? When will we see literature from the OPT specifically designed for kids?

The Sunday Times has quotes from Porritt’s concerning a report to be released soon.

Couples who have more than two children are being “irresponsible” by creating an unbearable burden on the environment, the government’s green adviser has warned.

Jonathon Porritt, who chairs the government’s Sustainable Development Commission, says curbing population growth through contraception and abortion must be at the heart of policies to fight global warming. He says political leaders and green campaigners should stop dodging the issue of environmental harm caused by an expanding population. …

“I think we will work our way towards a position that says that having more than two children is irresponsible. It is the ghost at the table. We have all these big issues that everybody is looking at and then you don’t really hear anyone say the “p” word.” …

Porritt, a former chairman of the Green party, says the government must improve family planning, even if it means shifting money from curing illness to increasing contraception and abortion.

He said: “We still have one of the highest rates of teenage pregnancies in Europe and we still have relatively high levels of pregnancies going to birth, often among women who are not convinced they want to become mothers.

I’m perfectly fine with families making their own decisions about how many children they want to have. Those decisions should be made after reviewing many factors including what is affordable, and yes, the impact on the environment.

The problem is that the information is not being based on facts. Global warming – re-branded as climate change – is the new religion after all. We’re brainwashing people. There is no consensus in science.

Liberalism and socialism is actually a driving force in all of this. If the government keeps bailing out everyone and continues down the path to provide health care, education, pre-school, breakfast, lunch,housing for families, and everything else imaginable, they will not have the reason to make their own decisions.

The government is there to support and provide of course, so why should they even care? Maybe if the government provides everything, parents would be willing to limit the number of kids they have. In turn, they loose all of their freedom.

Hat tip to Sister Toldjah for posting the link to the Times piece.

“Obama On Your Shoulder … Again”

“You can’t drive your SUVs and heat your home to 73 … ” and yada, yada, yada. And this coming from the man who heats his home, well our home, to above 73. Now he wants to take away your SUVs too. No really … he does.

RVO Reader Nick writes:

SEMA is the specialty equipment market association and helps car part retailers like myself with product research and legislation that could affect our business. When I read this, I thought it was a joke, but it’s actually true. This one will blow your mind.

Umm … yeah.

The so-called “Accelerated Retirement of Inefficient Vehicles Act” is “Cash for Clunkers” with a twist. Instead of focusing exclusively on old cars as is typical with scrappage programs, this bill will target any vehicle with lower fuel-economy ratings. Participants will receive a cash voucher [given the minimal $1,500–$4,500 voucher value] to purchase a more fuel-efficient new car or used car (model year 2004 or later) or receive credit for the purchase of public transportation tickets.

Thanks Nick. And you thought they just wanted to control your plastic bags, and plastic bottles, and cigarettes, and property, and guns, and free speech, and … oh never mind. Thought you might enjoy hearing this one again. This is why I love MKH. Have fun!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6kJTIbZM9Zo

And … you can read her stuff here.

“Q) How do you get a Democrat to pay their taxes? A) Nominate him to a cabinet position.”

Tom Daschle … Tom Daschle? Who’s next… the Treasury Secretary? Read more

Obama Advisor Calls Rush A Drug Addict

I received a call today from a “Hope n Change” listener who began by calling Rush Limbaugh a drug addict. That was quickly followed by a “Hope n Change” caller defending Peter and then hanging up. Little did I know this was a Democratic strategy to continue the assault on Rush by dragging themselves through the gutter.

Media Advisor to Obama Administration (Oh and CNN employee) Paul Begala fires I guess the third shot of the day. Hang on everyone for the new Obama “Hope n change” Party. Bonus video “Bush laziest President ever” comes at the end.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYBe2PUgHh8

Wow. OK … remind again, who was it who was using the cocaine? Just askin’, that’s all.

“Pot had helped, and booze; maybe a little blow when you could afford it. Not smack, though.”

Welcome Hot Air readers. Allah first read about this video here at Radio Vice Online!

Stimulus plan includes adding 1.2 million to Medicaid roles

Instead of dealing with nationalizing health care out in the open, the Obama stimulus plan takes the incremental – but significant step – to add more than one million Americans to the Medicaid roles if they are unemployed, or will soon be unemployed. This plan also includes millionaires who were laid off and not only expands COBRA coverage, but pays for 65 percent of the COBRA coverage!

When I began reading this article in the Wall Street Journal, I kept thinking about the COBRA program, which allows employees to carry their previous insurance for 18 months if they get laid off or another life change event occurs. The employer does not cover the cost of the premiums, but instead, the employee is able to continue coverage by paying the premium the employer was paying during employment. Confusing isn’t it?

Let’s just get rid of that confusion by having the federal government pick up 65 percent of the COBRA premiums!

From Kimberley Strassel’s post in the WSJ, with my emphasis in bold.

Under “stimulus,” Medicaid is now on offer not to just poor Americans, but Americans who have lost their jobs. And not just Americans who have lost their jobs, but their spouses and their children. And not Americans who recently lost their jobs, but those who lost jobs, say, early last year. And not just Americans who already lost their jobs, but those who will lose their jobs up to 2011. The federal government is graciously footing the whole bill. The legislation also forbids states to apply income tests in most cases.

House Democrat Henry Waxman was so thrilled by this blowout, it was left to Republicans to remind him that the very banking millionaires he dragged to the Hill last year for a grilling would now qualify for government aid. His response? A GOP proposal to limit subsidies to Americans with incomes under $1 million was accepted during markup, but had disappeared by final passage. In this new health-care nirvana, even the rich are welcome. CBO estimates? An additional 1.2 million on the federal Medicaid dime in 2009.

The “stimulus” also hijacks Cobra, a program that lets the unemployed retain access to their former company health benefits — usually for about 18 months. The new stimulus permits any former employee over the age of 55 to keep using Cobra right up until they qualify for Medicare at age 65. And here’s the kicker: Whereas employees were previously responsible for paying their health premiums while on Cobra, now the feds will pay 65%. CBO estimates? Seven million Americans will have the feds mostly pay their insurance bills in 2009.

Wow. This is not stimulus, this is welfare!

Hot Air and Power Line are on it too.

Timetable? We don’t need no stinking timetable.

I am not kidding. This morning on Morning Joe Congressman James Clyburn (D-NC) tells the MSNBC crew that Obama may not get the troops out of Iraq in 16 months. In fact …. well

You are just going to have to watch it to believe it. I did … 3 times before I posted it because I could not believe my ears.

Update: Ed over at Hot Air picked up on this Friday morning.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YsUqnNLVTvg

Remember now these are the same Democrats that hammered George Bush for 6 years. They demanded he set a timetable for withdrawal. They made it a campaign issue. Remember Obama’s promise to remove the troops in 16 months?

Also remember this is the same James Clyburn who told the Washington Post, if the surge worked “Now that would be a problem for us (Democrats).”

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tw8ES7E2-D4

Palin getting 2012 election season started

OK, she certainly has not started campaigning for national office yet, but she has taken the first step towards a possible run in 2012.

Palin has rolled out SarahPAC, which allows her to collect funds that can be used for speaking engagements that will, well, promote Sarah Palin. From the LA Times

Like others presumed to have their eye on the party nod — former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Arkansas ex-Gov. Mike Huckabee — Palin has set up a PAC — SarahPAC.

The creation of such a financial entity commits her to nothing. But such a political action committee will allow Palin to position herself to compete by legally collecting donations to travel and speak on her own behalf. (Iowa is a long snow machine ride from Wasilla, Alaska.)

It also will permit her to raise and distribute campaign donations to like-minded GOP supporters seeking office. That could earn her some valuable political owsies come campaign time in the Hawkeye state with the race now less than 29 months away.

Twenty nine months away? Goodness grief… we have to go through all of this again?

As a side note, I’m one of those people who think national elections for the Executive Branch go on for far too long. The early primaries and early start to campaigning – even if only unofficially – gives candidates the ability to provide good friends with jobs and ensure a long party atmosphere which for many involved must be similar to a drug they get hooked on.

Maybe I’m hooked too, I just don’t get paid for it…

LGF and Atlas Shrugs have more.