Dodd’s Irish Country Cottage

Tell me again about how these guys inside the beltway are performing public service? Chris Dodd, (D-Countrywide) watches the housing market implode while he gets favored mortgage treatment here … and great land deals overseas partnering with felons? Perfect. Kevin Rennie continuuuuuues.

Ireland does not easily give up its secrets. That may have been one attraction it held for Sen. Christopher Dodd in 1994 when he became an owner of a refuge on nearly 10 acres on the Irish west coast. The murky tale includes a felonious inside trader, a Kansas City businessman, a presidential pardon and what appears to be a financial bonanza to Dodd during the Irish property boom.

But wait … according to Dodd’s financial disclosures … his Irish cottage never participated in the Irish property boom … curious.

Between 1994 and 2004, according to the Central Bank of Ireland, prices of existing homes (as opposed to new ones) nearly quadrupled. But not according to a 2002 bank appraisal that Dodd used in the purchase of Kessinger’s interest.

That year, a year after Dodd obtained a pardon for Downe, Dodd purchased Kessinger’s two-thirds interest in the Irish hideaway for only $127,000, according to Dodd. Irish property records obtained for this story show it as $122,351. That was slightly more than its value eight eventful years before, but much less than what might have been expected given the explosion of Irish real estate prices.

At the same time, Dodd financed the purchase of Kessinger’s share with a 20-year variable rate mortgage from an Irish bank for approximately $159,000 at 3.85 percent.

Make sure you read the whole thing twice. But here’s what I wonder … are these the kind of deals you and I could get … or do you have to be a Senator? Public service indeed.

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Jim Vicevich

Jim is a veteran broadcaster and conservative/libertarian blogger with more than 25 years experience in TV and radio. Jim's was the long-term host of The Jim Vicevich Show on WTIC 1080 in Hartford from 2004 through 2019. Prior to radio, Jim worked as a business and financial reporter for NBC30 - the NBC owned TV station in Hartford - and as business editor at WFSB-TV in Hartford for 14 years while earning six Emmy nominations and three Telly Awards.


  1. davis on February 22, 2009 at 6:55 am

    You have to be a Senator. It's revolting that he's been getting away with all of this. Now here is a guy that should be recalled, but how? And by the time he comes around for re-election, he'll be likely be re-elected, unless the Republicans can come up with a good candidate.

  2. Bill on February 22, 2009 at 6:57 am

    Any wonder some of us call it Corrupticut?

  3. Rick-WH on February 22, 2009 at 7:57 am

    Jim, of course, we all get deals like this.

    Wait a minute….no, we don't.

    The rate of descent for Senator Dodd is accelerating.

    No "Rehabilitation Tour" of Connecticut will restore Dodd's credibility with the voters.

  4. theignorantfisherman on February 22, 2009 at 11:25 am

    ah…tis the good life laddy! does this guy ever stay in CT? lol…that's all we can do!

  5. Dimsdale on February 22, 2009 at 11:45 am

    But, but, Dodd said he is not clairvoyant, nor a VIP!!  How could poor little Chris Dodd be the serendipitous recipient of all of this "good luck?"

    I am sure it has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with his position as chairman of the Senate Banking Committee.  Purest coincidence.  Nothing to see here.  Move along….

    Everytime I see one of those recent rehabilitation commercials for Dodd, I want to puke.

    This has to be a cakewalk for someone like Simmons.

  6. Lazybum on February 23, 2009 at 12:54 am

    Does Dodd even know where CT is on a map? How often is he actually in this state?

    Rehab tour indeed. I am saving up my rotten tomatoes in eager anticipation.

    A bribe by any other name is still a bribe.

  7. gillie28 on February 23, 2009 at 2:16 am

    A further irony to this story is that Obama, when a Senator,  put Dodd on his panel of advisors on Ireland, along with Kennedy, Leahy and George Mitchell.   Obama called it his "dream team" of leaders "who cherish the Irish bond as I do."  Wonder how many of the other memebers were able to get cheap "cottages" in Ireland???

  8. gillie28 on February 23, 2009 at 2:59 am

    In 2006, the Thomas J. Dodd Research Foundation had a new director on its board.  Guess who???:

    Mr. Edward R. Downe Jr. joined the Board during the past year. Mr. Downe

    worked in the field of journalism, serving as editor of


    Argosy magazine and



    Family Weekly, a newspaper insert. He owned Downe

    Communications and is retired and living in New York City.

  9. Dimsdale on February 23, 2009 at 6:00 am

    Putin calls his "cottage" a dacha.  All the political leaders have nice ones in Russia.  All part of the "some animals more equal than others" mindset of former communists and Democrats.

  10. rush on February 23, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    If Dodd gets elected again I may lose all hope.

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