Mr. Sweetheart Mortgage Will not Seek Reelection
From the Wall Street Journal today.
The departure of [Senator Chris] Dodd, first elected to the Senate in 1980, carried the most symbolic value because of his seniority and his close association with the financial system bailout and other economic policies. He has drawn criticism for backing a measure that allowed the embattled insurance giant AIG to dole out bonuses to its executives.
Mr. Dodd, once closely associated with the insurance and hedge-fund industry, is one of the highest profile Democratic casualties of the financial crisis and its political fallout. Under fire for receiving what some charged was a sweetheart mortgage from Countrywide Financial, and for land deals in Ireland, Mr. Dodd had tried to reinvent himself as a populist, going after big banks and credit-card companies from his perch as chairman of the Senate banking committee.
And suddenly, the Dems are scrambling to fill four open Senate seats.
The uplift of optimism that accompanies this news is tempered slightly by a sense of perplexity. Why announce this decision now, before committing the terrible deed of voting in favor of health care reform? Doesn’t that cast doubt on the moral credibility of the Dem’s health care reform plan, while at the same time make these senators look like weasels who want it both ways? “Yes, I will vote for this legislation. Note, however, that I will shortly be departing this chamber.”
Meanwhile, the meeting, out of sight of C-Span and the American people, between Speaker Pelosi and Senate President Reid to
reconcile the Senate and House bills iron out the first steps to the systematic disassembly of the US health care system and to mandate jail for anyone who fails to exercise an inalienable right will take place as scheduled, though presumably with a heightened sense of urgency. There has been no immediate confirmation to the rumor that someone sounding strangely like presidential advisor Rahm Emanuel has already called the offices of Speaker Pelosi and Senate President Reid shrieking, “Pass it! Pass anything! Gone! Our beautiful super-majority will soon be gone!”