July 3, 2008

MORE ON OBAMA’S MORTGAGE DEAL: “What could Sen. Barack Obama do for a lender in exchange for more than $100,000? Plenty.”

Remember when Democrats were all about ending the “culture of corruption?” Now that sounds so 2006.

UPDATE: A reader who asks anonymity — but he’s a guy who’s written me before — emails:

I’m hesitant to add to this story, but I obtained a mortgage from Northern Trust in Chicago for my client at roughly the same time as Obama. The mortgage terms I got for my client were materially better than Obama’s–a 30 year fixed at almost a full percent less than Obama’s mortgage with a much larger principal amount.

Northern is an unusual bank that specializes in cases that require more attention and analysis than a typical bank will provide. I don’t find Obama’s mortgage to be anything special or unusual in the context of Northern’s very competent Chicago office, though I could see how his situation and unusual income stream would make Northern pretty attractive to him.

This mortgage story is not even remotely comparable to the congressmen like Dodd who solicited what can only be called “constructive bribes” from Countrywide’s CEO. The Tony Rezko aspect of Obama’s home purchase is sleazy enough without drawing hyperbolic conclusions about his mortgage.

Yeah, I agree it’s different from Dodd et al., but these members of Congress always seem to be getting some kind of good deal. Still, it’s good to get an inside opinion.

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