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Waters Got $12M TARP For Husband’s Bank

From the Wall Street Journal:

Waters Helped Bank Whose Stock She Once Owned

By SUSAN SCHMIDT

March 12, 2009

WASHINGTON — When Rep. Barney Frank was looking to aid a Boston-based lender last fall, the Massachusetts Democrat urged Maxine Waters, a colleague on the House Financial Services Committee, to "stay out of it," he says.

The reason: Ms. Waters, a longtime congresswoman from California, had close ties to the minority-owned institution, OneUnited Bank.

Ms. Waters and her husband have both held financial stakes in the bank. Until recently, her husband was a director. At the same time, Ms. Waters has publicly boosted OneUnited’s executives and criticized its government regulators during congressional hearings. Last fall, she helped secure the bank a meeting with Treasury officials.

Her involvement isn’t new. Ms. Waters has detailed her financial ties in a series of federal disclosure forms and has been vocal in public in support of the bank. Those ties, however, have received little public attention. Nor is it well known how the influential lawmaker has over the years acted to support the bank and its executives.

Such potential conflicts of interest are more serious as the banking system’s crisis has led the government to take an increasingly active role in overseeing financial institutions, including OneUnited. The financial-services committee on which Ms. Waters sits oversees banking issues, and the lawmaker is a potential future chairman…

OneUnited’s executives have donated $12,500 to Ms. Waters’s election campaigns…

Ms. Waters and her husband, Sidney Williams, were investors in two African-American owned California banks that merged with other lenders in 2002 to form OneUnited. Congressional financial-disclosure forms show Ms. Waters acquired OneUnited stock worth between $250,000 and $500,000 in March 2004, as did Mr. Williams. Mr. Williams joined the board of OneUnited that year.

Each sold shares in September 2004 — including Ms. Waters’s entire stake — but Mr. Williams continued to hold varying amount of the company’s stock. In the lawmaker’s most recent financial-disclosure form, dated May 2008 and covering the prior year, Ms. Waters reported that her husband held between $250,000 and $500,000 worth of the bank’s stock.

Mr. Williams also received interest payments from a separate holding at the bank, also worth between $250,000 and $500,000. The 2008 form doesn’t specify what that is…

At a hearing on minority lending in 2007, Ms. Waters criticized regulators for not doing enough to help minority banks stave off mergers with non-minority institutions. The lawmaker said she had contacted the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. in 2002 over such concerns and "I was told that there was nothing that could be done."

In her 2007 remarks, Ms. Waters alluded to two banks, Independence Bank of Washington, D.C., and "another bank that was about to be acquired by a major white bank out of Illinois."

Ms. Waters didn’t mention that OneUnited had been an unsuccessful suitor of Independence, which had been taken over several years earlier. The second bank, which she didn’t name, appears to have been Family Savings Bank of Los Angeles. In 2002, that bank backed out of a merger agreement with FBOP Bank of Oak Brook, Ill., and shortly afterward was acquired by OneUnited.

News reports at the time credited the intervention of Ms. Waters and others for Family Savings’s change of heart.

At the hearing, Ms. Waters praised OneUnited’s senior counsel, Robert P. Cooper, as "typical of the young, brilliant minds that have been amassed at OneUnited Bank." …

In January, Ms. Waters acknowledged she made a call to the Treasury on OneUnited’s behalf. The bank’s capital, which was heavily invested in shares of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, was all but wiped out with the federal takeover of the two mortgage giants, and the bank was seeking help from regulators.

OneUnited eventually secured bailout funds under the government’s $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program, which was set up later that month.

In a brief interview in January, Ms. Waters said she was unaware the bank received $12 million of TARP money, which arrived in December. OneUnited was "just a small" bank, she said.

A provision designed to aid OneUnited was written into the federal bailout legislation by Mr. Frank, who is chairman of the financial-services panel. Mr. Frank has said he inserted the provision to help the only African-American owned bank in his home state. He said in an interview that Ms. Waters’s interest "had zero impact on the outcome because I would have done it anyway."

In October, regulators demanded that OneUnited raise fresh capital and name an independent board. The bank was ordered to stop paying for a Porsche used by one of its executives and its chairman’s $6.4 million beachfront home in Pacific Palisades, Calif., a luxury enclave between Malibu and Santa Monica.

Say, whatever happened to the Maxine Waters who railed against the banking industry?

How many other “small” banks got TARP money? We suspect not many.

And note that the OneUnited Bank was slapped by regulators in October, and yet it still got federal bailout money weeks later in December.

But of course Ms. Waters had nothing to do with any of that.

It is just a coincidence.

(Thanks to Tammy7318 for the heads up.)

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, March 12th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

23 Responses to “Waters Got $12M TARP For Husband’s Bank”

  1. greasywrench says:

    The next time this racist pig (Maxine) goes to Cuba to grovel at the feet of the Castro brothers, she can stay there.

  2. Confucius says:

    I agree with Mrs. Waters. Her mother should have been allowed to have an abortion.

  3. wardmama4 says:

    Just another Typical Fiberal – Do As I Say Not As I Do – Political Person. And of course the Obamamedia is not reporting this one much at all.

    What are the words coming to mind?!? Oh yeah – croynism, nepotism, collectivism, despotism, totalitarianism – you know all the things these Fiberals accused Bush of for 8 years.

    And it hasn’t even been 60 days. This is going to be a loooooong 4 years.

  4. Gila Monster says:

    Will we have a House ethics committee investigation?
    After all, Piglosi said this is the most ethical Congress evah’, right?

    Yeah, I’ll believe that when the FAA issues a pilots’ license to a pig. A real pig as in a Sus domestica, not just a congress-critter trough feeder.

  5. Yarddog1 says:

    This behavior should come as no surprise. Washin”toon” is filled with the morally challenged (read: theives). I would hazard to say that every last congressperson and their staffs are mired in like behavior at some level. They don’t even try and hide it anymore. We “the people” have become so acustomed to these transparent unethical displays that we don’t pay attention. It’s like working in an emergency room; pretty soon the gore doesn’t bother you. What can be done anyway? The fox is in charge of the henhouse. You almost never see these idiots held accountable for their obviously illegal activity. They can’t criticize each other because they all do it. They’re in charge of enforcing the law and they won’t put themselves behind bars. Until we demand better it will only get worse. It is time for a cleansing and the imposition of term limits. Now – let us determine the proper way to accomplish some real change.

    • TwilightZoned says:

      You are soooooo right! Politicians, this next election cycle, will be fully scrutinized before getting my vote. Something’s gotta give!

    • VMAN says:

      I’m wondering if any of our votes will count in the next election.

    • proreason says:

      Question: how does a person so stupid she can’t say a coherent sentence, who couldn’t get through our dumbed-down college system to get a BA, manage to accumulate 250-500K in the stock of only 1 bank (knowing that she has many times that elsewhere).

      Answer: the same way all other 534 congessional representatives have accumulated fortunes that we can only dream of……they lied, cheated, accepted bribes and did every other dishoest, filthy thing they could to steal it from the taxpayers.

    • Looters.. until they become expendable they will steal from us.

      They are all criminals

      Proreason.. The fact they are even in a position that allows them this type of criminal indulgence given the perceived lower IQ is troubling. Mostly because they almost HAVE to be puppets to other corrupt influences to have gotten so far..

  6. Reality Bytes says:

    With 12 Million you’d think the ol’ broad could afford a better wig.

  7. seanrobins says:

    What do we need to do to get this racist pig prosecuted?

    My gosh!

    Not only is she a crook, a thief and a disgrace to her constituents . . .

    But her efforts – apart from her own financial conflict of interest – again clearly displays her racism!

    Goodness know, we can’t have any of the White money intermingling with that African-American money. Wouldn’t that be “fiscalogency”, or something?

    I have an idea, let see how long the economy, or what’s left of it, survives, if we all make sure only “White” money is in “White” banks, and “Black” money is in black banks, and so on….

    Might be interesting…..

    . . . .

    NOT!

    • Liberals Demise says:

      What’s this “money” thing your talkin’ about?
      OOOOOOOOH…..you mean, STIMULASS money.
      Maxine the Racist is fully “STIMULATED” now!!!

  8. brad says:

    Isn’t it strange that the only people who ARE NOT regulated to death are politicians themselves? There are no watchdog committees that investigate the slightest error, drag these people before hearings, question them, fine and imprison them for breach of public trust and public corruption?

    Every action they take, every bill and earmark they support, should be investigated, and on finding conflict of interests—-imprisonment and kicked out of Congress.

    • proreason says:

      very good idea

      I would add fines to the list of punishment. Once they have stolen their fortune, they don’t care about getting kicked out of Congress. Look at Daschel. He pivoted effortlesslly from being a criminal Congressman to being a criminal lobbyist. Didn’t miss a single bribe.

  9. canary says:

    Isn’t this illegal. Isn’t this a kick-back. And the way she chewed those banks out. Let’s not forget she threatened to quote “socialize” them too. Isn’t what Frank did racist. If it’s even the truth, and meant to show favoritism, would “Afro-American owners” override, a bank that gave more loans to Afro-Americans, like Citi-Bank that Obama sued in the 90’s. or a bank that employeed more Afro-Americans.
    So, this Witch Waters wants to run American’s finances, but she can’t run her own little bank? She should be fired from both jobs!.

  10. GL0120 says:

    I’m certain that the press simply overlooked this minor glitch and now that it’s been reported here, an article will be on the AP wire within minutes.

  11. Consilience says:

    This “thing” is a total friggin idiot—how she’s elected is a mystery….oh, hell, look at her district (I get it, sorry). She is an absolutely incompetent person who should be holding those “STOP”/”SLOW” signs in the midst of road construction…but then again, she may not be that bright.

    • MinnesotaRush says:

      Heck Cons .. she’d have both sides barreling down on each other claiming “no problem here”. After the crash was cleared, she’d be blaming the sign maker and auto manufacturers. :)

  12. U NO HOO says:

    “how she’s elected is a mystery”

    One half of a gaussian population is below average, plus one bigoted vote, and you have Maxine.

    Someone was talking about “Dukakis in the Tank Moments.”

    Every time I see Maxine it is a Dukakis in a tank moment.

  13. U NO HOO says:

    California U.S. House of Representatives for the 35th Congressional District

    (That would be Maxine’s Domain)

    Ethnicity 10.4% White, 34.1% Black, 5.6% Asian, 47.4% Hispanic, 0.2% Native American, 0.2% other

    You be the judge

  14. A Mad Pole says:

    I am looking at her photo on top of the article and then at the Lucianne.com add at the top-right of the page and can’t help noticing some striking resemblance. Is that dog a black witch (wink, wink), too?


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