McCain's Campaign Manager Was for It Before He Was Against It

Rick Davis headed Fannie Mae lobby and said people wanted "into houses cheap."

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A note on the work that you're doing now: It will be remembered. Unless you're in politics, that is.

Why is it that résumé matters so much in the private sector and memories are so short in the public sector?

As John McCain said in remarks today:

The financial crisis we're living through today started with the corruption and manipulation of our home mortgage system. At the center of the problem were the lobbyists, politicians, and bureaucrats who succeeded in persuading Congress and the administration to ignore the festering problems at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

It seems a little bizarre then that McCain's campaign manager Rick Davis was hired—after running McCain's failed 2000 presidential campaign—to head up a group called the Homeownership Alliance, a Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac advocacy group, which the Wall Street Journal reported (in August 2000) had a website creed of being dedicated to: "exposing and defeating trends that would harm consumer access to the lowest-cost mortgage option." The group viewed as threats those who are "seeking to spread unfounded fears about risks to the housing system."

From Institutional Investor in September 2000 (bold is mine):

"You can say what you want about free-market distortions, but people like the system because it gets them into houses cheap," notes [Rick] Davis, who will run an advocacy group called the Homeownership Alliance out of his Alexandria, Virginia, lobbying firm. He was recruited by Fannie Mae senior vice president John Buckley, whom he met while working on Ronald Reagan's 1984 reelection campaign. Says Davis, "What we tried to do in the McCain campaign parallels what we want to do here—protect the consumer."

Indeed, someone in Congress at that time, Rep. Richard Baker, a Republican from Louisiana, had "introduced a bill that would limit the companies' growth and reorganize their regulatory oversight," the newspaper reported. (This is the same Richard Baker who now heads the Managed Funds Association, a hedge fund trade group that has come out in serious opposition to the temporary ban on short selling financial stocks).