WASHINGTON — Unqualified home buyers were not the only ones who benefitted from Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank’s efforts to deregulate Fannie Mae throughout the 1990s.So did Frank’s partner, a Fannie Mae executive at the forefront of the agency’s push to relax lending restrictions.Now that Fannie Mae is at the epicenter of a financial meltdown that threatens the U.S. economy, some are raising new questions about Frank's relationship with Herb Moses, who was Fannie’s assistant director for product initiatives. Moses worked at the government-sponsored enterprise from 1991 to 1998, while Frank was on the House Banking Committee, which had jurisdiction over Fannie.Both Frank and Moses assured the Wall Street Journal in 1992 that they took pains to avoid any conflicts of interest. Critics, however, remain skeptical."It’s absolutely a conflict," said Dan Gainor, vice president of the Business & Media Institute. "He was voting on Fannie Mae at a time when he was involved with a Fannie Mae executive. How is that not germane?
"If this had been his ex-wife and he was Republican, I would bet every penny I have - or at least what’s not in the stock market - that this would be considered germane," added Gainor, a T. Boone Pickens Fellow. "But everybody wants to avoid it because he’s gay. It’s the quintessential double standard."
Is it a double standard? I believe it is. If indeed a Republican had ties to the Fannie Mae mess as Barney Frank does, it would no doubt be front page NYT from now until the election in November. Can you say “Mark Foley”?
Will this story even be featured in Section “A” of the NYT? Probably more likely it’ll be Page 2 in the Business Section, if it’s anywhere at all.
Oh by the way, I disagree with Dan Gainor's assesment that this is being ignored because Barney Frank is "gay".More to the truth, I'd say it's because Barney Frank is (D).
"We sleep safe In our beds because rough men stand ready to visit violence on those that would do us harm." - George Orwell