Govt.-Bailed Mortgage Cos Paid Execs $35.4 Mil
In an egregious move, the scandal-plagued mortgage giants bailed out by U.S.taxpayers awarded the inept executives responsible for their financial ruin with tens of millions of dollars.Taken over by the government after their disastrous collapse, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have bestowed $35.4 million upon its top six executives since Uncle Sam took them over two years. This should outrage every tax-paying American because the government has already injected the troubled mortgage companies with $153 billion and losses are expected to reach more than double that figure.It gets better. The exorbitant compensations were actually approved by the federal agency President Obama created to oversee Fannie and Freddie and supposedly protect taxpayers by promoting their “safety and soundness.” Indeed the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), created in July 2008, rubber stamped the astounding paychecks, according to a scathing government audit.Published this week by the FHFA Inspector General, the results of the audit are downright enraging because the agency was created specifically to conserve Fannie and Freddie’s dwindling assets on behalf of taxpayers. Instead, the inspector general says, executives at both struggling firms received far more than their counterparts at other federal housing agencies. The huge discrepancy should be explained to taxpayers, the IG suggests.“F.H.F.A. has a responsibility to Congress and taxpayers to efficiently, consistently, and reliably ensure that the compensation paid to Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s senior executives is reasonable,” Inspector General Steve Linick said in a separatestatement. ”This is especially true when you realize that the U.S. Treasury has invested close to $154 billion to stabilize Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac,” yet they are “spending tens of millions of dollars for executive compensation.”The collapse and subsequent government takeover of Freddie and Fannie have been marked by secrecy, even as the president claims to operate the most transparent administration in history. For nearly two years Judicial Watch has fought to obtain crucial public records on the failed mortgage giants that are now wholly operated by the federal government.The Obama Administration is fighting hard to keep the information secret, especially documents regarding Fannie and Freddie’s political campaign contributions and policies relating to such contributions. Last fall a court ruled that Judicial Watch has the right to access the requested files, but the administration has refused to comply and continues fighting the ruling. Click here to see Judicial Watch’s work relating to Freddie and Fannie.