On Friday, the Politico reported that the past anti-regulatory and lobbying efforts of one of Sen. John McCain’s top economic advisers, former Texas Sen. Phil Gramm, “contributed significantly to today’s economic turmoil.” Today, the New York Daily News reports “that two of his top advisers were recently lobbyists for a notorious lender in the mortgage meltdown“:
John Green, the senator’s chief liaison to Congress, and Wayne Berman, his national finance co-chairman, billed more than $720,000 in lobbying fees from 2005 through last year to Ameriquest Mortgage through their lobbying firm, disclosure forms reviewed by the Daily News show.
Ameriquest, which since has been bought out, was forced to settle suits with 49 states for $325 million. More than 13,680 New York homeowners got taken for a ride by the company, records show.
“They would be defined as the most blatant and aggressive predatory lenders out of everybody,” said Bruce Marks, head of the nonprofit Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America.