The Senate Ethics Committee in August 2009 concluded that there was “no credible evidence” that Conrad and Dodd had knowingly participated in a loan program not available to the public. News reports have focused on mortgages that Towns received for properties in Florida and New York.
McKeon and Gallegly acknowledged last week that they were among the Members whom Issa had referred to the House Ethics Committee, but both denied any knowledge of the program from which they received their mortgages. Documents referenced in Cummings’ letter, however, suggest that subpoenaed documents contained correspondence between McKeon and Countrywide employees that referenced the company’s VIP program.
“A follow-up letter sent to Chairman McKeon provided forms for him to sign and stated: ‘Thank you for allowing COUNTRYWIDE’s VIP TEAM to assist you with your financing needs on the above referenced property,’” Cummings wrote.
Other documents indicated McKeon was referred to the mortgage discount program by Michael J. Ferrell, who was then the head lobbyist at the Mortgage Bankers Association of America and had orchestrated the group’s effort to block higher fees on mortgage lenders.
McKeon is known to have received a Countrywide mortgage for $315,000, and Mozilo instructed the individual handling his loan to “take off 1 point, no garbage fees, approve the loan and make it a no doc,” according to documents reviewed by Cummings.
Issa has two interviews scheduled this week with the Countrywide employees who processed McKeon’s loan.