The Connecticut senator has been saddled with favors that may save him as much as $75,000 on his mortgages. Dodd says he knew he was part of a VIP program, but figured it was nothing unusual -- who in the senate is not "very important"? Dodd can be forgiven his lack of curiosity given that he's very busy as chairman of the Senate Banking Committee and can't be bothered with questions of who might be trying to influence him with which particular favors.
To his credit, Dodd holds no grudges. Even though Countrywide so badly served him by shaving points off his loans, he is honchoing a $300 billion mortgage bail-out bill that will benefit Countrywide by allowing it to unload its worst loans onto the federal government. When duty calls, Dodd answers.
Bank of America is on the verge of buying Countrywide, and an internal Bank of America "discussion document" from a few months ago happens to coincide with the bailout provisions of Dodd's bill. According to the Washington Examiner newspaper, Bank of America's PAC has given Dodd $20,000 since he became chairman of the Banking Committee last year, and Bank of America employees have given him $50,000. This can only be described as a string of very bad luck for Dodd, who -- given his selfless gullibility -- probably figures everyone is showered with donations from the financial industry.
Times are tough out there. Gas prices are high and the housing market has yet to hit bottom. But keep in mind Sens. Conrad and Dodd, and remember it could be much worse: You could be a U.S. senator.