Campaign Finance, Chicago Style

New York AG Eric Schneiderman is the last holdout on signing a sweetheart deal with the banks that will allow them to pay a pittance and be excused for their part in the housing market collapse, past, present and future. The administration is apparently applying the full court press to get Schneiderman to agree to the deal. Matt Tabibi speculates, very plausibly, that the quid pro quo is the banks’ funding of Obama’s re-election campaign.

In Schneiderman we have at least one honest investigator who doesn’t agree, which is to his great credit. But everyone else is on Wylde’s side now. The Times story claims that HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan and various Justice Department officials have been leaning on the New York AG to cave, which tells you that reining in this last rogue cop is now an urgent priority for Barack Obama.

Why? My theory is that the Obama administration is trying to secure its 2012 campaign war chest with this settlement deal. If he can make this foreclosure thing go away for the banks, you can bet he’ll win the contributions battle against the Republicans next summer. Which is good for him, I guess, but it seems to me that it might be time to wonder if is this the most disappointing president we’ve ever had.

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