What's up with Watt?

Does anybody have any insight into this? Sounds like Mel Watt got leaned on by Obama's boys to go along with the Big Money Protection Racket.

In an unprecedented defeat for the Federal Reserve, an amendment to audit the multi-trillion dollar institution was approved by the House Finance Committee with an overwhelming and bipartisan 43-26 vote on Thursday afternoon despite harried last-minute lobbying from top Fed officials and the surprise opposition of Chairman Barney Frank (D-Mass.), who had previously been a supporter.

A desperate, last-minute attempt to thwart the move came in the form of an amendment championed by Rep. Mel Watt (D-N.C.) and described by its supporters as more reasonable. On Tuesday, however, the Huffington Post reported that, on a close reading, his amendment would in fact decrease transparency at the Fed by adding additional restrictions.

Backers of the Watt amendment pressed their case on Wednesday by sending a letter from a "political cross section of prominent economists" backing a measure like Watt's. HuffPost reported, however, that those economists might well have be prominent, but they certainly aren't a "political cross section." Seven of the eight economists in question have extensive connections to the Fed -- and half of them are currently on the Fed payroll. Those affiliations were not noted in the letter.

Watt seems to mostly fly below the radar in Congress. Too bad he chose such a misguided position to move out into the open.

UPDATE: Transparency is a good thing. For example, you visit OpenSecrets.org to see who the top contributors to Mr. Watt have been in recent years. You won't be surprised.

Comments

from littlesis.org

Not saying that this is the answer, just passing along some info.

http://blog.littlesis.org/2009/11/18/watt-aide-was-friend-of-angelo/

Watt aide was “Friend of Angelo”

A key former aide to the North Carolina Democrat threatening popular legislation to audit the Fed once received a sweetheart Countrywide loan designed to influence predatory lending legislation introduced by the Representative. From a July 2009 CBS piece on the “Friends of Angelo,” (powerful recipients of sweetheart deals from the mortgage lender, named for Countrywide’s CEO, Angelo Mozilo):

Joyce Brayboy, the Chief of Staff for Rep. Melvin Watt was funneled into Countrywide’s VIP program. Countrywide’s lobbyist urged the loan officer to “carefully” handle the loan saying Brayboy “reports directly to Congressman Mel Watt who introduced predatory lending legislation to address unscrupulous lending practices, and they do view Countryside as a trusted advisor.” Watt serves on the House Financial Services Committee.

As I’ve previously noted, Brayboy was Watt’s longtime chief of staff (until 2007) and has lobbied for the American Bankers Association since leaving Capitol Hill.

Democrats are currently blocking an investigation of the Countrywide scandal.

Inquiries into the company’s special treatment of Senators Dodd and Conrad have concluded that they did not know they were receiving favorable terms.

Sheeesh

Color me disgusted. What a sick f*cking system.

Which simply shows...once again....

most of our elected representatives don't vote yes or no on legislation because of the perceived value to the citizenry or the need for or correctness of the legislation. They vote yes or no based on the value of the legislation to those who pay them BIG money and buy them tickets to shows and dinners and send them wads of campaign cash or give them cheap loans...and so on.

I say vote these incumbents out. Dem or Republican, they are not serving the people.

If the Fed is TRULY audited...and I mean audited, the revelations will be mind boggling. Bernie Madow will look like a piker. Goldman Sachs will be dismantled...and so on. It'll never happen.

Stan Bozarth

BofA?

Does BofA have a dog in this fight? And if so, does Mel ever carry their water?

Do you mean THIS B of A?

The DC Bankgangest's Establishment Takes A Major Defeat

"the House Finance Committee -- in a truly bipartisan and even trans-ideological vote -- defied the banking industry, the Federal Reserve, the Democratic leadership, and mainstream Beltway opinion in order to pass an amendment, sponsored by GOP Rep. Ron Paul and Democratic Rep. Alan Grayson, mandating a genuine and probing audit of the Fed. The Huffington Post's Ryan Grim has the best account of what took place"

http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/

Watt AWOL in Charlotte Observer

As a journalist/columnist in Charlotte, I was shocked, although not really too surprised, that the Charlotte Observer did not report on Watt's actions to derail a Fed audit. Seriously: Not. One. Word. I e-mailed the Observer's editor to ask him why the daily paper of a banking city (represented by Watt, no less) didn't think Watt's actions were news. I never got a reply. Here is an excerpt from a blog item that ran on Creative Loafing newspaper's site:

Watt gets much of his campaign money from businesses that have an intense interest in what happens at the Federal Reserve. In the 2008 campaign cycle, Watt’s four top contributors were Bank of America, Wachovia, American Express, and the American Bankers Association. Of the $458,000 received by Watt by PACs, $217,000 came from banking, finance, insurance and real estate PACs. (Figures are from the Center for Responsive Politics.)

Ah, come on

They were just busy covering more important stuff.

Heh.

Thanks for the note about the paper missing in action. Somehow it all makes sense.

311 cosponsors Paul/Grayson

The Ron Paul/Alan Grayson bill to audit the Fed now has 311 cosponsors, so the House really has to do something about it, but Mel Watt’s “something” is a bank/Fed effort to gut it.


firedoglake.com
is doing great work

It's outrageous that the Charlotte paper didn't report it.

Fish wrap.

Just an EXCELLENT post

Everyone on this blog should MAKE SURE and listen to this video. It is so spot on and so telling. It's all about the future of America and goes beyond politics-as-usual.

I have a great respect for you posting that here LoftT and even though I hate seeing/hearing some of it, I know it is totally and absolutely dead on.

Let's get our country back square. That's all important regardless of politics.