My God, what this administration has been (and will be) getting away with, especially with our tax dollars and during the era of tens of trillions of debt…
(The Daily Caller) – Department of Justice officials diverted millions of dollars slated for victims of the 2008 housing meltdown to politically favored third parties, including “left-wing radical groups,” according to the chairman of a House of Representatives oversight subcommittee.
Rep. Sean Duffy , a Wisconsin Republican and chairman of the House Financial Services oversight and investigations subcommittee, said Friday the officials “skimmed” off three percent from mortgage-related bank settlements. This created what he called a $500 million “slush fund” that could be steered toward favored groups.
“The first objective of a settlement is to make sure that we have victims who are made whole,” Duffy said, referring to millions of Americans who lost their homes during the meltdown that led to the Great Recession of 2009. “If you’re diverting money away from victims and sending it to third-party activist groups, you have victims who are being harmed not just once, but a second time.”
Justice officials were long able to “skim 3 percent of any settlement money into their own account to for the most part spend it the way they see fit,” Duffy told participants in the media briefing hosted by the Cause of Action Institute, a nonprofit legal watchdog group.
“Many of us in Congress were alarmed when we found out about the bank settlements and the fact that money was not just going to victims and to the Treasury but there was a setup for settlement dollars to go to third-party groups,” he said.
Cause of Action questions the legality of the diversion of settlement funds to activists groups but has been repeatedly rebuffed by officials at the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Justice Department. Duffy also believes the diversions are illegal and unconstitutional.
The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee released a report Thursday showing a major year-to-year increase in the size of the three percent funds, going from $158 million in 2013 to $526 million in 2014.
Duffy charged that Justice and HUD officials “at a high level” cooperated in shutting out conservative housing and community organizations from access to federal funds set aside for housing assistance.
Under terms set by the Justice Department, Duffy said he could read documents about the bank settlement disbursements but could not reproduce them for public dissemination.
“It became clear to us that as this deal was structured, there was a keen eye to make sure that conservative groups could not access any money through these settlements,” he said.
Among the political activist groups favored favored by the settlements is La Raza, the nation’s largest Hispanic activist organization that routinely supports Democratic candidates and causes. Cecilia Munoz, a La Raza senior vice president, was appointed by Obama in 2012 to head the White House Domestic Policy Council…
The Holder DOJ is also known to have extorted money from the nation’s big banks and funneled the money to liberal activist groups.
This is not new to the federal government departments/agencies, especially under the Obama administration. Recall the EPA has its own tax dollar money laundering for their agenda in “Sue and Settle” practices (2014 Forbes report):
“Sue and Settle “ practices, sometimes referred to as “friendly lawsuits”, are cozy deals through which far-left radical environmental groups file lawsuits against federal agencies wherein court-ordered “consent decrees” are issued based upon a prearranged settlement agreement they collaboratively craft together in advance behind closed doors. Then, rather than allowing the entire process to play out, the agency being sued settles the lawsuit by agreeing to move forward with the requested action they and the litigants both want.
In other words, the agency throws the case, somewhat like Bre’r Rabbit agreeing to be thrown into a favorite brier-patch. A big difference however, is that in this case, Farmer McGregor andMr. Rabbit were partners in the scam from the beginning. It’s the unwary American public that actually does get caught in the thorns.
While the environmental group is given a seat at the table, outsiders who are most impacted are excluded, with no opportunity to object to the settlements. Accordingly, both the litigants and the defendant agency, operating in coffee bars and friendly courtroom shadows, avoid the harsh outside glare of oversight. No public notice about the settlement is released until the agreement is filed in court…after the damage has been done.
On top of all that, we taxpayers, including those impacted regulatory victims, are put on the hook for legal fees of both colluding parties…
The EPA is known to have given environmental activist groups the money to sue individuals/EPA/feds, in addition to spending money while involved in the suits, and then the settlements (as mentioned above). The fact is, nobody outside the government could ever get away with this bullshit. Nobody.