Thursday, June 14, 2012

Lovers in a dangerous time: JP Morgan & the Senate Banking Committee

The Senate Banking committee's questioning of Jamie Dimon is all for show, as the committee and JP Morgan are intimate.  Service on the committee leads to JP Morgan lobbying jobs and vice versa, and there is a steady stream of payments [qua campaign contributions] from JP Morgan and from Jamie Dimon personally to committee members.  Pro Publica reports on the revolving door:
One current staffer on the Senate banking committee, Dwight Fettig, is a former lobbyist for JP Morgan. In 2009, the bank hired him to work on "financial services regulatory reform." Meanwhile, JP Morgan is stacked thick with former committee staff. 
Naomi Camper – Currently a lobbyist for JP Morgan. Prior to that, from 2001-2004, she was an aide to Senator Johnson. 
Kate Childress –A JP Morgan lobbyist since 2008, she is also a former aide to Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., who sits on both the Senate Banking and Finance committees. 
Steven Patterson –A JP Morgan lobbyist and formerly a staff director for economic policy for the Banking committee. 
Nate Gatten— A JP Morgan lobbyist based in London who was reportedly called back to Washington recently to help with the company's damage control. He is a former lobbyist for Fannie Mae, and, in the 1990s, was a banking aide to former Senator Robert Bennett, R-Utah, who also sat on the committee. 
P. Michael Nielsen – A lobbyist with a firm run by former Senator Bennett, he has been retained by JP Morgan for help with federal probes, according to Bloomberg. He was also a senior policy adviser to the committee from 2007 to 2010.
And on the campaign contributions:
JP Morgan is the second largest campaign contributor to Johnson, the committee chair, and to the top Republican on the committee, Richard Shelby of Alabama, over the past twenty years, according to a tally from American Banker. 
JP Morgan employees have donated more than $80,000 to Johnson since 1998 and more than $136,000 to Shelby since 1990. 
So far in 2012, Dimon has personally donated to committee members Bob Corker, R-Tenn., and Mark Warner, D-Va. In 2008, he gave $2,000 each to Johnson and Shelby.
Pro Public includes lots of links if you are interested.  All in all, of the 22 committee members, only six have not received any money: two of them are retiring and not collecting campaign funds.  What about those other four?  They are, according to OpenSecrets, Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Pat Toomey (R-PA), Michael Johanns (R-NE) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR).  Perhaps this oversight will soon be corrected.

If you search Jamie Dimon on Open Secrets you'll find that he's generous and bipartisan in his attentions, with over $150,000 in campaign contributions since 2008.  Of course that's minor compared to JP Morgan, which, in a generous and bipartisan spirit as well, gave about $10 million over the same period.  

In case the title of this post escapes you:

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