During his State of the Union address, President Obama announced that he would be forming a Financial Crimes Unit, to tackle the subprime mortgage meltdown and those who caused it. In 2009, President Obama announced the creation of the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force the purpose of which was to “hold accountable those who helped bring about the last financial crisis as well as those who would attempt to take advantage of the efforts at economic recovery.” The Financial Crimes Unit will operate as part of the Task Force.
It seems the Financial Crimes Unit is going to coordinate investigations into the mortgage crisis, specifically, and not fraud, generally. Also, it’s a Unit, not Task Force… so… that’s different, too.
In any event, this is good news:
Reporting from Washington— New York Atty. Gen. Eric Schneiderman, who was tapped by President Obama to co-chair a new state and federal mortgage crisis unit, promised Wednesday to move aggressively to coordinate investigations into the causes of the subprime mortgage market meltdown.
“We’re undertaking a more coordinated effort to pull together all of the various strands of investigations relating to the conduct that created the mortgage-backed securities bubble and led to the market crash,” Schneiderman told reporters in Washington after an event at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
“There have been investigations going on in various states and branches of the federal government,” he said. “We’re now making a concerted effort to pull everything together and move forward aggressively to address these issues.”
He said the new unit, part of the existing federal Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force, would go after “every aspect of the conduct that created the bubble and crash,” including the origination of mortgages and the packaging of them into securities.
Obama announced the new effort in Tuesday’s State of the Union address.
“This new unit will hold accountable those who broke the law, speed assistance to homeowners and help turn the page on an era of recklessness that hurt so many Americans,” Obama said.
Surely the “Yeahbutters,” will cynically complain: “Yeah but, he should have done this sooner!” or “Yeah but he’s obviously pandering to his base because it’s an election year!” And the “Toldjas” will take credit for it: “Toldja that Credo Mobile petition would work! Toldja!”
And the rest of us will laugh at the Yeahbutters and the Toldjas and ask if they’d like another pudding.
[via LA Times]