James Pethokoukis

Politics and policy from inside Washington

Bernanke/BofA hearing … live blogging

June 25, 2009

11:55: I dont know what Paulson said to Lewis; but always Lewis’ decision

11: 51 elijah cummings (D) didnt get the Dem memo that lewis, not bernanke is the bad guy

11:49 BB repeats¬† “I never told anyone to threaten Mr. Lewis”

11:41 BB: concerns about quality of BofA due diligence

11:40 BB asked rhetorically, where did TARP $$$ go? This again …

11:33 TALF was called TARF. Heh.

: The “I don’t recall” “I don’t recollect” stuff looks bad

Me: Anyone who wonders whether more regulatory powers for the Fed might politicize it, should have their questions answered by this hearing. Yes.

11:24 BB worries that too much Congress oversight, GAO would amount to a congressional takeover of monetary policy

11:22 BB says total Fed bailout $$$ $100 billion; balance sheet is $2.2 trillion and MBS;

11:20 Dems making point that Lewis was a wily CEO trying to shakedown taxpayers

11:10¬† BB says “the market” would have leveled threat at Lewis and board, not Fed

11:08 BB: doesnt regret anything about BofA/ML deal

11:03 B now explaining why Lehman was left to fail; says he had no authority

11:00 BB says Bank CEOs didnt have to take TARP

10:58 Jordon (R) says there is a “pattern of intimidation” by government/Fed/Treasury

10:52 Burton (R) makes suggestion of perjury by BB and his “I don’t remember” phrases … wow

10:50 BB: wont say Lewis is lying; says he was merely expressing concerns; also wont say Paulson lied that board would be fired; says he and paulson had frequent conversation and he wouldnt have told paulson that lewis/management would be axed

10:48 Kucinich is questioning, trying to make points about executive compensation limits pushed or not pushed by the Fed on BofA

10:40 BB said he does not remember details of conversation that email suggest was the genesis of a supposed threat to Lewis

10:39 Issa starts to question BB

10:35: BB denies threatening to fire Lewis, management, nor promising specfic $$ — just a plan

10:33 BB: need a new framework to give Fed more tools

10:30 BB: I did not tell BofA that Fed would try to remove management if they went through with MAC

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