JPMorgan Chase, which has strong ties to the Obama administration and which has received $25 billion in government bailout money, has given more than $5 million to the ACORN affiliate ACORN Housing since 2001, retired Judge Andrew Napolitano said last week on the â€œGlenn Beck Program.â€
Napolitano said that a bank spokesman told the program, â€œOur dealings with ACORN have been entirely appropriate,â€ and noted that other banks continue giving money to ACORN too. ACORN, â€œthe group blamed for helping to cause the mortgage meltdown,â€ has also been called â€œa criminal enterpriseâ€ that shuffles government money between its 361 different affiliates, he said.
The Obama administration has been trying to distance itself from the group â€œbut not from the funders who are backing it,â€ Napolitano said, adding that the New York Times has called JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon â€œPresident Obamaâ€™s favorite banker.â€
â€œDimon also reportedly has a phone hotline to his old pals, [White House] Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner,â€ said Napolitano.
Peter Flaherty, president of the National Legal and Policy Center, said years ago ACORN got the banks â€“JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Citigroupâ€” to begin paying tribute to it in the form of donations, including donations to ACORN Housing, a major affiliate in the ACORN network. â€œAnd of most consequence, it included backing off opposition to something called the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977,â€ said Flaherty. The Community Reinvestment Act is a kind of financial affirmative action program that forces banks to lend to supposedly underserved areas on the theory that banks are racist and actively discriminate against minority borrowers.
This â€œled to a severe loosening of lending standards, which led to the subprime meltdown and the more general mortgage crisis,â€ he said, adding:
Banks are supposed to operate differently now. Why are they still supporting ACORN? Has their relationship with ACORN changed at all? Are they demanding more information especially in light of the allegations of voter registration fraud and the embezzlement scandal within ACORN?
Napolitano said President Obama
has referred to Jamie Dimon by saying the following, â€œThere are a lot of banks that are actually pretty well-managed. JPMorgan is a good example. Jamie Dimon, the CEO there — I donâ€™t think he should be punished for doing a pretty good job managing an enormous portfolio.” And letâ€™s see, do I have this right? Not only does the president know him and like him, the mayor of Chicago, where this crowd comes from, his brother, is vice chair of the bank.
â€œThis bank is very political,â€ said Flaherty. â€œObama says Dimon is his favorite bankerâ€¦and William Daley, the brother of Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, has the title of Midwest director. Now, how many Fortune 500 companies have a Midwest director? Not another one. Itâ€™s political protection, pure and simple.â€