July 02, 2008

Insert "Loan Ranger" Puns Here

Is anyone actually surprised?

I can't feign outrage over Barack Obama using his position as a new U.S. Senator to help secure a lower rate on a loan for The Home That Resko Built Helped Cut a Deal On.

Obama had no prior relationship with the lender, was taking out a $1.32 million loan below market rates, without paying the customary fees. So what?

This is politics folks, and this a typical example of why people go into a line of work that exposes them to constant ridicule and scorn. It's about amassing power and prestige for the payoff of parlaying that influence into personal gains, be they monetary, or the advancement of philosophical beliefs.

Barack Obama did precisely what every other politician does, and nothing more.

The only reason this story merits any attention is that Obama's campaign has created a mythology around him that casts him as a reformer.

It is an excellent marketing gimmick, and he'll ride it as long as it is effective and helps the brand he is creating, but make no mistake; like all other politicians operating at this level, Barack Obama holds one conviction, and one conviction only: I'm going to get mine.

And he did.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at July 2, 2008 09:02 AM

"I'm not a crook"

Posted by: Neo at July 2, 2008 09:39 AM

"He's young and inexperienced and he's got a funny name. And did I mention he's white?"

Posted by: Neo at July 2, 2008 09:41 AM

Aw, c'mon. Michelle is having trouble buying fresh fruit and riding lessons as it is.

Posted by: bgates at July 2, 2008 10:05 AM

He got a small discount (amounting to $300 a month on a massive mortgage) from a bank that I'm sure wanted his business in part because he and his wife were making $500,000 a year and he had just signed a $2 million book deal. Also, this guy ( links to which says that people with excellent credit get an average of 50 points off their mortgage rate. Obama got 30 points off, and probably has pretty good credit, given his steady income and lack of debt. Non-story.

Posted by: Dan at July 2, 2008 10:21 AM

"This is not the same home loan rate I used to know and respect..."

Posted by: ElcubanitoKC at July 2, 2008 10:24 AM

The fact that 'every' politician does it, is what gives this story legs. Obama being caught in the same deal just gives it more resonance.

Posted by: JohnMc at July 2, 2008 10:25 AM

You should see the rates you can get if you have 8 figures with an iBank. 6 month LIBOR plus 1-2% (depending on your balance) is not unusual for a 30yr. fixed.

If Obama did get this loan after signing a $2mm deal, then he didn't get a very good deal at all.

Posted by: Eric at July 2, 2008 10:56 AM

Ha Ha. Too bad for Ob_ma, may his name be praised. Seems that those he preaches agin' - those money hunger speculator types - why they are just fine to do personal business with! And loan people - yes you, you are being cast as the speculator types - by BO. Did you think the no-doc loans were going to continue? or that they would withstand scrutiny?

Posted by: Californio at July 2, 2008 11:05 AM

Good credit gets you a reduced rate. Good friends get you no fees. Obama owes somebody a favor for that. Probably arranged by Tony.

Posted by: Jeff at July 2, 2008 11:17 AM

He got the 'favorable' loan because another bank had made him an offer, but the won't identify the other bank until he can find a bank president to lie and confirm Osama's lie. BWAHAHAHAHAHA
Je$$ie and Al must be beating their heads on a concrete wall, a better liar and con man has taken their 'ripoff' business away.

Posted by: Scrapiron at July 2, 2008 11:24 AM

We have a million dollar mortgage with NT and we did not get the same deal around the same time. We have excellent credit and had owned homes around the world. And we did due diligence on a number of banks and their proposals. Always make banks compete even the ones who carry your cash assets. He got this loan for only one reason: he was an Illinois politician and newly minted US Senator. We got ours because of our credit history and net worth and ability to repay and the assessed value of the property at the time, just everyone else.

Posted by: Jack is Back! at July 2, 2008 11:28 AM

How does getting a low loan rate qualify Obama to be President ?

Posted by: Neo at July 2, 2008 12:15 PM

There had to be a quid pro for this quo.

Posted by: Purple Avenger at July 2, 2008 01:16 PM

"The real question is: Were congressmen getting unique treatment that others weren't getting?" associate law professor Adam J. Levitin, a credit specialist at Georgetown University Law Center, said about the Countrywide loans.

I'd submit that this isn't the question. The answer to that question is already known.

Yes, they were getting loans nobody else could get.

The real question is why aren't we calling this what it is: bribery?

That's the real question. And for those who would argue that well, Obama didn't "do anything" to get the loan ... please tell me you aren't so naive as to not understand that the quid and the pro quo never happen on the same day.

If you want to bribe a politician, you buy him that shiny new house today ... and then ask for the favor next week when you need it.

That's how bribery works.

Posted by: bribewatch at July 2, 2008 02:01 PM

I'm not so worried about Obama's campaign trying to cultivate a myth, as much as so many of us buying into it.

When did we get this dumb as Americans?

Posted by: ashok at July 2, 2008 03:14 PM

Hate to say it but this is a non issue to me. I bought my house in September 2005 and my interest rate is 5.75%, about the same as Obama. Since I put down 20% I didn't pay any fees or points either. Heck, if you would have bought a house in July 2003 you could have gotten a loan for 3.9%.

I'd have to agree with the liberal wacko above, Obama kind of got screwed with that rate.

Posted by: Capitalist Infidel at July 2, 2008 05:53 PM

Much adoo about nuthin. My guess is the Obama's FICO score was above 750, so of course they got a favorable rate. Why yammer about this??

Posted by: Michael D. Setty at July 2, 2008 06:38 PM

In Chicago does a home loan come with its own bagman and Union legbreaker?

Posted by: DirtCrashr at July 2, 2008 07:10 PM

The Obamas claimed to be in heavy debt around and before that time. Maxed out credit cards, student loans etc. So to assume they had a high credit score is wrong.

Posted by: Mikey at July 3, 2008 03:07 PM