Not that I had any doubt that Wall Street’s fingerprints are all over every draft of the financial reform legislation, but here’s more disturbing proof of just how deep their fingers are dug into the pie.
The Huffington Post just reported that a top Treasury Department official, whose job was to work with the House Financial Services Committee in drafting financial reform legislation, just took a job with a firm that lobbies Congress on behalf of big banks.
Auditioning for your next job while working for the government is morally bankrupt, but sadly, not against the Obama administration’s revolving door rules. Wonder how many people at the Treasury Department are counting the days til their consumer advocate job starts? I can tell you we haven’t hired anyone here at Consumer Watchdog. But hey, my door’s open!
Just as Congress enters the final stretch of the financial regulatory reform effort, one of the Treasury Department’s leading liaisons to the Hill, Damon Munchus, is bailing out to go work for a financial services lobbying and consulting firm. Munchus was one of Treasury’s chief negotiators with the House Financial Services Committee.
…When he joined the Obama administration, Munchus — like all other appointees — signed an agreement not to lobby the administration for two years after leaving the government. But the pledge says nothing about lobbying Congress, which is absolutely part of what Munchus will do for his new employer, The Cypress Group.
…"You’ve got to wonder how much of a fight administration lobbyists are putting up against people they see as their future employers," Miller said.
The Cypress Group lobbies on behalf some of the very firms Munchus dealt with at Treasury, including Citigroup, which is partly owned by taxpayers; some of the regional Federal Home Loan Banks; Wells Fargo; U.S. Bank; taxpayer-owned Freddie Mac; the biggest bank in the country, Bank of America; credit card giant Capital One; and the International Swaps and Derivatives Association, a trade group representing derivatives dealers and traders.