Bloomberg News has an article this week showing that Newt Gingrich was lying when he said he only made $300,000 from Freddie Mac in order to consult with them as a historian. Turns out he got nearly $2 million to consult with them on how to craft a message for conservatives:
Newt Gingrich made between $1.6 million and $1.8 million in consulting fees from two contracts with mortgage company Freddie Mac, according to two people familiar with the arrangement.
The total amount is significantly larger than the $300,000 payment from Freddie Mac that Gingrich was asked about during a Republican presidential debate on Nov. 9 sponsored by CNBC, and more than was disclosed in the middle of congressional investigations into the housing industry collapse.
Gingrich’s business relationship with Freddie Mac spanned a period of eight years. When asked at the debate what he did to earn a $300,000 payment in 2006, the former speaker said he “offered them advice on precisely what they didn’t do,” and warned the company that its lending practices were “insane.” Former Freddie Mac executives who worked with Gingrich dispute that account…
Former Freddie Mac officials familiar with his work in 2006 say Gingrich was asked to build bridges to Capitol Hill Republicans and develop an argument on behalf of the company’s public-private structure that would resonate with conservatives seeking to dismantle it.
He was expected to provide written material that could be circulated among free-market conservatives in Congress and in outside organizations, said two former company executives familiar with Gingrich’s role at the firm. He didn’t produce a white paper or any other document the firm could use on its behalf, they said.
TPM reports that Newt himself has demanded investigations into legislators who received money from Freddie Mac:
GINGRICH: Well, I was going to say, let’s start with putting under oath some of the members of Congress. Senator Dodd, who will presumably be helping write this bill, was the largest single recipient of money from both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Senator Obama was second. Senator Clinton was the largest recipient for Lehman Brothers. Senator Obama was second. I think Congress ought to also be under investigation. If we’re looking at agreed [sic], let’s look at the politicians as well as the people who gave to them.
To quote Rick Perry: “Oops.”