As HR 1207 gains momentum and co-sponsors in the House of Representatives, the Federal Reserve is planning to fight the tide calling for an audit of its books by hiring a veteran lobbyist to “manage its relations with Congress,” according to Reuters.
The Fed plans to hire Linda Robertson, who previously worked for now-defunct energy company Enron, as well as the Clinton administration. She is currently head of government, community and public relations at The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Robertson “spent eight years in senior positions at the Treasury Department, working for three secretaries: Lloyd Bentsen, Robert Rubin and Lawrence Summers,” a bio posted on The John Hopkins University website states.
Robert Rubin, as secretary of the Treasury, recommended that Congress pass legislation to reform or repeal the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, while Lawrence Summers in the same capacity organized the looting of Russia, stripping one trillion dollars from Russia’s struggling economy in the name of the bankers.
“Members of Congress have chafed at the Fed’s bold use of its emergency powers and in particular its multibillion-dollar bailouts of investment bank Bear Stearns and insurer American International Group,” Reuters continues. “Critics also bristle at the Fed’s practice of maintaining the confidentiality of the companies that borrow directly from the central bank on the grounds that divulging their names would risk runs on those institutions.”
One such critic is senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont. In March, Sanders put it squarely to Fed boss Bernanke when he said “My question to you is, will you tell the American people to whom you lent $2.2 trillion of their dollars?” Bernanke, of course, refused to divulge a single name and instead said the loans in question are “over-collateralized” and thus come with a heavy stigma for the unknown borrowers.
Sanders has put his weight behind a similar bill — S. 604, the Federal Reserve Sunshine Act of 2009. It was referred to the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs on March 16, 2009.
As reported by Bloomberg, the Fed has entered into trillions of dollars in off-balance sheet transactions since last September. More specifically, the Fed extended $9 trillion in credit, which is $30,000 for every single men, women, and child in this country.
Early last month, Elizabeth Coleman, Inspector General for the Federal Reserve, told Rep. Alan Grayson of the United States House Committee on Financial Services that she does “not have jurisdiction to directly go out and audit Reserve Bank activities specifically.” See a video of Grayson questioning Coleman.
“We’re getting instructions from on high saying, ‘Don’t dwell on the past,’” Grayson was told before a hearing scheduled to investigate the Fannie and Freddie swindle.