Maxine Waters, following the strategy of Charlie Rangel, held a rambling 90-minute press conference at a time when the House of Representatives is on hiatus. Waters is defending herself on charges of inappropriately intervening with the U.S. Treasury on behalf of her husband and OneUnitedBank in which he owns stock. Waters said she had to do it because the Treasury (in the Bush administration) would not schedule the appointment without her influence.
"The question at this point should not be why I called Secretary Paulson, but why I had to," she said. "The question at this point should be why a trade association representing over 100 minority banks could not get a meeting at the height of the crisis."OneUnitedBank received $12 million of the requested $50 million TARP bailout.
Maxine's grandson, Mikael Moore, is her Chief-of-Staff and it seems his emails are a point of contention with the Ethics Committee.
The report highlights e-mails Moore sent and received from OneUnited executives and suggests Waters should not have allowed him to send them when her family had a specific financial stake in the bank. The congresswoman has said she was aiding a group of minority banks that includes OneUnited.
Waters did not attend the eventual meeting between Treasury and the National Banking Association, but here grandson and Chief-of-Staff did.
The Washington Post wryly says (or maybe not so wryly) this scandal is "not expected to affect her ability to win reelection in her heavily Democratic district." Can we blame her habitual presence in The People's House on George W. Bush?
More on Maxine Waters:
Bulldoze Maxine Waters and her Housing and Community Opportunity Subcommittee
The Genius of Maxine Waters