Pop quiz: Quotes from the Collapse

The Wall Street Journal has a handy reference guide to some particularly interesting quotes from Congressional hearings on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as they steered the global financial markets onto the shoals.  Let’s make this a quiz for Hot Air readers.  Can you guess the person and/or their party affiliation from the following quotes?  The answer key will be hidden from initial view below.

  1. The more people, in my judgment, exaggerate a threat of safety and soundness, the more people conjure up the possibility of serious financial losses to the Treasury, which I do not see. I think we see entities that are fundamentally sound financially and withstand some of the disaster scenarios.
  2. Secretary Martinez, if it ain’t broke, why do you want to fix it? Have the GSEs [government-sponsored enterprises] ever missed their housing goals?
  3. I want to roll the dice a little bit more in this situation towards subsidized housing.
  4. I am just pissed off at Ofheo [Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, regulators for Fannie/Freddie] because if it wasn’t for you I don’t think that we would be here in the first place.
  5. However, I have sat through nearly a dozen hearings where, frankly, we were trying to fix something that wasn’t broke. … Mr. Chairman, we do not have a crisis at Freddie Mac, and in particular at Fannie Mae, under the outstanding leadership of Mr. Frank Raines. … Everything in the 1992 act has worked just fine.
  6. I believe there has been more alarm raised about potential unsafety and unsoundness than, in fact, exists.
  7. And my worry is that we’re using the recent safety and soundness concerns, particularly with Freddie, and with a poor regulator, as a straw man to curtail Fannie and Freddie’s mission.
  8. I, just briefly will say, Mr. Chairman, obviously, like most of us here, this is one of the great success stories of all time.
  9. I know the press, particularly, keeps saying this is another Enron, which it clearly is not.
  10. Mr. Chairman, what we’re dealing with is an astounding failure of management and board responsibility, driven clearly by self interest and greed. And when we reference this issue in the context of — the best we can say is, “It’s no Enron.” Now, that’s a hell of a high standard.

In order to see the answers, please highlight the rest of this post by clicking your mouse and dragging it over the rest of this post.  Grading key:  9-10, you get your PhD in history, with a minor in government screw-ups; 7-8, bachelor’s degree in economics; 5-6, you need remedial work; 4 or less, pray that someone bails you out.

  1. Barney Frank (D-MA), 9/10/2003.
  2. Maxine Waters (D-CA), same date.
  3. Frank, 9/25/2003.
  4. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), same date.
  5. Waters, same date.
  6. Frank, same date.
  7. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), 10/16/2003.
  8. Chris Dodd (D-CT), 2/24-5/2004.
  9. Robert Bennett (R-UT), 6/15/2006.
  10. Chuck Hagel (R-NE), same date.

Final count: Democrats 8, Republicans 2.

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John Stossel 1:00 PM | June 15, 2024