Penny Pritzker: Another Friend of Barry We Should Be Concerned About

Barack Obama is attacking John McCain today over the Keating 5, a little remembered scandal from the eighties, after which McCain repented and went on to fight to reform Congress.

Meanwhile Barack Obama has another member of the Keating 5, John Glenn, out campaigning for him.

But this is bigger than just John Glenn. Obama claims McCain can’t be trusted because the Keating 5 had something to do with the S&L crisis of the eighties. What about the subprime mortgage crisis of today?

Just look to Penny Pritzker, Obama’s National Finance Chair and a long time supporter.

The Pritzker Family co-owned the Superior Bank FSB, which collapsed in 2001, resulting in a $460 million payment to federal regulators. Penny served as head of the Board from 1991-1994 and is a director of the bank’s holding company, Coast to Coast Financial Corp.

You won’t be surprised to learn that Superior Bank specialized in sub-prime lending, the kind Obama advocated for and the kind that has caused the current crisis. According to Kathy Bergen of the Chicago Tribune on December 28, 2004:

“Auditors Ernst & Young…agreed to pay the FDIC $40 million in restitution in connection with the collapse of the bank, a subprime lender that made risky mortgage and auto loans to people with poor credit histories. It had about $2 billion in assets when it was shuttered.

According to the Washington Post on July 31, 2001, Pritzker’s bank failed because:

Bad lending practices and improper bookkeeping led to the failure of the $ 2.3 billion institution, according to Scott Albinson, head of supervision for the federal Office of Thrift Supervision, the federal agency that regulated the bank until handing it over to the FDIC to be closed.”

With Prtizker as Obama’s fundraising chair, we can also see why there are questions about foreign nationals funding his campaign. Bad practices and improper bookkeeping seem rampant around Obama and his friends.

If Obama wants to go after McCain for something that happened more than a decade ago, we should remind everyone that Barack Obama counts among his friends (A) an unrepentant terrorist; (B) a convicted shady Syrian with ties to possible terrorists, that’d be Rezko; (C) a preacher who hates America; and (D) Penny Pritzker, a woman who brought down her bank because of bad business practices, bad record keeping, and sub-prime lending.

Obama will carry his friends to the White House. Can we afford them? I think not.