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This Date In History

May 17, 2002

May 16, 1998: Ralph Nader Takes On Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac

Inman News Features

Four years ago today, consumer activist Ralph Nader, who has an entire career bashing corporate America, took his swings at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

In an all-day conference dubbed "Closer look behind the scenes at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac" in Washington, D. C., Nader lined up eight critics of the secondary mortgage players who took turns taking swipes. They attacked Fannie and Freddie for getting indirect government subsidies for their private business interests without commensurate public benefits.

An undertone of the confab was challenging Fannie and Freddie's political stronghold.

"They retain important and often lucrative links to the federal government that create generous profits for private shareholders," said Nader of the two groups.

Some attendees believed that challenging Fannie and Freddie comes with some risk. Name badges for the attendees at the Nader conference only listed first names and there was no company affiliation identified. According to conference organizers, some persons who attended expressed concern ahead of time about being identified.

Copyright: Inman News Service

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