Over the weekend, Mitt Romney faced criticism for the $10,000 bet he offered Rick Perry during the GOP presidential debate. The comment showed how out of touch Romney is with the middle class, flippantly wagering several months’ salary for most working Americans.
But it was also, uncharacteristically, a bet that Romney could have lost. Far more profitable for Romney was the wager he placed on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the midst of the housing crisis.
Despite the blame Romney has placed on Fannie and Freddie for the economic crisis, Romney has profited handsomely off of the companies. According to financial disclosure statements, Romney has invested up to a half million dollars in a mutual fund heavily invested in Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and Federal Home Loan Bank notes. The pay-out on Romney’s bet: up to $50,000.
These investments weren’t made until the latter half of 2007. And, as the Boston Globe reported, “unlike most of Romney’s financial holdings, which are held in a blind trust that is overseen by a trustee and not known to Romney, this particular investment was among those that would have been known to Romney.”
With the revelation that Newt Gingrich made millions from Freddie Mac working as a “historian,” Romney has called on Gingrich to return the money. But will Romney return the money he made off of betting on Fannie and Freddie on Wall Street?
UPDATE: American Bridge’s new video: “Those Who Live in Glass Houses…”