Picking an unpopular target, PFOX this morning points out that Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae donated thousands of dollars over the last several years to PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays), HRC (Human Rights Campaign) and GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation).
The news release published on Market Watch, alleges that Freddie and Fannie donated to fundraising events for the organizations. The release quotes a spokesperson for Freddie Mac:
Shawn Flaherty, a spokeswoman for Freddie Mac, said she was not sure PFOX would meet the grant guidelines, adding the foundation focuses on three priorities — stable homes, foster care and adoption, and youth development.
The grants have not focused on the gay community, she said. “It’s a piece of it.”
Only the farthest right would be upset over helping needy gay people get homes. In the years leading up to the collapse, the mortgage giants were encouraged to help anyone who couldn’t get loans otherwise. Hindsight tells us that this was shortsighted, and sexual orientation has nothing to do with that.
What raises eyebrows is that these groups were donating money to charities for non-housing related purposes (fundraising galas?). We know these two groups donated money to politicians who regulated them over the years. Apparently, these groups wanted to curry favor with ideologically based groups as well. While I speculate that left-of-center groups were the main beneficiaries, I would have to review their records to know for sure.
It would be interesting to follow this money to find out if any of these donations were suggested by politicians regulating Fannie and Freddie.
The PFOX release says all grants are “under review.” Under review by whom? While I would like to know, I am not going to bother asking since they do not answer queries from me. My suggestion would be for them to make this more clear and to provide links to the documents from which they derived this information.
PFOX says it wants the same money. Not going to happen. I hope this is a rhetorical device and not a policy objective. I would oppose this request as I would requests from any non-housing related group. A few thousand here, a few thousand there and pretty soon, it gets to be millions and then billions. It isn’t a matter of the government related agencies funding my favorite charity; it is why are they funding anybody’s favorite charity?