Obama Mortgage Deal Frontman Sounds Off
"I think Roy Cooper (N.C.) and Lisa Madigan (Il.) and George Jepsen (Conn.) and I are among the strongest and toughest on the banks," Miller said. "Eric took a position opposing the settlement for a long time, and now he's at the lead of some important investigations on securities. So I think it really has to play out if he's stronger than Lisa and Roy and George and I."
Miller also rejected the notion that he would have been willing to grant banks immunities from other mortgage-related liability if it hadn't been for Schneiderman and some of other holdouts--Delaware and Massachusetts, for example.
Miller called it "just totally false that they got the release narrowed. The release was always going to be narrowed. It was never going to include
In a separate matter related to the mortgage talks, Miller drew criticism after the National Institute on Money in State Politics reported that after being named to lead the foreclosure negotiations, Iowa's to attorney brought in 88 times more in campaign contributions in a single year than he had done in the prior decade.
"What happened was that during the end of the campaign there was a huge amount of money by Iowa standards--outside money through the various different outside groups spent against me--about $1.7 million," Miller explains. "Nobody had ever spent more than $400,000 for Attorney General of Iowa so I went out and had to raise a considerable amount of money to fight back and raised $800,000, or so, and that money came from largely people that I've worked with in the past and who believed in me and what I've done."
Miller admits that some "fairly large" were primarily from lawyers, but adds "also friends." "It had absolutely nothing to do with the negotiations. One person gave $5,000-- he had absolutely nothing to do with the negotiations at the time. He became involved subsequently," he says. "The report draws just totally inaccurate conclusions. I did not get a lot of money. In fact I got very little if any because I was heading this up if you go thru it contribution by contribution."
Recently, Miller was tapped by the Obama Administration as one of 35 national co-chairs to help reelect the President.