Being called before a congressional committee to testify can be intimidating for most. Fortunately for Jamie Dimon, he had plenty of friends inside the room, and nearby.
Dimon, the CEO of JPMorgan Chase, appeared this week before the Senate Banking Committee to answer questions about his bank’s $2 billion in losses from risky trades. But many of the lawmakers who sit on the committee have come to rely on JPMorgan for significant contributions, and at least one staffer used to work for the bank.
For starters, there is the committee chairman, Senator Tim Johnson (D-South Dakota). He has served more than two decades in Congress. During that time, JPMorgan has been one of his largest donors, and over the past five years, the bank has been his largest contributor.
The bank has been just as big for Senators Richard Shelby of Alabama, the top-ranking Republican on the committee, and Jack Reed of Rhode Island, the committee’s No. 2 Democrat.
The committee’s No. 2 Republican, Senator Mike Crapo of Idaho, and its third-ranking Democrat, Senator Charles Schumer of New York, have also received sizeable contributions from the bank.
These lawmakers and others on the committee are assisted by staffer Dwight Fettig, who was a partner and lobbyist at government relations firm Porterfield, Lowenthal & Fettig, which did work for JPMorgan in 2009–2010.
In addition, many of the bank’s current lobbyists used to work for the Senate Banking Committee or its members, including: Naomi Camper (former aide to Johnson), Kate Childress (former Schumer aide), Steven Patterson (ex-committee staff director for economic policy), and P. Michael Nielsen (ex-committee senior policy adviser).
Senators Funded By Banks Suck Up To JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon During Hearing About $2 Billion Loss (by Zaid Jilani, Republic Report)