California GOP Rep. Issa: Countrywide gave VIP loans to Senate staff

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U.S. Representative Darrell Issa attends a North San Diego County Association of Realtors meeting, May 12, 2010.

A Republican lawmaker says documents show the former Countrywide Financial Corp. may have targeted Senate employees for sweetheart mortgage deals.

California Republican Darrell Issa says a dozen loans processed by Countrywide's VIP unit went to borrowers who identified their workplace as the office of Sen. Robert Bennett, a Utah Republican.

Issa also said 18 VIP loans went to borrowers who identified "U.S. senator" or "U.S. Senate" as their place of employment.

Issa is the ranking Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. He wrote the Senate ethics committee about his findings, but did not name any senators other than the reference to Bennett's office.

Countrywide was acquired by Bank of America. The bank has produced the records under a subpoena by the House committee.

© 2010 The Associated Press.

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