Watchdog Loses Bid for Fannie, Freddie Records

     (CN) – The Federal Housing Finance Agency is not required to hand over records on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s campaign contributions to a government watchdog group, a federal judge in Washington, D.C., ruled Thursday.

     U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman dismissed Judicial Watch’s claim that the agency violated the Freedom of Information Act by refusing to provide “any and all Freddie Mac and/or Fannie Mae records concerning campaign contributions.”
     The nonprofit watchdog group filed the FOIA request in May 2009, after the two largest providers of government-backed mortgages were temporarily placed under the conservatorship of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) after the housing market collapsed.
     The agency refused to produce the documents, claiming they weren’t agency records under FOIA.
     Judge Friedman agreed, saying the campaign contribution documents “are not relevant to the supervisory mission” of the agency and “have not been used, distributed, or incorporated into the FHFA’s files in any way.”
     “The FHFA did not create the records; it plans to return the records to [Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac] once the conservatorship ends; and it has not read or relied on any of the records in its work,” Friedman concluded.

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