Obama Admin Ethics: Ex-Car Czar Rattner Settles Case, Skirts Consequences

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Reported in the Washington Times:

Ex-car czar Rattner settles N.Y. probe for $10M

NEW YORK (AP) — The investment banker who helped lead the Obama administration’s auto industry overhaul has agreed to pay $10 million to settle influence-peddling allegations in New York.

Former “car czar” Steven Rattner admitted no wrongdoing as part of the deal, which was announced by state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo on Thursday.

Mr. Cuomo’s office filed civil lawsuits against Mr. Rattner in November, accusing him of paying kickbacks to help his company land $150 million in state pension fund investments in 2004 and 2005. He denied the charges.

The attorney general initially sought $26 million in fines and penalties and a lifetime ban from the securities industry. The settlement announced Thursday only bars Rattner from doing further business with any public pension fund in the state for five years.

Mr. Rattner, who just weeks ago called Mr. Cuomo a bully and claimed his demand of a steep fine was politically motivated, released a conciliatory statement saying he was pleased to put the matter behind him.

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