As the 111th Congress draws to a close, the heat is on
to confirm James Cole as Deputy Attorney General. Despite the last-minute push, Cole still has serious problems that haunt and disqualify him
from taking a senior position at the Justice Department.
From 2005 through December 2009, James Cole served as an independent monitor
in the Compliance Office of the American International Group (AIG), placed there by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as part of a deal that allowed AIG to escape prosecution for fraud.
While Americans and their elected representatives are notorious for their short attention spans, it’s worth remembering, in this case, that AIG was the corporation that nearly drove the US economy off a cliff in September 2008. AIG’s Financial Products Division (AIG-FP), based in London, wrote credit default swaps involving staggering amounts of money that had to be covered with a US government bailout in the range of $180 billion.