WASHINGTON -- U.S. Rep. Richard Baker late Friday fired back at swirling criticism by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac officials on a draft Congressional Budget Office study circulating through Washington last week, saying his patience is wearing thin.

The draft, which was to be officially released by the CBO this week, was leaked last week. Sources said it estimates the benefit of the federal government's support to both Fannie and Freddie translates into a $10.6 billion subsidy. Fannie and Freddie officials came out strong Wednesday and Thursday, charging that the report inflates the subsidy and fails to consider benefits that other financial services companies receive from the federal government. Freddie has even requested that Rep. Baker return the study to the CBO for revisions.

While declining to respond directly to the specifics of the criticisms or the study, Mr. Baker offered a sweeping condemnation of last week's events.

“Once more I find myself forced into the unfortunate position of having to respond to what can only adequately be described as an orchestrated and audacious attack by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac upon a respected federal government institution and its highest-ranking official," he said in a statement. "And once more I must kindly but forcefully request that Fannie and Freddie refrain from public conduct unbecoming, unfortunate, and beneath us all."

Rep. Baker, criticized Fannie and Freddie for a "full-scale assault" on the study's findings before it was released. He also threatened to call analysts who follow Fannie and Freddie before his committee to ask how they came into possession of the study at a follow-up hearing.

The full text of the release can be seen through the link below.


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