WASHINGTON -- President Clinton's nominee to head the Resolution Trust Corp. tried to help a friend purchase property from the thrift bailout agency, despite rules prohibiting such assistance, the Associated Press reported Thursday.

Stanley Tate was chairman of an RTC regional advisory board in Florida at the time, and subject to ethics rules barring assistance to friends, the AP reported.

Janis O'Rourke, a Miami woman whom Mr. Tate met while serving on a local hospital board, had submitted a bid for an office building that was well below the property's appraised value, the AP reported.

Mr. Tate, whose nomination has been pending before the Senate Banking Committee since July, could not be reached for comment Thursday.

But earlier in the week, Mr. Tate told American Banker he did not intend to give up, despite the apparent reluctance of Senate Banking Committee chairman Donald W. Riegle to schedule a hearing. "I'm here. I'm staying here. I'm pressing forward trying to get a confirmation date," Mr. Tate said.

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