Dodd's cottage value soars

Chris Dodd should be so lucky.

While all of use are seeing our real estate value plummet, his is going up -- a lot.
A new appraisal of the Irish cottage owned by Sen. Christopher Dodd concludes that it is worth about three times as much as Dodd has been reporting on his financial disclosure forms.

The new value of the cottage, on Inishnee island in County Galway, is $658,000, according to Dodd's 2008 financial disclosure form released Friday.

The two-page appraisal was done by the same man who did the original one in 2002 when the 1,200-square-foot cottage was valued at about $190,000.

The new appraisal comes two years into a historic crash in property values in Ireland, which suggests that it might have been worth even more in recent years when Dodd never reported its value at more than $250,000 in annual Senate financial disclosures.

Dodd has been criticized for understating the value of the cottage in his disclosure forms. Questions also have been raised about his original purchase of the cottage with a Kansas City businessman, William Kessinger, whom he met through longtime friend and campaign contributor Edward Downe.

Dodd would probably rather his property value didn't take such a favorable turn, as it rehashes one of the many controversies surrounding his 2010 reelection bid and gives his opponents more ammo.