Dem lawmaker to Paulson: You misled Congress

Former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson has "misled" Congress about his role in influencing Bank of America's decision to acquire Merrill Lynch late last year, one Democratic lawmaker alleged Thursday.

Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) accused Paulson of being less-than-forthcoming during his testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee this morning.

In testimony and questioning, the former Treasury secretary defended his work late last year to forestall BofA from backing out on a deal to buy Merrill after the former got a closer look at the latter's fourth quarter earnings.

"In my opinion, you misled Congress," Lynch told Paulson Thursday morning. Lynch said that Paulson would have never gotten support from lawmakers for his plans to bail out banks in the manner he had.

"That's why I think you misled Congress," Lynch said.

In particular, Paulson denied coordinating with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke to pressure BofA into the deal.

"I have had so many calls with Ben Bernanke, that I have trouble distinguishing one from another," Paulson told lynch.