WASHINGTON, D.C. – September 24, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — Yesterday, Monetary Policy & Trade Subcommittee Vice Chairman Bill Huizenga (MI-02) delivered the Sunday Video Message and discussed the positive solutions Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee are putting forward to address and reform the driving force behind the financial crisis – the housing finance system:
Hello, I’m Bill Huizenga, Congressman from Michigan’s Second Congressional District and I serve as the Vice Chairman of the Monetary Policy and Trade Subcommittee on the Financial Services Committee.
Last week marked the five year anniversary of the financial crisis. A crisis many think started on Wall Street, but their gambling on complex derivatives and mortgage-backed securities only amplified the effects of a crisis born in Washington. Covered by a Congressional Charter and charged with implementing decades of Washington’s misguided affordable housing goals, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac played a critical role in the dramatic erosion of mortgage underwriting standards that sparked the crisis.
Some in Congress responded with the 2,300-page monstrosity known as the Dodd-Frank Act. Another one of those ‘we have to pass it to find out what’s in it’ kind of bills. Yet in all those pages of new rules, regulations and requirements, not one reform of Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac can be found.
Here’s the bottom line: Nobody in Washington can say they’ve really addressed the financial crisis until we have a housing finance system that’s sustainable for homeowners and respectful of hard-working taxpayers. We need to create a system that is built to last.
Now the debate over how to best reshape the housing finance system is a complicated question, and there are many different viewpoints and reform plans. But five years after the crisis began, some things are no longer debatable. We can no longer allow Wall Street firms to simply offload risky mortgages on to Main Street taxpayers and never again should taxpayers be forced to fund bailouts like they did for Fannie and Freddie.
The PATH Act not only addresses Fannie and Freddie, by phasing them out over five years, but also includes the Consumer Mortgage Choice Act, my bipartisan legislation that helps make homeownership more affordable.
This measure would clarify the definition of “qualified mortgage” in the Dodd-Frank Act and improve access to credit and qualified mortgages for low and moderate income borrowers, all while continuing to protect consumers from bad loans – that’s key. It makes common-sense changes to promote access to affordable credit for Americans by ensuring that safer, properly underwritten mortgages pass the qualified mortgage test.
The PATH Act and the Consumer Mortgage Choice Act set in motion a more transparent housing finance system, so that American taxpayers who work hard and play by the rules are no longer held responsible for the Washington-induced cycle of boom, bust, and bailout.