On the heels of the president’s nomination of Rep. Mel Watt (D-N.C.) to lead the Federal Housing Finance Administration last week, Republican lawmakers say they want more than just a new director: they want a whole new plan.
While a new chief in charge of government sponsored entities Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae is a step, a more comprehensive housing finance plan is needed, Republicans told political news outlet The Hill.
“Obviously if you’re going to replace an interim person with somebody permanently, it is incumbent upon the administration to lay out how they plan to transition away from Fannie and Freddie,” Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), who is working on a housing reform bill, told The Hill.
Federal Housing Administration reform has been an ongoing topic among both parties, along with the future of housing finance overall, including changes to the GSEs.
Some hope the Watt’s appointment, while yet to be confirmed by Congress, will prompt action in the right direction, according to the Hill report.
“Bill Killmer, chief lobbyist at the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), said that while the politics continue to be difficult, he hopes the Watt nomination is a ‘pivot point to get all appropriate policymakers engaged,'” the Hill writes. “Killmer said the FHFA director can only do so much and it is up to Congress to pass legislation to make the comprehensive changes needed to ultimately reduce the role of the mortgage giants.”
“There’s an opportunity to do a bill on a bipartisan basis so maybe this will jar Congress to action,” he told The Hill
Written by Elizabeth Ecker