The Senate is voting on the bailout today and the House will soon be following suit. The progressive Dems in the House have been pushing for a bill that will be focused on having real protections for the taxpayers, strong anti-predatory lending legislation, and will provide mandatory mechanisms for modifying many of the bad loans that are still out there.
The National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) has been in the forefront for several years, trying to get the regulators, this Administration and Congress to address these issues. You can see NCRC’s talking points on the bailout out legislation here.
You can also weigh with Congress on this issue easily by going to this site where a simple clear message to your member of Congress will be generated on your behalf.
NCRC’s President and CEO, John Taylor has been working hard to get a progressive message out about this bailout. Over the jump you can read his latest letter to NCRC members and the general public.
Letter from John Taylor, President & CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition:
It is true that the economic well-being of our nation is in jeopardy and consumer confidence and liquidity is badly needed in order to have any hope of reversing this downward economic slide. But it is equally true that the congressional focus on stopping the foreclosures cannot be separated from the bailout of Wall Street. I say this not only because it is the right and fair thing to do, but rather because the bailout won’t work without it.
NCRC’s leadership met with Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke Last week and he made it clear that another 2 million foreclosures were imminent. Treasury Sec. Paulson said he expects we’ll see 2.5 million foreclosures this year. These figures show a dramatic acceleration of the foreclosure rates we have seen over the past few years. So if the foreclosures of these past four years can drive the U.S. Economy to the brink of a depression, what can we expect from a dramatic increase in those numbers?
Congress has a lower approval rating than President Bush. Hard to do, but they have earned it. Few congressional leaders showed the leadership to protect working Americans. Elected and appointed officials long ignored the warnings from NCRC and our members who urged them to clamp down on these high cost, unsafe and unsound loans. As far back as 2002 and every month going forward we warned that these loans were unfair and would cause problems for homeowners. To this day, they have still not outlawed the lending practices that got us here in the first place.
And now, after years of what Alan Greenspan described as “infectious greed and malfeasance” we find America facing a deep and dark economic precipice into which we are rapidly sliding. The government has backed itself into this position through deregulation, non-enforcement of consumer protections and its inaction against a lending and securitization industry gone wild. And now we have little choice but to shore up the economy, but we must do so by focusing in on one very fundamental reason for our economic decline, foreclosures.
Any bailout of Wall Street must be accompanied by meaningful, comprehensive and rapid loan modifications in order to halt the massive numbers of home foreclosures occurring at the rate of 300,000 foreclosure filings per month.
“It is about foreclosures, stupid.”
I said this over a year ago and it is as true now as it was then. Stop the foreclosures, save the economy. If meaningful foreclosure mitigation is not in the next congressional Wall Street bailout proposal, then we owe it to all Americans to oppose that legislation. The millions of families who have lost, and millions more that will lose, their homes due primarily to malfeasant lending practices and Wall Street greed, are depending upon us to do the right thing.
Stop the foreclosures, save the economy.
John Taylor President & CEO NCRC
Remember you can take action now by going to this site where you can send a concise letter to your member of Congress.