Dems’ Financial “Reform” Leaves Taxpayers on the Hook for Government Mortgage Giants
Democrats still don’t get it, and they refuse to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government mortgage companies that sparked the meltdown by giving high-risk loans to people who couldn’t afford it. Standing up for American taxpayers, CNBC’s on-air editor, Rick Santelli teed off on Rep. Paul Kanjorski’s (D-PA) claim that Democrats’ couldn’t reform Fannie & Freddie in their financial regulation bill because it was “too complicated,” asking: “It’s too complicated? You think taxpayers that go to work to pay the money you are subsidizing, it will end up a half a trillion, do you think they think complicated is an excuse?”
The exchange couldn’t have come at a worse time for Rep. Kanjorski and Congressional Democrats, because Fannie and Freddie simply won’t go away. As the Financial Times reported today:
“Fannie Mae said on Monday it would need an additional $8.4bn in aid, as the US government-controlled mortgage finance company continued to suffer heavy losses on its bad loans…Fannie Mae’s appeal for help comes on the heels of a similar plea last week by smaller rival Freddie Mac, which asked for an additional $10.6bn cash infusion. The latest requests for aid bring the total amount of taxpayer dollars drawn down by these companies to $148bn since the 2008 government-led bail-out.
But the unlimited bailout that the Administration has bestowed on Fannie and Freddie doesn’t seem to bother Democrats, though the latest giveaway may come at an “inconvenient time,” as the New York Times noted today:
“Fannie Mae’s request on Monday for another $8.4 billion in federal aid comes at a politically inconvenient time for the Obama administration, which is pressing to pass sweeping financial legislation without resolving the company’s future…. Democrats want to defer an overhaul of federal housing policy until next year, after the midterm elections. But Republicans have seized on the continuing losses to argue that a plan for the two companies should be a priority of the current legislation.”
Republicans have been pressing for an end to bailouts that would get the government out of the mortgage business once and for all. But Democrats are not only unwilling to reform Fannie and Freddie, they are doubling down on the failed government mortgage companies – burning through hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars in the process. As the Washington Post noted in a report today: “Under the terms of the government’s 2008 emergency takeover of Fannie and Freddie, the Treasury must pump money into either firm whenever its worth, as measured by assets minus liabilities, goes into the red. Late last year, the Obama administration pledged unlimited backing.”
For years, Republicans raised red flags about Fannie and Freddie’s financial condition and proposed responsible reforms only to be thwarted by Democrats who have deep political ties to the worst offenders. These same powerful Democrats are now pushing for a financial reform bill that doesn’t even address the need to fix these government mortgage companies. As the Wall Street Journal wrote last week, “reforming the financial system without fixing Fannie and Freddie is like declaring a war on terror and ignoring al Qaeda.”
House Republicans’ plan would phase out taxpayer subsidies of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac over a number of years and end the current model of privatized profits and taxpayer losses. Find out more by clicking HERE.