Rep Cmte Financial Services

Chairman Hensarling Comments on FHFA Director Nomination

Washington, May 1 -

Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) issued the following statement today regarding President Obama’s nomination of a director for the Federal Housing Finance Agency:

“Mel Watt is a senior and well respected member of the committee, but he is not the issue.  The issue is the administration’s continued inaction and refusal to put forward an actual plan to reform our nation’s unsustainable housing finance system.  Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were at the epicenter of the financial crisis and their failure resulted in the largest, most costly taxpayer-funded bailout in history.  Yet the administration’s response to the crisis, the Dodd-Frank Act, did nothing to reform these failed mortgage giants.

“Unlike the administration, our committee is working to create a sustainable housing finance system that ends taxpayer bailouts and abolishes Fannie and Freddie as government sponsored enterprises. This is a heavy lift, especially with divided government.  That is why leadership from the administration is so crucial, and why the administration’s silence and refusal to release a reform plan is so disappointing. 

“FHFA Acting Director Ed DeMarco has emphasized protecting the interests of taxpayers and reforming Fannie and Freddie.  Unsurprisingly, this has put him in conflict with the administration.  Whoever sits in the FHFA director’s chair needs to continue DeMarco’s policies.  If they simply do whatever the administration wants, they will have failed.”