Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Ranking Member of the Financial Services Committee released the following statement in response to committee passage of the inaptly-named “Protecting American Taxpayers and Homeowners Act” or “PATH Act” (H.R. 2767). H.R. 2767 is a Republican bill that would unwind Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and remove any government support from the secondary mortgage market. However, because the bill would remove a government guarantee, it would end the affordable 30-year fixed rate mortgage and have negative impacts on the middle class, community banks and credit unions, the housing market, and America’s taxpayers.
“Housing finance reform is a serious undertaking and American taxpayers deserve a thoughtful, bipartisan approach to such an important issue. I am committed to working with all of my Democratic colleagues to preserve the 30-year fixed rate mortgage and support affordable rental housing. Whenever the Chairman is ready to take housing finance reform seriously, I am ready to work with him too.”
Democrats support affordable housing and the vote against this bill echoes testimony the Committee received last week from consumer advocates, homebuilders, mortgage bankers, community banks, credit unions, realtors, and the multi-family housing community, all of whom are opposed to the bill. Ranking Member Waters led Democratic opposition to the bill, noting that a “government guarantee was necessary to preserve the affordable, American 30-year fixed rate mortgage. And this bill fails on that crucial goal.”
Despite today’s markup, Ranking Member Waters will continue to press forward on serious reform of the nation’s housing finance system.