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Hensarling Praises Bipartisan Legislation to Help Americans Own a Home They Can Afford to Keep
“There are so many on the left and the far left who want to protect consumers right out of their homes. That’s shameful, Mr. Speaker. It’s absolutely shameful.”

Washington, April 14, 2015 - Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling delivered the following floor statement in support of H.R. 650, the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, sponsored by Rep. Stephen Fincher (R-TN) and co-sponsored by Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL), Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) and Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ):

I thank the gentleman for yielding but more importantly I thank him for his leadership and I thank him for standing up for so many of the downtrodden -- the low and moderate income Americans from sea to shining sea who want to realize some piece of the American dream.

They want to own a home. Now maybe it’s not going to be quite as nice as a home that some Member of Congress might live in. But it’s going to be their home. And in this case it’s going to be a manufactured home. I can say for many of the people who live in the Fifth District of Texas, if it wasn’t for manufactured housing they wouldn’t have a house.

As the gentleman from Tennessee so eloquently said as this legislation was being marked up in our committee, there are so many on the left and the far left who want to protect consumers right out of their homes. That’s shameful, Mr. Speaker. It’s absolutely shameful. They should have the same equal opportunity to own a home as any Member of this body and yet my friends on the other side of the aisle would take it away from them.

They’ve got a bumper sticker slogan here, “Dodd Frank: We’re going to aim at Wall Street.”  But when they aim at Wall Street they’re hitting Main Street. They’re hitting Main Street and low and moderate income Americans are suffering. We have bank after bank, credit union after credit union -- we’re talking community financial institutions -- who are saying without the legislation of the gentleman from Tennessee they’ve got to get out of the business.

Do you know what that means, Mr. Speaker? It means people lose their opportunities to own that first home which might just be a manufactured house. First Arkansas Bank and Trust, we heard from them, “Our bank has a long history of helping consumers, especially those who for some reason cannot qualify for secondary market financing at the time. Due to the fact that this type of financing is now overly-burdened by the Qualified Mortgage standards, we have ceased this type of financing.”

I heard from the Central Maine Credit Union. By the way, we have not mentioned Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan. No, these are community financial institutions, Mr. Speaker. Five County Credit Union wrote me, “Five County has no longer been offering mobile home loans to its members due to the federal legislation.” First National Bank of Milaca, but given that it isn’t a money-center bank on Wall Street we’re a little less familiar with its name, this is in Minnesota. “The high-priced mortgage rules have caused my bank to reduce the number of real estate mortgages we make on certain types of houses, specifically mobile homes.”  I could go on and on, I’ve got a stack of these, Mr. Speaker.

And that is why the gentleman from Tennessee, with his able leadership, has brought forth legislation -- bipartisan legislation, I might add -- almost half of the Democrats on our committee supported it. The Ranking Member supported it before she was against it. I don’t quite understand the change of mind. The need is still as great. People are suffering. The low and moderate income Americans have been falling behind. Here’s a chance to let them have an opportunity to get into a mobile home. But no no no, we’ve got a Wall Street bumper sticker slogan here and it doesn’t matter who will get hurt.

Well it does matter.  It matters a lot, Mr. Speaker. We need to ensure that every American -- regardless of their income -- in a competitive, transparent, innovative capital market that they have the opportunity to finance that mobile home. Every American should have that opportunity. Every single American should have that opportunity.

And it’s the gentleman from Tennessee who is hearing their voices and is representing their voices on the House floor today. And, again, I want to thank him for his leadership and thank him for the thousands and thousands across the Fifth District of Texas that I have the privilege and honor of representing. Just because they are low income, he knows they still deserve that chance for the American dream. He is fighting for their American dream.

This was compromise language, Mr. Speaker. This isn’t the bill I wanted, it’s not the bill he wanted. It was compromise language and in fact the Ranking Member supported an even broader provision in the previous Congress. But what has happened is, yet again, the left hand doesn’t always know what the far left hand is doing. And the far left hand has decided that all of a sudden we are going to aim at Wall Street banks. It doesn’t matter if any person working at a Wal-Mart, or working at a Whataburger loses their chance at the American dream.

That has to stop. We need to support the legislation of the gentleman from Tennessee and I urge the House to adopt it.

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