House passes homeowner-relief bill

Item by Chris Graham
freepress2@ntelos.net

The House of Representatives has passed back to the Senate a bill that would help homeowners caught up in the ongoing foreclosure crisis, even as a pair of Virginia congressmen facing re-election battles voted against the measure.

“Congressman Goode is clearly out of touch with the honest, hardworking people of the Fifth District who are watching the value of their homes plummet. We need a leader in Washington who is actually willing to fight for real solutions for Virginia families,” said Jessica Barba, the communications director for Fifth District Democratic Party congressional nominee Tom Perriello, who applauded the move of the House to pass the American Housing Rescue & Foreclosure Prevention Act, HR 3221, yesterday.

Goode and Sixth District Republican Congressman Bob Goodlatte voted against the measure, which is drawing the ire of conservatives due to its $300 billion price tag and provisions contained therein that include rescue plans for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which own or guarantee $5.2 trillion of the nation’s home mortgages, or nearly 70 percent of the home mortgages on the books in the U.S.

President Bush has indicated that he will not veto the legislation. Even so, only 45 members of the House Republican Caucus voted in favor of the bill, and no Republicans in the Virginia delegation voted in favor.

“Congress is finally doing its job and both parties are working together to stabilize home prices and revive our economy,” Perriello said. “Families all across our district are watching their homes lose their value and this compromise will help turn around the housing market. It’s about time Washington rolled up their sleeves and focused on long-term prevention instead of quick fixes. I’m also glad this bill supports our brave soldiers as they return home, helping them find and keep homes and preserve the American Dream.”


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