State Capitol News
9:39 am
Tue February 17, 2009

AZ Senators on housing plan

Phoenix, AZ – Barack Obama will not unveil his plan to fix the housing mess
until Wednesday. But Arizona Public Radio's Howard Fischer
reports that did not stop the state's two U-S senators from
commenting today on the plan.

John McCain took the opportunity of a press conference to
criticize Obama for not doing more to deal with the housing
problem as part of the just-signed stimulus package.

(It was the housing crisis that started this conflagration. It
will be the resolution of the housing, in other words, the
leveling of home values, that brings about the end of it. And
this stimulus package, $790 billion, does not address the housing
issue.)

The president will outline his plan in Mesa. But Jon Kyl said he
already doesn't like what he's hearing.

(One of the ideas that I've heard bounced around is if you're
either 30 days or 60 days late on a payment, or in your
foreclosure, this bill would help bail you out. Well, the
proposal that we had on the floor of the Senate dealt with those
who are abiding by the rules today, not creating an incentive for
people to go into foreclosure or miss their payments.)

And Kyl said he fears the bill will allow bankruptcy judges to
reduce or eliminate mortgage payments.

(That will force the lenders to raise their interest rates to
everyone else. So at the very time we should be reducing interest
rates, we would be increasing interest rates. And that's the
wrong solution to the housing problem today.)

We will have details of the plan following the president's
speech.