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Paul Kiesel
Paul Kiesel
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Rep. Maxine Waters of California: The Banking Industry "Has Owned this Congress Far Too Long"

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There is a fight building over judges’ roles in altering loan terms on mortgages that are either unaffordable or that were structured improperly from their origination.

Congressional Democrats say the quickest way to save homeowners is to let them declare bankruptcy and allow the judges to dictate new mortgage terms.

This seems to be a practical approach to a terrible problem that is engulfing most of the country. (Most Americans can name at least one person who’s going through either foreclosure, in an "underwater" mortgage, live near foreclosed homes or going through their own foreclosure.) However, the banking industry, led by 10 groups representing the lending industry and other businesses are "fighting back fiercely," according to MSNBC.com.

The groups collectively spent $83 million in lobbying throughout 2008 and shows how strong of a hold the banking industry has had on Congress throughout the George W. Bush administration.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), who backs the bankruptcy proposal being touted by her fellow Democrats, has said repeatedly that the banking industry "has owned this Congress far too long."

Additionally, President Barack Obama told Democratic leaders on Friday that he also backs the congressional Democrats’ mortgage term modification plan.

More on this issue here.