Magazine article American Banker

Crapo: 'Toxic' Senate Will Take Time to Address Housing Finance Reform, Dodd-Frank

Magazine article American Banker

Crapo: 'Toxic' Senate Will Take Time to Address Housing Finance Reform, Dodd-Frank

Article excerpt

Byline: Ian McKendry

WASHINGTON -- Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo said Wednesday that although he plans to begin working on housing finance reform and changes to the Dodd-Frank Act, the poor relationship between Democrats and Republicans will hinder any progress.

"The climate right now in the Senate is toxic as I have ever seen," the Idaho Republican said at an event sponsored by the law firm Jones Walker. "What is happening in the Senate right now ... is a very slow process, much more slow than ever we have seen before and that impacts everything else."

Democrats have hampered President Trump's Cabinet appointees, eating up days at a time on a single nominee, which makes finding floor time to pass legislation difficult.

"Congress can in most cases walk and chew gum at the same time, so that doesn't mean there is going to be no action on any other issue, but it means that ... floor time in the Senate is much more difficult to get than in the House," Crapo said.

However, Crapo, who led previous legislative efforts at reforming the housing finance system, said it remains a "very high priority." He said he has taken up the issue with top Trump administration officials, including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

"My hope would be" that housing finance reform gets passed "within the next 12 months, but the practical reality is it might" take longer, Crapo said.

He said that old concepts for housing finance -- including one he co-sponsored with then-Senate Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson, D-S. …

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