Virginia Democratic Rep. Jim Moran told The Daily Caller on Thursday evening that President Obama should “refinance every home mortgage” without congressional approval in order to “reset the economy.”
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“Absolutely, I think [Obama] should do that but there are not a lot of places where he can act unilaterally,” Moran told TheDC during Conservation International’s Oct. 20 dinner in Washington, D.C.
“If he chooses to act unilaterally,” Moran said, “the likelihood is that there will be language in the appropriations bills that will prohibit him from spending money for that purpose. That’s just the political reality. But notwithstanding that, I think he should do everything he can do on his own to stimulate jobs.”
Obama has already asked his Council on Jobs to identify areas of the American Jobs Act that can be implemented without congressional authorization.
Moran told TheDC that he would “like to see” the Obama administration “refinance every home mortgage at three-and-a-half to four percent” interest, which he said can be accomplished without approval from Congress.
“The banks aren’t doing it, but the federal government can borrow money at three-and-a-half percent today. They should use that money to refinance every home mortgage, and that would put $750 billion into homeowners pockets,” he said. “It would reset the economy, and I think it’s the one thing that would most quickly get this economy back on its feet.”
Moran said that the plan “doesn’t cost any federal money. The people who are opposed to it are the Wall Street investment banks, the ones that we bailed out for hundreds of billions of dollars,” he added. “The federal government could do that because most of these loans are now owned by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.”
Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona told TheDC this month that Obama could “get away” with creating jobs without authorization from Congress.
“I’m sure that the president and other presidents before him, Republican and Democrats, have tried to exceed their constitutional authority,” McCain said, ”but we will do everything we can to try to stop it but I’m not saying he can’t get away with something.”
Illinois Democratic Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. told TheDC that he would like to see Obama declare a “national emergency” on the question of jobs and act without congressional approval.
“We’ve got to go further,” Rep. Jackson said. “Clearly, Republicans are not going to be for it. But if the administration can handle administratively what can be done, we should pursue it.
“And if there are extra-constitutional opportunities that allow the president administratively to put the people to work,” he added, “he should pursue every single one of them.”