Where are Sonny and Cher* when we need them?
There is a good reason why very little happens in the nation’s capital in August. Most locals are gone avoiding Washington’s stifling summer heat, that-–despite what you may think about climate change—has been worse this year.
That includes most Admin policymakers, the media, DC yakkers, lobbyists, and the Congress—which despite opposing federal laws giving workers mandatory six weeks paid vacations--manages to take 10, 20, and thirty day variations of the same for themselves. (“Me? Harrumph, why should I walk a mile in your unpaid vacation-less hot shoes?)
Yes, without being asked, Larry Kudlow looked and sounded a little ill or under the weather this weekend, when he told economic tall tales on the Sunday shows. No, he didn’t mention the GSEs, but that’s almost beside the point since he is somewhere in the Admin’s GSE decision tree.
That brings me back to a signature main point…again.
For what is the Administration waiting before it unveils its long-promised plan to free Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from Conservatorship???
President Trump is running for re-election (if you hadn’t noticed) trying to generate more voting support than any of his would-be opponents might generate, meaning Republicans in their primary, or one of the 600 Democrats seeking that party’s nomination.
In between trying to buy Greenland (wait till he finds out Greenland/Denmark have banned tanning salons and hair coloring facilities for God’s lifetime) and bragging how much his recent New Hampshire visit produced a bigger crowd than Elton John, and don’t forget in Pennsylvania where he took credit for a plant put together in 2014 before he even ran for the WH, DJT seems to be ignoring an action that is a far better investment of his valuable time and energy—ending the Fannie/ Freddie Conservatorship.
Is Steven Miller the only one advising DJT?
If the President wants to cut into the Democratic Party’s future Black/Brown vote, free Fannie and Freddie; if he wants to show he cares about the aspirations of moderate and middle-income American families, yearning for their share of the American Dream, free Fannie and Freddie; if he is worried that the economy is tiring from his phony tax and farm stimulus injections, free Fannie and Freddie and watch homebuilding/home selling employment grow and get credit from happy mortgagors, free Fannie and Freddie; and if he’s worried that he has no credentials--other than name-calling and demeaning anyone who challenges him--he should prove he’s a “houser,” not just a real estate hustler and free Fannie and Freddie and avoid being put on the defensive, if and when some federal judge or judges force the issue. (I am hoping that one of you Republicans who read my blog will share my advice with the White House.)
If the POTUS calls for it to happen, it will be done.
Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin--with a stumbling, slow walking Mark Calabria (“Wait, wait, Sir, I’m the GSE boss”) by his side, but slightly behind--will do it for you in a political heartbeat Mr. President and add "bigly" to your 2020 campaign arsenal.
I’ve tried, by talking with others better in the know than me, to discern what’s going on in New Orleans and the Fifth Circuit Collins’ deliberations, I came up with little, except some very reasonable legal procedural issues.
The view is the subject matter is so important—both for purpose of the court’s opinion and possible appeals--those writing what they hope to be the majority opinion (supporting the plaintiffs) and those disagreeing are taking their time and being super precise with regard to substance and process.
The flip side of that is so are those who might not agree with what’s shaping up as the majority opinion?
And, not too laughingly, is the fact that judges and clerks take summer vacation, too.
Last week, I was asked if Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is considered a significant player in Admin's GSE considerations???
I never heard that before about Ross but one clue is the Commerce Secretary did leave former FHFA Director Jim Lockhart at home as Vice-Chairman to watch over Ross's corporate businesses and I assume the two communicate regularly. If anyone knows more than that please enlighten me/us.
(*In 1967, S&C recorded, "The beat goes on.")