UPDATE: Post-event statement from MoveOn.org follows photos.
Local members of the progressive advocacy group MoveOn.org convened outside President Obama’s Asheville campaign headquarters to demand mortgage relief from government-run lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as the dismissal of acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, Ed DeMarco. A MoveOn.org press release says that DeMarco “refuses to support homeowners,” and that “President Obama can replace DeMarco and make sure Fannie and Freddie, which hold 60% of all mortgages, provide relief to the millions of Americans struggling with mortgage debt.”
Held on the corner of Hilliard Avenue and South French Broad, the demonstration included a performance by a parody vocalist group called the BOA (Bank of America) Constrictors dressed as bankers. MoveOn organizer Randy Bernard presented an Obama staffer with a petition supporting the group’s cause.
Post-event statement from MoveOn.org:
Asheville Residents to President Obama: Fire Ed DeMarco and Help Millions of Homeowners
Event at Obama Campaign Headquarters, Thursday, March 15, at 5:00 P.M. at 230 Hilliard Avenue
Over 20 MoveOn.org members braved rainy weather for an hour Thursday evening outside the local Obama for America (OFA) office in Asheville to demand that government-controlled mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac provide relief to ten million underwater homeowners by adjusting their mortgages to reflect the true value of their home. Participants lined the sidewalk holding signs that called on President Obama to stand strong with the 99% and replace the acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, Ed DeMarco, appointed by George W. Bush, who oversees Fannie and Freddie and refuses to support homeowners.
President Obama can replace DeMarco and make sure Fannie and Freddie, which hold 60% of all mortgages, provide relief to the millions of Americans struggling with mortgage debt.
“Americans are sinking in underwater mortgages. It’s far past time that government-controlled mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac provide some needed relief,” said Randy Bernard, an Asheville MoveOn member who helped to organize the event. “Clearly, Ed DeMarco doesn’t care about homeowners. If he did, he would allow them to adjust their mortgages to reflect the true value of their homes. To help get our economy back on track, President Obama should replace DeMarco and make sure Fannie and Freddie provide relief to the millions of Americans struggling with mortgage debt.”
Bernard presented Kristi Anderson, OFA Regional Field Director for the western region of the North Carolina, a letter and a petition with 48 pages of signatures of North Carolina residents urging President Obama to act. Similar events took place in Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Goldsboro, and Raleigh. Nationally, MoveOn collected over 60,000 signatures for the petition.
The event was part of a MoveOn.org national day of action called “Save Our Homes,” which included more than 200 actions around the country. It was held on the same day as the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs met in Washington, D.C., to discuss the fate of homeowners. Events took place across the country at OFA campaign offices, at the biggest banks, and in front of homes facing foreclosure.