LETTER: Rep. Maxine Waters, CPC Members to Eric Schneiderman: Hire Rep. Brad Miller as Your Cop on the Beat

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Rep. Maxine Waters, CPC Members to Eric Schneiderman: Hire Rep. Brad Miller as Your Cop on the Beat

Rep. Maxine Waters, CPC Members to Eric Schneiderman: Hire Rep. Brad Miller as Your Cop on the Beat

Via Fire Dog LakeMatt Stoller

Dear Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities Working Group Co-Chairs:

We are writing to you today in your capacity as co-chairs of the Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities (RMBS) Working Group to request that you select Representative Brad Miller (NC-13) to be the executive director of this new task force.

Rep. Miller has the best mix of skills and experience to steer this new Working Group. As colleagues of Rep. Miller in Congress, we’ve seen that he’s committed his career to protecting consumers and fighting financial fraud. His achievements include authorship of the Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act of 2009, which was ultimately included in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. Rep. Miller also co-wrote the original legislation that led to the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, has been a fierce and prescient advocate for principal reduction, and has fought to reform mortgage servicing. The Congressman has likewise been a leading advocate in Congress for the financial protection of servicemembers facing economic hardship and foreclosure.

Finally, it is important to note that prior to entering Congress in 2003, Rep. Miller was a civil litigator with 20 years of experience.

In January, President Obama announced that the RMBS Working Group “will hold accountable those who broke the law, speed assistance to homeowners and help turn the page on an era of recklessness that hurt so many Americans.” The primary means of achieving these goals is through an investigation into the creation and sale of securities backed by residential mortgages leading up to the 2008 financial crisis, and prosecution of any wrongdoing uncovered. We agree that this effort is crucial to providing long-awaited restitution to homeowners and investors, restoring the integrity of American capital markets, and preventing the next financial crisis.

With that said, we were dismayed by recent press reports indicating that the RMBS Working Group does not yet have phones, office headquarters, or an executive director. We understand that the task force is leveraging pre-existing enforcement efforts and staff at participating agencies, but we remain concerned that the Working Group has not independently established a robust infrastructure commensurate with the charge of investigating this component of the 2008 financial crisis.

With three months having passed since the initial announcement of the creation of the RMBS Working Group, we fear that this group’s efforts may be stalled. The best way to reignite this important undertaking is to hire a qualified, aggressive and committed executive director, and give them the power and budget to hire the necessary support staff. Without quick action in this regard, public confidence in the Working Group may be at risk.

We would welcome the opportunity to speak with you further about this request, and we are eager to do anything we can, as Members of Congress, to facilitate the success of the RMBS task force.

Sincerely,

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