In response to the President's speech tonight, the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) has experts available to comment on areas mentioned in the State of the Union address including, mortgage access, student lending and the importance of new rules to rein in reckless practices in the financial sector.

Strong Financial and Consumer Protections

"With the President's promise to veto legislation that would roll back the progress made by Wall Street reform and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Americans can feel secure that they are protected from the predatory lending schemes that sparked the financial crisis and stripped them of their savings," Mike Calhoun, President of the Center for Responsible Lending, said. "Study after study shows that fair, affordable financial services help our economy grow. People are going to be very wary of attempts to erode consumer protections that would let predatory lending practices run amok in the marketplace again."

Increasing Access to Responsible and Sustainable Homeownership

"The President's Federal Housing Administration reform will reduce the cost of mortgages for lower and moderate-income borrowers, and families of color," Nikitra Bailey, Senior Vice President of the Center for Responsible Lending, said. "The families that were hit so hard by the mortgage meltdown deserve a fair shot, and this decision is financially sound, socially responsible and good policy all at once. Homebuyers, homeowners and taxpayers will all benefit."

America's College Promise

"The President's plan to make community college tuition-free has the potential to reduce student loan debt and help make college affordable by promoting state investment in community colleges," Maura Dundon, Senior Policy Counsel for the Center for Responsible Lending, said. "Affordable, high-quality community colleges are an alternative to for-profit colleges, which are using misleading marketing claims to enroll students in degree programs that provide inadequate job preparation and are derailing student dreams by trapping them in unmanageable debt."

For more information, or to arrange an interview with a CRL expert on consumer issues, mortgage policy or student lending, please contact Andrew High at or 919-313-8533.

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