Rep. Ellison joins rally to halt eviction
By Becky Dernbach
Last week more than 50 community members rallied in support of Rose McGee as she faced off against Fannie Mae in settlement court alleging wrongful foreclosure. When Fannie Mae still refused to offer what she considered a fair deal, the judge ordered the parties to return for further court mediation May 14.
“The outcome of the court process today was very disappointing,” said Rose McGee. “The offer that Fannie has made is unreasonable. If they made a reasonable offer, I would gladly accept it. I think now that I’m being used as a scapegoat because they’re faced with so many cases like mine that they don’t want to set a precedent of losing this one.”
McGee, who has been fighting her foreclosure for over a year, fell victim last May to a process called “dual tracking.” Citi-Mortgage told her they were modifying her loan while at the same time selling her home to Fannie Mae at a sheriff’s sale.
In January, McGee met with Fannie Mae executives in Washington, D.C. Fannie Mae promised they were working on a loan modification for her — but she was dual tracked again when Citi-Mortgage continued pushing forward with the eviction at the same time.
This legislative session, McGee became the primary spokesperson for a Minnesota Homeowner Bill of Rights that would ban many of the foreclosure abuses she’s experienced. Although that bill died in committee, federal limits on dual tracking will go into effect in January 2014.
Last week’s rally came as part of New Bottom Line’s national Dump DeMarco campaign, calling on the Obama administration to fire Ed DeMarco, the federal administrator who oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and replace him with a permanent director who will implement national principal reduction and reset mortgages to fair market value.
“We need to be finding ways to keep people in their homes, not kicking them out,” said Rep. Keith Ellison, who spoke at the rally. “Ed DeMarco has consistently refused to write down these loans to make them affordable. Other members of Congress and I have taken the extreme but reasonable step of calling for him to be fired.
“Big banks need to change the way they’re doing business in our communities. Enough is enough,” Ellison said.
President Obama has come under fire recently for his reluctance to fire DeMarco. His attorney general’s “too big to fail/jail” policy toward the Wall Street banks has taken flack as well.
“Before McGee’s court appearance, her supporters delivered 330,000 MoveOn and CREDO petition signatures demanding Obama prosecute the bankers — whose criminal actions crashed the economy — to the U.S. attorney’s office, where a federal representative accepted them. Over a dozen other cities around the country organized similar petition deliveries as part of a national day of action with Home Defenders League and Campaign for a Fair Settlement.