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The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights  & The Leadership Conference Education Fund
The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

Press Release - The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

Advisory: Civil Rights Groups Call for Mel Watt Confirmation
Watt Filibuster Would be First for Sitting Congressman since before Civil War

For Immediate Release
Contact: Scott Simpson, 202.466.2061, simpson@civilrights.org
October 29, 2013

WASHINGTON – At noon EDT tomorrow, the day before the Senate is expected to vote to confirm Congressman Mel Watt to replace Ed DeMarco as head of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), civil and human rights groups are hosting a press call to declare their support for the longtime housing advocate.

The groups, including the heads of the nation’s largest civil rights groups, such as the NAACP, National Council of Raza, National Urban League, LULAC, and The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, have championed Watt’s nomination from the very beginning.

Many of the groups have signed on to a joint letter sent to the Senate from 54 organizations, which cites Congressman Watts’ 40 years of experience in housing and finance, including 20 years as a member of the House Financial Services Committee, and his advocacy for struggling homeowners, as among his many qualifications for confirmation. As the letter states, “Rep. Watt was one of the first Members of Congress to speak out against the predatory mortgage lending practices that characterized the boom in subprime lending,  and that eventually contributed to widespread economic devastation. Rep. Watt rightly led the push for legislation that would have required safety, soundness, and fairness to prevail over the blind rush for short-term profits... The nation needs Rep. Watt’s talents and leadership at the FHFA.”

WHO:

  • Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
  • Benjamin Jealous, president and CEO of the NAACP
  • Brent A. Wilkes, national executive director of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC)
  • Chanelle Hardy, senior vice president for policy and executive director of the National Urban League Washington Bureau
  • Eric Rodriguez, vice president, of  Research, Advocacy and Legislation at the National Council of La Raza

WHAT:  Press call for civil and human rights organizations to declare their support for confirmation of Congressman Mel Watt to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

WHEN: Wednesday, October 30th at 12:00 Noon EDT

CALL-IN INFO: 866-952-1907, Verbal Passcode “Confirm”

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