3:24 PM EDT
Maxine Waters, D-CA 35th

Ms. WATERS. I would first like to thank our chairman, Barney Frank, for the leadership that he has provided on dealing with a serious problem in America. I would like to thank the Members once more for the support that they gave me on the Neighborhood Stabilization Act that we passed today. That, coupled with what is being done now, will go a long way to providing real assistance to our cities, to our counties, to our States and to our citizens.

I know that it has been said over and over again today that people are suffering, that there are people who got into these loans that did not understand what a no-doc loan, a no interest rate loan was, an ARM that was going to reset within 6 months, 1 year or 2 years, and that the mortgage would double, triple or quadruple.

They are innocent, hardworking Americans out there every day who simply want to live the American Dream. Many of them were steered into these loans because there was this big, big housing bubble.

We had these local initiators of loans through our banks and our mortgage brokers who discovered that they could package them, they could securitize them, they would be invested in Wall Street, and the Wall Street people invested mightily in them, and now the services have them all. The only thing that the services can do is foreclose on these properties.

Well, we can do something about it. I don't know why we have to argue and fight about whether or not we can help the American people. They sent us here to look after their best interests.

I don't understand why anybody can call this a bailout when, in fact, nobody has said anything about the bailout of the almost $30 billion for Bear Stearns. If we can help Wall Street, we certainly can help the people who vote for us every day and who sent us here.

We help people all over this Nation in different ways. Some people are confronted with a hurricane, or a flood or an earthquake. American citizens expect us to be there for the citizens when we are needed in different ways. This is a different way.

I ask everyone to support the bill.