It’s only a baby step, but a bipartisan group of Senate lawmakers has finally found something to agree on about Fannie Mae FNMA +1.03% and Freddie Mac FMCC +3.06%: Congress should stop using the mortgage-finance companies to pay for other things.
A bill introduced by two Republicans and two Democrats would prevent lawmakers from using increases in fees charged by Fannie and Freddie to cover the cost of spending increases or tax cuts. The idea is to prevent any more moves to use the federally controlled companies as a funding source, especially given the companies’ surging profits. Exhibit A in this approach came in 2011, when Congress decided to use Fannie and Freddie to fund a temporary payroll tax cut.
Read more...Bill Aims to ‘Jumpstart’ Reform of Fannie, Freddie - Developments - WSJ