WASHINGTON, DC – Today, after President Barack Obama nominated U.S. Representative Mel Watt (D-NC) to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency, U.S. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), a senior member of the Banking Committee, issued the following statement:

“Mel Watt is a strong pick to lead the FHFA.  He has a proven track record of bipartisan cooperation, and, as a leader on housing issues on the House Financial Services Committee, he is a thoughtful legislator with the wisdom, experience, and skill to do this job.  This is a critical time for the housing market, and the FHFA needs a permanent director.  I hope my colleagues on the Senate Banking Committee will give Mr. Watt a fair hearing.  The American people are sick of all the gridlock in Washington.  They want Congress to work together and consider people on the merits, not just block any nominee the President puts forth.  Mr. Watt clearly has the qualifications and experience to be an effective leader.  He deserves a fair hearing and an up or down vote.”