(CNSNews.com) - President Obama could -- and should -- do more to help the 12-million homeowners struggling to pay their mortgages, a liberal activist group says.
MoveOn.org is pressing Obama to replace Ed DeMarco, the man President Bush appointed to oversee Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which hold a majority of U.S. homeowners' mortgages.
Liberals complain that DeMarco "refused to allow underwater homeowners to adjust their mortgages to reflect the true value of their homes."
On March 15 -- the same day the Senate Banking Committee is scheduled to meet in Washington to discuss mortgage issues -- MoveOn.org says it is organizing "big rallies" at Obama campaign offices around the country, in front of bank branches and outside foreclosed homes:
"We'll tell the president: We're sinking in underwater mortgages -- throw the 99% a lifeline to keep us in our homes."
In its March 4 email to supporters, MoveOn.org also said that Obama has the power to replace DeMarco.
"Homeowners are struggling to make ends meet. And helping them not only means saving their homes, it will also stabilize the market and help get the economy back on track for everyone."
Last month, President Obama announced that five large banks -- those "rescued by taxpayer dollars" -- had agreed to "put billions of dollars towards relief for families across the nation. They’ll provide refinancing for borrowers that are stuck in high-interest-rate mortgages, they’ll reduce loans for families who owe more on their homes than they’re worth, and they will deliver some measure of justice for families that have already been victims of abusive practices.”
Obama called the settlement "a start," saying it would allow some homeowners to refinance at low interest rates, even if they are underwater on their homes.
But, Obama added, “I want to be clear: No compensation, no amount of money, no measure of justice is enough to make it right for a family who’s had their piece of the American dream wrongly taken from them. And no action, no matter how meaningful, is going to by itself entirely heal the housing market."
MoveOn.org says it will support Obama in taking additional "bold steps" – such as demanding that Frannie and Freddie readjust mortgages -- and “replacing anyone who continues holding back the housing recovery," a reference to DeMarco.
As CNSNews.com previously reported, congressional Democrats from California complained in October about President Obama's response to the nation's mortgage crisis.
Among other things, they called at that time for Ed DeMarco to be replaced as head of the Federal Housing Finance Authority.