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Credit Union-Backed Candidates Do Well in Mid-term Elections   (Misc News: November 3, 2010)

While Republicans reclaimed the U.S. House in Tuesday’s midterm elections, credit union-backed candidates also had a good night, according to CUNA.

CUNA President and CEO Bill Cheney said in a letter to member credit unions that 26 of 29 credit union-backed candidates won in the U.S. Senate, while in the U.S. House, 300 candidates supported by the leagues and CUNA won while 48 lost. Ten House races with CUNA candidates in play were still to be determined and two Senate seats were still too close to call this morning.

Credit unions did lose two key races: that of credit union champion Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., and Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, D-S.D. 

Cheney said to expect Congress to consider tax reform and ways to tackle the federal budget deficit this term.  It is also possible that House Republicans may force symbolic votes to repeal the Health Care Reform law or parts of the financial reform bill; however, with President Obama wielding a veto pen, CUNA does not expect those measures to be enacted.

Housing finance reform will be the top agenda item for the House Financial Services Committee and the Senate Banking Committee.  This would have been true no matter which party controls the chambers, Cheney said. 

“The key question here will be: What role should the federal government have in the secondary mortgage market?” Cheney said in the letter. “It is a question that will sharply divide Congress, but it is also one that will be incredibly important to credit unions which rely on the secondary mortgage market.”

With Republicans in control of the House, CUNA expects oversight hearings on the implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act as well as the administration's handling of the financial crisis.  However, an ambitious legislative agenda is not expected because the 2012 campaign season will begin soon and both parties will begin posturing for the presidential election, Cheney said.

While Republicans took control of the House, Democrats will still hold the Senate and the White House.

“Going into the election, most pundits expected the 112th Congress to be a gridlocked Congress no matter who is in charge,” Cheney said. 

With the change in House majority, Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, will be speaker and Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., will most likely become majority leader. Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., is slated to become House Financial Services Committee chairman and Michigan’s own Rep. David Camp, R-Midland, is expected to chair the House Ways and Means Committee.

Click here to read Cheney’s letter.

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