We remain in the midst of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Unemployment
stands above 9%, the housing market is in its worst state since the 1930s, and turmoil in the
financial markets continues to threaten all Americans’ long-term security. State tax revenue has
declined with lower home sales, property values and corporate profits, resulting in a record gap
between state revenue and expenditures.
To address our economic security, Joe gained membership on both the Small Business
Committee- where he was elected Vice-Chairman- and the Education and Labor Committee to
support and educated and skilled workforce. During his time in office he has taken the following
steps to ensure economic security:
AN AGGRESSIVE ECONOMIC STIMULUS
VOTED FOR ECONOMIC RECOVERY AND REINVESTMENT ACT (ECONOMIC
Provided $787 billion in emergency funds for job preservation/creation to help prevent a national
unemployment rate of 12%. Invested in infrastructure, energy efficiency and science, assistance
to the unemployed, and State and local fiscal stabilization. Supported House bill, which
provided $80 billion more to better preserve jobs before it was watered down by the
STABILIZING THE HOUSING MARKET
AUTHORED COMPREHENSIVE BILL TO REDUCE RESIDENTIAL FORECLOSURES
Addresses complications in Hope for Homeownership Program to allow greater participation and
prevent more foreclosures. For example: eliminates shared appreciation provisions and 3% exit
AUTHORED LEGISLATION TO EXPAND FIRST TIME HOMEBUYER’S TAX CREDIT
Expands tax credit cap from $7,500 to 10% of the final sale price of a home.
SUPPORTED ADDITIONAL LEGISLATION TO:
Open the HOPE for Homeowners refinancing program to more families and insure more
consumer savings through the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), to avoid many of
the estimated 8.1 million additional defaults on mortgages predicted over the next four years
Outlaw predatory industry practices that contributed to the subprime lending boom
Preserve the existing supply of affordable housing for seniors, and expand seniors’ access
to affordable and “reverse” mortgages
Provide mortgage refinancing assistance so that families in danger of losing their homes can
refinance into lower-cost government-insured mortgages they can afford to repay
Stabilize neighborhoods by funding grants to purchase and rehabilitate foreclosed homes
Reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with new regulator and creation of Affordable Housing
Trust Fund, which is financed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, not the taxpayers.
STABILIZING FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS
VOTED FOR EMERGENCY ECONOMIC STABILIZATION BILLS TO ENSURE CREDIT
Allowed purchase of assets that are clogging the balance sheets of financial institutions to
ensure Americans did not face the unavailability of affordable car, education, small
business and other consumer loans, or a crash in the stock market, where the value of life
savings, pensions, and 401K’s is lost. Taxpayers protected from costs, assisted in keeping
homes through loan modification.
VOTED FOR TARP REFORM AND ACCOUNTABILITY ACT
Amended the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) to strengthen accountability, close
loopholes, increase transparency, and require Treasury to allow smaller community firms to fairly
SUPPORTED IMPLEMENTATION OF THE “FINANCIAL STABILITY PLAN”
Created ―Consumer and Business Lending Initiative and a Public -Private Investment Fund
to encourage purchase of troubled assets; Increased Small Business and Community
ASSISTANCE TO SMALL BUSINESSES
AUTHORED LEGISLATION, WHICH IS NOW LAW, SUPPORTING SMALL BUSINESS
FAIRNESS IN CONTRACTING
Requires bundling analysis of federal mega-contracts to create more small business
Requires market research to be conducted by the Department of Defense on the ability of small
businesses to perform work prior to awarding contracts of more than $5 million dollars
AUTHORED BILL TO SUPPORT ENTREPRENEURSHIP
Enhances Small Business Development Centers, including Women Business Development
Centers, and the Service Corps for Retired Executives (SCORE), recognizing small business
create more than 70 % of all jobs and every dollar spent on these programs provides a $2.87
return to the Treasury.
AUTHORED SBA TRADE PROGRAMS ACT
To help entrepreneurs overcome dislocations due to global trends through outreach centers.
AUTHORED TRANSPARENCY LEGISLATION FOR SMALL BUSINESSES AWARDS
Allows applicant to request an explanation of why the applicant did not receive the award.
PROTECTING CONSUMERS AND JOBS BY:
SUPPORTED THE CREDIT CARD HOLDER’S BILL OF RIGHTS
Ends unfair credit practices such as retroactive interest rate hikes, double-cycle billing, and due-
date gimmicks. Requires 45-days’ advance notice of interest rate, fee, and finance charges hikes.
SUPPORTED THE AUTO INDUSTRY FINANCING ACT
Authorizes and directs disbursement of bridge loans or commitments for lines of credit to eligible
auto manufacturers, recognizing that the industry is linked to one out of every ten American jobs.
SUMMARY OF FUTURE INITIATIVES
Looking forward, Joe has called for a comprehensive economic plan with four key components
addressing all facets of our economy:
Quickly Respond to the Current Economic Crisis:
Stabilize the economy through aggressive stimulus plan;
Stabilize the housing market through a comprehensive package;
Stabilize financial institutions through effective implementation of the Troubled Asset Relief
(TARP) and President Obama’s Financial Stability Plan; and
Provide liquidity to markets through effective Federal Reserve action.
Create and Retain Skilled American Jobs:
Invest in small businesses: Increase access to small business capital by securing Small
Business Administration microloans; establish a mechanism for federally directed emergency
small business lending to better weather economic downturns; expand federal procurement set
asides for small businesses; and support a major investment (at minimum $250 million) in public-
private business incubators to support entrepreneurial skills and development.
Close tax loopholes that encourage companies to ship jobs overseas and delay tax liability.
Invest in working families: support expansion and extension of middle class tax cuts (child tax
marriage penalty, tax break below $250K); support expanded funding for workforce development,
including Job Corps and Youth Build; secure retirement and pensions by allowing automatic
enrollment in company retirement plans; provide required minimum distribution relief for seniors
and temporarily eliminate penalties for emergency retirement plan withdrawals.
Restore American Innovation to Spur New Industries:
Support Major Federal Investment in New Industries: Incentivize private investment in
innovative technologies and companies; expand the Small Business Innovation Program to
include small business participation in federal and private projects; establish an office of angel
investing to encourage micro-lending for new ideas; and expand graduate education and
research programs in groundbreaking science and technology fields.
Harness Regional Strengths and Drive Public-Private Partnerships: Support public-private
partnerships that capitalize on the presence of colleges and universities in our community.
Investing in these public-private-academic partnerships will turn scientific research – and,
particularly, research in the life sciences and other high-tech clusters-- into innovation, which will
draw new high-technology jobs to the state.
Enforce Fiscal Discipline:
Close the budget gap by reigning in long-term healthcare costs;
Make “pay-as-you-go” rules enforceable— requires Congress to offset the cost of all new
Require discretionary spending caps;
Allow Bush tax cuts that exclusively benefit the top 1% to expire, while retaining and expanding
middle class tax cuts.