August 31, 2007
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Anna Christopher, NPR
   

TREASURY SECRETARY HENRY PAULSON DISCUSSES PLAN
TO HELP HOMEOWNERS AVOID FORECLOSURE
ON NPR NEWS ALL THINGS CONSIDERED
TODAY, FRIDAY, AUGUST 31

PAULSON ON SUBPRIME MORTGAGE CRISIS:
“WE CAN’T MAKE THIS PROBLEM GO AWAY.
WE CAN’T KEEP EVERYONE IN THEIR HOME.”

EXCERPT BELOW; AUDIO TO BE AVAILABLE AT WWW.NPR.ORG


August 31, 2007; Washington, D.C. – Secretary of the Treasury Henry Paulson tells NPR’s Robert Siegel in an interview airing tonight on NPR News All Things Considered that the government will make an aggressive effort to help people refinance, but speaking about the subprime mortgage crisis says: “We can’t make this problem go away. We can’t keep everyone in their home. But we sure as heck can make a big effort to help those who have got the capability to own a home refinance. And what we’re going to do is make a big effort. And to me, success is helping as many people as possible.”

On the Treasury Department’s plan to work with HUD to assist borrowers, Secretary Paulson says: “Alfonso Jackson, the secretary of HUD, and my people at Treasury are going to begin working right away getting together groups of mortgage servicers, getting together those groups developing new product, getting together counseling groups, not-for-profits, and start the process as soon as possible, start right away to begin attempting to identify those home owners that are facing a problem, and identify them in advance, and so we might be able to contact them in advance and help them refinance.”

When asked if there should be limits on borrowing against home equity, Secretary Paulson says: "I don't think it’s my job or the government's job to tell anybody how much money they can borrow, what asset they should borrow against. People will from time to time make mistakes, we can't protect everyone against losses, but home ownership is important in this country and the vast majority of people in this country have big part of their net worth tied up in their homes. So this is an area we're all focused on, and again I think that is why the President was so proactive here in coming up with a program to address this very real problem."

All excerpts must be credited to NPR News All Things Considered. Television usage must include on-screen NPR News credit with NPR logo. The audio of the interview will be made available at www.NPR.org at approximately 7 PM (ET).

All Things Considered, NPR's signature afternoon news magazine, is hosted by Melissa Block, Michele Norris, and Robert Siegel and reaches 11.5 million listeners weekly. To find local stations and broadcast times, visit www.NPR.org