Posts Tagged ‘maxine waters’

Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) PAC Supports Former Hillary Clinton VP, Senator Tim Kaine, Other Anti-Trump Agenda Democrats

October 12th, 2018 Comments off


People can spin, but the unvarnished facts don’t lie.


The facts about the headline will be revealed further below, as we tee up this timely topic.  Follow the money.  Follow the facts. What the money trail and facts reveal may surprise you, and/or your colleagues.


Affordable Housing Is Non-Partisan

In recent reports, as for previous years, MHProNews has made it clear that manufactured homes – affordable housing – is a non-partisan issue.

There have been several times when leaders from the pre-HUD Code mobile home industry, and the post-HUD Code manufactured housing industry came together with members of both major parties to get important legislation done.

That kind of bipartisan or nonpartisan engagement is how ‘mobile homes’ morphed through federal standards into HUD Code manufactured housing. That effort was signed into law by President Gerald R. Ford (GOP-R).  ICYMI, or want a refresher, you can see the related report, linked below.


U.S. President Praised “The Mobile Home Industry,” Manufactured Homes are “Here to Stay”


Prior to POTUS Ford, President Richard M. Nixon promoted federally backed loans for mobile homes, in the pre-HUD Code home era.  Again, as a refresher or ICYMI, see that report, shown below.

Help Others “Get It” – Loans on “Mobile Homes” Promoted by Another U.S. President


The first full year of the HUD Code took place during President Jimmy Carter’s (D) administration (1977).  Carter’s brother Bill filled some higher profile roles for companies he served a few years later in manufactured housing.

U.S. Presidents Carter, Nixon, and Ford Connections to Mobile Homes and Manufactured Housing

MHProNews has lead-the-way in factory-built housing spotlighting reality, be it highly partisan divides, or bipartisanship by a wide margin.


Who Says Bipartisanship is Dead? House Passes Massive “JOBS & Investor Confidence Act” S 488 by 406 to 4 Vote

We strive to cite sources across the left-right media divide, and let reality speak.

Affordable Housing, Manufactured Homes, Bipartisanship, Bill, Newt, Sexual Scandals, and You


Having Established the Factual Track Record…

That said, it’s important for the manufactured housing industry’s professionals to understand what’s happened in America until-2000 and what’s happened since 2001 are strikingly different experiences.

While there is still bipartisanship, such as S 2155, there was arguable neglect of good laws on the books laws since 2000 under both Democrats and Republicans. But much of the more serious harm done to manufactured housing occurred during the POTUS Barack H. Obama Administration era.  The importance of reports like the one below paint a picture that investors and long-term professionals should grasp.  Because government action or inaction impacts your business day-by-day.

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, From Mobile Home Resident to Manufactured Home Communities Owner, & Manufactured Housing Institute Leader


Heavy regulation – coupled with purported capital manipulation – during the Obama years were debatably part of what drove thousands of businesses out of business.  There is a stark contrast between the prior 8 years under former President Obama, and the first 21 months of the POTUS Donald J. Trump Administration.

Danny Glover, Presidents Barack Obama & Donald Trump, Promises Kept, and Affordable Manufactured Housing


While MHI understandably wants to work with both sides of the political aisle, they have also to admit that their own former government relations vice president publicly said in an exclusive to MHProNews that there was essentially no chance for Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act pass with Mr. Obama in the White House. Then why were millions spent by MHI, focusing on an issue – Preserving Access – that their own GR VP said had no chance?

2012 Election Results and Coming Lame Duck Session


Why Is MHI Backing Prominent Anti-Trump Candidates in Some Key Races?

According to Open Secrets, there is evidence that MHI has been supporting key Democratic candidates in tight races over Republican ones.


For example, some of those supported candidates are in key races for control of the U.S. Senate.

They include, but may not be limited to:

  • Sherrod Brown – (OH-D)
  • Joe Donnelly – (IN-D)
  • Kyrsten Sinema, (AZ-D) and
  • Jon Tester (MT-D)


Can MHI explain the logic of MHI PAC money payments to Maxine Waters?


Or where was the logic in MHI PAC giving a “top contributor member” – per Open Secrets – to Barney Frank, co-author of the bill Dodd-Frank, that arguably harmed many industry members, and consumers?


There is much more, but those should drive home this point. Where was or is the logic of the MHI PAC giving big contributions to those who oppose the interests of small to mid-sized manufactured housing industry companies? How does cutting off market-place options, or killing jobs, help consumers and taxpayers?


MHI and Elizabeth Warren

MHI may be tipping their Berkshire Hathaway hand once more, but putting out a message to their members last week, apparently promoting a program by Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA-D).  Warren was a strong supporter of the creation and protection of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and Dodd-Frank.

Facts & Analysis – Senator Elizabeth Warren re: Manufactured Housing Institute Memo to MHI Members, 10-3-2018

By Contrast, while MHI members were being treated in 2016 to two paid pro-Clinton speakers at their Chicago event, just days before the election, MHProNews worked over-time in 2016 to promote the election of a pro-growth, pro-jobs, pro-business president.


Warren Buffett, and several of his mega-billionaire friends are open supporters of Democrats like Elizabeth Warren (MA-D), Sec Hillary Clinton (D), and former President Barack H. Obama (D). While some obviously will be happy about this, there are thousands of small to mid sized manufactured housing professionals who would find it objectionable to understand the purported ties between MHI, Berkshire Hathaway, and the regulations that have hobbled the industry.


While the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) paid for two pro-Clinton speakers in the closing days before the 2016 election, the Kovach family supported Donald J. Trump’s candidacy as the best for the industry, small business and hundreds of millions of Americans. One of those stories ended up on the president’s campaign website, and hundreds of conservative and pro-Trump websites.

The Masthead features an analysis of what’s happening in the run-up to the midterms, which are now only 4 weeks out.

Truth, Trump, Tragedy, Triumph, Affordable Housing, and Manufactured Homes

Four states, says MSNBC,  already have early voting underway.

With other forms of robotic, 3D printing, and other kinds of imported factory-built housing emerging, HUD Code manufactured housing professionals need to be thinking strategically in their votes for the midterm.  The polling shows that several races in the Senate are now tilting Republican. But the House is still considered a toss-up.

Turnout will decide, as it always does.  Trump supporters shocked the world in 2016.  Will they do so again in 2020? Will the de facto endorsement of people like Kanye West continue to move more minority voters into the Trump camp?

Risk Taking! Kanye West, Jim Brown, POTUS Trump Oval Office Meeting, Plus MH Market Updates

Every race is about not just money, but in the end, about votes.

Democrats have more money, as MHProNews has previously documented.  Democrats have more money because they have more and richer billionaire backers, including Warren Buffett and his buddy Bill Gates.

But voting for pro-Trump candidates is how the continuation of regulatory rollback and tax-cuts made permeant can take place.  It’s what organizations like the NFIB is working for with their manufactured housing, and 325,000 other small business members.  Do your home-work, help inform others, and vote. ICYMI, or need a refresher, check out the related reports, further below.


Non-Partisan MHARR

By contrast, MHARR is non-partisan.  They have no PAC.  But they have repeatedly supported the pro-growth, Trump agenda. A year ago, they gave the industry this heads up in this video interview.


Check out MHARR’s latest call to remove the barriers that harm our industry. 

MHARR Calls on HUD To Remove Zoning, Placement and Consumer Financing Barriers to Manufactured Homes

Editorially, MHProNews has formally supported the Trump pro-growth agenda since the spring of 2016.  MHProNews believes in working towards reforms that reduce the regulatory barriers and market manipulations that have harmed the small to mid-sized companies of our industry, that limits choices by consumers, and thus harms the nation.


The comment above was said with respect to another recent topic, but relates to this issue too.

We follow the evidence, facts, statements, and money, for the sake of a brighter manufactured housing industry future. Only the truth will set us free. “We Provide, You Decide.” © (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Warren Buffett Would be Okay With Clayton Homes Losing Money, Says Kevin Clayton – But Why?

President Donald J. Trump Visit to Manufactured Home Community, Video, Hurricane Florence Update

“A New Era of Cooperation and Coordination,” is Promised by HUD Secretary Carson, Saying “I Hear You”

Greener, Stylish Manufactured Homes – Hidden Facts in the Washington Post Manufactured Housing Narrative


NBC Video – Federal Authorities Investigating Clayton Homes, Maxine Waters Denounces Lending “Discrimination” Against Minorities

October 9th, 2018 Comments off


If you thought it was over for Clayton Homes and their Berkshire Hathaway affiliated lending units with federal officials, mainstream media and other sources are telling the Daily Business News on MHProNews that it’s not.



WBIR, an NBC News affiliate, said Federal authorities are involved in an ongoing investigating of Clayton Homes for possibly discriminatory action against minority borrowers.



It’s not all a ‘new story’ to MHVille. But it is a continuation of the same or new issues that the Seattle Times, BuzzFeed News, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Guru Focus, the Nation, and other mainstream media outlets have spotlighted in 2018, or previously.


Still from the NBC WBIR 2018 video posted above.

This report posted above by a local Tennessee NBC news affiliate doesn’t include Clayton’s denial of the allegation.  But in fairness, other sources have told MHProNews that Clayton later denied the charges.  They said in part that numerous routine audits have turned up nothing.


Still from NBC WBIR news affiliate 2018 video, posted above.


But their denial statement is arguably misleading, per other mainstream media, Washington D.C. regulators, and manufactured housing industry sources.


Austin Frerick is a research fellow at Open Markets, a non-profit focused on problems related to monopolies.

MHProNews has heard directly from federal officials, as well as private attorneys, that are exploring these issues, as well as antitrust, or other concerns.


Austin Frerick is a fellow with Open Markets, an anti-trust (anti-monopoly) nonprofit organization.

Some have told the Daily Business News that many who have been through such federal investigations or civil procedures already know. These investigations and procedures can take time.


Rephrased, there can be a quiet before the storm breaks.



Two Sides of the Clayton Allegations Coin

As MHProNews has said, in America, allegations alone are not proof. Thankfully, in the U.S., one is deemed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law, via a settlement, or plea agreement, etc.

At the same time, the other side of the coin is that Clayton has previously admitted to having paid fines in connection with this ongoing allegations and media scandal.

While denying intent, both Warren Buffett and his colleague at Berkshire Hathaway – Vice Chairman Charlie Munger – have said that they don’t doubt that ‘someone, somewhere has done something wrong.’


Berkshire’s Munger’s statement to CNN Money of denial, while admitting in his own words that ‘something indeed could have happened with someone somewhere,’ is posted above.


Why It Matters to MHVille

For those who recall the glory days of much higher levels of manufactured home sales, rationale people should ask questions like the following.

  • Why is manufactured housing underperforming?
  • Why is the public perception so poor, in spite of an overall record of quality and home owner satisfaction?
  • Isn’t the steady drum beat of such reports about Clayton or MHI part of the problem?

See some related reports, linked below. We Provide, You Decide.” © (News, analysis, and commentary.)

  1. Footnote: The home shown is a manufactured home, not a mobile home. Also, the community is not a ‘trailer park,’ it is more properly a land lease community for manufactured homes.

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FEDs, MHI, Buffett’s Berkshire’s Clayton Homes Moat, Affordable Housing, and Billion$ in Manufactured Home Market Manipulation


Truth, Trump, Tragedy, Triumph, Affordable Housing, and Manufactured Homes

Barack Obama, Maxine Waters, President Donald J. Trump, Amway, and Manufactured Housing

June 26th, 2018 Comments off


Prologue. Though manufactured housing is a multi-billion dollar industry, the experiences of the last 15 years (+/-) have proven just how vulnerable the industry is to outside political and economic forces.


It’s thus prudent for the industry’s professionals and investors to at least be broadly aware of whatever the political and economic trends are.

To the extent that a person can influence others, professionals should consider doing so, to help guide and support the still-recovering HUD Code manufactured home industry’s prospects. That may be as simple as sharing a link to an article, by direct engagement with others, or through personal political and professional action, and so on.


The Broad Brush That MH Operates In

The divisions in America are mirrored in divides over views about manufactured homes (MH). and within the manufactured housing.  

Those splits among the people involve and influence our much needed factory-crafted home industry. They are challenges which are opportunities in disguise.

In turn, federally regulated HUD Code manufactured homes could significantly influence domestic politics, rather than be carried away by them. Amway is a living metaphor for how that could occur.  

There are lessons to learn too from past and current Presidents Barack H. Obama, Donald J. Trump, and Congressional Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA). 

Background. Every day a steady flood of news items from various federal agencies, an array of trade groups (NFIB, NAR, NAHB, NAR, NAM, MHARR, MHI, etc.), and private companies comes into the Daily Business News on MHProNews. Just reading what comes daily that influences or has meaning for our manufactured home industry could be more than a full time job. Curating that flood of potential content is both art and science. No one else in MHVille trade publishing – besides our platforms – even attempts to try.  

That automatically gives us real pressures, and potential advantages, to influence events.

Rephrased, MHProNews can go beyond mere reporting on X – toward influencing what others think, see, and believe with respect to Manufactured Homes and Communities. 

The one thing that is similar between all the for-profit and association trade voices that barrage the industry’s investors and professionals and MHProNews/MHLivingNews is the following.


All media have an agenda. That should beg the next question. Is the agenda of the media you read one that helps or harms your own interests?


The Amway Analogy. With that background – and before considering Presidents Obama and Trump or Rep. Waters – consider Amway as an analogy for manufactured housing professionals to ponder.  

Millions of Americans are customers of Amway, and/or have been in their untold army of independent distributors over the years. Like manufactured housing, Amway has their supporters and detractors.


Rich DeVos is the spouse of Besty DeVos, and the co-founder of Amway. 

Those in Amway see themselves as often misunderstood, but rather as a force for good. There are thus certain parallels between the Amway, and manufactured housing professions.


This is analysis, pure and simple. Facts simply are.

Yet in spite of the wide divide in public views about Amway, Betsy DeVos – spouse of Amway heir Richard “Dick” DeVos – is a cabinet member in the Trump Administration. One of several possible takeaways for manufactured housing industry professionals is that Amway found numerous ways to break through their fog to a get onto a bigger stage.

All analogies limp to some degree. This brief analogy with Amway is but the tip of an iceberg, which offers manufactured housing industry professionals useful lessons.  

Each industry – MH or theirs – has far greater potential that either previously acquired. But Amway earned a valuable seat at the big Cabinet level table. What about MH?

What else can MHVille pros, advocates, and investors learn from Amway? 



Maxine Waters and Barack Obama 

The MH Industry is deeply influenced by Washington, D.C. and national politics. It therefore pays to understand the forces that control our industry’s potential to such a significant degree.  

One may or may not agree with Nathan Smith’s political or business views to recognize that he’s prudent to be engaged in politics. He’s right too in saying that the industry’s bigger national association has often failed to be pro-active.


It is time for MHVille professionals to be far more pro-active. 

This is a critical time in American politics. What will occur in the midterms will influence our industry, and thus your investments or interests.

Let’s take an objective (non-partisan) look at two of the many Democratic leaders.

The Democratic Party was transformed in several ways by Barack Obama.  

To consider but a few, the Democrats under former President Obama: 

   moved further to the political left,

   continued the Bill Clinton strategy of embracing the uber-rich, who they periodically postured as slamming their wealth, while giving those same billionaires and their wealthy and/or influential businesses tremendous access to the White House and other federal levers of money/power,

   and were widely embraced by the left-of-center media. 

Barack Obama achieved to a significant degree several of his personally stated goals.

Mr. Obama:  

   was for the political left a transformational president,

   has been as influential for Democrats as Ronald Reagan was for Republicans,

   achieved numerous political goals for his diverse base of supporters – like it or not – the list of Obama era changes could include gay marriage, Dodd-Frank, ObamaCare, transgender advocacy, a host of environmental, and other policy changes that shifted America and our nation’s culture to a significant degree.

By shifting the U.S., Mr. Obama also moved numerous events in the world.

The Democrats to large extent become the party of Mr. Obama. His absence has been felt by their party.


Former President Barack Obama has struck a deal with Netflix that will pay millions. He’s busy preparing for his presidential library. But reports indicate he is working behind the scenes for the Democratic party.  

Yet during the Obama years in the White House, the Democratic Party lost over 1,000 seats at the local, state and national level. And in under 18 months, President Donald J. Trump has swept away much of the Obama legacy, both foreign and domestic. These are serious reality checks for Democrats.

Among the voices that have taken a more prominent role in Democratic politics is Maxine Waters. While she has been politely corrected by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer for her weekend rant in front of several of her followers, the rant is instructive on several levels. See the video below, and compare and contrast her numbers with that of President Trump.



Compare and contrast how the interaction is between Congressional Rep Waters, and President Trump stump speech for South Carolina Governor Henry McMasters. Compare too the messages. Which voice is better for a civil, prosperous society? 

New York magazine recently ran a cover asking, where is Barack Obama? Democrats are a party seeking leadership. President Trump flipped some 200 counties that voted for Barack Obama and later voted for Donald J. Trump.  

Clinton campaign and Democratic strategist Doug Schoen are among Democratic voices that are worried that their party is adrift, having become too progressive. Schoen also believes Dems have largely become the party of anti-Trump. The linked report can be read later for more details.

Doug Schoen, Clinton Adviser, warns – “Democrats must advance an agenda…to create a society of opportunity for all – not guaranteed outcomes achieved through wealth redistribution.”


POTUS Donald J. Trump 

The 45th President of the United States (POTUS) Donald J. Trump has taken an unlikely path to the White House. Barack Obama’s resume was thin before becoming an Illinois politico, U.S. Senator, and then President.  

But President Trump’s political resume might at a glance seem even thinner. Never holding or attempting a run at prior public office, he rode down the Golden Escalator in Trump Tower three years ago, gave a widely panned speech, and is arguably the most powerful visible political figure on earth today.  

The businessman, builder, and entertainment professional Trump has and still does use all of his experiences to achieve his own stated goals. The right-of-center Heritage Foundation says he is more successful at this point in his presidency than conservative icon Ronald Reagan was.  

Watch when you can – if you’ve not seen them already – the videos posted in this article. Because each one reveals much.  

For example, look at the connection that President Trump’s supporters have with the man.

The president has proven in less than 18 months in office what pro-business, pro-growth policies can achieve. His policies have arguably benefited the economy, and manufactured housing – both directly, and indirectly.

The 45th Chief Executive of the U.S. has been limited by some in his own GOP party, who at times resist the president’s methods and style as much as Democrats do.

Both the Democratic and Republican Parties are no longer the party they once were 10, 20, or 30 years ago. While clearly different, Mr. Obama and Mr. Trump are transforming, disruptive figures.  



Each home shown above is a manufactured home.  The industry has for whatever reasons overall done an arguably poor job of education and self-promotion, and has for decades. Thanks to the support of few, the facts, experts and home owners stories about modern manufactured homes can be learned in detail, as this link here.

The Industry’s Choice

The midterms are coming up fast.

As a political independent, this writer notes that the Democrats – to the extent they are talking about something beyond opposing President Trump – are apparently favoring: 

   taking back the tax cuts,

   protecting and expanding ObamaCare into “Medicare for all,” meaning full blown socialized medicine,

   restoring the power of the CFPB,

   impeachment of the president on any pretext they can find,

   and other environmental, social, and other issues in the vein of the Obama era.


So, if you liked the impact of the Obama Administration’s policies had on your business, the MH industry, the economy, deficits, and debts, you better get busy supporting the #resistance. 


Trump supporters at the White House – Kid Rock, left, Sarah Palin and Ted Nugent (right). Credit: Truth Examiner.

Many once never-Trump Republicans have slowly embraced his results, even if they disagree with his style or methods.  Polling suggests that POTUS #45’s approval with party members is around 90 percent.

The Democrats and their media allies have at times taken positions different than they once supported. The party of Trump is largely a populist, working, and middle class party. The blue collar Democrats are often supporting the policies of POTUS Trump.

No president in American history had so much negative media, even in cases of obvious success. With some 90 percent of the mainstream media reports opposing him and his policies, the president’s approval ratings are as high as Barack Obama’s or Ronald Reagan’s were at this point of his presidency.  

Astonishing, but true. 

It’s all instructive and necessary for forward thinking manufactured housing industry professionals, advocates, and investors to consider. Our industry can learn much from Mr.  Trump, and from Amway.


Manufactured Housing’s Balance of Power? 

With an estimated 22 million Americans living in pre-HUD Code mobile homes or post-HUD Code manufactured homes, the industry is capable of significant influence. 

Research by the New York Times and MHProNews in 2016 suggested that our industry’s residents tilt toward President Trump. Among those who vote, our estimate at the time was about 52 percent favored Mr. Trump vs. 47 percent for Secretary Hillary Clinton.  

Our industry’s residents are in many ways a readily identifiable group that could in tight races be the swing voters.  

Furthermore, given the powerful insights from the affordable housing crisis and YIMBY-NIMBY, the MH Industry could prove to be a powerful forces for transformational personal and national economic advancement. But that will occur only with growth focused leadership.

With a clear-eyed understanding of itself and the broader political landscape, the industry that HUD Secretary Ben Carson called “amazing!” – today’s manufactured homes – could be poised for greater days. But that is only going to occur if we act with clarity of thought and determined vision. ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Leadership and Manufactured Housing. Collage design by MHProNews.

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President Trump Spotlights Factory Home Builder in Speech, Proven Promotion, Support of Industry Advancement

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Plot Twist – Duty to Serve – Freddie Mac CEO Layton Called to Accountability w/Congressional, Administration Leaders Over New Manufactured Home Lending Revelations

March 5th, 2018 Comments off

The Duty to Serve (DTS) program for manufactured housing industry retailers, communities and potential home buyers took what may be a problematic twist in news revealed, according to a memo obtained by the Daily Business News.


The memo to Donald H. Layton, Chief Executive Officer, Freddie Mac – one of the largest lenders in the nation, cc’d Congressional leaders and Trump Administration officials as follows:

  • Hon. Michael Crapo
  • Hon. Sherrod Brown
  • Hon. Jeb Hensarling
  • Hon. Maxine Waters
  • Hon. Jeff Sessions
  • Hon. Mick Mulvaney
  • Hon. Gary Cohn
  • Hon. Melvin Watt

The memo said that, “At a February 26, 2018 telephone conference meeting of the MHIT, Freddie Mac representative, Ms. Simone Beatty, indicated, for the first time, that Freddie Mac plans to pursue implementation of a “pilot program” — on an expedited basis (i.e., during June and July 2018) — for loans on an undefined “new class” of manufactured homes, apparently based on the exclusionary (i.e., limited to MHI members) / proprietary MHI “new class” of manufactured home research and development activity.”

The MHIT meetings are supposed to be confidential, sources tell MHProNews. 

But when the Daily Business News inquired, how can an important public policy matter like this that impacts thousands of businesses be kept confidential?’ no reasonable response has come forward from any source yet.

Secrecy over DTS regulations defies common sense.  MHProNews has called on the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) and the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) to produce all minutes from all meetings, for complete transparency in a process that critics say has notably provided Berkshire Hathaway lenders with a windfall every year that the program has been delayed.


Per the memo, obtained today by MHProNews, and linked here and here as a download, says in part:


“...a participant in Freddie Mac’s “Manufactured Housing Initiative Task Force” (MHIT), has learned that Freddie Mac apparently plans to divert an unspecified portion of its already minimal and wholly inadequate support of the manufactured housing market under DTS to a so-called “new class” of manufactured homes which is currently being researched and developed on an exclusionary, proprietary basis by the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), under the direction and authority of a control group comprised, in relevant part, of executives of the industry’s three largest manufacturers.”

As noted, the memo CC’d key Washington leaders, concludes by saying:

For Freddie Mac, after ten years of inaction on DTS, followed by a blatantly inadequate DTS implementation plan, to now even consider diverting any aspect or portion of DTS to a “new class” of proprietary, high-priced, non-affordable manufactured home, is indefensible, inexcusable, in direct defiance of DTS, and unacceptable,” said Mark Weiss, President and CEO of the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR). Weiss says MHARR will take any and all steps necessary to see that this rerouting of DTS monies won’t go to the controversial, so-called ‘new class’ of manufactured homes.

FHFA Publishes Fannie Mae’s and Freddie Mac’s Underserved Markets Plans for Duty to Serve (DTS) Program

Once more, the link to the full memo is here, or is available here as a downloadable PDF of the document provided. ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)


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Keith Anderson, CEO Champion Homes, MHI ‘New Class’ Monopoly Concerns Memo, ‘Harms Owners, Independents’

Wisconsin Housing Alliance – an MHI ‘Affiliate’ – Amy Bliss’ Messages Raise New Anti-Trust Issue

Duty To Serve, “Complete Waste of Time” per Tim Williams, CEO/21st Mortgage; POTUS Trump, Warren Buffett Insight$

Manufactured Housing’s “Trojan Horse”

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Kinzler, Gallagher on Congressman Keith Ellison, the MH Industry, and Manufactured Home Communities

October 20th, 2017 Comments off

ProgressiveStarCongressmanUSRepDemocraticNationalViceChairKeithEllisonOfficialPhotoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsCongressman Keith Ellison (D-MN-5) is a rising star in the Democratic Party.

Ellison’s not been without controversy among his peers.

While today’s focus is his proposal that will impact manufactured home communities and other elements of the industry, some background on Representative Ellison and his interest in manufactured housing is warranted.

Rising Democratic Star, Keith Ellison

Ellison is viewed provocatively by many within manufactured housing industry circles. The reason?

It’s because of his joint call with some fellow Democrats, who formally asked federal officials at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), and the Department of Justice (DoJ) to release their findings to-date on their investigation of charges of racism, steering, and predatory lending by units of Berkshire Hathaway. See that related, exclusive Daily Business News report, linked here.

But Ellison’s willingness to boldly push for his progressive, left-wing agenda were among the factors that landed him the vice-chairmanship of the influential Democratic National Committee (DNC).


Beyond pushing to investigate what his Democratic colleague has referred to as the near monopoly” of Berkshire Hathaway‘s units in manufactured housing, Ellison is making his presence felt in other ways in the manufactured home industry.


U.S. Representatives Maxine Waters (D-CA), Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Mike Capuano (D-MA). Image credits, Twitter, Wikipedia.

While voices in Arlington, Omaha, Knoxville, and their allies want to ignore or brush off Ellison’s public moves, they do so at their own risk.

One need not look beyond the prior failure of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) to pass their Preserving Access bill – and the reasons why it failed – in the last congressional session.  Disregarding Ellison and others he’s aligned with, is to do so at the peril of the millions spent to date lobbying for their proposed changes to Dodd-Frank.

‘Heads in the sand’ won’t make a painful truth go away.

Ellison vs. MHI backed Preserving Access

Ellison and Maxine Waters (D-CA) were the opposition leaders to the MHI backed Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, which recently cleared the powerful Financial Services Committee, where Ellison is a member.

HR 1699, the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, by a bipartisan vote of 42 to 18,” stated NYHousing.

Of the 60 members on the [Financial Services] Committee, only two members spoke out against the bill. Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) expressed concerns that the bill will remove consumer protections,” the association’s statement said.

However meritorious the HR 1699 bill may be, what’s often missing in discussions elsewhere in the industry is that Waters and Ellison have already teed up their knockout punch, referenced above and once again, linked here.


See that in depth report on Ellison, Water’s efforts, linked here. 

It’s progressive political star Ellison who’s hunting for allegations of racism, steering, and predatory lending.  That, D.C. insiders say, will be the Waters/Ellison rallying cry.

Surprisingly, MHI and Berkshire Hathaway firms contacted have pointedly declined MHProNews invitation publicly condemn racism. Why not respond publicly via the industry’s most popular trade media, and denounce racism in a simple statement?

Expect Ellison, Waters and their allies to make that an issue in the mainstream media, per sources to the Daily Business News.

Against that context, this Daily Business News report now turns to Ellison’s own manufactured home industry focused legislation.

Cong. Ellison’s ShelterForce Op-Ed


The photo used in Ellison’s ShelterForce op-ed, with logos, added under fair use guidelines.

As the Daily Business News has previously reported at this link here, Ellison introduced a bill that has significant support among members of the manufactured home industry.

The Frank Adelmann Manufactured Housing Community Sustainability Act (H.R. 3296)

In support of that legislation, DNC Vice Chair Ellison penned an Op-Ed for ShelterForce, which reads today as the download – linked here – reflects.

Quoting from that column, Ellison begins with an impassioned plea.

Frank Adelmann was bereft when he received an eviction notice from Lowry Grove mobile home park,” Ellison stated. “At 59, he had no resources to move and could not afford another home. The day before the park was to close, Frank ended his life. He was one of ninety-five families who lost their homes. Kids, parents, veterans, and even seniors, some in their eighties, were evicted. Parents struggled, and mostly failed, to find a home they could afford in the same St. Anthony’s school district. And dozens who thought Lowry Grove would be the last home they lived in, suddenly had nowhere to go.”


Ross Kinzler, retired Executive Director of the Wisconsin Housing Alliance. Credits, MHProNews.

Regarding Ellison’s op-ed, award winning industry veteran, Ross Kinzler told MHProNews that, “The congressman acknowledges the problem right off the bat then promotes “cures” that ignore it.”

Brian Gallagher, Chief Operating and Financial Officer, of growing and respected Santefort Real Estate Group, LLC, took a more nuanced opening in his detailed reply to the Minnesota congressman.

After laying out their operation’s credentials, Gallagher wrote, “We share your concerns to ensure that the MH industry continues to provide quality affordable housing to over 22 (not 17) million Americans, all of them generally unsubsidized by government programs.”

Gallagher gives as an example of their manifest concern for their residents and prospective home owners.

Our company endeavors to be an example of best practices in responding to resident needs every day, including our offering of a 5% fixed financing rate to “Neighborhood Heroes” – Vets, nurses, teachers, and police/fire personnel,” Gallagher said in his letter to Ellison, that he then provided to MHProNews.

Ellison’s Stance

In Minnesota, ten mobile home communities have closed in the past twenty-five years, and no new ones have opened,” Ellison stated. “This uncertainty affects nearly 3 million Americans who are residents in the nation’s 50,000 [SIC] manufactured housing communities. While most of these people own their homes, they rent the land, which leaves them vulnerable to dramatic rent increases, arbitrary rules, and even eviction.


Notice: that the SIC was editorially added by MHProNews, because the likely closer estimate
for the number of communities is around 44,000.
This article will have an updated link on that controversial topic, by Monday.


Ellison’s point is that the problem is real, and he proposes to correct that through his H.R. 3296 legislation.

The Free Market Solution?

But Kinzler, who long lived in neighboring Wisconsin, believes Ellison’s proposed solution misses some key points.

Ten communities have closed in MN and no new ones built,” Kinzler tells MHProNews,What would the world look like if 25 to 100 new communities were built?  Supply and demand answers lots of questions.”

Kinzler added, “His [Ellison’s] “problems” are the creation of local government created shortages.”


Credits are as shown, to see the latest story on the Lowry Grove saga, click the image above. Note: the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) and their National Communities Council were contacted for comments, and provided none. Click here for that report

The Lasting, Painful Legacy of Magar Magar, and Lowry Grove?


Brian Gallagher. Credit: LinkedIn.

We acknowledge that bad actors exist in our industry, as they do in all, but they do not tell the whole story,” Gallagher’s letter and attachment – linked here at a download – to Ellison said.

From experience, professionals like Gallagher and other industry professionals know the impact that stories like Magar Magar – spotlighted by NPR – or Lowry Grove have on public officials and millions of Americans.

It was precisely the Lowry Grove community’s drama in Minnesota which sparked Ellison’s bill.

Gallagher, Kinzler and others are far from alone in saying that issues of image, misunderstandings, and “bad actors” need to be addressed by the industry and its members.

That may explain why Gallagher took pains to spell out in his letter to Ellison the good that they strive to do in their operation, and that most industry members strive to do the same.


That ‘there are good actors too’ theme is that ROC USA President and CEO, Paul Bradley sounds often.


A Santefort Neighborhood.  While the history on this particular property is not known to MHProNews, many investors are buying older communities, and are improving them. That’s private capital – free enterprise – at work to provide appealing, affordable, and quality homes. That routinely happens in manufactured housing without taxpayer subsidies.  Santefort website photo above, is provided under fair use guidelines.

But there are other voices who share a different viewpoint, believing that bad news should be overlooked, or ignored.

For example, the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) President and CEO, Dick Jennison, told MHProNews in writing that those who responded to the PBS NewsHour – and by inference, similarly negative stories – ”are either misguided or have a self-serving agenda.”

Seriously? Don’t industry members have the right to defend their profession’s reputation?  The full context of Jennison’s remark is in the screen capture, below.


Then MHI Chairman Tim Williams told MHProNews that, “We can also make a case to counter the segment addressing manufactured home site rent increase. No one from MHI was asked to comment on the segment and the allegation that consumers become trapped in their homes. The reporter did not make any effort to understand the cost of operating a manufactured home community and why those costs must be passed on to the tenants, even though MHI provided ample evidence and information to assist the reporter in his research.” Wouldn’t the insights Williams shared be useful for the media and public to know? The only reason the industry knows, is because MHProNews asked for and received William’s thoughtful comments. Those are linked, here

A related article to Jennison’s message are shown at this link here.

Gallagher Stresses Objective, vs. Emotional Response to MHC Issues

Any rental resident is subject to market and regulatory forces, as are the MHC operators. State laws generally govern rent increases, and very, very few, if any, MHC residents who are financially able to pay their rentfall asleep wondering if they’ll have a home in the morning.” wrote Gallagher; the italicized part was a quote from Ellison’s column, linked here.

Ironically,” Gallagher stated in his letter to Ellison, “as I trust you know, Lowry Grove appears to be on its way to become a modern MHC (see 10/14/17 Star Tribune article, attached).   Apparently, the town approved only 350 of the 700 units requested for the 15-acre site.  Time will tell how this ultimately turns out – but it is further support, in my opinion, for the proposition that “hard cases make bad law.”

Gallagher draws towards a conclusion by noting that Ellison is mistaken in opposing Preserving Access.

Finally, your column also mentioned your effort to oppose proposed legislation which would “exempt manufactured housing sales people from the CFPB licensing requirements’.  This proposal is intended to correct the misfit between the SAFE Act, designed for traditional single-family home/condo sales and financing, and the standard operating procedures of the manufactured housing industry, which, as you mention constitutes 50,000 communities housing 22 million residents,” Gallagher said.

The law does not relieve loan originators from compliance, or dilute borrower protections, but allows MH sales people the ability to discuss financing alternatives with applicants in the absence of brokers and third-party lender without fear of non-compliance with federal regulations.   This will facilitate transactions without sacrificing the protections of the CFPB,Gallagher noted.

Again, Ellison’s full column is linked here, and Gallagher’s response is linked here. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, Analysis.)

Related: this video below debunks many of the stereotypes, through an interview with a now retired official who served at both the CFPB and HUD.

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

SoheylaKovachManufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews-Submitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for

(Note: Soheyla Kovach is a co-founder of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC – the parent to and – and is a managing member.)

Is it Judgment Day for the CFPB?

May 24th, 2017 Comments off

What is the fate for the CFPB? Credit: Journal IE.

Today is a big day in the history of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), as it heads to an appeals court in a case brought by PHH Corp.

That case could completely reshape the organization.

As Daily Business News readers are already aware, critics of the CFPB point to leadership structure, data collection and so-called “trophy wins” as issues that need to be addressed. A D.C. Circuit Court ruled that the CFPB was unconstitutional, in the legal action brought by PHH.

The court ruled that the CFPB’s structure was constitutionally flawed and that its director should be removable at the will of the president.

In advance of today’s hearing, the House Financial Services Committee, led by Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) debated the future of the Financial CHOICE Act during a hearing on April 26th.

Originally introduced by Hensarling in 2016, the CHOICE Act included a proposal to replace the CFPB with a five-member bipartisan commission that would be subject to congressional oversight and appropriations.


Jeb Hensarling. Credit:

The Financial CHOICE Act re-establishes this rogue agency as a civil enforcement agency, patterned after the Federal Trade Commission. One that is responsible for actually enforcing the enumerated consumer protection laws written by Congress, instead of making up its own law in an unfair, deceptive, and abusive manner,” said Hensarling.

True consumer protection is only to be had in competitive, transparent and innovative markets which are vigorously policed for fraud and deception. That’s what the Financial CHOICE Act is all about.”

And, both experts and other politicians had their say on the matter at the hearing.

The CFPB is an unaccountable federal agency, as exemplified in the case PHH Corp., et al. v. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” said Norbert Michel, senior research fellow, Financial Regulations and Monetary Policy Institute for Economic Freedom and Opportunity at The Heritage Foundation.


Credits: Flickr, CFPB, PHH.

The PHH incident is a clear-cut case of an unaccountable federal agency flouting the basic principles of the rule of law. Private firms—financial or otherwise—cannot safely operate in such an environment without the expectation of being wrongly persecuted by the government that is supposed to protect all of its citizens from such actions.”

Congress can do even better by consolidating the various consumer financial protection statutes under one existing federal agency, such as the [Federal Trade Commission.]

Another Texas Republican was more to the point.

The CFPB is one of the most unacceptable and unaccountable agencies in the United States,” said Rep. Roger Williams. “This is what Dodd-Frank gave us and that is why it is so important to fix this disastrous law.”


A View From the Other Side…


Senator Sherrod Brown. Official photo.

Recent motions filed by U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), argued that Congress wanted a single director for the agency, because lawmakers who drafted the Dodd-Frank Act, which established the CFPB,understood that the nation needed a regulator that could respond quickly and effectively to new threats to consumers … and it knew that the CFPB’s effectiveness could be hampered by the delay and gridlock to which commissions are susceptible.”

Sixteen state attorney generals and the District of Columbia also filed a motion, defending the CFPB in its current incarnation.

As the representatives of millions of citizens across the country, the state attorneys general have used their express statutory authority to bring civil actions to enforce consumer financial protection laws and to pursue regulatory actions in coordination with the CFPB to protect consumers against unfair, deceptive and abusive financial practices,” the motion said.


Representative Maxine Waters. Credit: Wikipedia

The current ruling, if permitted to stand, will undermine the power of the state attorneys general to effectively protect consumers against abuse in the consumer finance industry.” 


Could MHI Have Killed the CFPB? Another Opportunity Missed?

As we reported here, prior to the close of filings, MHProNews asked the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) if they would be filing an amicus brief in the closely followed PHH vs. CFPB case.

Several operations and organizations have been among those who filed an amicus brief in the case. Was MHI among those organizations?

MHProNews sources say no, and MHI won’t comment.


Frank Rolfe.

The folks at MHI – the industry lobby group – are nice people, but what’s with the concept of silence is golden? Negative articles on the industry are met with ‘no comment.’ Positive news opportunities are met with ‘no comment.’ I’ve never seen anything like it,” says Frank Rolfe.

When you refuse to talkit looks to the public like an admission of guilt, and when you refuse to promote your product it looks like you are embarrassed by it.”

Silence, according to Rolfe, isn’t golden.

The appearance, per Rolfe, is that someone – in this case, MHI – is hiding something.


The View From the MH Industry


A tweet from Senator Bob Sasse.

While the CFPB had the support of the Obama Administration, the Trump Administration has had the organization in its crosshairs since the election.

Those in the industry have not been shy about their feelings on the matter.

The information on this case also has indirect ramifications for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), and others in the industry, as the Preserving Access bill is being floated, which would modify portions of Dodd-Frank.

For more on what the Preserving Access bill means for the industry, check out the latest article on The Masthead.


The Daily Business News will continue to follow the hearing and provide updates.

For more on the CFPB’s impact on the manufactured housing industry, click here. ##


(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)



RC Williams, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.


(Copyright Notice: This and all content on MHProNews and MHLivingNews always have been and are Copyrighted, © 2017 by a dba of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC – All Rights Reserved. No duplication is permitted without specific written permission. Headlines with link-backs are of course ok. A short-quoted clip, with proper attribution and link back to the specific article are also ok – but you must send a notice to of the exact page you’ve placed/posted such a use, once posted.)

Decisions in CFPB Appeal

February 8th, 2017 Comments off

Credits: Housingwire, CFPB.

A major blow was delivered to those who were working to defend the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last week, when a federal appeals court denied their motions.

According to Pay Before, the same three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit that determined the CFPB structure was unconstitutional in October 2016, denied appeals in the PHH Corp. vs. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau case.

In the decision, which was covered by the Daily Business News here, the court determined the CFPB is controlled by a “single, unaccountable, unchecked director, Richard Cordray, who can only be removed for just-cause, which poses the risk of arbitrary decision-making and abuse of power compared to a multimember independent agency.


Senator Sherrod Brown. Official photo.

The circuit court ultimately ruled that the CFPB could continue operating, but that the director can now be replaced at will.

Recent motions filed by U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), argued that Congress wanted a single director for the agency, because lawmakers who drafted the Dodd-Frank Act, which established the CFPB, “understood that the nation needed a regulator that could respond quickly and effectively to new threats to consumers … and it knew that the CFPB’s effectiveness could be hampered by the delay and gridlock to which commissions are susceptible.


Representative Maxine Waters. Credit: Wikipedia

Sixteen state attorney generals and the District of Columbia also filed a motion, defending the CFPB in its current incarnation.

As the representatives of millions of citizens across the country, the state attorneys general have used their express statutory authority to bring civil actions to enforce consumer financial protection laws and to pursue regulatory actions in coordination with the CFPB to protect consumers against unfair, deceptive and abusive financial practices,” the motion said.

The current ruling, if permitted to stand, will undermine the power of the state attorneys general to effectively protect consumers against abuse in the consumer finance industry.

Public interest groups, including the Americans for Financial Reform, Center for Responsible Lending, Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, and Maeve Brown, chairperson of the CFPB’s consumer advisory board also filed a joint motion in support of the CFPB, which they decided to do after President Trump put the organization, and Dodd-Frank, in the crosshairs for major changes.

President Trump has voiced strong opposition to the Dodd-Frank reforms that created the CFPB,” according to the group’s motion.


Still from an Inside MH video, reflecting how Richard Cordray himself said that there was never much high cost lending in the manufactured housing industry market. Click here or on the picture above for the full story.

President Trump started the process of dismantling Dodd-Frank in an executive order signed on February 3rd.

Following the court’s October panel decision that the CFPB structure is unconstitutional, the bureau filed a petition in November for a rehearing before the entire appellate court.

Had the circuit court granted the motions last week to intervene, the groups would have been able to submit briefs supporting the CFPB’s structure in the event of a rehearing of the case.


President Barack Obama announces the nomination of Richard Cordray as the first director of the CFPB on July 18, 2011. Credit: Wikipedia.

According to one attorney, that would have been unprecedented.

In my entire career, I have never heard of someone trying to intervene at the Court of Appeals level related to a petition for rehearing,” said Alan S. Kaplinsky, partner, Ballard Spahr LLP.

PHH sued CFPB Director Richard Cordray after the agency issued an order against the lender for $109 million over an alleged kickback scheme around reinsurance payments. The CFPB accused PHH of referring customers to mortgage insurers who, in turn, bought reinsurance from one of PHH’s units.

The Daily Business News will continue to follow developments around the CFPB and update this story as information becomes available. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)


RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Cordray Defiant, Says Trump Won’t Change Agency

January 28th, 2017 Comments off

Richard Cordray walks into a Treasury hearing. Credit: LA Times.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Director Richard Cordray has finally spoken in the wake of President Trump’s inauguration, per the LA Times.

And he’s not pulling any punches.

The new administration really shouldn’t change the job at all,” said Cordray at a forum held by the Wall Street Journal.


We’re expected to work with different administrations of different points of view. We have … an independent mandate to do what we do and we will continue working to protect consumers.

Cordray has said in the past that he has no intention of stepping down. His term ends in 2018.

As Daily Business News readers are aware, the Trump Administration has sent clear signals that Dodd-Frank is in the crosshairs for parts of the legislation to be rolled back, or repealed.


A tweet from Senator Bob Sasse.

After the election, Republican Senators Bob Sasse (Neb.) and Mike Lee (Utah) penned a strongly worded letter to then Vice President-elect Mike Pence, urging then President-elect Donald Trump to remove Cordray.

It’s time to fire King Richard,” said Sasse.

Underneath the CFPB’s Orwellian acronym is an attack on the American idea that the people who write our laws are accountable to the American people. President-elect Trump has the authority to remove Mr. Cordray and that’s exactly what the American people deserve.”

The Daily Business News has also followed the CFPB saga closely, including their involvement in the Wells Fargo case and a D.C. circuit court ruling that deemed the organization unconstitutional due to it’s lack of independent oversight.

Senator Mike Lee touched on the importance of the unconstitutional ruling.

The Constitution was written to protect the American people from unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats, said Lee.

Considering the damage CFPB has done to credit unions and community banks, President Trump should act quickly to remove the director.

CFPB Dir. Richard_Cordray_c-span2__credit postedDaily BusinessNewsMHProNews

Credit: CSPAN2.

Within a week of the letter from Sasse and Lee, Democrats came to Cordray’s defense.

Do not tell Richard Cordray he’s fired,” said Senator Chuck Schumer (NY).


Senator Sherrod Brown. Official photo.

Firing Cordray might be part of the billionaire agenda, but removing him and gutting the consumer bureau would shatter Trump’s promise,” said Senator Sherrod Brown (OH), who is the ranking Democrat on the Senate Banking Committee.

Senators Schumer and Brown have now been joined by Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Los Angeles) and 37 other members of the Congressional Black Caucus in the effort stop action on Cordray.

In a letter to President Trump on Tuesday, they wrote that they “would strongly oppose” any attempt to remove Cordray and “would view such an action as an illegitimate abuse of power.

Director Cordray has done nothing to give the necessary cause for his removal from office,” wrote the lawmakers.


Representative Maxine Waters. Credit: Wikipedia

Communities of color and, indeed, all consumers in America will benefit from having director Cordray remain in his position and continue to independently implement the mandates imposed upon him by Congress as the director of the CFPB.

While the CFPB is credited with taking actions to protect consumers, most notably in the Wells Fargo case, those who have followed the history of the CFPB understand that the CFPB was not the lead agency in the case and during the time the events took place in 2011, the CFPB charter basically only allowed it to police the activity of big banks.

It did not catch the Wells Fargo activity at that time.



Parody of CFPB logo – credit, Plus 1 Properties. Cartoon credit, MHProNews.

Cordray also commented about whether he would fight an attempt by Trump to fire him.


MHProNews Sponsor, for more information, click the banner above.

I was nominated and then confirmed by the Senate to serve a term,” said Cordray.

All the independent federal regulatory agencies have terms that overlap one administration or another. That’s meant to preserve their independence.

That’s important because without the independence you end up mired in partisan politics, the big-money special interests … will try to dictate results.

For a deep dive into the CFPB, Dodd-Frank and their adverse effects on the manufactured housing industry, click here. ##


(Image credits are as shown above.)


RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Senate Passes Bill to Allow MH Purchase with Section 8 Vouchers

July 15th, 2016 Comments off

Manufactured Housing Institute loge-credit-Manufactured Housing Institute-postedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsThe Senate has passed H. R. 3700, as the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) informs MHProNews, the Housing Opportunity through Modernization Act (HOTMA), which will allow Section 8 vouchers to be used for the purchase of a manufactured home (MH). The House of Representatives passed the legislation in February, and President Obama is expected to sign it into law.

An amendment offered by Representative Peter Welch (D-VT) was added on the House floor—by voice vote– that allows Section 8 not only for the purchase of MH but also for leasing the land, mortgage payments, property tax and insurance.

This change would actually allow families to purchase a home instead of using their Section 8 voucher to rent an apartment. While the measure does not provide any direct funds or require anyone to use a voucher to live in an MH, it gives the 2.1 million Section 8 voucher holders the option to use their voucher to acquire a manufactured home.

The amendment was supported by House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), and ranking member Maxine Waters (D-CA). The main thrust of H. R. 3700 is to improve the quality of life for public housing residents, cut program costs, encourage work and expand homeownership opportunities.

MHI was a part of a coalition of more than 40 housing and advocacy groups advocating for Senate passage of this legislation, including other manufactured housing professionals, and states it has worked for over a decade urging passage of these reforms. ##

(Image credit:Manufactured Housing Institute)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Democratic Lawmakers want DOJ to Investigate Clayton Homes, lenders in wake of Seattle Times/BuzzFeed report

January 13th, 2016 Comments off

maxine_waters_democrat_from_calif__bet__creditFour Democratic House Representatives have asked the Justice Department to look into allegations of Clayton Homes and their related lenders alleged targeting of minority borrowers, based on the advocacy journalism of the Seattle Times and BuzzzFeed’s Mike Baker and Daniel Wagner. Baker and Wagner have been described as making a career attacking Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway

Baker and Wagner have alleged that minorities are charged higher rates than their white counterparts, a claim Clayton Homes has strongly denied, providing their own facts to make their case.

Rep. Maxine Waters, the top Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee, has been joined by Keith Ellison, Emanuel Cleaver and Michael Capuano in writing a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray asking for an investigation into the charges.

The allegations raised in the news report are squarely within the agencies’ authority to investigate and pursue appropriate corrective action,” the Democratic lawmakers wrote. According to Bloomberg, The Seattle Times and BuzzFeed have updated their attacks on Clayton Homes and related lenders.

Calling the news accounts misleading, Clayton said, “race and ethnicity don’t factor into how it prices loans, that it doesn’t target minority communities and that it doesn’t tolerate discrimination against employees.”

MHLivingNews checked with industry sources, who dispute the Seattle Times/BuzzFeed accounts, based upon their own knowledge and experience of Clayton Homes, and their related lending arms, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance, and 21st Mortgage.

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett, Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, which owns Clayton, says he makes no apologies for the lending practices of what is the largest producer of manufactured homes in North America.

Neither the firm nor Warren Buffett had any immediate comment following the most recent charges.

Sam Gilford, a spokesman for the CFPB, said last month that “the allegations of discrimination and predatory practices raised by the reporting are obviously very concerning to the bureau,” although Gilford declined to say whether Clayton was being investigated. ##

(Editor’s Note: MHC activist, Ishbel Dickens, in comments to MHLivingNews connected the PBS NewsHour report to the Seattle Times/BuzzFeed stories and the pending Dodd-Frank related reforms of CFPB regulations of manufactured home personal property loans. See Dicken’s comments, as a download to a related report, linked here.)  

(Photo credit: bet–Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), minority leader, House Financial Services Committee)


Article submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily BusinesNews-MHProNews.