AP source: Obama naming North Carolina's Watt for housing post - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

AP source: Obama naming North Carolina's Watt for housing post

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WASHINGTON -

President Barack Obama intends to nominate Rep. Melvin Watt to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the government regulator that oversees lending giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, a White House official said Tuesday.

If confirmed by the Senate, Watt, D-N.C., a 20-year veteran of the House, would replace Edward DeMarco, an appointee of President George W. Bush who has been a target of housing advocates, liberal groups and Democratic lawmakers.

The president was expected to name Watt on Wednesday, according to the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity ahead of the announcement.

Watt's nomination comes at a crucial time for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, two government sponsored mortgage-finance enterprises that the government rescued at the height of the financial crisis in September 2008 as they teetered neared collapse from losses on soured mortgage loans.

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