Gannett’s Albany Bureau first reported this morning that New York’s Democratic congressional delegation is rallying around Attorney General Eric Schneiderman in a letter to Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller after Schneiderman was removed last week from a committee negotiating a nationwide foreclosure settlement with U.S. banks.
“As members of the New York congressional delegation, we are united in fighting for a fair resolution of the housing crisis that has devastated tens of thousands of families across our state,” the 21 Democratic House members wrote in a letter obtained Monday by Gannett’s Albany Bureau.
“That is why we are deeply troubled by your recent action to silence New York’s voice” by removing Schneiderman from the panel, the letter continues.
The letter was dated Thursday and signed by all Democratic House members – including Reps. Nita Lowey of Harrison, Westchester County; Brian Higgins of Buffalo; Maurice Hinchey, D-Hurley, Ulster County; Kathy Hochul, D-Amherst, Erie County; Louise Slaughter, D-Fairport, Monroe County; and Paul Tonko, D-Amsterdam.
Miller and the U.S. Justice Department have led an effort to reach a settlement with banks and overhaul mortgage borrowing practices.
The unity behind Schneiderman, also a Democrat, comes as he is receiving praise from supporters and civic groups for opposing a potential settlement that could halt future investigations into the banks’ potential fraudulent business practices. Schneiderman has also protested a proposed $8.5 billion settlement with Bank of America, saying it would be unfair to investors and homeowners.
Schneiderman has vowed to keep up his fight.
Miller’s office had no comment Monday because it had not seen the letter, a spokesman told Gannett.
Here’s the letter.