Now the 2016 VP Attacks Begin
Progressive groups go after Julian Castro
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 12, 2016 8:41 AM CDT
In this Oct. 15, 2015, file photo, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, right, stands with Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, left.   (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

(Newser) – A new wave of political attacks launched Tuesday morning, but the target isn't one of the five presidential candidates left standing: It's Hillary Clinton's potential VP, Julian Castro. In what Politico is calling a "preemptive strike," a number of groups—many aligned with Bernie Sanders—are trying to render the potential "major asset" (he's young, Latino, was San Antonio's mayor) unusable. It's the 41-year-old's current gig, as Housing and Urban Development secretary, that's at the root of the attack, which targets mortgage sales. The allegations, per the groups' DontSellOurHomesToWallStreet.org site: "HUD promised to help homeowners avoid foreclosure by selling more overdue mortgage loans to nonprofit community organizations rather than Wall Street banks."

"But," they continue, "in reality HUD’s two most recent sales have sent 98% of the mortgages straight to Wall Street—and at a HUGE discount, almost half off!" HUD disputes the figure. Politico explains that the Distressed Asset Stabilization Program has since 2010 let mortgages that are barreling toward foreclosure be sold to "qualified bidders" whose goal is supposed to be to get the loans back in good standing. Under Castro, progressives feel it's basically been "a fire sale for Wall Street firms," in Politico's words. They'd rather nonprofits and others more invested in the local communities purchase the mortgages. Since that's seemingly not what's happening, they argue Castro isn't a true progressive and is helping Wall Street over minority communities.