On Aug. 5, the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee held a nomination hearing for three Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Assistant Secretary Designates. The first nominee, Julia R. Gordon, is the Assistant Secretary Designate for the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Gordon spoke about her extensive experience in housing-related positions, including at the Center for Responsible Lending, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, and the National Community Stabilization Trust.
Dave Uejio is nominated for Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (FHEO). He currently serves as the Acting Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. In his testimony, Uejio said he has a deep commitment to addressing and preventing housing discrimination. Finally, Solomon Greene is nominated for Assistant Secretary for Policy, Development and Research. Greene, a Senior Fellow at the Urban Institute, testified:
“A home is more than a roof over your head – it is also a platform for health and wellbeing and a downpayment on your children’s future. Throughout my career, I have strived to give every family the opportunities I was given by studying policies and programs that expand options for safe, stable and affordable housing.”
Chairman Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) opened the hearing by expressing support for the nominees. He listed their relevant experience and noted the committee had collectively received hundreds of support letters for the nominees. Ranking Member Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) then brought up his concern that some of nominees appeared to support defunding the police in their past Twitter posts.
Two other senators, Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) and Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) questioned the nominees about the alleged Twitter posts and articles they had written related to defunding the police. In response, Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT) asked each nominee whether they support defunding the police. Each nominee responded, “No, I do not.”
Committee members questioned the witnesses on several other topics, including pandemic-related housing issues, affordable homeownership, and racial equity in housing. Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) asked the nominees about the Housing Choice Voucher program, citing his Family Stability and Opportunity Vouchers Act. Greene responded that there are not enough housing vouchers to meet the need, and there is a lack of affordable housing stock on the supply side of the issue.
The recorded hearing and written nominee testimonies are available on the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs website.