March 4th, 2009
04:37 PM ET
13 years ago

Poll: Majority say Obama mortgage plan is unfair

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/03/04/art.getty.obama.3.4.jpg
caption="A new national poll suggests that most Americans think the plan is unfair to those who pay their mortgages on time."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - On the day that the Obama administration begins implementing a new program to fight home foreclosures, a new national poll suggests that most Americans think the plan is unfair to those who pay their mortgages on time.

Sixty-four percent of those questioned in a Quinnipiac University survey released Wednesday feel the Obama administration program is unfair to those who pay their mortgages on time. Only 28 percent say that the president's $75 billion plan is fair. More details on the program, which is aimed at helping up to nine million borrowers stay in their homes using refinanced mortgages or modified loans, were released Wednesday.

Americans may not like the plan — but that doesn’t mean they think it’s a bad idea. While nearly two-thirds think the plan is unfair to those who follow the rules, 57 percent say they approve of the package, and 55 percent believe the plan will stabilize home prices.

"Americans don't like to see other people get special treatment, particularly when it comes to money, but they don't like to see others suffer either," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "And unlike federal assistance to auto companies and banks, the Obama mortgage plan appears to benefit individual Americans, typically a more popular option in polls."

The poll also indicates that lenders are getting the lion’s share of the blame for the mortgage mess: 62 percent of those question blame them for the current crisis, to 25 percent who blame borrowers.

The Quinnipiac University poll of 2,573 people was conducted by telephone February 25-March 2, and has a sampling error of plus or minus 1.9 percentage points.


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (533 Responses)
  1. Mckee

    This article is totally irrelavant to today's announcement.. How stupid is CNN?!!. Is there no intelligent life in your Atlanta Headquarters? Obama just introduced the plan today, and CNN as usual is carrying water for the same corporate shills that got us in this mess. CNN is discraceful!!!!! This poll that you have mentioned doesn't even relate to today's Mortgages.

    March 4, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  2. Scott Brown Palm Bay Florida

    No doubt the Obama plan will benefit ACORN. He needs to pay them back for the election somehow. Only in American (New) is this type of behavior rewarded.

    March 4, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  3. John

    The problem with this plan is we don't have enough information. How many of the people being "helped" are really in trouble with their mortgages because of a job loss or misrepresentation by a bank, and how many were investors looking to "flip" a property to make a quick buck. If we're bailing out investors, I'm against this program. Some reports indicate that is mostly the case in states like Florida. I'd like to see some good statistics before I make a judgement.

    March 4, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  4. phdlynn

    No one with sub-prime or ARM mortgages should be helped. They gambled and lost and it is not up to the government or the taxpayers to bail them out. If I go to Las Vegas and lose $1,000 because I gambled, will the government give it back to me?

    This is a slap in the face to every American who lives within their means. No government program to help should cost the taxpayers even $1.

    This plan is not beneficial to the whole. It is only beneficial to fiscally irresponsible people!

    March 4, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  5. Mickie

    First, it is not just that people don't want to pay or bought too expensive a home, many have lost their jobs or have had a catastrophic illness. Hooray for those who pay all their bills, and I have been one of those, but I also know people who have lost their jobs, their homes and their dignity through no fault of their own. Second, if we don't help those who are facing foreclosure, the value of the homes we have been paying the bills on will devaluate greatly. It is so easy to be judgmental when you're not the one in trouble and I find many Americans rush to judgment and not just about finances.

    March 4, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  6. worriedmom

    I just want to see who this home plan actually benefits. I agree with Miss-take why don't they lower the interest rate for all homeowners and give all of us a break on our home payments. Just because we may make our mortgage payments on time doesnt mean we are not struggling to do so, we just know we have an obligation. The way Obama's plans are going, he is encouraging those who didn't work and have receive freebies to continue to do so. And i agree with what Citi Mortgage did for people who lost their jobs to reduce their payments to $500 a month for 3 months.

    March 4, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  7. David A.

    Even though this plan favors irresponsibility, it is most definitely a necessity. I'd rather see the issue resolved than prolonged or worsened; if life were fair we wouldn't be in a recession and George W. Bush would not have been President for two consecutive terms.

    March 4, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    I am a single parent with (2) jobs. I have a mortgage, car note, electric bill, etc. I pay my mortgage on time but, I haven't lost my job.

    Both of my parents lost their jobs last year. If they weren't homeowners, there is no way they would be able to pay their mortgage, let alone any other bills, on time.

    It is unfortunate that many people have lost their jobs in the recent months. With the loss of a job, not only do you suffer not paying your bills on time, but you loose your dignity; health benefits; pride; some loose each other.

    Give Obama a break. Remember, he is inheriting some elses neglect to Americans.

    March 4, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  9. Scott

    How quickly was this poll done? Details on the plan just came out this morning and people have already been polled on it? Did the poll ask how many people had read/understood the plan?

    For those wondering the plan states you have to be current on your mortgage payments and cannot have missed payments. Therefore the plan does reward the responsible people and the irresponsible are out of luck. Please read and understand the plan before making ignorant comments.

    March 4, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  10. Lee in Oregon

    Granted, it may be unfair but look at the whole pie not just one piece of it. Because of this mess everyone's property values have gone down and that's not fair either. With the forecloseure crisis combined with millions of job losses what other alternatives are there?

    President Obama is looking at the bigger picture and what it will take to stabilize our economy and get our country back on its feet again. Let's give him the opportunity to prove that his vision and foresight will in time become a reality.

    Meanwhile this situation should be a lesson for all.......live within your means.

    Be patient America.

    March 4, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  11. JES

    I am employed and able to pay my mortgage. For those like me, instead of throwing stones at the less fortunate maybe we should just feel really lucky.

    March 4, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  12. DIZIZI31

    Some very nice people will lose their home and that is what's unfair. Why isn't government going after the faulty regulators and banks. Did anyone notice the document on "Greed" by MSNBC? Why not go after those brokers, bankers, investors who knew they were doing wrong but did nothing.

    March 4, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  13. Proud American

    Looks like republican morons no longer watch foxx news.

    March 4, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  14. Azzaro

    people don't get it. sometimes you need to postpone the punishment of a bad behavior.
    Not been able to pay your mortgage is not always consequence of affordability. In this economy, some have lost job as a result can't afford to pay. Let them down will not help the neighbor who thinks he has a secure job.
    " When you are digging a hole for your enemy, don't make too deep for fear that you might fall in yourself".

    March 4, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  15. nitro

    its funny that whats fair and whats not fair seems to be an issue in the for front of american ideas. It never was before.

    March 4, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  16. Dave

    This is the big problem here. We pay on time and we have to sit and watch those that bit off more than they could chew get all this help. The same with the investment banks. They should have allowed them to fail. But it was all a scheme with our money anyway. They were ordered to enrich the bankers.

    March 4, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  17. Wolf-Woman Palin Charlotte, NC

    I think the problem is too many of us have listened to the ranting negative voices of the Rushlicans. Helping someone, who through no fault of their own is "underwater," not only benefits them ,but also the rest of us. It stops the home forcolsure decay that runis our neighborhoods and lessens our home values.
    Because of homes sitting in my neighborhood and througout our city, my new home has lost %25 of its original value in just two years.

    Secondly, I would think the "Religious Right" would encourage this since it gets a neighbor out of a ditch. Isn't that what their God ask them to do?

    March 4, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  18. Wendy in Los Angeles

    It may not seem fair but it is smart! Here is the logic that makes sense to me, my brother owns a home in Phoenix and houses all around him have been forclosed so he couldn't sell or rent his house if he tried. He has had his hours cut at work and worries about layoff because if he had to move to find work he would have no choice but to walk away from his house too regardless of the fact that he has faithfully paid his mortgage. Forclosure affects everyone whether it be directly or indirectly so any plan that will cut down on the number of forclosures can only be a good thing.

    March 4, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  19. Simpliticus

    If mortgage holders are NOT helped down the road, those holding and paying on good mortgages may eventually be directly or indirectly affected by job losses as the economy falters. Those who have been paying on time still benefit by not losing a job even though it may appear that the stimulus plan is unfair. The snowball of a bad economy has to be reversed by an equal and opposite monetary stimulus plan, without which devastation could impact even those with good mortgage payment histories. Life is inherently unfair, thanks to Bush!

    March 4, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  20. Margaret in Germany

    Giving my money to irresponsible banks was unfair and unwise. At least this way the money, which also will ultimately go to the banks, will be doing some good for someone. I don't see how else we are going to get this economy moving again!

    March 4, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  21. george cook

    CORRECT: DO NOT Penalize those of us who "Live by the Rules" and understand what we are getting in to when we apply and accept a mortgage contract. No ONE is GIVING us any thing. Their is no Inherent Right that we can own a home someday...we have to go out and EARN that right and privilege. Now let's see WHO, which party, started this ENTITLEMENT SOCIETY idea.??? I think I know, don't we.

    March 4, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  22. Democrat turning Republican

    I think Obama's plan is definitely unfair. I've always paid my mortgage on time and what do I get? Not a danm thing. I had enough sense to understand what I was getting when I signed the mortgage papers and knew I would stay in my house long enough for a fixed rate mortage to make the most sense for my situation. I provided honest information about my income, expenses, and job status.

    Now people who either couldn't be bothered to educate themselves about the mortgage they were getting or who flat out lied about their income are being rewarded. Under no circumstances can Obama or anyone in his adminsration justify this as fair treatment for responsible consumers. And yes I know.....LIFE IS NOT FAIR!!. I guess this is what Obama would say to those of us who are paying their mortgages on time.

    I think I definitely going to change my voter registration from Democrat to Republican. The way Obama's administration is willing to mistreat responsible consumers just to give handouts to the irresponsible consumers is just sickening and disgusting.

    I know I did the right thing by voting for someone other than Obama. It's just too bad the rest of the country didn't wise up before election day.

    March 4, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  23. Margaret in Germany

    Giving my money to irresponsible banks was unfair and unwise. At least this way the money, which also will ultimately go to the banks, will be doing some good for someone. I don't see how else we are going to get this economy moving again!

    March 4, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  24. Stephanie

    What ever happen to love thy neighbor. I'm sure that their are many that bought homes with good intentions and just got caught up in the mess that was handed down. Go with the program it just might work for us all.

    March 4, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  25. Margaret in Germany

    Giving my money to irresponsible banks was unfair and unwise. At least this way the money, which also will ultimately go to the banks, will be doing some good for someone. I don't see how else we are going to get this economy moving again!

    March 4, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
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