Jeb Bush doubts Obama will take hard line on housing
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said that the current political climate in Washington might discourage President Obama from making big decisions to solve the country's current housing crisis. Bush is now head of his own eponymous consultancy firm and spoke at the Mortgage Bankers Association's 98th Annual Convention & Expo 2011 in Chicago. "The hope and feeling of optimism (has been) replaced with despair. All the polling numbers have been so bad as to the pessimism of the country, so that 70% feel we are heading to recession," Bush said. "How will we solve some of the problems we face with an election? My guess is (Obama) won't take the high-risk solutions," he added. David Axelrod, former senior adviser to President Obama, acted impressed by Bush's comments. "You sure you aren't running for election?" Axelrod joked. Axelrod commended the Bush family for all of the contributions they have given the country and thanked the mortgage finance industry for giving Americans the opportunity to buy homes, despite problems in the economy. Bush said the heavy-handed regulatory environment also hinders long-term solutions for the economy. "We still have long-term structural problem in this country," he said. Write to Jacob Gaffney. Follow him on Twitter @jacobgaffney.