"We Can't Wait" is the White House's new economic rallying cry. With Senate Republicans committed to filibustering President Obama's jobs bills, and House Republicans refusing to hold votes on them, the administration is taking some steps that don't require Congress to act.
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The most significant of these, announced Monday, will allow people with underwater mortgages to refinance at favorable rates if their mortgages are backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. It will expand the existing Home Affordable Refinancing Program to all underwater homeowners, leaving people with more money in their accounts every month, and thus, as David Dayen has pointed out, functioning as a de facto stimulus.
Will it move the needle on unemployment though? It depends on whom you ask, but the broad view seems to be it won't on its own fix the ailing economy. But it is expected to jack up the number of mortgage refinancings.