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Obama Wants Debt Collection Calls To Cellphones

Debt Collectors Calling Your Cell soon?
(Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

Aligning himself with the debt-collection industry prior to an election year could be dangerous say critics, but President Obama has now floated the idea of allowing debt-collection calls to be made to cellphones.

The plan is tucked inside the 3 trillion dollar debt reduction plan Obama presented to Congress.  As soon as the plan was found inside the bill, howls is dismay came from numerous consumer advocate groups, and even major Democratic leaders are scurrying away from the President on this one.  For some time, what are called “robo-calls” or computer generated calls to landlines to the purposes of debt collection.  These calls pepper a number until someone answers, at which time the operator quickly jumps on the line.  The Administration claims the robo calls to cellphones would only be used to collect money owed the Federal Government, especially in the form of student loans.  But as Lauren Sanders of the National Consumer Law Center points out,  a significant number of people are not paying back students loans because they cannot find a job.  This also applies to those who have lost their jobs, and with consumer confidence down, unemployment flirting with double digit numbers, even Senior Democrats say they cannot support Obama on this one.   Aides for Senators Schumer and Reid, who have been long time consumer advocates, will NOT confirm if they will support the president.  Other anonymous sources say most Dems cannot support such a measure.   the Federal Trade  Commission already investigates tens of thousands of complaints from the debt collection industry already, and this would add more.  Critics also doubt whether such a practice would result in more Federal money actually coming in; rather, it will result in a political backlash for a president already viewed by many as being insensitive to the plight of the average American.  Critics also view the heavily penalized debt collection industry as playing the President for their own purposes.

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