LANSING, Mich. (5/24/10)--The Michigan Credit Union League (MCUL) Friday announced its support for U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra’s (R-Mich.) bid for governor. Calling the endorsement a vote for small business and for consumers, MCUL President /CEO David Adams applauded Hoekstra’s track record and leadership. “Congressman Hoekstra has been a champion for small-business interests and for policies that help the consumer,” Adams said. “These values align with those of the credit union movement, which is built on local ownership and commitment to serving middle-class America. These values are what Michigan needs as it rebuilds its economic strength and strengthens the vital financial interests of its citizens.” Hoekstra called the credit union endorsement a momentum builder. “Credit unions are about as ‘mainstream America’ as you can get,” Hoekstra said. “The league’s endorsement shows confidence in my track record of strengthening Main Street by supporting locally owned credit unions and their 95 million members across the country. The diverse and bipartisan nature of credit unions makes them a great partner for my campaign.” The MCUL’s endorsement decision was based on the congressman’s positions and votes on legislation that allowed credit unions to expand their fields of membership and their ability to expand small-business lending. Hoekstra has served nine consecutive terms in the House of Representatives since winning his first election to the Congress from Michigan’s 2nd District in 1992. In the U.S. House, Hoekstra has served on committees, including Education and Labor, Budget, and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. Credit unions’ structure has positioned them as the sole sector of the financial services industry that continued to lend during the recent financial crisis brought on by Wall Street abuses. In 2009, credit unions’ small-business lending in Michigan was up 18%, while banks decreased business lending, MCUL said. State credit union membership has been growing at a record pace, with 40,000 new members in 2009, as national and local media tout the strength of credit unions, their ability to continue lending and their favorable interest rates and lower fees, MCUL said.