WASHINGTON (9/25/08)—As the dust settles from the current economic maelstrom and mortgage meltdown, credit unions may find they have successfully distinguished themselves on Capitol Hill as the strong and secure financial institutions that did not engage in the bad lending practices that are at the heart of the nation’s financial crisis, according to Politico (Sept. 24). And that distinction, the article surmised, could give a boost to some credit union priorities in the long run. Once the bailout is passed, the economy will remain weak, Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Vice President of Legislative Affairs Ryan Donovan pointed out in the column. “Congress is going to need to look for ways to help Main Street recover,” Donovan said, and noted that allowing credit unions to lend to small businesses — when other institutions are cutting back — would be one good option. Increased member business lending and several other proposed credit union regulatory reforms have been fiercely fought for years by the banking industry. But, Donovan noted, “Credit unions were created in the aftermath of the Depression to help the economy recover, so it makes perfect sense that, coming out of this situation, Congress and American consumers should look to credit unions to help them.” Wall Street Politico is a weekly column looking at issues that drive business. To read the complete column, which also focuses on hedge funds and investment banks, use the resource link below.