Wednesdays with Al

Minneapolis REALTORS visit junior senator Al Franken at NAR Midyear 2013

While almost every US Senator seems to aspire to be a celebrity, it is a rare celebrity who wants to, let alone does, become a respected US Senator. For that reason, Minnesota’s junior senator Al Franken always draws a huge crowd on Hill Visit Day. About 40 Minnesota REALTORS packed into a stuffy conference room yesterday afternoon to hear Senator Franken’s views on the Mortgage Interest Deduction and FHA, as well as his good-natured jokes about his FPC Fran Davis (who has known Al since he was a kid putting together list books at ten cents an hour for his mother, a REALTOR).

During his first term, Senator Franken has proven himself to be a strong and thoughtful supporter of the housing industry, and on Wednesday reaffirmed his willingness to protect FHA programs, preserve Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. He offered pragmatic insight to Congressional debates on the Mortgage Interest Deduction, and concluded by passionately speaking on housing’s crucial role in the nation’s continued economic recovery.

Throughout the meeting, Senator Franken’s furry four-legged companion padded around the room to greet the visitors. After every sniff and wag if his tail, he returned home to the Senator’s side.

Julia Parenteau

Julia Parenteau, Public and Government Affairs Director, Minneapolis Area Association of REALTORS® Julia has been a political advocate in the real estate industry for more than a decade and has worked for nearly every REALTOR® association in Minnesota, plus two in California. When the lure of snowstorms in April became too strong, she returned from the sunny beaches of Los Angeles to take the role of Public and Government Affairs Director for the Minneapolis Area Association of REALTORS®, where she has been taking on an array of high-impact projects under soft, low mood lighting for more than two years. Julia has a penchant for five-inch heels and nine-pound dogs, and she recently purchased a 123-year-old house in Minnesota’s capital city of Saint Paul so she could live near the state’s heart of government and civics.

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