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John Edwards: stop predatory lenders

July 7, 2006 - Des Moines, Iowa

John Edwards, a White House hopeful, focused on the problem of predatory lenders in his first swing through Iowa since a statewide poll gave his potential presidential campaign a boost.

"What we're doing is focusing on what can be done to stop predatory lenders and payday lenders from preying on our most vulnerable families," said Edwards, who called for new regulations for an industry in which annual interest rates for payday loans can soar to 300 percent to 400 percent.

The 2004 vice presidential nominee spent Friday raising money for Democratic candidate David Loebsack's long-shot challenge against Rep. Jim Leach (news, bio, voting record) and meeting with activists at a Warren County barbecue.

In his 2004 bid for the Democratic presidential nomination, Edwards scored a surprising second-place showing in Iowa's caucuses, giving him the momentum that eventually landed him on the ticket with the party's choice, Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts.

Soon after the Democrats lost, the former North Carolina senator returned to Iowa and has been rebuilding his campaign organization. A poll for the Des Moines Register last month showed Edwards leading the still evolving Democratic field, with New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton second, Kerry third and Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack fourth.

"It was encouraging," Edwards said. "It means I still have some very good friends in Iowa, which I appreciate."

News Source

CBS News, Mike Glover, AP Writer

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