WASHINGTON (2/25/09)—“Fire it up!” Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-Pa.) emphatically told credit union attendees during the morning session at the Governmental Affairs Conference Tuesday, to which attendees responded: “Ready to go!” Kanjorski, who was introduced to attendees as “a true credit union champion,” by Pennsylvania Credit Union Association President/CEO Jim McCormack, fired up attendees to solve the problems plaguing the nation’s financial sector. Credit unions started out 100 years ago by solving the problems of middle class Americans, and “that’s how we’re going to win this. We’ve met challenging times before and won. We know how to do it,” he said. Kanjorski recognized credit unions’ banker battles, saying that “if bankers don’t want us to give loans, they’ll make a big mistake.” But, he noted, “We’ve got battles and that’s got to wait for another day.” “Finding who’s at fault” for the economic turmoil won’t help, either. “We’ve got a very sick patient on the floor [the U.S. economy],” Kanjorski said. “We need to save the patient.” To help the economy, credit unions need to make smart decisions and lead the cause for America. Credit unions also must make Congress realize that they want to lead Americans “out of the darkness.” “Don’t leave Washington, D.C., in doubt, or think, ‘woe is me,’ ” Kanjorski said. Credit union representatives need to return to their homes and find ways to help homeowners get out of a predatory mortgage, or help the unemployed find new jobs. “You have to get this economy going,” he said. “If we put all our energies forward and make the right decisions, we’ll do it.” Kanjorski, who was re-elected to his position as a U.S. representative this past year, also thanked credit unions for their support during his campaign. “The most important people in my political life were my friends—the credit unions,” he said.