Former top executives at Fannie Mae, PMI, and Countrywide have launched a new advocacy group that will lobby on behalf of what it calls "independent, community and regionally based" mortgage banking firms.

The Community Mortgage Banking Project (CMBP) already has 26 members and is talking to eight more, said group founder, Glen Corso, a former senior vice president for The PMI Group, a mortgage insurance firm. His partners in the project include Robert Engelstad, a former senior vice president at Fannie, and Pete Mills, who was Countrywide Financial Corp.'s top lobbyist in Washington.

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