By JULIE PACE
AP White House Correspondent
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama will urge Congress this week to back bipartisan efforts to shutter Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage-giants bailed out by the government in 2008.
Obama will also renew his calls for sweeping mortgage refinancing legislation when he travels to Phoenix Tuesday. Arizona's desert capital was the epicenter of the housing crisis that began in 2008, but the market there has rebounded strongly, with home prices up and foreclosures down.
The president's visit to Phoenix marks the latest stop on his summertime economic tour aimed at refocusing his agenda on middle class Americans still struggling to fully recover following the recession. The collapse of the housing market in particular had a dramatic impact on people's lives and the economic viability of communities across the country.