How Would the Republican Presidential Nominees Handle the Housing Crisis?

The foreclosure crisis is still here as 2012 begins, and even though signs are improving – housing sales are up and foreclosure rates are falling in some places – the housing market will still be a major issue for the foreseeable future.

And since 2012 is an election year, the current host of Republican candidates differs in how they think foreclosures and housing should be address from their opponent in November, President Obama.

The only serious candidates left – including Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, and Rick Santorum – haven’t spoken up much about the housing crisis over the past year or so of campaigning, choosing to instead focus on federal spending, the national debt, healthcare, jobs, and other facets of the economy. But in Monday night’s debate held in Florida, a general consensus was established regarding home foreclosures in America: the federal government should back off.

Romney, the assumed frontrunner for much of the campaign season, argued that the only way to reduce the numbers of foreclosure properties and distressed properties in the market today is to improve the employment rate – in essence, saying the government should focus on improving the economy and let the market take care of itself.

Normally Republican candidates would take this opportunity to distance themselves from the frontrunner, as they have done with pleasure on virtually every other issue, but for the most part they agreed with Romney.

Ron Paul said that a bubble was generated by excessively-low interest rates. Gingrich – a former lobbyist for Freddie Mac who Romney accused of profiting from the foreclosure crisis – has mostly echoed sentiments that government regulation is too powerful. Rick Santorum believes in “[letting] capitalism work”.

The only candidate who has given a concrete and tangible solution to home foreclosures, it seems, is Santorum, a candidate who mostly has campaigned on family values and opposition to abortion. He has put forth an idea that would allow homeowners who had to take losses on the sale of their homes to deduct the amount as capital losses, similar to capital losses for stocks and other investments.

That still doesn’t address plans for mortgage reform at the bank level, or the merits of refinancing, or some of the other main, pressing issues tied up with the foreclosure problem. In fact, to this point, none of the candidates have offered such a plan – and that does not appear to be changing any time soon.

People also view

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *