Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Candidates on the Housing Market

Last night, I was watching the Democratic Presidential Debate, and they discussed the topic of the subprime mortgage meltdown and the housing market. If my memory is correct, this was the first time I had seen the topic discussed in depth at any of the presidential primary debates. So, it made me curious what the official stance was from all of the candidates both on the left and on the right.

I thought it would be helpful to present statements and links for all of the candidates' viewpoints, but I could only find statements on this issue from the three major Democratic candidates. The Republican candidates do not address the housing market or the subprime situation on the issue statement sections on their websites. So, here are the statements from Clinton, Edwards, and Obama (alphabetically to be fair!):

Hillary Clinton:
"Foreclosure Moratorium: Hillary will call for a moratorium on home foreclosures of at least 90 days so that a rate freeze can take effect and at-risk homeowners can get financial counseling to help them transition to affordable loans.
Freeze Adjustable Rate Loans: The rate freeze must last at least 5 years, or until subprime mortgages have been converted into affordable loans. A typical subprime adjustable rate loan is raising monthly payments by 30% to 40% for many families, causing a wave of housing defaults across the country."

Read more: Hillary Calls On Wall Street To Address Housing Crisis

John Edwards:
"Insist that any freeze on interest rates – like the Bush-Paulson plan – keep rates low for seven years so housing markets can fully recover and families have the time to escape unaffordable mortgages.
Assure that families can halt foreclosures until their lenders offer help. Every family facing foreclosure will have a right to individual assistance from their lender – such as converting to a fixed-rate mortgage, capitalizing delinquent payments, reducing the interest rate, or forgiving a portion of the loan – so they can keep their home if they can."
Read more: Ending the Housing Crisis

Barack Obama:
"Obama will create a fund to help people refinance their mortgages and provide comprehensive supports to innocent homeowners. The fund will also assist individuals who purchased homes that are simply too expensive for their income levels by helping to sell their homes. The fund will help offset costs of selling a home, including helping low-income borrowers get additional time and support to pay back any losses from the sale of their home and waiving certain federal, state and local income taxes that result from an individual selling their home to avoid foreclosure. "
Read more: Address the Subprime Mortgage Issue

If the Republican candidates had their official views on this topic on their campaign websites, I would quote them and link to them, as well. There are many news reports and YouTube videos about their stances, but no official statements. If I missed the official statements somehow, please let me know.

What do you think of the candidates position on the housing market and subprime situation? I'd love to hear responses from the community.

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