Ways & Means Committee Says “We Love Housing Too”

April 10, 2008

While the Senate is busy finalizing what amounts to terrible tax policy, the House Ways and Means Committee has said “Don’t forget about us! We can make bad tax policy too.”

You cannot make this stuff up, folks. It is maddening. The House Ways & Means Committee has voted to make the IRS the new Freddie Mac. The committee passed yesterday an $11 billion Housing Assistance Tax Act. As today’s Daily Tax Report explains, it would create a “refundable tax credit of up to $7,500 for first-time home buyers, who would be required to repay the amount received over the next 15 years in equal installments.”

Rangel, McCrery, and Co. want to use the tax code for the government to offer taxpayers interest-free loans for housing. I guess we don’t have enough federal spending programs that are designed to subsidize and ensure loans for housing. We only have an entire cabinet department called Housing and Urban Development, and two government-created entities called Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.

And to believe that there are Republicans on this committee who claim to be in favor of “small government.” Anybody on this committee who voted for this provision and says he/she favors simplification of the tax code is either a liar or a hypocrite.


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