Democratic Presidential Contenders Speaking about Homelessness

Warren, Booker, Harris and Castro suggest proposals to help low-income families afford housing

For the first time, democratic presidential contenders are seriously talking about the lack of affordable housing and ways to fix the affordable housing crisis in our country. In a report released by NPR News last week, a variety of audio clips from Senator Elizabeth Warren, Senator Cory Booker, Senator Kamala Harris and Julian Castro, introduce their proposals to end homelessness.

Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren

One of U.S. Senator Elzabeth Warren (D-MA)’s main concerns is addressing the racial discrimination faced by African American home buyers. In addition, Warren plans to build new housing units across America, and is projecting to build about 3 million.

New Jersey Senator Cory Booker

Growing up in a family who experienced discrimination when looking for a home to purchase in New Jersey, U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) understands the problem first-hand. On top of protecting people from housing discrimination, Booker wants to help people facing eviction and “give refundable tax credits to renters who have to pay more than 30% of their incomes on rent.”

California Senator Kamala Harris

U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) believes that housing is “a fundamental right, a human right, a civil right.” Harris is another candidate that would give low-income renters tax credits.

Julian Castro, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Obama

Former HUD Secretary Julian Castro mentions his concerns with families sleeping on the streets and doubling up. He stated that he is willing to spend tens of billions of dollars on affordable housing so that everyone who needs a housing voucher will be able to receive one.

Meanwhile, according to another NPR post, President Trump believes tax cuts for corporations and the upper class will eventually lead to increased housing. He proposes these cuts enacted in 2017 will stimulate the economy and ultimately help all Americans in the long run. In fact, “The administration has said it hopes to increase the supply of affordable housing by providing tax incentives for construction in economically distressed areas, called “opportunity zones,” and by “eliminating restrictive zoning laws.”

Regardless of party-affiliation, the lack of affordable housing can affect any American. NPR News states, “Three out of four voters say they’re more likely to support someone who has an affordable housing plan.”

Although millions of low and middle-income citizens have been affected by the housing crisis, many do not regularly participate in elections and are under the impression that their vote does not matter. With the 2020 Election quickly approaching, it is important that all voters educate themselves on the candidate that best represents American interests.

If you are interested in hearing more about which affordable housing solutions work best for Americans, attending the 2019 Congressional Reception on July 24 is a great way to get involved. You will hear directly from New Jersey residents affected by homeless and why they believe housing is not only a fundamental right, but where opportunity begins.