[Congressional Record Volume 150, Number 93 (Thursday, July 8, 2004)]
[Pages S7823-S7824]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]


 Mr. SANTORUM. Mr. President, President Bush officially 
declared the month of June as ``National Homeownership Month,'' and 
with this annual tradition, America's attention was again drawn to the 
importance of homeownership and the stability it can bring to families 
and neighborhoods. It is often homeownership that financially anchors 
American families and civically anchors our communities. But I believe 
our focus on homeownership also returns our attention to the basic 
ideals of the American Dream. Ensuring access to homeownership, and 
through it access to the American Dream, is among the most significant 
ways we can empower our citizens to achieve the happy, productive and 
stable lifestyle everyone desires.
  Having a house of one's own that provides security and comfort to 
one's family and that gives families an active, vested interest in the 
quality of life their community provides is central to our collective 
ideas about freedom and self-determination. As a nation, we know that 
homeownership helps the emotional and intellectual growth and 
development of children. We know that homeowners show greater interest 
and more frequent participation in civic organizations and neighborhood 
issues. We know that when people own homes, they are more likely to 
accumulate wealth and assets and to prepare themselves financially for 
such things as their children's education and retirement.
  In America today, homeownership is at a record high. Unfortunately, 
however, there remains a significant gap between minority and non-
minority populations, leaving homeownership an elusive financial 
prospect for many. The homeownership rate for the nation's African 
American and Hispanic households lags more than 25 percentage points 
below White households.
  In Congress, we have the responsibility of ensuring that the dream of 
homeownership is possible for more of our citizens. Last year, Senator 
John Kerry and I drafted and sponsored S. 875, the ``Community 
Development Homeownership Tax Credit Act,'' a bill that enjoys strong 
bipartisan support in the Senate. This legislation would give 
developers and investors an incentive to participate in the 
rehabilitation and construction of homes for low- and moderate-income 
buyers. This measure is aimed at reaching President Bush's goal of 
increasing American minority homeownership by 5.5 million families, 
thus making 5.5 million new dreams come true.
  Owning a home is an integral part of attaining the security, 
continuity, and comfort of living the American Dream. I will continue 
to advocate policies that help make this dream become a reality for our 
Nation's families. I ask my colleagues to join me in support-
ing homeownership by cosponsoring
S. 875.

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