- The Washington Times - Friday, October 11, 2019

Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O’Rourke on Friday introduced a plan to boost homeownership and increase the supply of affordable housing in the country that includes a goal of building 6 million homes.

Mr. O’Rourke, a former congressman from Texas, wants to leverage a $400 billion investment in the National Housing Trust Fund over 10 years to create 3 million homes.

He would leverage $60 billion over 10 years in a separate grant program to create another 3 million homes and invest $50 billion to rehabilitate existing public housing.

SEE ALSO: Beto O’Rourke: Strip Catholic Church of tax exemptions

“The wealthiest, the most powerful country on the face of the planet has the resources necessary to increase access to housing while working to effectively end homelessness across America, and under my administration, we will,” Mr. O’Rourke said.

Mr. O’Rourke wants to set up government-backed “Kickstart Savings Accounts” to help people who make less than 400% of the federal poverty line buy homes, with his campaign saying the initiative would help people of color and younger people in particular.

He would also reverse a Trump administration move so that young illegal immigrant “Dreamers” would have access to Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans.

Mr. O’Rourke would also fully fund housing choice vouchers so every family making less than 50% of the median income in their area would be eligible for one.

He would also ban federally funded homeless shelters from refusing service based on someone’s sexual orientation.

Mr. O’Rourke had said on Thursday at a town hall devoted to LGBTQ issues that groups that oppose same-sex marriage should lose their tax-exempt status.

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