— The Senate proclaimed a fierce bipartisan resolve two weeks ago to help American homeowners in danger of foreclosure. But while a bill that senators approved last week would take modest steps toward that goal, it would also provide billions of dollars in tax breaks — for automakers, airlines, alternative energy producers and other struggling industries, as well as home builders.
The tax provisions of the Foreclosure Prevention Act, which consumer groups and labor leaders say amount to government handouts to big business, show how the credit crisis, while rattling the housing and financial markets, has created beneficiaries in the power corridors of Washington.
It also shows how legislation with a populist imperative offers a chance for lobbyists to press their clients’ interests.
This has proved especially true on the housing legislation, which many lawmakers and lobbyists view as one of the last opportunities before Congress grinds to a halt amid election-year politics.
In the Senate bill, the nation’s biggest home builders, some now on the verge of bankruptcy, won a provision that would let them claim millions in tax refunds by charging their current losses against the huge profits they made three or four years ago. Other struggling industries would benefit from this provision.
Sen. Christopher J. Dodd, Democrat of Connecticut, was the main author of the Senate bill meant to help homeowners.
(The ones who will really benefit from this are, like always, the corporations.
And guess who will pay for these tax breaks in the end? – The Infinite Unknown)
Read moreBig Tax Breaks for Businesses in Housing Bill