2:15 PM EDT
Sheila Jackson Lee, D-TX 18th

Ms. JACKSON-LEE of Texas. Mr. Speaker, in 2007, Texas ranked fourth behind California, Florida and Illinois in pre-foreclosures. We're reminded of Franklin Delano Roosevelt who said we have nothing to fear but fear itself. We certainly have to face fear and to be able to respond to this collapse in mortgages and our economic markets, by resolve and not fear.

And so this is not a bailout. It's a helping hand. It's what Franklin Delano Roosevelt did to restore this country, and it worked. We survived.

And so this tells us that we can survive, providing $10 billion in low-income tax credits for low-income homeowners and to also build rental properties. We also give a $7,500 tax credit for first time home buyers and a $700 tax credit for those who are paying property taxes.

And it does fix the GSEs. It does provide an opportunity to get us out of this mortgage foreclosure hold, but it does it in the right way. It's not scandalous. It's not illegal. It allows us to be able to have the mortgage owner sell it back to FHA at a lower price; the lower mortgage is then backed by FHA, and it isn't a gimmick. It's not a flipover. Any profit made by the homeowner comes back to the government if the property is later sold.

And we protect our disabled veterans, those who have fallen upon hard times. They can still be in the program even if they are in bankruptcy.

Mr. Speaker, this bill responds to the homeless and the helpless. What it does say is those who are living from hand-to-hand, who are living in their parents' homes, who have been thrown out of their home, who have been thrown out because they're in rental property, this is a fix and the life and the spirit of what America is all about.

We don't believe in giving a fish. We believe in giving a fishing rod. This is an even-handed, balanced way between the House and the Senate to provide tax relief but also to be able to provide the construct and the infrastructure to get our houses back together, along with our stabilization bill that says we're going to buy back foreclosed homes and give them to people who need them.

Is there anything wrong with America rising to be higher angels and helping our fellow brothers and sisters?