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The first 2024 presidential debate was light on housing news

And only one candidate mentioned it

During Thursday night’s historic presidential debate broadcast by CNN, housing issues only came up briefly, and only from one candidate. The debate was the first in decades not to be sponsored by the bipartisan Commission on Presidential Debates, the first presidential debate with a commercial break and the first television debate between a current and former president.

Joe Biden

In his introductory remarks, President Joe Biden came right out of the gate mentioning housing costs as an issue he wants to address if he’s elected to a second term.

“We’re going to be able to reduce the price of housing,” Biden said of a potential second term in the debate’s opening moments. “We’re going to make sure we build 2 million new units. We’re going to make sure we cap rents so corporate greed can’t take over… corporate greed is the reason why we’re in this problem right now.”

Later, during a question about issues facing Black Americans, Biden mentioned challenges including “segregation that exists among these corporate operations that collude to keep people out of their houses.” He also mentioned his proposal for a $10,000 tax credit for first-time homebuyers.

The official portrait of U.S. President Donald Trump.
Donald Trump

The Biden administration has been vocal about housing issues this year, including in a dedicated section of the president’s State of the Union address this past March. In the lead-up to that speech, the White House released a housing plan that included an annual tax credit that would give eligible beneficiaries $400 a month for two years to put toward mortgage payments.

He also proposed cutting the requirement for title insurance on some loans, a controversial element of the plan, though it only applies to refinances.

Former President Donald Trump did not specifically mention housing during the debate, nor did any question from moderators Jake Tapper and Dana Bash specifically focus on it. As of Thursday evening, housing is not present on the “issues” section of Trump’s campaign website.

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