NAHB rejects GOP tax bill over mortgage-interest deduction

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) is opposing the tax bill House Republicans expect to unveil on Wednesday.

The reverse decision comes after the GOP proposed to “water down” the mortgage-interest deduction, according to NAHB CEO Jerry Howard.

“We don’t think that a housing subsidy for the super wealthy is a good expenditure of the taxpayers’ dollars,” Howard told FOX Business’ Neil Cavuto during an exclusive interview on “Cavuto: Coast to Coast.”

The NAHB expressed concern over the mortgage-interest deduction, which allows homeowners to subtract interest payments from their federal tax bill. However, Howard said he had been working with House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) and other lawmakers to replace the mortgage-interest deduction with a tax credit that would benefit the middle class and spur investment in the housing sector.

“I know Chairman Brady liked the idea, I think the speaker likes the idea, but somebody in the Republican leadership said no, [so] we have to walk away,” he said.

The proposed new tax credit, which has the support of the Trump administration, doubles the standard deduction and provides a set dollar amount, capped at a certain level.

“We’re taking what’s left of the mortgage-interest deduction, using the tax expenditure that is in that part of the code, geared only to the wealthy, and taking it back and putting it for the middle class,” Howard said.

The NAHB CEO added that providing a tax credit that also benefits the middle class would protect against another recession.