More than 800 homeowners from across Missouri, Kansas, and Nebraska came together with local business leaders, real estate professionals, politicians, and civil rights leaders this week in support of homeownership.
The rally, organized by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and the Home Builders Association of Greater Kansas City, took place at the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum in Independence, Missouri, within the Kansas City metropolitan area.
Speakers put the importance of homeownership into perspective when they told rally participants that during the worst of this recession, roughly 3.2 million Americans were out of work as a result of the housing downturn.
Speakers at the rally included U.S. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Missouri), Independence Mayor Don Reimal, Kansas Secretary of Revenue Nick Jordan, Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster, and Missouri Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder, among others.
""We will not have a fully growing economy until our housing market is back where it was before the downturn,"" Lt. Gov. Kinder stressed in his address.
Participants at the rally were urged to reach out to their elected leaders and pass on the message that Americans value homeownership and that the housing market is capable of generating millions of jobs and the type of revenue that could kick-start the nation's frail economic recovery into high gear.
NAHB has organized nine homeownership rallies -- in key ""swing states"" leading up to the November election -- with the goal of making homeownership a top priority for lawmakers.
The trade group and its supporters are advocating for elected officials to ensure the mortgage interest deduction is protected, mortgage credit is readily available, and steps are taken to resolve the foreclosure crisis.