2005 Federal Assets Policy Report and Outlook

Policy Paper
March 31, 2005

The purpose of this annual report is to summarize and take stock of the current state of federal policy through an asset-building lens, especially as it affects the asset base of the poor.

In his Second Inaugural Address, President Bush reaffirmed his commitment to promoting an “Ownership Society” and unambiguously connected asset building policy to the most cherished ideals of the nation. He proclaimed:

In America's ideal of freedom, citizens find the dignity and security of economic independence, instead of laboring on the edge of subsistence. This is the broader definition of liberty that motivated the Homestead Act, the Social Security Act, and the G.I. Bill of Rights. And now we will extend this vision by reforming great institutions to serve the needs of our time. To give every American a stake in the promise and future of our country, we will bring the highest standards to our schools, and build an ownership society.

Through his promotion of an ownership society, the President has placed asset building issues on the table. While budget and other pressures make it unlikely that any significant advancement will be made in most policy efforts that target the poor, there is a possibility that asset building may prove to be one of the few areas where some progress could be made.

For the complete document, please see the attached PDF version below.

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