The 2014 mid-year elections were historic by many measures, but particularly for the NAR and the REALTOR Party. It was NAR’s most successful election to date, winning over 90 percent of the REALTOR Party supported races. Needless to say, real estate issues stand to be well represented in Congress over the next two years.
In the Senate, Republicans gained 8 seats (with Louisiana still undecided), putting them in the majority with at least 54 seats. NAR supported Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who will become Majority Leader in 2015. Senator McConnell has been a strong supporter of the mortgage interest deduction, rural housing development, and other top real estate issues throughout his 30-year career.
NAR-backed candidate Pat Roberts (R-KS), who sits on the important Finance Committee, also won his race. As a result of the change in the Senate, every Committee will now have a Republican Chair. The following new Committee Chairmen will be very important for REALTOR® issues in the 114th Congress:
- Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) – will be the Chair of the Senate Finance Committee (tax issues).
- Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) will be the Chair of the Senate Banking Committee (financial services and housing issues)
- Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) will be the Chair of the Appropriations Committee (discretionary spending).