By Veronica Anderson
With the final decision for 2008”s presidential race swiftly approaching, candidates are each applying different solutions to the current economic situation. There may be more pressure on the Democratic candidate, however, as polls show that Democrat supporters are more likely to worry about financial problems resulting from this crisis.
During the three, highly publicized presidential debates in the past few weeks, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama has urged relief of American families through lowered taxes.
On Oct. 7, Obama said: “For many of you, wages and incomes have flat-lined. For many of you, it is getting harder and harder to save, harder and harder to retire.
“That”s why, for example, on tax policy, what I want to do is provide a middle-class tax cut to 95 percent of working Americans … those who are working two jobs, people who are not spending enough time with their kids, because they are struggling to make ends meet.”
A recent Gallup poll asked voters whether they considered themselves at greater financial risk because of the turmoil of the past few weeks. The largest margin, 76 percent, of those polled who said they would be harmed “a great deal” to a “moderate amount” by the economic crisis were Democrats.
Some voters cannot get over the idea that the United States is headed for a second Great Depression, said Ned Hill, a National Advisory Council professor at the Marriott School of Management.
“In a depression, which is where we could be heading, the unemployment rate rises to the 20-30 percent level,” Hill said. “Life savings are destroyed. Our individual, family and societal problems would be vastly more serious than anything we”ve seen in recent decades. My hope is that Congress will have the courage to act quickly to avoid these dire consequences.”
Whether or not the financial situation continues to degrade, some voters are calling for a change in economic policy to be inaugurated along with their new president.
“I also want change in economic policy,” said Bryce Cox, a 25-year-old BYU alumnus from Kearns. “We are starting to see the effects of people borrowing more than they can afford to pay back, living beyond their means. The government can help get through the consequences of this situation.”