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October 07, 2008

It's the Economy (Again)

Catherine New
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Tonight, John McCain and Barack Obama will meet in Nashville for the second of three presidential debates. In an op-ed published in the New York Times on Oct. 7, 2008 (“The Dismal Questions”), Dean Glenn Hubbard and Prof. Joseph Stiglitz posed several questions relating to the economy they would like the candidates to answer. Select questions:

From Prof. Stiglitz:

More than a million people have lost their homes in the past two years. A million more are expected to lose their homes in the next 12 months or so. Do you support a more direct program of relief for homeowners? The government pays more of the mortgage costs of rich homeowners, through larger tax deductions, than of poorer homeowners. What would you do to correct this injustice?

From Dean Hubbard:

Does the financial crisis indicate that we need more regulation? Or is the problem less one of too little regulation than of poorly focused regulation? The crisis had its origins in part in international capital flows that led to extraordinarily low interest rates. But high-risk mortgage lending drew some of its breath from regulatory interventions. Some heavily regulated financial institutions managed to get themselves in trouble. And it was government-sponsored enterprises, no strangers to regulation, that stimulated the demand for questionable mortgage products. Shouldn’t the next president be standing up to protect markets instead of sowing doubts about them?

What questions about the economy would you like the presidential candidates to answer?

Comments

by Courtney McGrory | October 07, 2008 at 2:37 PM

As the economic contagion spreads, what will you do to avoid a backlash against globalization and the formation of protectionist barriers, both here and abroad?

by Stephanie Torruella | October 07, 2008 at 3:05 PM

I would like each candidate to clearly define "middle class" and "wealthy" and explain how the definitions vary across state and city lines. Based on their definitions, where do they see shared/overlaping interests and what one proposed policy would benefit both groups?

by Ramsey McGrory | October 07, 2008 at 3:34 PM

A lot of the rhetoric has been about predatory lending because it plays well to the voters, but consumers living outside their means with overextended credit bear some responsibility here. Other than the regulations on financial markets, what actions should be taken to address the actions of the consumers?

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