Jul 7, 2008

It is all about the economy. Well this is what it is looking like for the week ahead in the intensifying campaign between McCain and Obama. But the economy as an issue poses real challenges for both candidates. This from the New York Times:

Not since at least 1980, when the United States was reeling from the oil shocks, inflation and slow growth of the previous decade, has the economy been in worse shape heading into the heart of a presidential campaign. The crush of bad economic news — six consecutive months of job losses, rising rates of home foreclosures, gasoline prices seemingly headed toward $5 a gallon — is increasingly setting the contours of the race between Senators Barack Obama and John McCain.
Both candidates plan to spend this week focusing almost entirely on the economy. But both face political problems with the issue.
Mr. McCain, Republican of Arizona, has been shadowed by his statements earlier in the campaign that he is not expert in the subject of the economy and by the likelihood that voters will associate him with the economic policies of the Bush administration. He has embraced President Bush’s stands on central issues like tax cuts and trade policy.
Mr. Obama, Democrat of Illinois, has had difficulty connecting with working-class voters, and his more ambitious responses to economic problems like expanding access to health insurance would be paid for in part by tax increases, always a risky proposition.