August 1st, 2008
08:09 AM ET
12 years ago Sharply different economic plans from candidates

NEW YORK ( - When it comes to stagnating wages, Barack Obama and John McCain agree on one thing: Americans are suffering. And that's about all they agree on.

The presidential candidates have starkly different plans on how to reverse the years-long slide in workers' incomes. Democrat Obama's proposals of creating jobs through government investments are aimed at helping the middle class. Republican McCain focuses his plan on cutting taxes on businesses that he says will spur more jobs and keeping tax rates low so people have money in their pockets.

Wage stagnation has made the downturn in the nation's economy is even more painful, economists say. Skyrocketing fuel and food costs have hit workers hard because their incomes largely have not kept pace with inflation during this decade.

On Friday, unemployment hit a four-year high after employers trimmed 51,000 jobs, the Labor Department said. A day earlier, a separate government report showed that inflation-adjusted wages showed their biggest decline in the survey's eight-year history.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (129 Responses)
  1. Rudy NYC

    If you want a better paying job, move out of the US. Go to India, Hong Kong, UAE anywhere but North America.

    If you want a low paying job, then stay right here in the US of A.

    August 1, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  2. jimmy

    It`s because one knows what he is talking about (with experience )and the other does not.

    August 1, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  3. Deb, Allentown, PA

    The only people who will benefit from cutting taxes on businesses are the business owners themselves. Do we really expect to see a trickle down effect? Successful businesses have already pared the fat out of their operations and are running those businesses at efficient levels. Tax cuts for them won't make them go out and hire new people and add to their overhead.

    No matter which candidate is elected, taxes will have to be increased. How else can we possibly get ourselves out of the incredible deficit hole we've dug?

    It's funny to watch McCain play pingpong with himself on taxes...

    No new taxes
    Nothing's off the table
    No I won't raise taxes
    We may have to negotiate on tax increases

    It would be funny if it weren't so darned scary!

    August 1, 2008 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  4. v.a.

    they may agree that americans are suffering, but here's the difference.

    obama has a plan to help and mccain just turns his back and goes negative on americans calling them a nation of WHINERS.

    this choice is crystal clear.

    August 1, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  5. MMN-Milwaukee WI

    Without spin or politics someone expalin this one.

    GM Posts $15.5 Billion Loss

    Breaking Own Record, Exxon Sets Highest U.S. Profit Ever:
    Second-Quarter Earnings Total $11.68 Billion

    August 1, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  6. Vigla

    Lowering taxes for the rich will NOT help wages increase... It didn't work for 8 years, and it isn't going to work now. Reaganomics has failed. Stick a fork in it.

    August 1, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  7. paulie_nj

    Obama's answer to everything is to just give a tax credit or fund [it] with a government program. This type of thinking just puts the government into further debt and, in the long run, that debt will need to be offset by higher taxes in other areas. Don't be fooled. For those of you who are still undecided about who to vote for you must read "The Obama Nation"; it's a real eye opener and will make you think twice before voting for Obama in November.

    August 1, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  8. rbt

    Lets see. . . wages down . . .economy bad. Obama has a new direction and plan, McCain's idea, lets cut taxeso businesses to spur more jobsand keep taxes low. Does that sound familiar. Sounds like trickle down to me. . how is that working for you so far in the past 8 years?

    August 1, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  9. Ms. RDS

    Republican McCain focuses his plan on cutting taxes on businesses that he says will spur more jobs and keeping tax rates low so people have money in their pockets....What? Keeping tax money in whose pockets. The company owners yeah that helps when the workers are actually paying more taxes than the people who own the company. Warren Buffett said it best it's a shame when his secretary pays a bigger percentage in taxes than he does!

    August 1, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  10. Bill from ALabama

    McCain is right! People,you can't make money without jobs,and the jobs need to come from Private sector companies,not Government subsidized entities....costing the workers more of their hard earned income,in taxes. Keep the taxes low so businesses can thrive. Personnel get to thrive along with the businesses.

    August 1, 2008 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  11. Voter

    The problem with Obama's plan is that he will be a tremendously weak president, relying on his "celebrity" status, which will get really old really fast.

    And with no experience and only a newly acquired "fan" base in the Senate and House, there's not much left, is there?

    As soon as Senate and House members begin to have their seniority and their iron clad committee structure, we'll see who they'll fight for-the political baby or themselves.

    I see Jimmy Carter all over again.

    As we will hear spoken more and more in the halls of Congress, in the national media and over dinner tables across America as an Obama presidency wears on, "Talk is cheap.

    August 1, 2008 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  12. obama is unfit to be president of this country

    McCain is the BEST. LOVE HIM!!
    Go home obama !!!!! You lie and lie and lie. You will not get this country.

    August 1, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  13. Steve (Independent)

    I's say, put an end to "Trickle Down" economics and put the money back into the hands that need it. If those that need it get, they can spend it and pay more taxes without adding as much in new taxes... get it?

    August 1, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  14. NoMcSame

    PUMA people don't care because they will vote for McSame anyway. Same old Bush same old McSame and you will toss the country into hell because you are mad because Hillary. Hillary will be ok, my question is what about you if Mcsame gets in.
    Bull, it is a race issue. The puma people ran to McSame after Clinton lost. McSame does not line up with not one thing that Clinton was fighting for. He would cut off the heads and undo everything that the PUMA people want but that would vote for him before they would vote for a black man. Most of her supporters would rather have the ship sink than to have a black man lead or be at the helm. How sad it is when people have that much hate. They try to cover it by saying that they are mad at the party because of the way Hillary was treated. That is like someone in the army saying that they are going to join up with Taliban because he or she didn't like the fact that Bush replaced their general. So just go and do what you are going to do. Obama will still be ok no matter what or how any of you haters vote. Oh, and one more thing I WILL TOO.
    Obama08 whata DREAM Not in America

    August 1, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  15. Linda31

    Let's see...Obama – create jobs
    McCain – cut taxes on businesses.

    Who benefits????

    Cutting taxes does not aid businesses in managing better. If they can have less people doing more, they will.

    August 1, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  16. Rise America Rise

    If american people would stop buying products made overseas, the demand for jobs in the US would increase. Sure, we would pay more, but then we would be giving the money to our fellow citizens. Its, like, duh!

    August 1, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  17. Texas Voter

    Obama believes in the redistribution of wealth. Read his autobiography, and you can tell it's one of his core beliefs.

    Obama promises everything to everyone, so you can't go off what he says, look at his RECORD.

    Obama wants to tax, tax, tax so he can expand the size of government.

    That's the last thing we need.

    August 1, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  18. MMN-Milwaukee WI

    Without spin or politics someone explain this one.

    GM Posts $15.5 Billion Loss

    Breaking Own Record, Exxon Sets Highest U.S. Profit Ever:
    Second-Quarter Earnings Total $11.68 Billion

    August 1, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  19. CNN is Biased

    who monitors what article allow posts....anything angainst Obama, they open up to posts, and allow people to post offensive sometimes abusive comments about Obama, his wife an his campaign, but when its about McCain, like that articel about Rove, they close for comments. Cnn is so can they claim to be anything else. That's why I don't watch CNN anymore, I only come to the website, and I won't be doing that much anymore. If you want anything meaningful and without bias I guess you will have to look somewhere else try MSNBC

    August 1, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  20. Debra

    August 1st, 2008 9:02 am ET

    So we're more sexist in the US than racist? Give me break. Pie face lost fair and square. Get lost and go vote for McCain.
    I will

    August 1, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  21. R.I.F.

    100% agreed Deb, Allentown, PA

    McCain and the republicans are only mainly interested in keep more money in their rish buddies hands. McCain's tax "cuts" offers 1/3 the cut to people who need it the most as opposed to Obama's plan which is focusing on helping the people who need it the most.

    August 1, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  22. Former Repub

    McCain will be forced to raise taxes!
    Don't be folled by him FLIPING-FLOPING and then FLIPING it again.
    Truth is, in the dire state the economy is in, We have to get more revenue through taxes to recover. Obama just wants more tax on the upper 1% and use the money saved from IRAQ war, while McCain will have to raise taxes for everyone because he still wants to stay in IRAQ. The senior bush also promised no new TAXES, but he broke his promise his 1st term in office.
    So all the repubs voting for McCain b/c of taxes, stop fooling yourself!
    The money has to come from somewhere!!!!

    August 1, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  23. mayahh


    August 1, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  24. John in Virginia

    Come on McCain. If you cut taxes for businesses, they are not going to add jobs. They are simply going to give raises to upper management and continue to send jobs overseas. It is obvious you don't know anything about job creation or the economy. Obama's plan, on the other hand, is to invest in infrastucture here at home; jobs that can not be outsourced. American people employed put money into the U.S. economy. People in India may draw money in for the corporation they work for, but they spend in their own economy. People, please do not fall for McCain. McCain was also a D student in school who graduated 894 out of 899. Lets hire the guy who worked hard in school and graduted with As.

    August 1, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  25. Charlotte

    People have plenty of money to donate to Obama. What is the worry? I'll worry when he can't raise millions overnight. When people are not standing in line for hours to purchase $500.00 IPHONES and the like, I'll worry. When movies stop grossing $50 million a weekend, I'll worry. When people stop drinking Starbucks, I'll worry. Wait, isn't Starbucks closing 1000 stores? Maybe I'll worry just a little. We are a nation of spoiled, whinning, egotistical people. We are long overdue for a correction and that is something to start to worry about.

    August 1, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
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