The two major U.S. presidential candidates are
expressing reservations about the Bush administration's $700 billion bail-out of
ailing financial institutions. Republican John McCain and Democrat Barack Obama
both agree on the need for government action. But as VOA's Jim Malone reports
from Washington, the candidates have different visions of what the plan should
Democratic nominee Barack Obama campaigned in
Wisconsin, where state polls show a tight race with his Republican opponent,
Senator John McCain.
Obama and McCain agree on the need for more
government oversight of the financial bail-out plan put forward by the Bush
But Obama also supports a Democratic-led effort in
Congress to include in the bail-out an economic stimulus plan aimed at helping
"Now on Main Street, there have been quiet storms going
on for a very long time," he said. "There have been people crying out for a
government that is fighting for them for a very long time, and that has fallen
on deaf ears, and that is one of the things we have got to change in this
Obama also blamed the financial turmoil on eight years of Bush
administration economic policies, and said electing John McCain would do little
to change the direction of the country.
"We can't do this again," he
said. "We can't put up with eight more years of mismanagement of the economy. We
can't put up with eight more years of no regulation. Enough is enough!"
Senator McCain also expressed some
reservations about the government bail-out plan during a campaign stop in
Pennsylvania, another state expected to be close in the voting on November
McCain said he wants a high-level oversight board to monitor the
bail-out plan, and he also questioned the wisdom of giving Treasury Secretary
Henry Paulson broad authority to direct the plan.
"Never before in the
history of our nation has so much power and money been concentrated in the hands
of one person, a person I admire and respect a great deal, Secretary Paulson,"
he said. "This arrangement makes me deeply uncomfortable, and when we are
talking about trillions of dollars of taxpayer's money, trust me just isn't good
McCain told a television interviewer that the current financial
turmoil is the most serious crisis since World War II. A week ago, McCain came
under attack after saying the fundamentals of the U.S. economy were
McCain also told the campaign event in Pennsylvania that the
bail-out plan should help people remain in their homes and prevent Wall Street
executives from profiting from the financial rescue plan.
to the American people is to fix the Wall Street mess, reform Washington and
most importantly, enact a pro-growth agenda to create jobs for Americans and get
this country back on track," he said. "That is what I promise you."
two campaigns also traded new television attack ads. The McCain camp depicted
Obama as the product of corrupt Chicago machine politics, while the Obama
campaign put out an ad warning about McCain's proposals to deregulate the health
Both candidates will also be busy this week preparing for
their first presidential debate, which will be held Friday at the University of
Mississippi. The subject of the debate will be foreign policy and national
Two other presidential debates are scheduled as well as one
debate between the two vice presidential candidates, Democrat Joe Biden and
Republican Sarah Palin.