FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
"It's the economy, stupid"... That's the message presidential candidates are once again getting from voters. The economy now tops Iraq as the most important issue to Americans.
The list of problems with the economy is long and getting longer: the mortgage meltdown, the credit crunch, the rise in unemployment, the continuing decline of the dollar and high gas and oil prices.
It all adds up to the likelihood of a recession. A lot of people think a recession has already begun. The Wall Street Journal surveyed a panel of economists who put the chance of recession at 42%.
Ordinary Americans are more pessimistic than those economists. A new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll shows 61%of those surveyed think the economy is already in a recession.
And there's more bad news: Moody's credit rating agency says the U.S. government is now at risk of losing its triple-A credit rating, unless we do something to curb our soaring costs of health care and Social Security. U.S. government debt has had the highest rating possible (triple-A) since it was first rated a hundred years ago in 1917.
This is a big-time alarm bell and should force the candidates to sharpen their focus on these issues. The problem is that the solutions require either higher taxes or cuts in benefits, and no politician wants to talk about those things during a campaign.
Here’s my question to you: Which presidential candidate is most capable of dealing with problems in our economy?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
That's simple. The only candidate who understands the effects of a flawed monetary policy. The only candidate who has been talking about this problem for years. The only candidate who brings it up in every single debate he was allowed to attend – whether the people want top hear it or not. Congressman Ron Paul.
Hillary Clinton is clearly the candidate for the job. Bill righted the economy and corrected the deficit in the 90s. Hillary can do it, too. It takes a Clinton to fix a Bush economy.
John Edwards, of course. He's he only candidate who gives a damn about people who are losing their jobs and their health care. Since he's not beholden to special interests, he can stand for what he really believes. He's my guy!
Rudy Giuliani transformed New York City's economy with fiscal discipline, welfare to work and reinvigorating business.
This is where experience does count. Hillary Clinton and John McCain are by far the 2 candidates that Americans can trust most to bring the economy back to healthy expansion. I am a lifelong Democrat and have never once voted Republican but, if it were Obama vs. McCain, I'd have to go with McCain.
Mitt Romney is the only candidate who has run companies, associations, governing bodies, and governments. He understands what a budget is and how to raise revenues while controlling expenses… And, Romney knows how to form a dynamic, talented team around him. We need a conductor, not a soloist.