Economic issues have emerged as a dominant concern among voters in this primary season. "The poll numbers in New Hampshire were striking. Among Democrats, 38 percent called the economy the biggest issue, compared with 31 percent who named Iraq and 27 percent who said health care. Among Republicans, 31 percent cited the economy, while 24 percent said Iraq and 23 percent chose illegal immigration."
In this context, two quotes from last night's GOP debate are of interest:
“There are some jobs that aren’t coming back to Michigan. There are some jobs that won’t come back here to South Carolina. But we’re going to take care of them. That’s our goal. That’s our obligation. We need to go to the community colleges and design education and training programs so that these workers get a second chance. That’s our obligation as a nation.” John McCain
“I know that there are some people who think, as Senator McCain did — he said, you know, some jobs have left Michigan that are never coming back,” he said. “I disagree. I’m going to fight for every single job. Michigan, South Carolina, every state in this country. We’re going to fight for jobs and make sure that our future is bright.” Mitt Romney
- Both accept that the government has an obligation to "protect" jobs or help match people with available jobs.
- McCain assumes the government can do little to prevent job losses, but a lot to help those who lose jobs. He offers very concrete ideas.
- Romney assumes the government can and should do a lot to prevent job losses. He offers not a single specific policy to achieve this.