Election Connection

Putting Lipstick on the Mortgage Crisis

The spat between Sen. John McCain's VP pick, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, and Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama may only be a war of words - afterall, as Ballotvox points out, "lipstick on a pig" is an expression that "McCain himself used in 2007 to describe Hillary Clinton's healthcare plan."

But enough with the nitpicking. Patchwork Nation's Dante Chinni reports that the spat isn't having much of an effect on some key voter blocks. In the Boom Towns and Monied Burbs, the pressing issue isn't Sarah Palin's choice in eyewear, but the mortgage crisis and how many people are at risk for losing their homes.

"Today, I looked at the mortgage bailout. It actually could have some real impacts on the election. If all   those people with ARM mortgages can refinance now (some are forecasting 30-year fixed rates at under 6%) that could make them feel a bit better about themselves financially. And the mortgage crisis is biggest in to key community types -- "Boom Towns" and "Monied Burbs". They've seen some of the biggest effects from the foreclosures an they are both battleground community types where the vote was split in 2004.

Of course, weighing against that is the fact that a bailout was needed in the first place, which speaks to the shakiness of the housing market in general and probably helps Obama.

One other odd thing, McCain and Palin have come out blasting the bailout. Not sure that's a smart move."

Bloggers agree that the ad attacks are taking attention away from the issues about which voters are most concerned.

In a post that PRX project Ballotvox found from Black Men for McCain, one blogger speaks out on the lipstick attacks:

"I have never in my life been so embarrassed to be a Republican. Conservatives and Christians alike, I beg of you, take a stand. We are better than this. Only months ago, we had agreed to campaign on the issues. What happened?"

What are the key issues in your area? Are the candidates spending enough time talking about real things that affect communities?


Jim - Akron Ohio said:

I keep waiting for someoone to ask the real question to John McCain and Sarah Palin: If this war is so vital, why are they billing it to my grandchildren. Let's pay as we go John.

SuzyQ_TX said:

This really is silliness time. Now that we have had our fun commenting on lipstick, pigs, and such, as the walrus said, "The time has come to speak of many things. . .....

The instructor in a tax class I am taking on preparing Form 1040 gave us a simple suggestion. She told us to look at what the presidential candidates are proposing as they relate to the effect on real taxation. She said that she would make no comment on either candidate, but would leave it to us to give serious consideration to what would really happen with the proposals of each candidate. I just did. Of one candidate, I thought, "What is this idiot thinking of?" The other presented such straightforward statements on tax policy that it was easy to see exactly what effect his proposals would have. Right now we have a very unfair tax that has grown out of what was once an excellent plan to capture taxes from people whose CPA was clever enough to save his client income tax payments. Simplifying the income tax and bringing about some level of fairness is long overdue.

What on earth is going to happen with the home mortgage crisis? Even Alan Greenspan dances very cleverly around saying anything that could be used against him. No, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac should not be in such trouble, but they are and we need some cool, steady logic to work toward getting us out of this mess. It doesn't help to blame people who bought the hard core advertising that sold them on the idea that they could have something for nothing. That is the whole point of advertising. Sell people something completely unrealistic. Good old snake oil.

Iraq and Pakistan. Draw down troops in one place so you can send them off to another?. Is that really an answer? I don't know the answers here, but I'll bet we could all discern when someone comes out with plans that make sense. I haven't heard it yet, but I keep hoping.

One thing, though. We are emotional beings and we will make some choices based on emotion, so it would be unreasonable to expect politicians, who are in the business of selling, to refrain from trying to influence us by appealing to our emotions.

bert said:

Nice to hear someone talking about simplifying and making the tax system fair. Almost half of all "taxpayers" pay no tax at all. If you want to really help people, eliminate, don't expand, refundable tax credits. Instead of the EIC and child tax credits, there should be a tax credit for small businesses that hire new full-time employees.

Wouldn't it be better to have a $20,000 job than a $2,000 government handout?
Maybe it's just me....

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