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Florida’s Economy Impacts Voters’ Election Day Decisions

With the housing market in turmoil and the markets reeling from the credit crisis, voters in the battleground state of Florida are scrutinizing what each of the candidates may be able to do to tackle the situation. Judy Woodruff reports on what voters are saying.

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  • JIM LEHRER:

    Now, the next in our series on the presidential campaigns in battleground states.

    Judy Woodruff spent last week in Florida, already one of the most familiar of all battlegrounds, where, as elsewhere, the economy has been hurting.

    Tonight, in the first of three reports, Judy looks at how the economy could affect the way the state votes in November.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    At Casavana, a new and noisy Cuban restaurant in South Miami, both Democratic and Republican diners sat raptly watching last Friday night's debate, straining to hear, especially when the candidates spoke about the country's financial crisis.

    SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), Arizona: It has to have accountability and oversight. It has to have options for loans to failing businesses, rather than the government taking over those loans.

    SEN. BARACK OBAMA (D), Illinois: We've got to make sure that none of that money is going to pad CEO bank accounts or to promote golden parachutes.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Afterwards, supporters of both men said what they heard bolstered their opinion going in.

  • ROBERT FERNANDEZ, McCain Supporter:

    I'd really come supporting McCain and really with what he has to say.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    And what did you hear in the debate that reinforced that view?

  • ROBERT FERNANDEZ:

    Well, his views on enriching the economy by cutting taxes for businesses and trying to, you know, spur growth through the businesses, it's really where I think it can lead to greater benefits for the economy.

  • ROSANNA FORTEZA, Obama Supporter:

    I see in Obama some flexibility of mind that can understand complex problems and adapt to what is going on and make, you know, good, common sense, and be pragmatic about problems.

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