Democrats' Ideas to Jump-Start the Economy

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Presidential candidates John Edwards, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama are among those calling for economic stimulus policies. They introduced detailed proposals to deal with the downturn.

Edwards plan,

announced Dec. 22:

Investment in clean energy.

- Increase safety net for the unemployed: Require Congress to set aside resources to help states cover additional workers in the event of increased unemployment.

- Increase aid to states: Additional federal contribution to Medicaid and other state aid so that a constitutional requirement to balance state budgets does not result in tax increases.

- Action on housing: Create a "Home Rescue Fund" to help families avoid foreclosure, giving people the chance to rewrite the terms of their primary mortgages in bankruptcy; pass a national law against predatory lending.

Clinton plan,

announced Jan. 11:

- $30 billion emergency housing crisis fund: Provide resources to states, cities and community organizations to prevent unnecessary foreclosures.

- Action to end the housing crisis: A 90-day moratorium on subprime foreclosures and an automatic rate freeze on subprime mortgages for at least five years or until mortgages are converted into loans families can afford.

- $25 billion in emergency assistance for heating bills: Home heating assistance grants for 37 million eligible families.

- $10 billion in extended unemployment insurance.

- Acceleration of $5 billion in energy efficiency and alternative energy investments: Tax credits to encourage purchases of hybrid and low-emissions vehicles; job training program on energy-efficient work.

Obama plan,

announced Jan. 13:

- Immediate $250 tax cut for workers and their families.

- Temporary $250 bonus to low- and middle-income seniors in their Social Security checks: If there is a three-month cumulative decline in employment, an additional temporary supplement of $250 per beneficiary would be provided.

- $10 billion fund to help avoid foreclosure: Increase emergency pre-foreclosure counseling and finance work through the Federal Housing Administration, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to help families facing foreclosure refinance their mortgages or sell their homes.

- $10 billion to state and local governments hardest hit by the housing crisis.

- Extension of unemployment insurance.

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