The United States is one of the world’s wealthiest countries. Even so, its economy goes through ups and downs. An economy is the way a country manages money and resources to produce, buy and sell goods, or products, and work done for others, or services. The strength of the U.S. economy is a big concern right now for many Americans. The economy has struggled since a major recession in 2008. A recession is a period of decline in trade, industry and job growth. The percentage of unemployed workers seeking jobs was at 8.3% in July. Barack Obama and Mitt Romney each have ideas about how to build a strong economy, create jobs and make it easier for people to find work.
* Barack Obama believes in less government spending. He says he wants to help the economy by investing in education, clean energy and companies that bring jobs back to the U.S. As President, Obama pushed a plan to rescue the U.S. automotive industry. The plan helped save more than 1 million jobs. One of Obama’s key goals is to boost the economy by helping small businesses. Here are some of his ideas:
-Give tax breaks to those who invest in clean-energy technologies, such as wind turbines and advanced car batteries.
-Invest in technologies that will create manufacturing jobs. Give tax breaks to manufacturing companies making goods in the U.S., and increase taxes for U.S. companies outsourcing jobs overseas.
-Give tax cuts for small businesses to help them move ideas [delete: from lab] to the market and create new jobs.
-Enforce the Wall Street Reform Act, which says that if a financial company fails, it will be Wall Street firms that pay the price—not taxpayers.
* Mitt Romney believes the government should be smaller, simpler and have less regulation over the economy, in order to reduce costs and make the U.S. more competitive. He says his goals will encourage growth and innovation in businesses. One of Romney’s key plans to boost the economy includes investing in energy to bring more revenue and jobs. Here are some of his ideas:
-Bring government spending below 20% of the GDP (gross domestic product) by reducing the federal workforce by 10%, reducing foreign aid, reducing or cutting federal funding for some government programs and merging government agencies and departments.
-Replace jobless benefits with unemployment saving accounts that help place unemployed individuals into companies that provide on-the-job training.
-Open up more areas of the U.S. for offshore oil drilling and give states more power in energy production. Romney says his energy proposals will create more than 3 million new jobs and move the U.S. toward energy independence.
* The candidates’ positions are culled from their websites and other primary sources.