Economic Inequality An Issue For 2012 Campaign

President Barack Obama and his Republican rivals are focusing on economic inequality as an issue in the 2012 campaign as they argue about which of them can best help the middle class.

It comes as studies have shown a widening gap between rich and poor, even as unemployment remains stubbornly high. Obama has called boosting middle-class opportunity "the defining issue of our time," but former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney accuses Obama of "class warfare."

There are risks for Obama and the GOP in the debate. Obama could get blamed because his economic policies haven't solved the country's problems in his first term. On the other hand, voters agree with Obama that taxes should rise on the very wealthy.

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  • by DINO on Dec 25, 2011 at 08:53 AM
    The issue shouldn't be "economic equality" it should be the unequal application of the law for the rich versus the average working Joe. Rich corporations, banks and mega rich investors break laws with little or no risk of ever being prosecuted while if an ordinary person were to steal a loaf a bread they'd be looking at jail-time. Our law makers are one of the worst offenders, many of them should be in jail and not the capital.
    • reply
      by Bill on Dec 25, 2011 at 09:48 AM in reply to DINO
      Would you please tell us what laws are being broken
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 02:07 PM in reply to Bill
        Do peddling bad mortgages ring a bell?
      • reply
        by Tim on Dec 25, 2011 at 02:17 PM in reply to Bill
        I think DINO is right. An example for ya... elected officials can take information they obtain and use it to make millions in the stock market, but if you or I did that it would be called insider trading and we would wind up in prison.
        • reply
          by Anonymous on Dec 26, 2011 at 10:57 AM in reply to Tim
          Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are two of the biggest offenders.
  • by Tom Location: USA on Dec 25, 2011 at 08:07 AM
    Wall Street Mission Statement - to equal the playing field for all people in the United States. To send a message to our Government and Wall Street - Just because you write the law's to stack economic royalties in your favor, doesn't negate your duties to the American People to provide life, liberty and happiness to all Americans. Our freedom can not be dictated by our wealth and wealth controlled by so few. This is economic dictatorship.
  • by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 06:35 AM
    The moving vans had barely left the White House in 2009 when the republicans started blaming Obama for the mess Bush left behind - surpluses turned into deficits, a needless and costly and bloody Iraq invasion, deregulation of the banking industry to allow the trillion dollar scams, the divisiveness and inequity, religious bigotry... Vote republican in 2012 for more of the same.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 07:34 AM in reply to
      If you think things are better now vote for President Obama. If you don't like the direction the country is headed, vote for a change in 2012. For sure we need to look forward and stop the blame game, vote for a president with a plan to fix the economy without sending us deeper in debt to pay for more government handouts.
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 02:13 PM in reply to
        I like the direction President Obama is trying to take the country, I don't like the way the Rep/Tea are doing everything they can to disrupt it and bring it down for political gain. So, Yes I will vote for Obama and NO I will not vote for any Republican who's mission is to bring this President and the country down, BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY!!
        • reply
          by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 02:48 PM in reply to
          I agree, we need to vote for candidates who will cut government spending and promote economic growth to stimulate job creation.
        • reply
          by Anonymous on Dec 26, 2011 at 11:01 AM in reply to
          By any means necessary? Would that be simply checking one box versus another on a ballot or is there more to your rant?
  • by Denial on Dec 25, 2011 at 06:23 AM
    In the 50s the working class held 34% of the wealth in America. Today the entire bottom half of Americans own less than one percent.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 07:48 AM in reply to Denial
      The government started spending huge sums of money on entitlement programs in the 1960's,ever since it has been easier for generations of Americans to sit on their butts collecting government assistance instead of working at honest jobs to be self-supportive.
  • by William Location: Greenville on Dec 25, 2011 at 03:38 AM
    The so-called Middle Clas was created in the past by a booming industrial base which created millions of good jobs for semi-skilled workers and generated more millions of jobs that supported industry. Most of those jobs are gone forever. Unless the politicians can look beyond the next election and come up with ways to create more private sector jobs in the new economy, and the education and training programs needed for the new economy. As this approach succeeds, it will begin to restore lost tax revenue and be far less expensive than welfare, unemployment payments and the myriad other government-funded support programs. The results will be more jobs, more money coming in to the government and less going out. This is how budgets get balanced. As George H.W. Bush once said, "It's a vision thing." Someone also said, "Plan your work and work your plan." Right now we have no plan that addresses already well know facts - just senseless bickering over a lot of unrelated details.
  • by Tyee Location: Wiesbaden Germany on Dec 25, 2011 at 03:08 AM
    After WW II, the Germans taxed everything you owned, including radios, etc. If you did not pay, they took the items you did not pay the taxes on. Little tough but it brought them back to a good style of life in a hurry. If you ran thru a traffic life a camera would take your picture, then would send a ticket thru the mail and you better pay, or else. Change life to light, please. These are facts, reduced the number of german police and they cleaned the woods with an axe. Different countries do different things. Great to be able to see deer standing as much as 100 yards deep into the woods. Had to have a fishing license and had about 10 yard spot in which to fish. Rod & Gun club rented about two miles of water in which to catch German Brown trout.
  • by Tim Location: Kitty Hawk on Dec 24, 2011 at 06:37 PM
    The government is promoting class warfare through their policies of rewarding failure. Anyone with common sense knows we're in deep trouble and heading in the wrong direction. Both parties are driving this country into the ground, but don't worry because it all fits into the master plan. Have a merry Christmas!
  • by wake-up on Dec 24, 2011 at 06:24 PM
    I love the comments from the delusional middle class, who believe that they are cut from the same cloth as the rich and privileged. The "war" they accuse Obama of waging, is one of defense against a decades long assault on the average American. How is it that the richest keep getting richer while the rest of us continue fighting over an ever shrinking slice of the pie? It is the Republicans' desire to eliminate the middle class, a true belief that we are here to serve them, and a philosophy that the free market will cure all. It is fantasy of the most dangerous kind.
    • reply
      by Nope, You're Wrong! on Dec 24, 2011 at 10:18 PM in reply to wake-up
      There are people that ARE smarter and earn more money because they are smarter. My dad earned over $1,000,000 dollars within 10 years of opening a fast food restaurant. He eventually began earning $1 million per year. Most of you might think he was pretty smart. But his brother earned $5-10 million per year working as a broker on Wall Street. Both went to college. Both had the same good parents. So, why did one earn more than the other? Are you gonna claim that the president at that time and the policies of that administration made the difference?
    • reply
      by Karl Marx on Dec 25, 2011 at 04:23 AM in reply to wake-up
  • by Anonymous on Dec 24, 2011 at 05:02 PM
    What is the point of going to school and working hard to be successful if Uncle "Obama" Sam is going to pick your pockets to make everyone equal.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 04:21 AM in reply to
      Now that's about the stupidest post I've read yet.
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Dec 25, 2011 at 07:11 AM in reply to
        Only a traditional capitalist would think of a comment like that. You sound so 20th century.
  • by Mike on Dec 24, 2011 at 12:13 PM
    The politicians in BOTH main political parties had better listen up and do what's necessary to bring the jobs and economy back or they may be history. Listen to what TEA party candidates are saying and what the TEA party voters are saying. The GOP is scared to death of the TEA party and so is the DNC because it threatens to take away the fatted calf. Put aside your prejudices and blind loyalties to actually listen for a REAL CHANGE!!
    • reply
      by Nelson on Dec 24, 2011 at 04:44 PM in reply to Mike
      Noone wants to hear what the TEa party has to say...they have caused more problems than they are worth. Did you ever stop to wonder why their membership has fallen 70% in the last year? Try to keep-up.
      • reply
        by Karl Marx on Dec 25, 2011 at 04:28 AM in reply to Nelson
        They were too busy working to make up for the slackers of the "occupiers" who have been sitting on their thumbs for the past year waiting to be fed from "mother government".
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