“Change” may be more than an election-year buzzword: Thanks to record deficits and Wall Street's crisis, it could be the only money the next president has left. Barack Obama and John McCain are vowing ambitious projects, reports McClatchy, but “the next president is just not going to have the money to meet his promises,” says a nonpartisan researcher.
Obama's tax cuts and health care reforms would cost $425 billion, and McCain's at least $471 billion. Meanwhile, Washington's budget deficit is expected to hit $407 billion this year and $438 billion next year, topping the all-time high. “They’ve got to be asleep not to see this is bad news,” says one expert, while another tells candidates to hash out new proposals: “What may have been economically and politically palatable six months ago will have to be reviewed.”