McCain Lays Out Economic Proposals

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Republican John McCain laid out a list of economic proposals today, including eliminating federal taxes on unemployment benefits.

McCain made the proposal on Tuesday, as a part of his $52 billion economic plan while campaigning near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

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The McCain campaign says that currently nearly 4 million Americans receive government jobless benefits. If the government eliminated taxes on unemployment benefits, recipients would see an increase on average of nearly 10 percent, they said.

Under McCain's plan, seniors would also pay lower taxes when they withdraw from retirement accounts. He said he would lower the tax rate on Individual Retirement Accounts and 401 plans to the lowest rate, 10 percent, on the first $50,000 withdrawn. The campaign estimated it would affect 9 million people over the age of 60.

McCain's plan included reducing the tax rate on capital gains to 7.5 percent for two years.

"I will help to create jobs for Americans in the most effective way a president can do this -- with tax cuts that are directed specifically to create jobs and protect your life savings," McCain told a cheering audience at the Montgomery County Community College.

McCain's proposal comes as Republican insiders say the Arizona senator needs to do more than just criticize Obama in an economy that the Democrats say favors them.

Democrat Barack Obama announced his economic plan on Monday. He demanded the government suspend the tax on unemployment benefits as well as extending benefits.

Obama spokesman Bill Burton ridiculed McCain's plan as a "gambit" and "trickle-down, ideological recipes" that will not help the middle class.

"His trickle-down, ideological recipes won't strengthen our economy and grow our middle-class, but Barack Obama's pro-jobs, pro-family economic policies will," Burton said.

The Illinois senator also proposed allowing people to withdraw up to $10,000 from their retirement accounts without any penalty for the remained of this year and all of next year. Obama's plan also calls a 90-day stay on home foreclosures at some banks, and a two-year tax break for businesses that create new jobs.

The two rivals for the White House unveiled their plans before Wednesday's scheduled third and final presidential debate, which is exactly 21 days from Election Day.

Source: The Associated Press, Washingtonpost.com

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