Whoever Wins Presidential Race Will Struggle To Manage Economy

(October 29, 2012)—For whoever wins the presidential race, economists warn that when it comes to managing the biggest economic threats, there won't be clear sailing ahead, according to a new Associated Press survey involving 31 economists.

Most of them believe Europe's recession will continue deep into the next presidential term, which would mean weaker demand for U.S. exports, and it would cost U.S. jobs.

The economists say an even more urgent threat to the U.S. economy is the failure by Congress to reach a deal that would prevent tax increases and spending cuts from taking effect next year.

Whether President Barack Obama or challenger Mitt Romney is in office next year, the president will still likely be dealing with one chamber of Congress led by the opposing party.

Still, there are ways in which the economists think the White House will be able to drive the economy.

More than 70 percent of them say he could help lift growth and reduce unemployment by backing lower individual and corporate taxes and looser business rules, policies that are at the core of Romney's economic message.

Only about one in five of the economists say Mr. Obama's policies, including more spending on public works and targeted tax breaks for businesses, would be more likely to help spur growth and reduce unemployment.

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