NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


May 11, 2007

Presidential candidate John Edwards is offering more policy proposals than any other candidate in the primary and his ideas are winning loud applause from Democratic audiences.  The question is whether other voters will cheer when they see the price tag -- more than $125 billion a year, says the Associated Press.

How will Edwards spend all that money? Here are a few of his proposals:

  • $15 billion to $20 billion to help achieve his goal of ending poverty in the United States within 30 years, including $4.2 billion to increase the earned income tax credit; $4 billion to create 1 million short-term jobs; and $3 billion for $500 work bonds.
  • $13 billion for an energy fund, with $3 billion in tax credits for the production of renewable energy and $1 billion to help the U.S. auto industry modernize with the latest fuel-efficient technology.
  • $1 billion for a rural recovery plan with initiatives like increased investment in rural small businesses, education, health care and resources to fight methamphetamine abuse.
  • $5 billion in foreign aid to combat international poverty, including $3 billion to help pay for primary education for every child in the world.

"There's definitely a lack of numbers in some of his proposals," said Paul Weinstein Jr., chief operating officer at the centrist Progressive Policy Institute.  "I think you should be commended for wanting to provide universal health care and to eliminate poverty.  I think it would be more legitimate if he would identify some of the ways in which he would pay for these things."

Source: Nedra Pickler, "Edwards offers big ideas with price tags to match," Associated Press, May 11, 2007.


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