Obama or McCain Better for Cities?

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Columnist Neal Peirce has a terrific new column out analyzing the urban policy track records and platforms of presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama.

An Obama presidency, he concludes, would be likely to bring us “an activist federal government in areas from transit and infrastructure to housing.” For a McCain administration, you have “to be a super-detective to discern any city-metro policy at all.”

Citing a recent debate held in Chicago with proxies for the candidates standing in, Peirce recounts that the Obama spokesman even pledged a new White House Office on Urban Policy to promote cabinet-agency cooperation, while the McCain speaker couldn’t be more specific than bashing taxes and regulation.

Given all the challenges facing metro/urban America today—the yawning infrastructure deficit, the affordable housing crisis, the need for more transit service and the golden opportunity presented by “green jobs” to solve global warming—these issues matter enormously and I highly recommend Neal’s column to everyone who cares about them.

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