Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Planks from the Platforms

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Planks from the Platforms

Article excerpt

Banking per se rarely makes it into political parties' platforms and Election '96 is no exception. However, numerous issues of direct interest to bankers are touched on by both major parties' platforms. Those are selected and excerpted here. (To read the full platforms on the World Wide Web, see http://www.democrats.org for the Democrats and http://www.rnc.org for the Republicans.)

Environmental Issues

Democrats: "The President and the Vice-President have created a brownfields initiative to bring life back to abandoned and contaminated property by reforming outdated regulations and providing incentives for cleanup....We want to challenge businesses and communities to take more initiative in protecting the environment, and we want to make it easier for them to do it."

Republicans: "Because we view the careful development of our country's natural resources as stewardship of creation, we believe property rights must be honored in our efforts to restore, protect, and enhance the environment for the generations to come."

The platform calls for assurance of due process of law before an owner is deprived of property rights.

"Republicans consider private property rights the cornerstone of environmental progress. That lesson has been confirmed in the tragic environmental record of Communist rule and of socialist regimes in the less-developed world. By safeguarding those rights--by enforcing the takings clause of the Fifth Amendment and by providing compensation--we not only stand true to the Constitution but advance sound environmentalism as well."

Small Business Issues

Democrats: "Over the last four years, the President has transformed the Small Business Administration to eliminate burdensome paperwork and deliver real assistance to entrepreneurs as they work to start or expand their businesses. At the same time, since Bill Clinton became President, we have more than doubled the number of loans to small businesses, nearly tripled loans to minority businesses, and quadrupled loans to women-owned businesses." The platform also notes that under Clinton the SBA has eliminated half of its regulations.

Republicans: Besides an overall call for lower taxes and regulatory reform, the platform demands: deductibility of health insurance costs for small businesses; restoration of a fair home-office deduction, "so important to start-up businesses"; and assurance that no one who inherits a small business or farm must sell it to pay inheritance taxes. …

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