Financial woes worry many

Worries about the economy and personal finances are top-of-mind for many Americans in the run-up to the 2008 election, a new report says.

More than one in three people surveyed by the Northwest Area Foundation say they worry most or all the time about whether their paychecks are enough to cover their basic living expenses.

They worry about their neighbors as well, with more than three in four saying they know someone who works full-time yet has trouble making ends meet.

Although Americans are worried about their own finances, virtually all say they would like to be able to help others in need, the report says, with almost two-thirds saying they are willing to pay an extra $50 in taxes to help others in their community.

Almost six in 10 of respondents rate their economy as “fair” or “poor,” and almost seven in 10 fear the economy will worsen over the next year.

The vast majority say elected officials have a role in helping those who are struggling financially, the report says, and eight in 10 say that belief will have an impact when they vote in the November election.

The report, conducted by Lake Research Partners, includes responses from 4,000 people from eight Western and mid-Western states.

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