CAP en Español
Small CAP Banner

Capital Hill

  • print icon
  • SHARE:
  • Facebook icon
  • Twitter icon
  • Share on Google+
  • Email icon

As our country faced the greatest economic crisis in generations during the financial collapse of 2008, a rare bipartisan majority passed a $700 billion bailout for failing banks known as TARP, the Troubled Asset Relief Program. During the financial meltdown, Americans lost more than $10 trillion of their own hard-earned savings when housing values plunged and retirement accounts were hollowed out. Why did Congress move so quickly and on such a historic scale to save the financial sector, but not do anything remotely similar to provide direct relief to the working- and middle-class voters who were suffering an even greater loss—and who, incidentally, had the power to vote them out of office?

In White-Collar Government, Nicholas Carnes, an assistant professor of public policy at Duke University, suggests that one underexamined factor shaping economic policy in the United States is the social class of the legislators who vote on it.

Read more here.

This article was originally published in Democracy.

To speak with our experts on this topic, please contact:

Print: Allison Preiss (economy, education, poverty)
202.478.6331 or

Print: Tom Caiazza (foreign policy, health care, energy and environment, LGBT issues, gun-violence prevention)
202.481.7141 or

Print: Elise Shulman (Oceans)
202.796.9705 or

Print: Chelsea Kiene (women's issues, Legal Progress, Half in Ten Education Fund)
202.478.5328 or

Print: Tanya Arditi (Immigration, Progress 2050, race issues, demographics)
202.741.6258 or

Spanish-language and ethnic media: Jennifer Molina
202.796.9706 or

TV: Rachel Rosen
202.483.2675 or

Radio: Chelsea Kiene
202.478.5328 or