There's no question that concern over the faltering American economy has become the pre-eminent issue of the upcoming US Presidential elections being contested by US Senators John McCain and Barack Obama.
For proof, one need only look at last Friday's first presidential debate: though the stated topic -- agreed upon earlier by both campaigns -- was to be foreign policy, a full 40 per cent of the debate was dedicated to the two candidates' plans for America's economy.
In the most recent CBS/New York Times 2008 Presidential Election poll, 52 per cent of respondents identified 'the economy and jobs' as the issue that would most determine whom they vote for.
The second most pressing issue, according to the same poll, was terrorism and national security, which garnered only 11 per cent of responses. It's clear where prospective voters are assigning importance.
Of course, given the recent meltdown of the US financial sector, this emphasis on the economy is to be expected. The importance of this issue has only accelerated in recent weeks, with America, the epitome of capitalism, showing uncharacteristic signs of socialism.
Image: The picture shows a Euro coin and a US $1 bill. | Photograph: Joel Saget/AFP/Getty Images
Also read: The world's most and least corrupt nations