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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: October 30, 2008 @ 1:37 pm

    Obama, McCain show their arts

    Fiona McCann

    We all know (ish) what they think about healthcare, the economy, war and the like, but there’s been little comment about the differences in the two candidates for the American presidency when it comes to the arts. And there are differences. Obama, whose arts policy is outlined here , wants to create an Artist Corps of young artists to work in low-income schools, and supports increased funding for the National Endowment for the Arts. John McCain, who finally released a four-sentence statement on his own arts policy this week, supports arts education though he leaves it up to local entities to decide on funding.

     No big surprises then, and one wonders, given the current state of economic chassis, whether any of it even matters. Americans, if you’re out there and happen to be reading the Irish Times arts blog, will this new release by John McCain have any effect on your vote?

     Here’s his full statement, in case you missed it:    “John McCain believes that arts education can play a vital role fostering creativity and expression. He is a strong believer in empowering local school districts to establish priorities based on the needs of local schools and school districts. Schools receiving federal funds for education must be held accountable for providing a quality education in basic subjects critical to ensuring students are prepared to compete and succeed in the global economy. Where these local priorities allow, he believes investing in arts education can play a role in nurturing the creativity of expression so vital to the health of our cultural life and providing a means of creative expression for young people.”

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