Credit crisis woes spur calls for more federal regulation

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The current economic crisis is being seen as 1 of the factors prompting calls for more government regulation.

The regulation rush is apparent in a proposed overhaul of financial oversight, the recent inspection crackdown on airline safety and growing concern about the need to get government involved in dealing with climate change.

Small government has been a hallmark of conservative thinking, but even Republican John McCain's economic adviser has come down on the side of more federal involvement to help solve the mortgage mess. Former GOP Congressman Jack Kemp says, despite the danger of over-regulation, he wants to "keep people in their homes."

Conservative economists worry that too much regulation could stifle economic growth and efficiency.

Economist Allen Sinai says society tends to "over-respond" with more regulation. He says there has to be a balance, although he says, at the moment, an overhaul of financial oversight is something that's needed "without a doubt."

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.