Sen. McCain hears Bay Ridge business owners' woes

BAY RIDGE - Presidential hopeful Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) made a campaign stop in Bay Ridge Thursday to hear small-business owners' concerns.

McCain said he wanted to know what problems they're facing during a lagging economy, which includes the slumping housing market and a possible recession. He met with six area business owners, including the owner of third-generation owned Windows We Are.

Rising gasoline prices and health insurance costs were among the biggest concerns expressed at the roundtable discussion.

Earlier in the day, Mayor Michael Bloomberg introduced the Republican as, "Someone who is nothing if not forthright." The likely GOP presidential nominee then sketched out a plan to help up to 400,000 homeowners trade "bad" mortgages for manageable loans in a speech in Brooklyn. Aides said the plan could cost up to $10 billion, but McCain failed to mention exactly who would be eligible for the assistance.

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