We’re a little more than 48 hours away from the first presidential debate…

Many are predicting this single event — months ahead of Election Day — to be a critical turning point for both campaigns.

We rarely cover politics here, as you may have noticed.

That’s partially because we know your inbox is already flooded with political opinions and activism. Instead, we prefer to stay laser-focused on money and markets (hence the name of our publication).

At the same time, it’s the government that prints our money and drives our markets.

Government spending makes up over 36% of America’s total economic activity.

President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump both have vastly different agendas.

But whoever wins will guide the flow of trillions in spending over the next four years.

So even though we’re not covering up-to-the-minute polling or campaign news, we’re still paying very close attention to how the race is developing — and the impact it could have on your portfolio.

Here’s what you can expect during (and after) Thursday’s “Clash of the Titans”…

Only ONE Thing Matters to Voters…

You’re probably already familiar with James Carville, aka “the Raging Cajun.”

The cable TV pundit and political strategist rose to fame after helping former President Bill Clinton get elected in 1992.

Carville is perhaps most famous for inventing the phrase “the economy, stupid…” during that campaign.

America was in the midst of a recession, and Clinton was running against an incumbent who had an early advantage.

Instead of trying to tackle every one of America’s countless problems, Carville focused the campaign on one issue: the economy.

His message was so simple, so focused and so persistent that it broke through to Americans everywhere.

Over the course of a few months, the phrase became the campaign’s mantra. “It’s the economy, stupid” was its tongue-in-cheek rallying cry.

And it worked.

George H.W. Bush went from an approval rating of 90% in March 1991 to a disapproval rating of 64% by August 1992.

Thanks in large part to Carville’s aggressive messaging, voters trusted Clinton to take care of their everyday needs. And so, on that fateful day in November 1992, they made Bush a one-term president.

Fast-forward to today, and we’re in a similar situation…

Who’s Stronger on the Economy?

Though we’re not officially in a recession, America is struggling with some of the highest inflation rates in decades.

And just like in 1992, there are numerous “hot-button” issues that each candidate has addressed — from immigration and border control to support for NATO and the war in Ukraine.

But once again, America’s economy is the single lightning-rod issue that holds the greatest sway with voters.

Inflation is hitting the pocketbook of every American family, and many are blaming it on Biden’s liberal policies.

The current president’s team has tried to get ahead of the issue by floating catchphrases like “Bidenomics” and touting the accomplishments of trillion-dollar spending bills like the Inflation Reduction Act.

But major outlets like the Wall Street Journal have cast doubt on whether Biden’s mega-legislation is ultimately a good thing for our economy.

Meanwhile, it’s no coincidence that the Trump campaign is suddenly circulating a flurry of new ideas that directly address this topic…

At a campaign stop in Las Vegas, Trump announced plans to potentially do away with taxes on all tipped income. That kind of policy could make him an instant choice for millions of service industry workers looking for a windfall.

Trump has also proposed eliminating the federal income tax and replacing it with a 10% tariff on imported goods.

While both of those plans are a little “pie in the sky,” they’re getting Trump plenty of positive press and attention.

Much like his 2016 campaign’s stated goal of building a massive wall on the border with Mexico, these are evocative ideas that get voters excited.

So Who Will Win Thursday’s “Clash of the Titans?”

The lines here are clearly drawn…

Americans are hurting from inflation, which means Biden has an uphill battle to climb in terms of his administration’s record.

Trump has his own challenges, such as his ongoing legal woes, but on the economy, he has a clear advantage with voters.

So if Trump can take a page from Carville’s book, if he can keep the debate and the resulting discourse focused on the economy and his future policies, then he’ll come away the clear winner.

If the former president gets pulled away from that primary topic, if Jake Tapper’s line of questioning draws him away from inflation, the economy and the future of the stock market, then he’ll start to lose that advantage.

That’s why Thursday’s debate could indeed be a serious turning point for both campaigns.

Of course, there’s a chance CNN passes on asking what some are calling “the $15.7 trillion question…”

Do you want to know why?

Because it’s the one thing Biden and Trump may actually agree on — and that’s not good entertainment!

That’s why my team and I have been working behind the scenes on a critical presentation that you need to watch before Thursday’s 9 p.m. ET broadcast.

No matter the outcome in November, one industry in particular is poised to reap a massive windfall…

And I just revealed THREE ways to invest before things could really take off.

To good profits,

Adam O’Dell

Chief Investment Strategist, Money & Markets