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What Will The Next President Face On #Day1?

The next president to occupy the Oval Office will confront four seemingly intractable problems: stagnant wages, cybersecurity, violent extremism and federal debt. Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images

The next president to occupy the Oval Office will confront four seemingly intractable problems: stagnant wages, cybersecurity, violent extremism and federal debt.

Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images

Presidential candidates are doing what they have to do at this point in the campaign season — they're raising money and strutting their biographies and electoral viability to voters. We haven't heard much yet about policy papers or what they would actually do if they win. But those policy issues will matter — as the campaign picks up steam and especially once the next president steps into the Oval Office on Day 1.

This week, NPR looks at four seemingly intractable problems that await the 45th president on Day 1, and the policy options that might be available to him or her. The issues we're focusing on are:

For now, we're talking about the issues themselves — we will also track where candidates and voters stand on them as the campaign heats up. You can hear the stories on NPR's Morning Edition and All Things Considered this week.

We want to know what issue you think the next president will need to address on Day 1. Tell us on Facebook or Twitter using #Day1.

What Will The Next President Face On #Day1?

  • Part 1: Despite A Rising Economy, Paychecks Remain Stuck

    Worker productivity has grown, but wages have fallen far behind. NPR hide caption

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    Worker productivity has grown, but wages have fallen far behind.

    NPR

    It's a familiar story. Most Americans, like elevator operator Michael Hall, still aren't seeing big raises, even though the job market is slowly recovering. Hall, who works at Seattle's Space Needle, says despite the success of the attraction, his pay hasn't budged in the past four years.

    As the U.S. economic elevator starts to climb again, a central challenge for the next president will be making sure more American families aren't stuck on the bottom floor.

    Part 1: Despite An Economy On The Rise, American Paychecks Remain Stuck

    What Will The Next President Face On #Day1?

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  • Part 2: How Will The New President Protect Our Digital Lives?

    The 45th president will have to come into office with a game plan for how to protect us online. Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP hide caption

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    Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP

    The 45th president will have to come into office with a game plan for how to protect us online.

    Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP

    When President Obama took office back in 2009, "cybersecurity" was not a word that everyday people used. It wasn't debated. Then, mega-breaches against consumers, businesses, and the federal government changed that.

    Now, as one expert said, "just as we have energy policy and space policy and defense policy, maybe we need cyber policy."

    Part 2: How Will The Next President Protect Our Digital Lives?

    What Will The Next President Face On #Day1?

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  • Part 3: Violent Extremism Moves Closer To Home

    A member of Iraqi government forces in position against the so-called Islamic State. Haidar Hamdani/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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    Haidar Hamdani/AFP/Getty Images

    A member of Iraqi government forces in position against the so-called Islamic State.

    Haidar Hamdani/AFP/Getty Images

    In the past two years, nearly 200 Americans have either tried to travel to Syria and were stopped, are actively considering going, or have actually made it to the ISIS battlefields there.

    It's something the next president will have to grapple with on Day 1 in office.

    Part 3: For Next President, The Fight Against Extremism Will Hit Closer To Home

    What Will The Next President Face On #Day1?

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  • Part 4: Debts From The Past

    While annual deficits have shrunk dramatically since the depths of the Great Recession, the federal government is still adding to its overall debt. Mark Wilson/Getty Images hide caption

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    Mark Wilson/Getty Images

    While annual deficits have shrunk dramatically since the depths of the Great Recession, the federal government is still adding to its overall debt.

    Mark Wilson/Getty Images

    Our next president is likely to have some big plans for the future of the country. But he or she will also have to wrestle with some leftover bills from the past.

    The federal government has issued trillions of dollars in IOUs. And just the interest on that massive debt could be a serious constraint for the next president.

    Part 4: The Future President Will Need To Wrestle With Debt From The Past

    What Will The Next President Face On #Day1?

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