Overheard on CNN.com: Should President Obama sidestep Congress?
July 28th, 2011
05:34 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Should President Obama sidestep Congress?

Comment of the day:

"I don't know if I'm relieved or concerned about some of the revelations in this article. While they all seem a bit shady, I suppose it's good to know that there are still some executive options on the table to keep us from going over the brink that Congress has brought us to."–svscnn

3 ways Obama could bypass Congress

"We are having a debt-ceiling crisis because Congress has given the president contradictory commands," writes Constitutional Law professor Jack Balkin, "Congress has ordered the president to spend money, and it has forbidden him to borrow enough money to obey its orders." But President Obama may be able to save the United States from defaulting, he writes, perhaps by issuing $1 trillion coins or selling the Federal Reserve an option on $2 trillion in property.

katahdin62 said, "President Obama should do whatever he has to do to protect the country. Clearly most of the rational Republicans are gone, and the few who remain are too scared of the nuts to act in the best interests of the country. Since he's stuck dealing with screaming children who can't be reasoned with, the president should simply act on his own."

jschartz said, "Avoid the gimmicks of the first two options. Option three is viable since the Constitution may well grant the president that power based upon interpretation. If it comes down to the wire, I think President Obama should do this. Let Congress impeach him and question the constitutionality of this move. Maybe then America will wake up to the reality of our representation: Many House members place politics above America's well-being by refusing real compromise."

But mslman71 said, "No matter how frustrating dealing with Congress might be that is no reason to bypass it. What country is this? Hail the emperor, is that what you want? What happens when the pendulum swings back the other way and a Republican is in office?" MetsFan17 replied, "Where were you when Emperor W was running the country into the ground? Probably never saw a single thing wrong there."

jandrews10 said, "Defaulting on our debt would cause a collapse of the bond market, as I understand it. Interest rates would rise, causing a slowdown in the housing market because people wouldn't be able to afford to buy homes with higher rates. Credit card rates would rise. It would give the impression that our safest investment (bonds) are no longer a safe investment. It wouldn't be a good thing."

MsMaryE said, "I predict that on 3 August, President Obama will give a press conference on who and what will get paid. He will not use the 14th Amendment. He will let the tea party and Boehner hang themselves."

takingsides said, "Man, if the U.S. defaults I am going into business digging moats and building drawbridges."

Reaction to pastor giving thanks for 'smokin' hot wife'

A Baptist preacher who gave the invocation at a NASCAR race tickled some and offended others last weekend by thanking God for his wife and corporations for their cars, and then signing off, "Boogity, boogity, boogity, amen." Many CNN.com readers applauded the pastor, Joe Nelms, for his good humor and appreciation of his wife.

Karen said, "I think he's a sweetie-pie husband for saying that in the prayer! I think God loves it when we're crazy-in-love with our spouses!" shelly said, "I think it was wonderful! I've been married for 23 years and this was the first time my husband really heard a prayer!:))"

Ashlyn said, "I think it was sweet. This woman is married with kids, and if she had any supermodel days, they are long behind her. If her husband wants to proclaim her 'smokin' hot' for everyone (including God) to hear, good for her. We should all hope our spouses still find us hot after years of marriage and multiple kids. The product placement seemed a bit over the top, though."

Jesus Loves Nascar! said, " 'And yea, verily, thou shalt roar around a circle again and again in thy holy attempt to become rich and famous in a Jesus-loving way as thousands of beer-smeared yokels who haveth not much upstairs hoot and yowl and thinketh this is something amazing as they give lots of their cash to rich people and hope to see a gnarly crash, for Jesus loveth a few good smash-ups.' The Gospel of Rubes, 12:34-45"

But others were not amused. SAM said, "To pray in Jesus' name, the highest name, above all others and to make a mockery of it is a disgrace! God does not want us to act as if we are dipped in pickle juice and while you can ask anything in that name, this pastor went too far and should be ashamed."

peter lawrence replied, "Dear Sam, if Jesus was to hear that prayer he would be laughing as well. You, on the other hand, have no sense of humor and probably no life. Go get a life and have some fun and stop being an ass!" CN0 said, "Jesus loved a party." Don said, "God doesn't mind, he has a good sense of humor. How else would you explain the platypus?"

jacksonsaid, "It was a lighthearted remark made at a race. It ain't the pope speaking to the throngs in the Vatican Square." Jesus Loves Nascar! replied, "Actually, that was the Southern Baptist equivalent of the pope speaking to the throngs at the Vatican!"

Britain bans airbrushed Julia Roberts makeup ad

Airbrushed makeup ads of actor Julia Roberts and supermodel Christy Turlington are misleading, Britain's Advertising Standards Agency ruled. The watchdog agency banned L'Oreal's photos of the two, saying they exaggerated the ability of the products they were promoting to cover lines, wrinkles and blemishes. L'Oreal called the Roberts image "aspirational."

Kudos to the British, said many CNN.com readers. seter16 said, "Europe is so much further ahead of us in so many ways. In America we value that we can lie to our citizens to get them to buy a product." Neutral79 said, "Must be nice living in a country where the regulators actually do their jobs on behalf of the public." guru2u2 said, "They insist on truth in advertising? How odd and clearly un-American."

SomeDudeinNCsaid, "If you see how much work goes into Photoshopping an advertisement of even a beautiful woman, you would be shocked. They are so aggressive in removing every little blemish that people have a totally unrealistic view of who those people even are." pmichner said, "Just say at the very end of the commercial 'This has been an advertisement for Mega Airbrushing Company.' "

Claghorn said, "The thing I like best about makeup is the persistent use of the phrase 'natural.' Constantly telling you that coating yourself in several layers of chemical compounds is the way to achieve the 'natural' look." CG77 said, "If the makeup could achieve those effects, why didn't they?"

1MyOpinion said, "Look how good my product is (after I fix it)."

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (197 Responses)
  1. ssc740

    How is this president going to get us out of this Financial Train wreck, He is the one causing it, oh oh, here comes the cliff !!!!!!!!

    July 28, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • anuheiarichardson

      HOW STUPID.FIRST OF ALL HE IS THE COMMANDER AND CHIEF OF THE UNITED STATES.TERRORIST WILL LOVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO KILL AMERICANS.HOW THE HELL CAN U TALK ABOUT THE REPUBLICANS THEY WANT TO CUT DEFENSE DEPT.SOMETIMES I WONDER WAS IT REALLY IRAQ THAT BOMBED THE WTC.OR WAS IT REPUBLIANS WAY OF CUTTING SPENDING.OBVIOUSLY THEY DONT GIVE A DAMN ABOUT THE PEOPLE,THEY JUST WANT TO DEFEAT OBAMA.THIS HAS BEEN THERE AIM SINCE DAY ONE.PEOPLE OF COLOR ARE WATCHING THE UNITED STATES,IRAQ,AFGHANISTAN,EGYPT,THEY ARE RECRUITING AMERICANS TO DO THERE KILLING.WE DONT LOVE THIS COUNTRY,ITS OWNED BY CHINA.................

      July 28, 2011 at 11:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Capercorn

      The President is only asking for permission to pay the bills that Congress ordered him to pay.

      July 29, 2011 at 12:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Mike kerns

      What planet do you hail from?

      July 29, 2011 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
    • JenniferUCD

      Stop drinking the kool-aid, numbnuts!

      July 29, 2011 at 3:08 am | Report abuse |
    • steve

      @scc..your spewing what your daddy said around the dinner table. Bed time ...

      July 29, 2011 at 3:12 am | Report abuse |
    • steve

      geeeeee @ ssc ...I guess he will have to do the exact opposite of what "that" other President did. Now..as i said before ...have your milk and cookies and go off to bed.

      July 29, 2011 at 3:19 am | Report abuse |
  2. s kel

    shut up ssc740 your the tea party racist that hates the president because of his color, thats why i hate you,your family, and all like you.

    July 28, 2011 at 11:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Oscar

      Wow, he hates Obama, you hate his entire family. Are you seeing a pattern here? Lets stop the hate.

      July 29, 2011 at 12:28 am | Report abuse |
  3. Infinity

    It's clear that the Republican't party, aka the Grand Obstructionist Party is worse than a pushme-pullyou from Dr. Doolittle. A 2 headed critter that's pulling in both directions rather than trying to find the type of compromise that our great country was built on.

    July 28, 2011 at 11:30 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Kiki

    This is about paying debts we've already incurred. How moral, ethical or responsible is it for us to default?

    July 28, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Report abuse |
  5. anuheiarichardson

    Listen ,i believe the repulican party is trying to bring our country to its knees.They have made mexicans there new target.THE PEOPLE HAVE NOW BECOME SECONDARY,LOOK AMERICA WE MUST TAKE THE POWER AWAY FROM THOSE THAT ARE ABUSING IT,RACISM IS REARING ITS UGLY HEAD.THE WAY THE REPUBLICANS TALK ABOUT OBAMA IS DISCUSTING.THEY ARE CLEARLY RACIST AND NO LONGER HIDE IT.OBAMA YOU HAVE DONE WELL.YOU ARE RIGHT TO TAKE THE PEOPLE FIRST.STAND FAST TO YOUR WORD,TO YOURE PROMISE,THAT THE PEOPLE ARE YOUR CONCERN.GOD TOLD US THIS WOULD HAPPEN.THAT THE GREEDY WOULD SMASH THE NEEDY.THE SYSTEM HAS CLEARLY TURNED ON ITSELF.HOW DARE YOU EVEN TALK TO THE COMMANDER AND CHIEF THE WAY YOU HAVE.YOU HAVE DESERCRATED THE OFFICE OF PRESIDENT.OTHER COUNTRIES ARE LAUGHING AT US.AMERICAN PEOPLE,THIS IS THE TIME TO MARCH ON WASHINGTON.STOP THIS INSULTING GAME THAT YOU THE REPUBLICANS ARE PLAYING.REMEMBER ELECTIONS ARE SOON.U WILL PAY THE ULTIMATE PRICE,YOU JOB.REMEMBER IF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE GO DOWN,YOU ARE GOING DOWN WITH US.

    July 28, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • JenniferUCD

      Stop yelling at me! Caps Lock off please.

      July 29, 2011 at 3:10 am | Report abuse |
  6. Paulo

    Obama should invoke the l4th amendment and bypass these childish idiot whiners that call themselves the Tea Party. Pity party is more like it.

    July 28, 2011 at 11:40 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Moe L

    Not only should President Obama sidestep Congress...he should run away from Congress as far as he can. MINT THOSE COINS President Obama...only way out of a situation brought about by republicans/teabags.

    July 28, 2011 at 11:46 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Alma Stevenson

    Congress should stay away from President Obama decisions of the debt deficit because the Lord God put his hope in him. It is a good man to work hard as a President. By Alma Stevenson

    July 28, 2011 at 11:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Oscar

      Give unto caesar that which is caesars and give God what is Gods. God has nothing to do with politics.

      July 29, 2011 at 12:40 am | Report abuse |
    • Jean Sartre

      MAN created GOD... he can UNMAKE GOD!

      This is the 21st century...

      July 29, 2011 at 2:57 am | Report abuse |
  9. WOT

    Mr. Persident, your advisor should be God only!

    July 28, 2011 at 11:51 pm | Report abuse |
  10. wileysee

    The democratic party, the party of no! Barak Obama...the president of "I don't know". No plan, no action, no clue.

    July 28, 2011 at 11:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jean Sartre

      wileysee: the cretin with no brain...

      July 29, 2011 at 2:59 am | Report abuse |
  11. Emelia Kanson

    They're a pity party now? I thought they were hobbits!

    July 28, 2011 at 11:53 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Neo

    In some countries, when you threaten to shut down the government for looking for ways to raise revenue to fix an ailing economy that will potentially affect its citizens, that is treason!!!. I still don't know how cutting down government spending can stimulate an economy when the corporations is driven by profit. it is not the spending that is bad, it is what you spend on. We need to a lot of investments as well as cut excess spending. it has to be this balanced approach.

    July 28, 2011 at 11:57 pm | Report abuse |
  13. bypassingcongress

    Would immediately plunge this country into a civil war.

    July 28, 2011 at 11:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • college grad

      you really are a redneck . thank god the majority of us are not as stupid

      July 29, 2011 at 1:01 am | Report abuse |
    • JenniferUCD

      Not paying our debt is a straighter path to civil war than bypassing a dysfunctional congress. Nothing like a financial crisis to make people crazy enough tho kill. See WWII.

      July 29, 2011 at 3:13 am | Report abuse |
  14. Cpt. John Brown

    Should the President sidestep Congress? If they can't get their act together, he damn well better. Otherwise we are left with only one final option. Someone will have to make a sacrifice and "fire" the House tea party and their lackeys. That's why we have a second amendment after all, isn't it?

    July 29, 2011 at 12:03 am | Report abuse |
    • bypassingcongress

      Our whole government is set-up to be run by the people. Look at Gallup and Rasmussen, the people don't want Obama. If he decides to try and over run the checks and balances our government is based on, it will get very ugly, very fast. History doesn't just show up in history books, it actually happened. If we aren't careful, we'll be added some very unpleasant pages very shortly.

      July 29, 2011 at 12:06 am | Report abuse |
  15. JJ

    Of course the President can sweep aside an intransigent Congress on an issue like this. The real question is whether or not Obama can sweep aside his penchant for Kumbaya-Style Lets-all-hold-hands-and-play-nice style of politics and grow a pair for the sake of the country.

    July 29, 2011 at 12:15 am | Report abuse |
    • bypassingcongress

      The majority of this country has been watching Greece, Portugal, Ireland...... for a long time and most of us know that the US is now facing the same cross roads. The country would view "sweeping aside" congress because it can't get its way FAR more seriously than you do.

      July 29, 2011 at 12:18 am | Report abuse |
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