Overheard on CNN.com: Beyond frustrated with debt stalemate
July 26th, 2011
11:51 AM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Beyond frustrated with debt stalemate

As debt ceiling talks continue, last night both sides presented reasons for a stalled solution. President Barack Obama called the political showdown "no way to run the greatest country on Earth" while House Speaker John Boehner insisted that excessive government spending is the root cause of America's financial problems and that expenditure cuts are the only solution.

Based on their comments, CNN.com readers are frustrated by the deadlock and many blame Republicans and House Speaker Boehner for not being willing to compromise.

Comment of the morning:

“It's looking to me kinda like grandma won't get her SS check because we invaded Iraq needlessly. That's pretty hard to swallow.” - ArooMadazda

Where’s the compromise?

Here's what else our readers had to say on the issue:

MasterJ51503 said, “Other than surrendering himself for impeachment, President Obama has given the Republican party EVERYTHING they desire. This is about as much compromise from Democratic leadership I have seen in decades, and the Republicans un-willingness to strike a deal on such circumstances that favor them tremendously only shows their true agenda: they want to paint Obama as a "failure.”

aahawks said, “No matter which side you are on, the President said one important word: "Compromise." From what I see, Obama is willing to make cuts and meet in the middle. The Republicans are not willing to meet in the middle. It’s their way or no way. Compromise is how we get things done.”

TorukMakto said, “Can we get the approval ratings for Boehner? I thought Bush was bad, but I have never seen a politician so openly threaten to let the U.S. economy get destroyed as long as the wealthy and corporations continue to enjoy the Bush TAX CUT.”

adamThegr8 said, “Obama speaks to you. Bohner speaks at you.”

Samuel27 said, “Boehner's speech boiled down to ‘Do what I say, and no one gets hurt!’”

TryLogic said, “Hey, Boehner: It's not a blank check. It's a debt ceiling increase, which has happened 74 times since 1962. And it's for exactly $2.4 trillion. Stop holding our nation hostage with politics.”

TheRealist20 said, “Boehner chooses to make extra cuts to Medicare and Social Security so he can preserve tax CUTS that were supposed to expire anyway, for the wealthiest 2 percent of the population. What a total slime ball.

Switters02 said, “Boehner cannot get his 'plan' passed by the House – 39 Republican Representatives have SIGNED A PLEDGE not to vote for it. Priceless.......”

anonyname said, “Remember, Speaker Boehner, if you break, it you own it. While you try to blackmail the President to keep millionaires and billionaires from paying more taxes, you are in GRAVE danger of being the guy who places the last straw that craters our economy. Do you want to be remembered forever as the guy who did that?”

Guest responded, “It's the President who doesn't UNDERSTAND the economy. He has NO background to be in the position as the President. It's showing BIG time here.

zzbbe said, “For some strange reason Boehner is determined to reelect Obama. His performance last night must have been worth many million votes for the Democrats.”

ihantotta said, “Poor Boehner. He looked so pathetic. He had to get up in front of the whole country and tell us that his party won't lift a finger for the common man.”

Truthwins101 responded, “Any sane person listening to Boehner last night would never be able to vote for Obama again in a million years. If you pull the lever for Obama in 2012 it speaks VOLUMES about your lack of mental capacity.”

brianguy123 said, “Obama's speech rambles about the year 2000, teachers, firefighters and corporate jets, none of which have anything to do with the issues at hand. The guy is from Pluto. He is not living in the real world.”

CorruptUS said, “If I had to choose right now between the plans presented last night. Hands down would I choose the one Obama was pushing.”

apaige said, “President Obama explained the debt ceiling crisis in everyday language to many Americans who didn't understand how serious this situation has become. He asked for balance and compromise while Boehner spent his time attacking the President. More importantly, the President told the country how a small cult of extremists have taken over the government and produced this very dangerous and unnecessary stalemate.”

ChefCHEESE said, “I watched President on TV last night and I think his plan makes 100% sense. The Republicans are an arrogant bunch of people who act as if they are still in power. I hope the voters will realize that and given them a real beating in election in 2012.”

gman90210 said, “Obama is openly lying to you. 'Tax the millionaires and billionaires'. Then in the same speech the plan is to tax 250k+, which is closer to zero than a million. Democrats can't understand simple math, blindly following a clueless leader who only cares to kick the can down the street to get past the next election instead of solving real problems.”

BobnLA said, “What is sad is that the President has to ask people to get involved in their own future. Getting a phone number or email address for any politician is simple- Google them. The real problem? Most Americans don't know who their representatives are!”

fiskenmann said, “Contact your lawmakers? Sorry, Mr. President, our lawmakers in South Dakota do not respond to voters unless you give them a check!!!”

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 (2,307 Responses)
  1. lernstjr

    I've been a registered Republican since 1964 and definitely conservative. Nevertheless, the current national debt crisis requires sacrifices FROM EVERYONE to deal with this. It seems unreasonable to me that the middle-class and elderly are being targeted for sacrifice while the rich appear to want to perpetuate their greed by not agreeing to pay higher taxes.

    When you're spending more than you're making, there are only two ways to get that under control: cut spending AND INCREASE INCOME. To only cut spending is inequitable. I am watching and will respond accordingly at the polls!

    July 26, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Keith

    This is a made up issue, a controversy created by the Tea Party and allowed to progress becasue the media has not called them out. The debt limit is to ensure our previous spending and borrowing is covered, to let the world know we honor our debts. If you want to make an issue of future spending that is a different matter but the debt limit debate is a shame to make President O'bama look bad, the limit has been rasied during every presidency since Kennedy. How do you solve the problem, rasie the debt limit, controvery resolved.

    July 26, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marine

      But both parties have agreed to raise the debt limit. They just havnt agreed to quit spending. It is pretty expensive building mosque in Egypt, and it is absolutely essential to use your childs future production to do it so the Islamic world will like me.

      July 26, 2011 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Cj n Cut n Shoot

    We have no representation in DC – if a company was run as poorly as our Government it would be closed. It is time for us to fire all residents of Capitol Hill we must find a way to take back our country now!

    July 26, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Working Joe

    Hey Boehner you and the GOP blew it big time on this one but I guess your party is real good at getting us into a Great Depression again. You and your tea party buddy's will never get your cap & cut bill passed no matter how many times you dress it up. All I keep hearing from you and your party are the same old broken talking points and you still think trickle down works? You should change the theme of your party to Hell Yes We Are Only For The Rich & Big Business. When you do that maybe people will finale wake the hell up.

    July 26, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  5. D Dugger

    No. Just giving the President a bit of his own meds. Remember he voted against the rase in the debt cieling when he was a senator.

    July 26, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kiki

      Screw the country to get Obama...at least you're upfront about it.

      July 26, 2011 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jozie

      Obama voting against raising the debt limit years ago was a symbolic gesture; he knew it was going to pass regardless. You republicans are beautiful on the 'spin'. Factually/technically correct, but plain BS.

      July 26, 2011 at 5:24 pm | Report abuse |
  6. jugo9dda

    I would assume that cantor, boehner, and other can afford to be reckless in these discussionsbecause they come from districts that vote republican and don't need to worry about being voted out in a subsequent re-election. This is a good reason to have term limits some extreme established lawmakers don't dictate the entire direction of country

    July 26, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
  7. T in Orlando

    Tried to send an email to FL Rep thru Gov't website several times – website was down!

    July 26, 2011 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
  8. The Rev

    The Dems do all of their budget figures by expecting that raising taxes won't have any effect on the economy, and so their number just take today's numbers and raise them by the percent of the tax raise. But guess what? Raising taxes will slow the economy, and potentially end up bringing in LESS money in the long run!

    The GOP is so afraid of raising taxes, because they don't want it to hurt the economy any more than it is already hurting. But honestly, we're going to need to raise taxes at some point to pay this stuff off. We can't get rid of our debt by cutting spending, exclusively. (It's actually possible that a tax CUT could actually end up bringing in more revenue in the short term... but one way or another, taxes are going to have to go up to deal with this, unless we decide to default, which is probably a bad, bad idea).

    The real problem here is that neither party can make the kind of decisions that will ultimately be necessary to fix this, because it would be so politically unpopular, they're afraid they'll lose what power they currently have! It's more about a political power struggle than it is about doing what's actually right. And it will never change.

    Shame on the Democrats for not accepting short term increases, because they're afraid that if they have to do it again before the election, they'll lose (which they might well, anyway!). And shame on the Republicans for not accepting the latest plan to cut spending without raising taxes.

    It's not going to matter anyway. Even the most aggressive reduction they've been talking about is $4 trillion over 10 years – at a time when we're $1.6 trillion in the red every year anyway. So it's not like this is reducing the DEBT whatsoever! It's only (slightly) slowing its growth. We're going to have to fight it eventually. Now is probably a better time than any time in the future!

    The trick is figuring out the least painful way to do it.

    July 26, 2011 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • justme

      Everyone keeps saying the sam thing, raising taxes on the wealthiest of Americans will slow the economy. Someone please explain to me how, how is asking them to pay their share going to slow the economy. The proof is in the pudding, so to speak, the economy has been going down every since Bush decided he and his friends should be allowed to stop counting a 250.

      July 26, 2011 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • The Rev

      The argument is basically that the wealthiest Americans are also generally the ones who own businesses, and hire others. The more that they are taxed, the less likely they are to have their businesses thrive, and that, in turn makes them more likely to lay off workers, etc. The result being a strain on the economy. That's a little black and white and simplified, but it's generally true.

      And you say "pay their share" – you mean "pay everybody's share"? Well, the top 1% of taxpayers pay roughly the same amount as the bottom 90% of tax payers. If that's not "paying their share", that's kind of scary to me. And last I checked, nearly half (like 47%) of eligible tax payers in the U.S. pay NO federal income tax. None. Nada. Zero.

      So should we tax the "rich" even more, so that 60% of Americans get a free ride?

      July 26, 2011 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
  9. DIANN

    The country had major debt from the former administration. I didnot see the Republican administration coming out this strongly against that administration. I understand now Pesident Obama has to deal with their debt and add new debt just to keep things going. What I donot understand is why are the Republicans standing so firm now when they should have done that two administrations ago. There are alot of middle class and below from both parties and all people who have worked and paid into the system should be treated fairly without being made to feel that their good work efforts were in vain.

    July 26, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • The Rev

      Part of it is a matter of scale. Bush was no saint when it came to spending. But Obama's first year in office quadrupled Bush's worst year.

      July 26, 2011 at 6:01 pm | Report abuse |
  10. neutral

    I guess this site is heavily sponsored by the Dems... no point reading it..

    July 26, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • half-employed household

      Or maybe REALITY is that most people are – in fact – fed up with the Republicans. But that would mean they wouldn't be doing what the people really want. That couldn't possibly be it. Right?

      July 26, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marine

      Possible but not likely half employed. Most likely it is one paradigm's attraction to a similar paradigm (Repubs to Fox, Libs to CNN) with an increasing friction from canaries in the coal mine.

      July 26, 2011 at 6:05 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Reel American

    GOD obviously Supports Republicans, The wealthy in this country HAVE BEEN GIVEN the intelligence to be in control of the money,resources , and policy decision making. We know what's best for the poor and middle class Americans who can't balance their own check books and want us to pay for it. Democrats just want a hand off

    July 26, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      "Reel American
      GOD obviously Supports Republicans, The wealthy in this country HAVE BEEN GIVEN the intelligence to be in control of the money,resources , and policy decision making. We know what's best for the poor and middle class Americans who can't balance their own check books and want us to pay for it. Democrats just want a hand off"

      Ahh, the voice of the extremist bigoted RICH Tea Party Republican. Seems like they'd be reasonable right? Right? Seems like they care about 98% of Americans right?

      July 26, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • DIANN

      I know a lot of Republican and Democrats who are good people that will feel the same pinch as they rely on what they have already worked for and can't get it. It was not a hand out then and it is not a hand out now. The elite will probalbly not cover the expenses of the people once they have used up their support....well any rate I hope they do...just having an opinion like the bog says...have a good day.

      July 26, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Tim

    I'd rather see my taxes go up than see the dollar drop even farther. Paying a little more in taxes to help solve this problem could save me money rather than going through a default...Not that it's my fault this is where the country is right now.

    July 26, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  13. half-employed household

    II have been largely trying to ignore this latest fiasco because, well, I have a demanding job and my husband has been unemployed since 2009. So I don't have time to worry about this.

    But despite trying not to read articles or listen to the radio, I can't get away from it because it is that bad. It is that worrisome that I get a sinking feeling in my stomach when I see the headlines. This situation is ridiculous. The partisan crap is APALLING. You can't support GWB and his spending from 2001-2008, and then turn around and play like it never happened and suddenly it's everyone else's fault that we're in this mess. Remember those last 8 years of spending? No?We're still paying for it. It didn't magically disappear or get paid for my the free pennies at the 7-11.

    Put the taxes BACK from pre-2001 and cut spending. Grow a pair and do what is right. Stop bullying the middle-class into covering for your mistakes.

    II would tell that to my Congressman except every f******g time I write him with a contrary opinion to his own, I just get a canned response of party-line propaganda.

    And therein lies the problem. Our representatives don't care what we think.

    July 26, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  14. G. Tritt

    gman90210 said, “Obama is openly lying to you. 'Tax the millionaires and billionaires'. Then in the same speech the plan is to tax 250k+, which is closer to zero than a million. ....."
    What the heck bkind of math is THAT? And I think your zip code says a LOT about why you don't want those w/ taxable income over $250 thousand..frickin' Beverly Hills, man??
    TorukMakto said, “Can we get the approval ratings for Boehner?...."
    Actually at RealClearPolitics they DO a Congressional (not Boehner specifically) Rating, using many of the most quoted national surveys averaged all together. In fact when the Democrats controlled Congress for that 1 & a half of Bush's time and Bush's rating sucked so badly, the GOP kept pointing to the CONGRESSIONAL RATING which was so much worse. Check it out. RIght now the DISAPPROVAL Rating for Congress is 74.4%, I believe, with a whopping 19.2% approval of their overall actions. Great job, guys!

    July 26, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Steve

    Extremists like the Tea Party Republicans are a lot like that quote from The Dark Knight..."Some men just like to watch the world burn." You really think rich Tea Party Republicans are going to care if the US's triple AAA credit ranking falters...they're rich...and unreasonable. Congrats America...you voted for them. Now we all suffer.

    July 26, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
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