iReporters weigh in on debt crisis
iReporter Bill Dalton says he sides with the Republican plan that was pushed through the House and defeated in the Senate.
July 30th, 2011
06:43 PM ET

iReporters weigh in on debt crisis

The "debt ceiling" battle is being fought not just in Washington, but all around the United States as people debate on how best to resolve the issue and who is to blame for the crisis.

Many of these people have submitted their thoughts about the topic to CNN in recent days through iReport. Some - be they military personnel, small business owners fearful of tax increases, or people receiving entitlement benefits - called for action as they spoke of the personal impact of failing to reach a resolution.

Others echoed Democratic and Republican leaders' talking points. In the former case, that includes possible revenue hikes  and insisting that the debate shouldn't be renewed next year, and in the latter by insisting on no tax increase and movement on a balanced budget amendment that would mandate the nation balance its books.

Below is a sampling of recent iReporters' comments, as the U.S. government creeps closer to an August 2 deadline to raise the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling or default on its debt.

What's at stake?

If the nation defaults on its debt, Staff Sgt. Tomas Valent - a U.S. Army Ranger combat medic at Fort Benning, Georgia - said he is deeply worried about losing his pay and benefits. If that happens, he said, "I will be nothing short of disgusted that the country I fought so hard to defend is being governed by individuals who feel their political beliefs are more important than the welfare of the general population."

As a man with disabilities and reliant on social security benefits, Philip Alexander Swiderski said that the debate already has caused him "great stress." The 33-year-old Texas resident said that a default would put his "only source of income, health care and housing ... in jeopardy." He urged the players to treat the debate as if they were in a marriage: "with deep thought and consideration towards others."

Nicholas Pegues, a 25-year-old who works with the Shelby County, Tennessee, election commission, said it was imperative that political leaders "unite and find a solution ... to secure a future for my generation."

Still, the political bickering up until now has already inflicted damage, said Christian Hopkins of Hartford, Connecticut. He said his "biggest concern is that the United States' reputation is already damaged as a result of this action.... We're being seen as a welfare state that borrows beyond its means."

How did this happen?

Omar Medina, a 33-year-old aerospace engineer from Annapolis, Maryland, blames "a small group in the House (that) has taken the U.S. economy hostage to try to save the U.S. economy. It's as if, collectively, they decided to throw a poltical temper tantrum on our behalf." Medina gives them credit for getting his and others attention, but said that Congress should now act and raise the debt ceiling.

How should this crisis be resolved?

Bill Dalton, a 55-year-old owner of a small consulting firm from Miami, sides with the Republican plan that has been pushed through the House (only to be defeated in the Democratic-controlled Senate). "Compromise only to the extent real spending cuts occur, not war savings, taxes on those of us with small businesses are not raised, the debt is reduced, and a balanced budget amendment is voted on in Congress by the end of the year," said Walton.

Rob Diaz, though, presented an opposing view. He said Republicans should "stop trying to reduce programs that people need to live on monthly" and added that the "rich need to do their part and pay higher taxes." The Texas resident, 30, favors a tax reform scheme "where major corporations, not small businesses, would pay taxes up to 1990s levels."

Diaz advocates that President Barack Obama "use the bully pulpit" to effect change - a sentiment voiced by fellow iReporter Vera Richardson. The 57-year-old, who said that she is disabled and who receives Medicare and Social Security benefits, said Obama - whom she supports - should step up and "set the tone and content of the national political debate."

Terry L. Heaps, a sales clerk, said a resolution can only be reached if "our elected officials ... stop behaving as children and reach an amicable solution that is fair and just to the American people." Given his flagging trust in politician, the 54-year-old Columbus, Ohio, resident wants U.S. voters (and not Congress) to decide which is the best plan to address the debt issue.

Cynthia Epps, though, thinks that there will be heroes coming out of this crisis. Opining "we absolutely crave moderation and common sense, not political rhetoric," the 51-year-old from Bothell, Washington said, "I actually believe that those who do cross party lines to really work together ... will be rewarded by voters in the next election."

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Budget • Economy • Harry Reid • John Boehner • Politics • Taxes
soundoff (75 Responses)
  1. Curious

    American Taliban? I disagree but that is pretty funny.

    July 31, 2011 at 12:18 am | Report abuse |
  2. Curious

    Their behavior is deplorable but I don't call fellow Americans terrorists or hostage takers because I'm angered by them. This isn't treason either.

    July 31, 2011 at 12:24 am | Report abuse |
  3. Manny Vega

    Hmm so a default would mean a massive windfall in interest hikes from the very creditors that include the banks we helped keep afloat with stimulous money.. and now thumb their noses at us? This is such a charade. It will be approved..they always Forbes once in a while.. If we don't default, well we keep printing the money anyway, only we get charged more in goods from abroad..This makes all as much sense as appointing that GE chap as Jobs Czar and he turning around and investing in China 2 billion dollars and relocating a 11 year old x-ray machine business along with over 1k obs. Very nice..and he is still the Jobs Czar.
    Keep watching the swan song and dance routine while the Rome burns, they are never short of scapegoats in these situations., and the taxpayers the suckers for buying into this.

    July 31, 2011 at 12:57 am | Report abuse |
    • daddycat

      I agree a100 percent,republication's really don't care about the middle class.The big corp's and the rich helped get them in there in the first place and they will do and say any thing to make sure they keep there billion's,all though they through a bone in there every once in a while to act like they care but we know they don't.What's that saying, 'sacrifice a few to save million's".This nation should first take care of the majority,our own nest. And yes that a sin to give all this big corp's bank's our money ,then they take our houses ,give there ceo's million's.that makes me sick.If i had 20 million dollars ,i think just keeping 5 million would be enough.Why are there republican here in the first place.To make sure the rich keep all there money.If you really believe in GOD and republicains are soposily the only one's that do ,then alot of gop are going to rot in hell.GOD BLESS THIS COUNTRY,GOD BLESS THE WORLD.

      July 31, 2011 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  4. jj

    not worried very happy jazzy jazz love the kokiness tho muah!

    July 31, 2011 at 4:02 am | Report abuse |
    • Jazzzzzzzz

      Thanks my friend and back atcha ! BOOGERRRRRR lol

      July 31, 2011 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
  5. II


    July 31, 2011 at 4:15 am | Report abuse |
  6. steven STEVENS

    if the repuicans want a crash give it to them...let their stocks sink t the bottom and their all of their investments take a big hit..maybe if were lucky those folks who who feel that they are safe....the many who voted republican.and live on the edge...those seniors who are collecting ssi and medicare who refuse to beleive that they are not part of the "dole"...those middle calls folks who for some stupid reason beleive that the republicans have their best interest up front. in other words screw those folks who should be voting and supporting the democrats that will be screwd by their repulican friends

    July 31, 2011 at 8:16 am | Report abuse |
  7. Keeping them honest


    July 31, 2011 at 8:21 am | Report abuse |
  8. Teresa Munoz

    Teresa Munoz

    I say we start getting rid of the waste in the White House! Why do these Men and Woman of the United States get to have Sunday off when the JOB is not done, Heck I would lose my job. We need to look at all the waste and get rid of it. We as voters need to look at this! I have one check book and mine is balanced every month as I'm sure alot of Americans do the same. We are asked to pay our bills all the time, So why is the White House even thinking of not paying there bills? I say do a 20% across the board tax bill for everyone, I say what we pay for to in port or export they meaning over seas pay the same! And why when we have a program out there we have to have another program out there to make sure the one we had first gets done? I say we bring home some of our Fine Americans over seas and start taking care of our own boarders! It's time to take care of waste and start saving. It does not take a Rocket Science to do this. I'll ever take my own time to help out with the BUDGET!!

    July 31, 2011 at 8:27 am | Report abuse |

    we owe, we owe, so its off to work i go....

    July 31, 2011 at 8:29 am | Report abuse |
  10. John Davis

    I hope all of you understand that NOBODY is talking about cutting what is spent. The "cuts" they are talking about is pace at which they had all plan to increase the budget in the future. The President ask to have the budget grow 7% every year and now ALL they are talking about in the $2 trillion in cuts is to slow the RATE of GROWTH. When it is all done the governmnet will stiff spend more than last year every year for the next 10

    July 31, 2011 at 8:32 am | Report abuse |
  11. John Davis

    my comment has been sensored –I think so i will try again

    48% of household pay no income tax at all– are you surprised that they all think others should pay even more?

    July 31, 2011 at 8:45 am | Report abuse |
    • dan

      And I pay 70 percent in taxes, go figure. Middle class are f'd. But I look at it this way, which the rest of these fools haven't a clue about.

      I work for a major corporation , I make good money. Less then 100,000 a year, but real close. It's not my fault that:
      1). The rest of you fools were stupid about the profession you chose. If I lose this job, I will get another one making the same money. Already have, I was laid off like the rest of you during the last 2 years. And am working for the same amount.
      2). It's not my fault that you are not considered a productive individual, or have the work history to prove your not. So that large corporation will not hire you.

      So what you cry babies, because you can't get a good paying job with a large corporation ? You want them taxed extinction?

      I hate liberals, seriously I do. And even though I recognize the good that the tea baggers have done, and they have done alot of good. We wouldn't be talking about saving anything without their loud vocal input. It would be spend, spend, spend like usual. It's time for them to recognize what they have given this nation, the realization of the seriousness of our debt, and compromise so we can fix it long haul.

      Shut up democrats, your fools and cowards. Your to much of cowards to protect this nation and your to much of cowards to accept responsibility for what you have done to drive this nation to the point of default it is now at.

      Say hello Greece, thanks to democrats. Say goodby USA.

      July 31, 2011 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
    • F H Lindstrom

      This is a specious argument. That 48% may not pay federal income tax, but they are certainly paying state sales tax, federal excise taxes and local property taxes (directly or indirectly), so to assert they are getting a free ride is a bit rich.

      July 31, 2011 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
  12. dazimae

    What needs to be cut in this country is medicaid and food stamps...the need is thre, yes....but is being controlled by people completly out of touch....single mom with 3 kids, getting $900. in food stamps..the real world of middle class
    working americans maybe spend $100. Married, with 2 kids and making $38,000 a year...medicaid take 2 preschool
    kids to dentist every mo. to clean teeth...NOT in the real working american world..these programs are necessary, but
    the monitoring of these programs needs to be done by real working america. This scenerio is being repeated by thousand of americans on these programs every day, imagine the money that could be saved if monitored correctly.

    July 31, 2011 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
  13. Jazzzzzzzz

    I know for our hospital that we work at, it's always a *struggle to get MCD to pay the claims that are submitted. even when we do submit them, they come back with some sorta paper work or diagnosis that is incorrect according them, going back and forth till timely filing becomes the issue.

    July 31, 2011 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Jazzzzzzzz

    BTW... folks, just a heads up, make sure when you go to get the blood draw for a Routine exam..that the Lab req. has the dx code clearly stated on it. this code is universal V70.0 or for a routine Gyn it is V72.31

    July 31, 2011 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ELROD

    Its going to take 10 years and the death of a voting generation to get rid of the Tea Party quacks protected in their safe districts. It would be a more intelligent voting strategy to get rid of the rest of the Republicans to right the wrong inflicted upon the House and Senate by the choices we Americans made in our representation during the 2010 vote.

    July 31, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
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