Overheard on CNN.com: Congress' lack of action sparks anger
December 20th, 2011
12:17 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Congress' lack of action sparks anger

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

Congress showed little sign of resolving its partisan standoff Tuesday over the payroll tax cut extension as the Republican-controlled House of Representatives passed a measure expressing disapproval of a Senate plan, and leaders in the Democratic-controlled Senate insisted they won't go along with a new House proposal.

The House motion, passed in a virtual party-line 229-193 vote, called for the dispute to be immediately taken up by a House-Senate conference committee - something already ruled out by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada.

House Republicans on Tuesday passed a motion calling for further negotiations on the payroll tax cut, disagreeing with a Senate measure that called for a two-month extension. Only Republicans supported the motion in the 229-193 vote.

[tweet https://twitter.com/problemcauser1/status/149161231310262273%5D

The Senate voted 89-10 in favor of a two-month tax-cut extension Saturday - a fallback plan designed to give both sides more time to negotiate - but that short-term compromise has slammed into a conservative roadblock in the House, where rank-and-file Republicans are fuming over the short-term nature of the plan, among other things.

As the clock ticks down, nobody appears willing to bend and neither side seems to know how to break the logjam.

The latest political drama follows what seems like a year of endless debt talks and regular episodes of near-government shutdowns, and some people are simply fed up with Congress. We take a look at the frustration with government that people are sharing on both CNN.com and around the Web.

Some users commented they felt lawmakers from both parties are to blame and they planned to hold them accountable. They said that Americans have the power to vote out incumbents if they can't get anything done to help the people of this country.

[tweet https://twitter.com/Jchawes/status/149126949715984386%5D

us2us: "Who do these people represent? Answer: Themselves."

marjoreemae: "It's a shame responsible people will not come together and fix what's wrong with our country. I vote not to pay these individuals. It's time we have a real voice in our government."

gadzooks: "I do hereby call for the resignation of every member of Congress."

hv19006: "I'm just not voting for any of the incumbents in the next election. They have all proved they can't get the job done, both the Senate and the House, both the Democrats and the Republicans."

[tweet https://twitter.com/jesseclee44/status/149140452552097792%5D

Some readers were concerned about how the tax cut would affect Social Security.  Others said a two-month-extension in general would likely do little to help.

[tweet https://twitter.com/hlovesidol/status/149144928524582912%5D

RickyV: "The tax cut is an attack on Social Security. It should become part of the GOP platform. It's time to out the hypocrisy of the Democrats who claim to help the 'little guy' while screwing them and poor families the whole time."

KarlinT: "I actually hate to say this. ... I am totally against the GOP but a two-month extension does what exactly?! They want a one-year extension. If you want the tax break, why would you not want it to last longer?"

Others said they thought the GOP was using the issue as a chance to push the the Keystone XL oil pipeline project.

ialsoagree: "Because they have only this week to pass any bill before the tax cuts expire. The Senate passed a two-month extension with every meaning to come back to the table in January to forge a one-year extension to the tax cut.

"Republicans saw this as an opportunity to continue ramming the gas pipeline down the throat of Americans. With any luck, (Senate Majority Leader Harry) Reid and the Democrats will have some backbone, stick to Reid's statement that the Senate won't negotiate further until the two-month extension is passed, and let the tax cut expire. I hate to see my own taxes go up, but come January everyone making less than 106K a year will be wondering why the party of 'no tax increases' raised their taxes."

MontanaBill: "It is not a 'tax break', it's 'I'm not funding my future Social Security' break and it has provisions for a new tax on home mortgages. Obama doesn't want the pipeline decision to have to be made until after the elections so he won't have to anger environmentalists before the vote. He will approve it, eventually. And then claim credit for the jobs."

WilliamGa: "For a worthless two-month extension, we are supposed to thank them on bent knee."

[tweet https://twitter.com/lizbuddie/status/148901328834404352%5D

Other readers squarely put the blame on Republicans. Some criticized the GOP for staunchly standing behind the wealthiest Americans while refusing to help those in need, something they thought was selfish. Others pointed fingers at House Speaker John Boehner.

[tweet https://twitter.com/JamalSimmons/status/149131939880775682%5D

jnpa: "I don't know what the GOP is thinking they will gain from all of this, but I hope the American people will remember this next election and vote them all out!"

Effelbee: "So the House GOP leaders were afraid that it would pass the House so they decided not to bring it to a vote. How democratic. Their very rich bosses must not have let them, but the average American is silenced once again."

yranny0000: "Boehner won't even put this up for a vote because he is afraid that enough Republicans will bolt from the ranks to pass it, and the GOP will look like it's lost control of the House. It is truly sad considering the number of times that Boehner ... whined about Democrats playing 'political games.' "

SND: "My concerns about Boehner's motives increase daily. It's pretty much a given that his primary goal is to replace President Obama in the White House. Somehow he's determined that publicly leading the House in destroying the American economy will lead to a Republican Congress and president. From my perspective, that is exactly what will not happen in 2012. Voters will cast their ballots against anything Republican - good or bad. Boehner must have been living in an alternative universe the past several decades to have conceived such a 'strategy.' "

MET100: "A two-month extension of the payroll tax (cut) was not the perfect answer. But it was a start."

donnybp: "This is so frustrating to watch. I can't believe that these people were voted into their positions. ... Can't they just pass the extension without trying to sneak anything extra into the legislation? I, as well as many others must be, (am) just exhausted over this political show. Pass the extension, take the time off to think about what's right for the country and come back to Washington ready to pass effective legislation that's bipartisan and collectively good for the country. Stop making the country suffer for the holidays!"

[tweet https://twitter.com/lindberg49/status/149188169227698177%5D

Share your opinion in the comments area below and in the latest stories on CNN.com.  Or sound off on video via CNN iReport.

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

soundoff (1,006 Responses)
  1. phyllis

    I am like fellow taxpayers, let these do nothing Republicans, do with out their pay checks, and perks, and see how they like it for a while........These people must think, they are working for themselves, because that is just what they, have been doing for years........The taxpayers are the ones, who are paying for everything, and they are getting nothing, for their money, and their vote..........I say throw the sorry lame bunch out.........I am sick to death, of these do nothing A$$ HOLES.

    Taxpayer at large.........peace out.......

    December 20, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • sononi

      I wonder why CNN did not put up any of the thousands of comments against the democratic party. Just biased reporting and almost and if not worse than a b c. Where is Obama through all this? Vacation like the Senate. Well the House is still hard at work 4 days from Christmas while democrats are christmas shopping with their millions of dollars. They dont care about you they only care about making republicans look bad. Republicans submitted a bill to fund one year of tax extensions and it included a jobs bill, a huge one but the Senate said F the american people, they dont need jobs nor do they need more than 2 months tax extension. Basically (_o_) is the message i got

      December 20, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • sweetbird

      I don't see how these people can keep their jobs doing what they have done, which is nothing. They should never stand up with their hands over their chest doing what they are doing. Thye have done nothing they need to uncross their arms and get to doing something. I say we need to get rid of the whole lot and start with somebodies that can getthe work done. There's something you can agree too. Dump the Washington and put the real working class there we will show them how to get the work done.

      December 20, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • NobodyIsSafe

      with all those commas, i read phyllis's post, and i hear it in my head in the voice of William Shatner...

      Boehner, you..... useless piece of... trash!

      December 20, 2011 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Mark

    CNN is a left wing radical joke.

    You will not see any of the conservative view points on this scam

    December 20, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sanity

      @ Mark: "CNN is a left wing radical joke. "

      If you think CNN is radical left wing, you are so far off to the right that you are falling off the edge of the flat earth you believe in!

      December 20, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Darth Cheney

      First off, you don't know what left-wing radical is. Second, there are many conservative comments here that you are apparently blind to because you are convinced that CNN and everything about it is left wing.

      December 20, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  3. mr Mad

    these just say no to everything house GOP congressmen all need to voted out by special election right now

    December 20, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  4. mickey

    this will not be changed by polite, peaceful protest.
    they don't care. they just ignore you.

    December 20, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Common Sense

    We have been in a state of military operations for over 20 years now and at some point, we need to pay for our decisions and actions. One President after the next, one Congress after the next, blame the earlier administrations for the deficit but none have offered to change. Cutting Federal spending will not do it, we are bringing home a military that needs continued funding to rebuild and continue to improve our military state of readiness. Bottom line, we need more revenue. All the rest of these debates are meaningless and are driving a wedge between Americans. Congress and the President – do what must be done and raise taxes and federal revenue and end all the nonsense please, otherwise consider yourself done in politics as you lack the intelligence and backbone required to make the tough decisions.

    December 20, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      Great idea... raise taxes to fix our military while everyone else here in the states starves to death. you cant draw blood from a stone dumba$$

      December 20, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • nevadarebel

      Your right, and the Rich should pick up the tab for their freedom. Thanks would help but they moved all the jobs a work out. So seeing as they made billions, then they can get the bill this time. Seeing as the poor were the one that had to do the fighting. At lease for the Iraq war, seeing as they trick us in to that one.

      December 20, 2011 at 6:39 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Don

    How pathetic are the people who voted the last Congress into office. It was obvious that the Far Right was going to do exactly what they are doing. At least they're honest. They said they would basically break government as we know it and they have.

    December 20, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |

      Yeah but the idiots that were in before these clowns got us to where we are now so we really need to get rid of them all and start over again with elected officials that actually represent the interests of the people.

      December 20, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |


    December 20, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  8. John Rossi

    Every congress person should go now...!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    December 20, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  9. rhinowls

    They do nothing but grandstand on things we dont even want. Could you be in the pocket of corporations a little more? I doubt it. Congress is useless, Obama is a disappointment of epic proportions and the GOP candidates are like a series of cartoon characters with all of thier issues. I hate to say it but when Ron Paul makes the most sense...guess I'm throwing away

    December 20, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Pretenders

    What's wrong with having the minority lead congress? They lead America. There are many laws that the vast majority do not agree with nor approve of. Yet here we are. Things that have been illegal for over 200 yrs. are now legal because a minority wanted to break those old foundation laws. Now it's perfectly legal to do all sorts of things that you would have gotten into trouble for.

    December 20, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  11. W. Witt

    The art of compromise is lost. Somehow, somewhere along the way we have begun to value "standing fast" for its own sake. The problem isn't our method of governing or the passions of the individuals involved, its that they now place a higher premium on 'how it will appear' rather than the give-and-take that's always kept us afloat.

    December 20, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  12. brigid

    What a bunch of sanctimonious, hypocritical windbags. They don't give a flying @)#($)* about the American people, especially the hard working, live within their budgets, Americans who can't afford to lose medical insurance, their houses, any income to a tax cut expiration.

    The reason these idiots are in Congress is that they can't get a job in the real world where they can rip off an employer like they are the American people (and you wonder why there have been revolutions throughout history when the "ruling class doesn't listen)!

    December 20, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Richard

      You nailed that Brigid.

      December 20, 2011 at 3:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck88888

      I would add the White House to your rant.

      December 20, 2011 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Phoenixresident

    There has been no previous Congress that has been so ineffective, so inefficient and held so much animosity towards each other than this one. The general public has such little confidence in this group of jokers, and the sad part is none of these politicians seem to care that they are held is such low esteem. They are so entrenched both sides are afraid to "blink" regardless of their incompetence.

    December 20, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • VP

      The whole thing is ridiculous. This Congress is entirely useless. Everybody should be voted out, regardless of their party affiliation.

      December 20, 2011 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Tom Brockman

    Its time to pick up your arms and occupy congress.

    December 20, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  15. I dont know


    December 20, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
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