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. jay

    Different Day – Same Old Sh#!

    December 20, 2011 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Ozzy

    I am disenchanted with our political process. We have career politicians worried about their pocket book or lack of concern because they get paid regardless of our economy. Let them feel the sting of our frustration, not enough money to pay for necessities. Dentist appointments deferred, doctors appointment deferred, grocery options streamlined to bare necessities, telling your loved one sorry we are barely getting by.

    Our government servants have become the king and usurped the will of the people. It is no longer to serve but to be served by special interest groups, lobbying groups, political groups.Hispanic's have a saying," Every head is its own world", the politicians in office must be of the same head because they act as if they are in a different reality.

    Our elected officials are so out of touch that they can not see the warning signs that they are diminishing the stature of this great country.

    This goes for both Republicans and Democrats. I am a Republican but am disappointed in the party and will seek a third choice or a choice that is as close to my core beliefs. Republicans- JUDAS, Democrats-JUDAS for thirty pieces of silver you have sold us out as well as our birthright.

    December 20, 2011 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jianna

      Sad thing to say but your are right. We need to revamp what this government has become and we need to do it now before we break up into civil war and are splintered small countires with hate-filled boarders.

      December 20, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Fedup

    If it was their benefits this would have been pasted months ago.
    The American public must sent a message to these “elected” officials and get them out of office.
    Can you say Term Limits?

    December 20, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big George in Big D

      and just who do you think will bring THAT up for a vote? Don't get me wrong, I've been screaming that for years but stupid people keep re-electing the dummies!

      December 20, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Shari

    I am embarrassed to have these people in the House or Senate. As someone else stated, they DO NOT represent me or what I believe the USA should do and be.

    December 20, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Kevin T. Baldwin

    As long as this continuous two-party political football is in play things will never change. It's been getting progressively worse for the past twenty years and I'm so sick of it. The collective members of both parties should be hanging their heads in shame rather than high-fiving one another. No matter who wins the rest of us lose.

    December 20, 2011 at 3:51 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Sandy

    I wonder what the rest of the world thinks of the US of A and the inept, incompetent, bumbling, corrupt, self-serving politicians in the House of Representatives, Congress, and Senate, on BOTH sides who cannot work together at all to alleviate the tremendous burden they have repeatedly dumped on the forgotten Americans that struggle each and every day just to eat and have a roof over their heads. All politicians should be ashamed of themselves for what they have done to our once great country. Greed has overtaken most and the rest are oblivious.

    December 20, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Sid Prejean

    1.If John Boehner can't do his damned job, he should step aside.
    2.

    December 20, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
  8. essbee

    NAMES, please. I'd like to see a list of names of the clowns who decided that there will be no direct vote on this matter in the House. Whoever these guys are, they have too much power and I want names!!

    December 20, 2011 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • jimm

      All GOP members of the House.

      December 20, 2011 at 3:59 pm | Report abuse |
  9. DMoneyx2

    does this really matter...we give millions and billions to companies and countries...1k a year...they make that sound like a lot!

    December 20, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
  10. 66Biker

    I don't think anyone in Congress should be re-elected. All they do is fight with each other and that is not doing anyone any good. The only way anything ever gets done in Washington DC is when everyone works together, something the current members of Congress are clearly unwilling to do. They need to remember why they were elected in the first place. It absolutely was not to make them rich and powerful. They are supposed to be representatives for the rest of us, but all they do is what their political parties want. I say Recall 'Em All!

    December 20, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • DMoneyx2

      the reason we can't get rid of the whole lot at onetime, is that everyone thinks there congressional delegate is on the up-n-up...and the rest are morons! Thus the same idiots keep getting reelected!

      December 20, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  11. T-Man

    Everybody wants to go home for the Holidays, so they think passing a 2 month extension is the ticket out of town.
    And then what? Come back in the new year and postpone-bicker-blame yourselves all the way to the election?
    Sit down, together, and get it right! Quit worrying about your election, Mr. President, and actually lead FOR THE PEOPLE, not your party and not your next 4 years!

    December 20, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • jimm

      Last I checked, this was an issue for Congress, not the president.

      December 20, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Tom

    Hmm where's the outrage against Pelosi and Obama for failing to propose a plan to deal with the Debt Ceiling. Obama never led. He just told Congress to propose a plan and then says he will Veto it if he doesn't like it. Sounds like both sides are being so damn stubborn to me. But nice try.

    December 20, 2011 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • jimm

      Not sure what you are taling about. Obama negotiated a deal with the House GOP, but they pulled out at the last minute.

      December 20, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Rudy Gonzales

    Worst Congress ever! If you notice, Boehner is in the background on this issue as his knees have been chopped out from under him by the Treasonous Erring Anarchist(­TEA) party currently led by Eric Cantor. Their usual mode is to agree to one thing and come back with another to confuse and delay the final outcome in an effort to deter others from making plans. Allowing the two-month approved agreement to expire and holding onto the first agreement would lay all the blame on these Troubling Egotistica­l Ambivalent (TEA) party. The Senate did their job based on an agreement having a 90 % approval, but the House version of the Terrifying Errant Activist(T­EA) party shut down any agreement which would make the president and the Democrats go back to the table for discussion­. It is obvious Mitch McConnell'­s ties to the Tragic Erratic Activist(T­­EA) party have made him the most shadiest Senator in Congress. The Troubled Economic Antagonist­(TEA) party have vowed to run candidates all over the country and have even targeted John Boehner for replacemen­t. At this point in time the TEA-GOP-Re­publican elitist fringe have been dutifully backed into a corner and those across the aisle and in the other chamber and the president should hold their ground and throw cold water on these blowhards!

    December 20, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Gary

    If we Average American Citizens performed our jobs as poorly as our elected officials, we would be fired!

    December 20, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bob

      You know as I read these comments I realize the problem with America resides in the intelligence of the citizens. If you did not graduate college you have no business voting. Half you idiots express an opinion and have no clue or have even researched what the issues are. Do any of you find it odd that the Democrats were yellign to raise taxes 2 months ago and now they are fighting tooth and nail for a tax cut. Do you think maybe there is something for all of them in this bill and it sure ain't lower taxes for joe citizen. Wake up you morons!

      December 20, 2011 at 4:13 pm | Report abuse |
  15. John Williams

    The only way the American taxpayer will get control of their government is to pass an amendment limiting all terms to 4 years and out for President, Congress, Federal Judges and Supreme Court. A felony to give money to any of those in any way.

    December 20, 2011 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • cathy

      I agree 100%. Sadly the congress is made up of lawyers who make the laws to satisfy their greedy self-serving bank accounts. We will never see term limits as long as lawyers are in congress. Gone is the day when the "servants of the people" serve the people and the country.

      December 20, 2011 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
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