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. ZXQ

    I am so upset, I think that I just popped a hole in my left VENTricle.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
  2. treblemaker

    We will get fooled again, over and over again. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss. It doesn't matter whether you're democrat or republican, greed and selfishness reign supreme on both sides of the aisle. We the People voted them in; we deserve what we get. Use your precious vote to affect real change, and start voting for people of character who are not afraid to compromise for the good of the country.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Dan

    People are just going to vote out everyone currently in office. It may be the GOP causing this, but I bet many of the American population blame this on democrats.

    Personally, I'm just going to vote independent from now on. These current political parties have lost their way. They don't stand for what they are supposed to, and it is time for new parties.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Suz

    I do not understand why these people are not fired and sent home with no paychecks or benefits?? I don't understand it. If we don't do our jobs we end up fired and on unemployment. Why are we forced to pay for these deadbeat politicians who care only about getting their next 'benny' through getting re-elected. Forget the elections. Fire them. Send them home. Worst congress I've ever seen on 60+ years. Not one of them should be re-elected. If we can impeach a president we should be able to impeach all of them! What don't they get about 99% of Americans outright hate them for what they have done to us.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Tessa2U

    Can someone explain WHY the republicans are so concerned about money NOW after 8 years of selling our country out...turning a blind eye to wall street regulations that caused the economic crisis and to oil companies that caused the biggest disaster in the gulf, got us into two wars we couldn't afford, took us from a country with a surplus to one deeply in debt...and NOW they are all born again conservatives? Saddest part of all, many Americans won't give this any consideration because they have become so accustomed to spewing the vile rhetoric they are bombarded with in radio talk show hosts, etc. and Congress will continue to be allowed to govern just as they are today...with NOONE's interest in mind other than those that can line their pockets. They don't care about anyone else. Now they have the audacity to leave and go home for Christmas...once again on the backs of the poor and middle class. Wake up American! Read the facts, then vote these self-serving individuals out of office!

    December 20, 2011 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Dave

    Reid needs to just pass the 1 year extension like he should have done to begin with. He has made the Senate a joke.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • reg

      While having Fed Employee's pay freezed for another year and cutting 10% of the Federal work force. The arguement is to help the middle class NOT hurt them. All Fed employee's are in the middle class.

      December 20, 2011 at 8:46 pm | Report abuse |
  7. David

    Honestly, the Republican Party (the party of "NO"), is hell-bent on destroying the economy just to beat Obama in 2012. The Democrats need to hold the line on this so that the tax cuts expire, the economic pain deepens for the 250 MILLION Americans who are NOT wealthy, and then everyone can see who the real enemy to fairness is: Boehner, Cantor, and the rest of he Republican thugs who are destroying this nation.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • friday

      This tax cut is bad policy and a sell out. It puts SS in even worse shape, I would vote any rep that voted for this idea out of office....its stupid.

      December 20, 2011 at 9:32 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Malcolm X

    All of you all on here are really retarded to even follow this? It's like two parents telling their kids, "It's the other parent's fault." That's just one way to keep the kids in control. Keep worrying. Nothing will ever change in your favor, regardless of who wins the next election.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  9. JohnBer2020

    The Republicans have spoken. We care more about our 1% than then the 160 million Americans.
    We wanted to play the month here and month there game but go shut out.
    We wanted to add more favor to the !% but got caught again on that one.
    160 million Americans are NOT going to forget what your stubborn 1% favoritism ideology has done to them,

    December 20, 2011 at 8:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tessa2U

      I hope American's are intelligent enough to see it for what it is and follow through on voting JohnBer....too many of them follow blindly without much thought about the facts. That is what scares me the most. With that said it appears that given enough time the Republicans are self-imploding as seen by each crash and burn candidate put forth as a presidential hopeful.

      December 20, 2011 at 9:28 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Malcolm X

    1) Companies issue IPOs (Initial Public Offerings) and then let the people fight over the price of the stock by buying and selling to each other. The company is in the clear.
    2) News media post news and then add a comment section to let idiots fight back and forth with each other, while the news media sits back laughing.
    3) Law enforcement lets cocaine and meth come to the streets and then let dummies fight back and forth over the drugs, while they sit back and wait for the arrests.

    What if no one voted in the next election? There would scare the SHIZ out of all politicians. As long as they (as a group) know that we use voting as power, they can control our actions. If we stop voting, they will wonder (what are the citizens up to?)

    December 20, 2011 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Malcolm X

    A message to CNN: In your disclosure, you are using the word "our." However, the pronoun does not agree with the subject, as "CNN" is not a person. It is an organization or group. Therefore, the pronoun "ITS" should be used. Therefore, I don't think anyone knows WHOSE terms of service or privacy policy is mentioned.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:43 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Hillhopper

    Once again, Mark Twain had it right..."Suppose I were a member of congress, and suppose I were an idiot. But I repeat myself."

    December 20, 2011 at 8:48 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Scott

    So the two-month extension is inadequate? Even accepting that, how is it worse than NO TAX CUT? Even if it's everything bad you claim: pandering, kicking the can down the road, posturing; still how is it WORSE than NO TAX CUT???

    December 20, 2011 at 8:50 pm | Report abuse |

    So now we know for sure:

    We elected them ............. and THEY DON'T GIVE A DAMN ABOUT US!

    Please remember this at election time.

    December 20, 2011 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Barry t

      Check your income tax rate increase on jan 1st 2011, most everyone had a income tax increase but did hear much in the media about it. Dems pushed to lower s.s. Withholding so you would not notice you just got a tax increase. Don't take my word for it look at your withholding on your ck stub vs last year. Wake up America!

      December 20, 2011 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ken Wood

      Right on brother!!!!

      December 20, 2011 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
  15. mark

    LOL, pass it for a 2 month extension, how stupid can the senate get? Take money from a program that is going broke so it goes broke faster? How about take money from congress, salaries, benefits, and expense money, they should be working for free since they can't get anything done. If people in the private sector worked as efficently as the politicians everyone would be unemployed. I don't care what party you think it is both of them have gone beyond stupid.

    December 20, 2011 at 9:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Kaufman, Oceanside, CA

      I could tell the American people how to fix this terrible mess, but one, most would not believe me, two; the doubting Tomas would say my fix would never work; and three, most of you must wallow in your bucket of $#*@ until you get very tired of the terrible smell and the disgusting mess before anyone would really take me seriously. Hint, what does a specialist doctor do when you have something terribly wrong with you?

      December 20, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
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