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. hippediva

    The Tealiban cancelled Christmas

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

      Don't worry Dear Leader Obummer wil save the day.

      December 20, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Plotting

    The venting is almost over. Time to start plotting how we, the American Taxypayers, can take back our country from a bunch of no good politicians and lying, cheating, slackards taking from our social programs that are meant for hard working American citizens.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  3. SybionRoss

    Ok.......... How about this, Congress: NO WORKEE, NO PAYEE YOU BY US TAXPAYERS!

    December 20, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Change is coming...

    We as a people need to rise up and take our country back and start over without these 2 political parties. They have created a stalemate that cannot be overcome and has halted progress of this country. Even more, they have drained this generation, and future generations economically. They have pillaged us long enough and do not represent us or our interests. We need to put our country first again. We need to renew our sense of nationalization and the pride in our country by buying American, making our own products, and become self sustaining again – produce our own steel, buy our own cars, grow our own food, employ and nurture our own people again. I am not a 99%er because I don't think the 1% will listen to peaceful demonstrations.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • You Greedy American Pig Dogs

      Globalization is the cause of your nation's failure. Suck it pig dogs.

      December 20, 2011 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • falcon63

      Peaceful and powerful is the only way. Third party choice. A party for the people by the people. Our government no longer works for the common man. Our forefathers created a government for the common man. These elitess have stolen that. They sit behind both parties with the same agenda. Make you as poor as the people in China, India and other third world countries while they benefit. The politicians are their surrogates. It is time for the 99% what I call Gulliver to Stand up and be counted. All the laws they have passed to control the masses give us authority to take control from them. It is that simple.

      December 20, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • roland

      @ yougreedyamericanpig dogs. Ask the chinese who bought their homes in August how they feel about their 30% drop in value in November. There is enough greed to go around.

      December 20, 2011 at 1:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Change is coming...

      I hate to disagree, but Peaceful and Powerful doesn't work. It never has. Never in history have you ever seen change happen because a bunch of people occupied a place. Never. No one is listening to either side. I am not extreme left or right, but I can see that neither side is being heard.

      December 20, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Dawne

    I have always loved and supported my country....and that will probably never change. I am afterall, an American whose father fought in WWII. But I am very disappointed and discouraged. I've been without work for a year now. I've gone through so many interviews I can't think straight. Everything from computer generated interviews, to cattle call interviews where you're in a room with 75 other people and you have 1 minute to sell yourself. I agree with just about everything that has been said. Congress doesn't have to worry about house payments, health insurance or retirement. They really don't give a flying fig about the American people, only their party. It's sickening.... I would love for them to live my life for a week or 2. They couldn't handle it. All of this just makes me very sad.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  6. DP Dreher

    It really is very sad that we as a nation are allowing this to go on. It doesn't matter if you a republican or democrat – wrong is just wrong. I agree with a lot of the earlier posts, since congress can't get their act together and govern then they should not be paid. For them to go on vacation and go home and enjoy their Christmas when so many others will be suffering is beyond wrong. I hope the GOP and their corporate cronies find a way to live with themselves after this debacle. Only good thing is 2012 will bring us all a chance to vote these horrible leaders out and get on with the business of being a country that loves and cares for one another instead of how much money we can rip out of the hands of the working man.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Moderate

    Congress should have the guts to vote STRAIGHT UP on the payroll tax cut. Why is this tied to any other issue, like the totally unrelated pipeline thing. The GOP is willing to HOLD AMERICA HOSTAGE and risk DAMAGING OUR ECONOMY in order to get their way on an unrelated issue. This is is POLITICAL TERRORISM. America, please reject these dangerous tactics.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
  8. falcon63

    We need a third polictical party......both parties and their special interest have created this mess.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Common Sense American

    Anyone voting for a two month financial policy of any kind and then just picking up and leaving town for holiday should not hold such a coveted position. You people are there to serve this nation – stop kicking the can down the road!

    December 20, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
  10. conoclast

    We now know for sure that we've been wrong about the republicans all along; what we'd mistaken as their lack of concern for the middle class has in fact been downright contempt for it!

    December 20, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Tom

    If you are so concerned that this 2% tax cut will effect Social Security that badly, then you need to do it right. No CAP on earnings. Forget the 110K max. You make 50,000 you pay 6.2% on it, you make 1,000,000 you pay 6.2% on it.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Philly Gene

    I say vote them all out and start over. One problem, everybody says, everybody but my rep or senator.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Debbie

    The GOP have just handed the election over to Obama. Thanks guys! I'm a supporter. Merry Christmas!

    December 20, 2011 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Bubba

    Two Words "TERM LIMITS". Get rid of them all!!!

    December 20, 2011 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Elephant v Donkey

    Anyone stupid enough to think this is an Democrat vs. Repunlican thing needs a labotomy. No matter if it's a fat ass Elephant burdened with donkey dung and having the smallish head of a Donkey or if it's a fat ass Donkey tripping over it's own giant Elephant head, it's still the same beast. And it acts the same either way too. Like an obese 12 yr. old boy with ADD carrying around a loaded shotgun.

    December 20, 2011 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
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