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January 3rd, 2011
05:00 PM ET

Most important issue facing country in 2011?

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(PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

As the new Congress gets down to business this week, there's no shortage of issues waiting to be addressed.

House Republicans say they will fulfill a campaign promise and vote to repeal President Obama's health care law before he delivers his State of the Union address.

Seems like a pretty futile exercise - even if such a repeal were to pass the house, it's unlikely to go anywhere in the Senate since the Democrats still hold a slim majority there. Plus, President Obama could veto it.

Also, by focusing on health care - when much of the country is still worried about jobs - Republicans risk making the same mistake Democrats did when they plowed ahead with health care in the first place.

The GOP also has its eye on other legislation passed by the Democratic congress - like new limits on greenhouse gas emissions and the reach of entitlement programs. Some are calling for various investigations into the Obama administration...

Just what we need, tying up the Congress with investigations at a time when there are other huge issues out there - like the economy, immigration and the skyrocketing deficit. Republicans have vowed to tackle government spending, but they'll soon have to decide whether they want to raise the debt ceiling, once again, from $14.3 trillion.

Meanwhile, a majority of Americans are optimistic about the new year. A new Gallup poll shows 58 percent say 2011 will be better than 2010. 20 percent say it will be worse and 21 percent say it will be the same.

The poll suggests Democrats and young Americans are more positive than Independents, Republicans and older Americans about the coming year.

Here’s my question to you: What's the most important issue facing the country in 2011?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Dave in Florida writes:
Three things: Jobs, everything else and jobs.

Langston writes:
Entitlements, entitlements, entitlements. Our government is a massive entitlements vending machine which is deferring costs as far as possible into the future burdening later generations. Unless policy changes are made, projected spending for Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and federal employee retirement programs alone will consume all tax revenues collected by 2030.

Sam writes:
Reducing the deficit must be a top priority. Although it's not a major short-term problem, the plans to reduce it must be set in place now or it may not happen until it's too late.

Richard in Michigan writes:
Cynicism is the greatest problem we are facing. We won't be able to solve anything if insults, disrespect, and sarcasm replace legitimate political discussion. It may play well on the newscasts, but dueling sound bites and snarky pundit commentary aren't doing a thing for the rest of us.

Steve in Clifton, Virginia writes:
The most important issue facing the country for 2011 is just the application of common sense for the common good of the American people. Let us not confuse the debate with fellow citizens within our borders with enemies outside of our borders.

Kevin in California writes:
A second financial meltdown. This time from states defaulting on bonds, massive cuts by states and the possible collapse of the Euro.

Stacy in Florida writes:
Getting the unemployed to go to school to learn a trade or profession. I read where there are a lot of jobs that need to be filled but can't be filled due to unqualified people.

Helen writes:
Happy New Year, Jack! The top issue for 2011: the economy. I hope this year you will ask more intelligent questions. No more stupid Palin questions.


Filed under: United States
soundoff (165 Responses)
  1. Barbara Leavitt

    Well Jack, a wild guess would be the economy/JOBS. The Republicans keep saying they "heard the American people" but yet the things I hear them say "this is what the American people want".............really isn't what we were telling them. So does it really matter what any of us say we think the most important issue facing the country is in 2011? Neither party is going to listen.

    January 3, 2011 at 1:41 pm |
  2. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: The most important issue facing us in 2011 is the economy and unemployment. Not only our future economic soundness but the very soundness of our democratic institutions depends on the determination of our government to give employment to idle men--
    You take my life when you do take the means whereby I live.

    January 3, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
  3. Rhoda Bryce

    Since the basis of our economy is money, I think JOBS is the most important issue to address. From there everything else will follow – housing, manufacturing, travel, etc. Someone needs to step up to the plate and make it happen whether it is big business or having a work program like Pres. Roosevelt did.

    Scottdale, AZ

    January 3, 2011 at 1:52 pm |
  4. Rick McDaniel

    That's easy. bringing jobs back on shore from off shore. There is NO other solution to the jobs problem.

    January 3, 2011 at 1:56 pm |
  5. Kevin of SD CA

    Most important issue facing country in 2011 is re-building the Public School system with Administrators and Teachers whom have to take full responsibility for their student’s success so that they don’t end up as government officials, or in government jobs, or on welfare!

    January 3, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
  6. Bob Kobs

    Bohner's emotional problems. If he spends the next session of congress crying, America will feel the weight of his emotional imbalance.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:02 pm |
  7. TOM TYSKIEWICZ

    jack, I hope to see vigilante justice on WALL STREET and their political minions. Jail or hang the ba$tard$ that have wrecked our economy. Now that would be important News!

    tom, forest hills, pa

    January 3, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
  8. Pisher in Harrisburg

    Jack,

    The most important issue facing the country in 2011 and beyond is our economy's recovery. With China and other nations owning our debt and American's spending more than they are making on products and services that are service offshore, America's productivity and wealth are leaving our hands and control.

    Americans will have to buy American and by less than they want and only what they need. Some businesses will go out of business if they sell only offshore produced items, but other businesses will grow. Things may be more costly at first, but with more people in America working, prices will come down for products produced in America.

    We need to stop printing money and produce purchasable. We need to get back to producing, industry and farming which made us undeniably one of the most powerful nations in the world.

    All empires rise and fall. America is falling due to economic implosion. Only American can stop it. It is time to stop fueling Wall Street and the government. We need to fuel Main Street.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
  9. Sam

    Reducing the deficit must be a top priority. Although its not a major short term problem, the plans to reduce it must be set in place now or it may not happen until its too late.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  10. Elzera Flynn

    Big banks failing to work with people trying to stay in their homes. They deliberately stall on paper work and plaque clients with requests for duplicate paper work and all these months that pass the customer falls futher and futher behind with unbearable late fees and past due mortgage payments until there's no hope. I never missed a payment on anything and when I asked for a modification due to wage cuts I was told as long as you are paying they will not work with you. So I stopped paying and then for over a year I have gone around and around with people who don't know how to do their jobs. Unfortunately they don't lose we DO! The entire fiasco has made me sick and after being in our home for 11 years we are giving up. And no one wants to have to move when they are in their 70's which we are. It's a travesty and 7 out of 12 homes on our block are in process or have already foreclosed. I see this as a tragedy facing our country. See no way out!
    Thanks for your Great Show. Love your latest book Jack!
    Elzera Brentwood,Ca

    January 3, 2011 at 2:15 pm |
  11. Kate

    Actually Jack we have two major needs for the year of 2011.
    JOBS, AND LESS DEBT.
    If the government had to be as sensible as I do with my money, we would not be in this mess.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  12. KDS Irvine, CA

    Happy New Year Jack, I hope you and your family had a wonderful holiday season. The answer to your question is easy. Jobs! Americans want to go back to work.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  13. Jon

    The most important issue is how to reshape our systems and institutions, including reckless capitalism. We have let our economic and political systems run wild like neglected children, and this has poisoned our institutions and caused virtually all of the problems we face. By being afraid to alter these systems to better align incentives we squander the opportunity to deal with a multitude of problems ranging from environmental degradation, educational decline, and social inequity to the obesity epidemic, mindless consumerism, and the poisoning of our democracy.

    Jon
    Murrieta, CA

    January 3, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  14. Ed from California

    Happy New Year to you and Wolf, first and foremost. To your question....JOBS! We need plenty of good paying jobs w/benefits. Just like we all had less than ten years ago.

    The United States Government has allowed communist China to give us their unemployment problem. How? Well, our own corporations were allowed (by Lobbying efforts and bought-off politicans) to ship our jobs from here in America to China, India and Mexico. All for the name of a few extra quid in the pockets of the American "patriot" corporate owners. Very sad. Too bad it'll never get better, only worse. Happy New Year!!

    January 3, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  15. Bradley, Portland, OR

    Jobs, of course.

    I don't know why the Republicans think that taking away health care from millions of Americans is the most important thing they can spend their time on, now that they got tax cuts and exemptions from the estate tax for millionaires.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  16. Rich McKinney, Texas

    The high unemployment rate in America tops the list Jack. If people are not working then they are not paying Federal Income Tax. If people are not paying federal income tax then there is no money to run the government and that includes our military. The high unemployment rate also means that a lot of people are getting unemployment checks and those checks are not free either. The more unemployed the more checks that have to come from the government to support them.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:42 pm |
  17. Peg from N.Y.

    The economy.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:47 pm |
  18. Henry

    Jobs!JobsJobs!

    Long Island,NY

    January 3, 2011 at 2:48 pm |
  19. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Hi Jack and welcome back. According to the new Congress it's repeal health care or is it Obamacare and cut spending. To me it's jobs, jobs and more jobs. But they'll do their thing and unemployment will go up so they can win the White House in 2012. These people are real scary.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:50 pm |
  20. Jim

    Jack, Yet to unfold will be the "culture attack" on the Dems. Daryl Issa Representative from California closely alligned with the car alarm industry has all the characteristics of Middle Eastern Culture Police. If his Sunday appearance on "Meet The Press" is any indication his culture war about to unfold, will drive everything else off the front page and TV. He belongs in the Middle East with the "Imams" policing that culture not our Democracy.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:50 pm |
  21. Loren

    The apparent lack of self-control in Congress when is comes to spending tax dollars. If only Congress has as much concern for where tax dollars are spent as they do for their perqs of office, we would have healthy economy, a surplus budget and a happy electorate.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  22. Janne from NC

    The most important issue facing our nation is the rebuilding of the American people’s confidence in the American dream. If we as a people can find our way back to the belief that anything and everything is possible everything else will just fall into place.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  23. Lori - PA

    Jack,

    Unemployment. The things that the Federal Government have done, such as the Stimulus Package, aren't working to revrese it. People have lost everything they've had because they haven't been able to find another job after being laid-off. I truly believe it all goes back to companies being allowed to outsource.

    January 3, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
  24. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    I think there are two main problems that needs to be addressed. First problem is the war in Afghanistan. This war has been going on for over nine years. It has cost us too many lives and wounded soldiers. Not to mention trillions of dollars. It is time to go into Afghanistan with all our might and get the people responsible for 911. Then get the hell out. Nation building should be out of the question. We don't have the time or money to even think about it. The second problem would be getting our deficit under control. We need to come to the realization that you cannot support two wars and cut taxes. Especially the tax for the highest 3% of the wealthy. If we don't get our deficit under control soon, we will be in deep trouble.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
  25. John from Alabama

    Jack: The most important issue facing the country in 2011 are jobs and the economy. The economy is improving, but the lower and middle income population do not have a warm and fuzzy feeling about job security or the economy. Confidence is needed for consumer spending and business growth for job creation.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
  26. Stacy st. Augustine fl

    Getting the unemployed to go to school to learn a trade or profession. I read where there are a lot of jobs that need to be filled but can't be filled due to unqualified people. The no nothing jobs are gone forever. If American's can't fill them foreign educated labor will at a much lower wage.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
  27. Lawrence Daley

    Sir

    We need to get people to work. I believe and was raised to believe that America was created on hard work. We need to create jobs for people. I don't believe we will create jobs where people will get rich but make enough to make a living i.e., techical fields, production, manufacturing.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
  28. southerncousin

    Curtailing entitlement programs and gutting the so called Health Care Reform Act.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
  29. Kevin in CA

    A second financial meltdown. This time from States defaulting on bonds, massive cuts by States and the possible collapse of the Euro.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
  30. bud rupert

    Reforming the Tax Code should be a priortiy. If they do that – get the corporate tax rate down the the 20's, have a 18, 15 and 8 flat tax across the board for personal income, and illiminate personal deductions so people will actully pay a fair share would be huge, in my view

    All the cost cutting blabber regarding the deficet is a joke. Unless they go after Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid which they WON'T!

    January 3, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
  31. Conor in Chicago

    Finding a way to keep this country together while the most extreme and hostile Republican majority in history takes over the House of Representitives.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  32. Ken in California

    Good paying jobs so consumers can pay for products, services, and taxes, without borrowing. Collectively businesses don't want to pay us a decent wage. That is the issue, or dilemma we face since government will not pump trillions into the economy anymore, a flow of dollars that provided for the middle class, and poor.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
  33. Terry- Greensburg, IN "Hoosier Hillbilly"

    Something "WE" cann't do anything about for 2 years, and then we'll only be breaking the crust. It's going to be a long drawn out procedure
    to solve current issues; because 1st "WE'" must elect politicans for congress that have the countrys best interest @ heart & not their own.
    A GOVERNMENT THAT ( REALLY WORKS )!

    January 3, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
  34. Ray in Knoxville

    Let's see, Jack, we face continued near double digit unemployment, mounting debt, continued quagmires in Iraq/Afghanistan and governmental policies that favor the extremely rich over the American middle and working classes. Despite all these problems, the most important issue we face in this country is the ever growing divide (and hostility) between right and left.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  35. al in Delaware

    Unemployment. It's still the economy.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  36. thom richer

    The overwhelming acceptance of war...and the war mentality of the United States. Our government/military , the media, corporate America and the far right have convinced Americans that war is an inevitability and we have a right and obligation to occupy and invade other countries at will. They have used religion, terrorism and failing economy to justify exactly what we would never tolerate ourselves...other countries invading our soil. We have given Imperialism a new warm and fuzzy name, "Nation Building" and have accepted it without question. Wars have been instigated by the past administration and continued by the current administration knowing full well from the onset they would never come to an end that would be justifiable or beneficial to any but corporate America. If we are willing to fund, support and sacrifice our youth fighting unjust, illegal and greed ridden wars in total complacency and righteous indignation, there is no other issue of any significance in 2011 or beyond.

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    January 3, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  37. charles yaindl

    jobs//economy/deficit
    allentown,pa

    January 3, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
  38. Kim Smith

    Integrity in government. Without elected officials who put the people first, all of our other problems will only get worse over time. Corruption is the single largest issue we face as a nation. It is why we are always at war, always in debt, always facing bankruptcy. The end of corruption begins with putting an end to lobbyists.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
  39. Matt

    Jack

    Only one? We have so many critical issues to face. The economy, conducting two wars, health care, racism, a Congress that is unresponsive to us, the growing deficit – you name it – all need to be dealt with.

    Matt
    Rockford, IL

    January 3, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
  40. bonnie from nj

    I think the number one issue is jobs, jobs, jobs. Not minimum wage jobs either, decent paying respectable jobs. I think if we get the country working a lot of other problems will be helped also. But I am afraid our lack of good jobs and all of our other numerous problems, (deficits, wars, crumbling infrastructure etc. etc. etc.) will not have any solutions due to our great governments inability or desire to accomplish anything meaningful. Appartently solving these problems would anger their wealthy corporate daddies.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
  41. Richard Xaver

    From St. Joseph, Michigan:

    Cynicism is the greatest problem we are facing; we won't be able to solve anything if insults, disrespect, and sarcasm replace legitimate political discussion. It may play well on the newscasts, but dueling soundbites and snarky pundit commentary aren't doing a thing for the rest of us.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
  42. Mark Reddish

    The question is will the newly elected republican congress govern the US or simply use their power to defeat the advances of the past 2 years. We need to move forward, will this congress move us forward or will it moves the country backwards. Their call, and we will be watching, and voting in 2012.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  43. Deeg

    A: Will 0bama's unemployed get jobs.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  44. Gary S Phillips

    Los Angeles:

    Most important – ending or diminishing the corporate takeover of our economy, government and Nation.

    Be it campaigns being financed by mega corporations or the state sponsored monopolies or the corporate lobbyists writing our laws or the special favors for corporations that send a record amount of jobs overseas-

    It all leads back to corporate personhood and how these unfeeling entities have been allowed to much sway and effectively drowned out Democracy.

    Any other problem ends up leading back to this anyway, so let's get to the source.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
  45. ken, atlantic city, nj

    Corporate control of the president and congress is the most important issue, in 2011. As long as the president and congress are owned and controlled by big corporations the people on main street will never see any change. Corporate pandering , corporate welfare, corporate tax deductions, corporate farm subsidies, corporate outsourcing of jobs, corporate hiring of illegals, and free trade must all be eliminated or there will be no jobs and no money to operate the government. Endless tax cuts and tax breaks for corporations will never remove the U.S. 16 trillion dollar debt and the 70 trillion dollar federal liabilities we owe. In spiite of all the whining about high taxes the fact is that the U.S. has the third lowest tax rates in the world right behind Turkey and Mexico. Shame on obama and congress.

    January 3, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
  46. Janet

    The answer to your question is high unemployment. With millions of Americans out of work, the politicians need to stop talking about debt, deficit and social issues and come up with a plan to get businesses to bring jobs back to America and stop giving tax breaks to companies that ship jobs overseas.

    Prescott, AZ

    January 3, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
  47. Ben in Maryland

    I have no doubt that high on the GOP priorities (at least for the tea party representatives) is finding the President's birth certificate. That'll show them democrats!!!

    January 3, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
  48. george c paree

    repell of health care to stop obama from bank rupting the country. chuck paree anderson in

    January 3, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
  49. Gary H. Boyd

    Two issues are primary - addressing the deficit and repairing the disconnect between the electorate and Washington. When a nation owes $14 trillion dollars and it's citizens have no faith in its leaders,
    there is genuine trouble ahead.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    January 3, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
  50. Steve, NY

    Why is it the Republican's responsibility to do everything. They control the house only. That's a third of the government. What about the two thirds of the government, what are they going to do.??
    I gues the most important issue in 2011 is to shut the Democrats down comletely. They controlled congress for the last 4 years and screwed everything up big time. The only thing you hear from them is the "tax cuts for the rich". If we finally take away the tax cuts for the rich, the Democrats how nothing to campaign about.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:06 pm |
  51. Rick, Medina, OH

    Jack,

    Stability and true reform of the tax system should be a high priority. CNN and others have reported that $1.1 trillion in loopholes and preferences are built into the voluminous tax code. And let's not forget the hundreds of billions never collected from the underground economy and tax cheats. Removing tax incentives and preferences in exchange for lower rates for everyone would make sense. It would also make sense to tax all income the same ... whether it be wages or investment income. Perhaps the billions Americans spend to comply with the tax code could be better utilized, along with the skills of millions of very smart people who help them do it.

    Rick
    Medina, OH

    January 3, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  52. Michael H. in Albuquerque, NM

    Reconciliation between polarized parties so that we may get down to the business of running this government. And, that includes drawing businesses to this nation, which provide jobs, and increases the tax base, providing for services...

    January 3, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  53. Kathleen Parker , South Carolina

    The American ship-of-state has numerous life-threatening leaks such as the foreclosure crisis, a falling dollar, immigration reform, greedy banks , unemployment, paralyzing educational cuts, etc and Congress is once again going to engage in the name-calling and blame-game. Are there no adults on either side who are willing to tell the awful truth – that we ALL need to make serious sacrifices in order to get out of this mess? Oh, my bad, most Americans don't want the truth, they only want to be told that we're still number one and it's only "other people" who should have to sacrifice. But don't worry, China loves us just the way we are – declining!

    January 3, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
  54. sheila

    J-O-B-S--no question about it. However, the repubs will spend all the time trying to repeal health care or finding ways to keep it unfunded.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
  55. Alex in Gig Harbor, WA

    The most important issue is balancing the budget in a responsible manner before the new Tea Party members of congress crash the world's economy by refusing to raise the debt ceiling. I don't like going deeper into national debt, but it is a lesser evil when compared to national bankruptcy and defaulting on the debt.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  56. Norm

    The most important issues are these:
    Do our leaders believe in the U.S. Constitution or not?
    The pay cuts that must be made to keep the country running.
    The steep national debt and balance of trade has to be addressed.
    Education reform must include the closing of the U.S. Department of Education and dealing with those well paid souls that have pretended to advocate for education but have actually destroyed it. That includes administrators, long term teachers, bureaucrats, scholars and board members.
    Continuing to support our troops and our armed forces.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  57. CRAIG R. MCNEES

    Tampa, Fl I would guess since we just got rid of 61 members of Congress that voted for yet another DREAM ACT, it would be to get what is left in Congress to start enforcing our immigration laws before we start work on getting rid of the rest of them. Maybe we could stop offending Mexico with our present immigration system and just install their system of laws and immigration limits. That works for me.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
  58. Jim

    Jack,

    The economy is number one, but I'm not holding my breath with the Republicans running the House. They lost all, and I mean ALL, credibility regarding controlling spending when they held tax cuts for most Americans hostage until they could force similar cuts for the wealthiest 2%. I really haven't seen much evidence that they care at all about the middle class, except for their votes at election time. They'll spin and posture and then look for others to blame when nothing gets done. The best we can hope for is that the economy will recover on its own in spite of Republicans in Congress, not because of any intelligent actions they will take.

    Jim
    Reno, Nevada

    January 3, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  59. Terry in Chandler, AZ

    Not jobs. Not the economy. Not repeal of health care. Not cutting spending. The best answer to the question is...detente. Without detente, the easing of strained relationship between democrats and republicans, none of the serious issues will be solved.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  60. Fred, Hampton

    To find out what killed all of those birds and fish, Jack.

    Are they testing out new genocide chemtrails for the middle class without our knowledge?

    January 3, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
  61. cal

    saving american ways and rights.stop spending on all our money overseas. call all our army forces from back and let the world take care of it self. guard our bordors and let any one know any attacked will be meet with all our might. we do not need to be the police force of the world.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  62. Robert in CT

    The lack of unity you just described. It is high time that we start relaize that if we don't work together we will sink together. Americans, left or right, are not the enemy. we all love our country. We all have something to bring to the table. Only when we recognize this fact will we start to address the crucial issues facing this country.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  63. Steve, Clifton, VA

    The most important issue facing the country for 2011 is just the application of common sense for the common good of the American people. Let us not confuse the debate with fellow citizens within our borders with enemies out side of our borders.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
  64. Patsy, Texas

    Jack, your commentary makes it easy to answer your question.
    The most important issue facing the Country in 2011 is the
    Republican Party and its offspring the Tea Party. As you state,
    nothing has been said about jobs They ripped the Democrats
    over "jobs", now all they can talk about is repeal and investigate.
    They are going to tear this Country apart with their petty little
    selfish agendas in their quest for a dictatorship and I don't like it
    one bit, and they scare me. Happy New Year!

    January 3, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
  65. chaney Louisiana

    Jobs, job, jobs, we have got to get our middle class working and prosperous....our other problems will be more managable then.... the Republicans better be careful about trying to undo all of President Obama's legislation....and launch silly investigations like they did during the Clinton years.....I saw where Issa, said he didnt mean to say that the Obama administration was the most corrupt ever...he is lying he meant to say exactly that....since when did our elected officials assume they had the right to lie and distort the general public in order to further their own petty politics.....disgusting.....

    January 3, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
  66. Langston

    Entitlements, Entitlements, Entitlements. Our government is a massive entitlements vending machine which is deferring costs as far as posible into the future burdening later generations. Unless policy changes are made, projected spending for Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, and federal employee retirement programs alone will consume all tax revenues collected by 2030. Baby Boomers are beginning to retire which will put more stress on entitlements. If left uncorrected, this fiscal gap will force our nation to make a choice, between our obligations to our children and our obligations to our elders. The partisan posturing and the bureaucratic anesthesia surrounding entitlements needs to end because the ultimate test of a moral society, is the kind of nation it leaves to its children.

    Macon, GA

    January 3, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
  67. Dave, Orlando, FL

    Three things: Jobs, everything else and jobs.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
  68. Toni

    Oh, Jack, that's an easy one: JOBS,JOBS,JOBS!!!

    South Carolina

    January 3, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  69. david

    Jack I think the first thing the new congress should do is scrap the name debt ceiling and change it to debt hole, that just keeps getting deeper & deeper. Hole describes what we've got ourselves, and to get out of it, is going to take a real herculean effort which isn't going to happen as long as their own agendas are the most important thing on the table.
    Dave from NH.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  70. staci

    Our high centered millions of unemployed who have exhausted their UI benefits, lost their shelter and are thought of as lazy even tho there are no jobs available.

    99 weeks wasn't enough. There are NO jobs!!!!!!

    January 3, 2011 at 4:48 pm |
  71. katiec Pekin, IL

    Jobs, Jack, Jobs.
    The politicians on both sides must make this their priority as until our economy improves, nothing will.
    'The republicans talk about getting rid of all unfunded policies, however, that applies only to middle class America as their tax breaks, perks etc for the wealthy and big business are not included.
    They talk about repealing health care as they prefer to let people
    die and their insurance companies continue to rape the American people.
    They haVe sold us out and their unrealistic, unAmerican goals are very frightening.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  72. Annie, Atlanta

    Republican extremism. These people scare the living hell out of me, not only for their unbridled hatred of anyone unlike them, but the destruction they cause while in power. We must be masochists since 8 years apparently wasn’t enough.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  73. Singh

    Writing from New Jersey
    The most important issue facing the country in 2011 is the future of job and security for the generations to come, not really the politics and labeling of people as Democrats, Independents, and Republicans as the media does. As a college student I am worried whether I will be able to find a job after graduating. And on the issue of government spending, I am also worried whether "both" political parties will continue to take part in costly unnecessary wars around the world, instead of strengthening our national security in smart ways.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  74. Ann from Charleston SC

    This isn't an issue in the sense that you mean it, but it is raising havoc with our system of government. I am talking about the games Congressmen are playing, political games they want to win. Republicans are more interested in defeating Obama and the Democrats and the Democrats are more interested in defeating the Republicans than either party is interested in solving the nation's problems.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  75. Valerie in Raleigh

    The most important is Jobs, jobs and jobs. And, as a former Republican, keeping the Republicans from damaging the country by trying to "get" the President is of great concern. Each time I hear their threats as to how they are going to destroy the President, I want to reach into the TV and grab them by the throat and say " Work on fixing the country" or the country will simply destory you in 2012.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  76. David from Herndon, VA

    The big issue facing us is the economy. It's made up of all sorts of smaller issues including energy independence (defecit reduction, cleaner environment), alternative energy (jobs, cleaner environment), more efficient tax structure (jobs, less reliance on safety net), cutting unnecessary spending (defecit reduction, economic competitiveness), financial regulation (keeping the country from imploding), etc.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  77. steve - virginia beach

    The most important issue facing us is Congresses inability to recognize that many issues perpetrated by both parties and many Presidents have caused our current problems, that the issues are interrelated, and require the attention of responsible patriotic adults who are capable of non-partisan critical thinking with intellectual honesty followed by multitasking to solve the problems instead of throwing money at some of the symptoms. A good first step would be to fire the spin doctors and teleprompter operators.

    January 3, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  78. Pete from Georgia

    Lowering taxes which will result in.....................JOBS !!!!!!!!!!

    Get rid of the Cancer known as Government Intervention.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
  79. Rob Palm Beach Gardens, FL

    Jobs, jobs, jobs, an end to free-trade, outsourcing overseas, H1-B Visas, and finally secure the borders, if we accomplish just 2 of the above American jobs will come back.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
  80. Jerry Johns Creek, GA

    The most pressing issue facing our country is as has been creation of viable productive jobs. Government jobs are not the answer, the jobs must be in the private sector so we can get more people to pay the tax bill that our congressmen have given us and our children. It would also be a bit encouraging if the American people could discern some degree of integrity in those who are supposed to be representing our interests.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
  81. Gordon NJ

    Jobs. Recessions used to be cyclical and the factories eventually reopened. Now, most of our factories have been sold overseas to boost stock prices. Industries that once relied on American consumers to buy things, have effectively impoverished their customer base by sending jobs abroad. President Bush used to talk about "training Americans for 21st Century jobs," but I still have not heard anyone in Washington tell me what those jobs are. Today, good technical jobs are too often filled at lower wages by engineers with H1B visas from India. Wall Street, seems to have forgotten that it is in the United States.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
  82. Scott Stodden

    Jobs, Jobs, And More Jobs! We Need Jobs In This Country And We Need To Figure Out How To Lower The Unemployment From 9.8% That Should Be The Main Goal For The Year Not Trying To Repeal Health Care Which Won't Happen Anyways, Not False Investigations That Are Based On Republican Lies! The Economy And Jobs Should Be The Main And Only Focus For 2011 And That Will Determine Weather 2011 Will Be A Good Year Or Bad Year!

    Scott Stodden (Freeport,Illinois)

    January 3, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  83. Susan from Idaho

    it's a four letter word,jobs.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
  84. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    Any issue would become less important if there were resolutions.

    And there cannot be resolutions without the loss of absolute ideology and the addiction for power.

    Therefore, the coming together of all human beings with the hope of compassion, gratitude, and understanding is the only issue.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
  85. Renee Peoria,Ill

    Ironically, an issue that hasn't changed much in years or even decades: we need a Congress that is more interested in working for the people instead of their own selfish interests. If every member of Congress made that their top priority they could cross party lines on both sides and get some real work done. Just don't hold your breath waiting for it. I'm one of those Independents who expects things to get worse or at least stay the same because I know that their own interests is the one constant in our Congressional leaders.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
  86. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    The economy and the deficit. Put a roof over people's heads,give them a job to go to,and put food in their bellies. The party that does this will get the White House in 2012. Happy New Year to youself and Wolf.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
  87. Sam from Florida

    Jobs !!!! Jobs !!!! Jobs !!!!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
  88. Sam from Florida

    By the way, why not just phase out the House – that would save a lot of money; they don't do anything constructive anyway, except line their own pockets!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  89. Ken in Maryland

    One word... jobs. Stop the showboating and start doing something to actually put people to work. Not tax cuts for the rich, not repealing healthcare reform, jobs.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  90. Stuart Shepherd

    Jack all I can tell you is jobs and more jobs. It's the only way we are going to get this county back on it's feet.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  91. John

    It will take some time for the new Congress to clean up the mess created by the Dims over the last four years. It will be refreshing to see what really happened to Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. Chris Dodd? Barnie Frank? Will they end up behind bars? Time will tell.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  92. Ed from Amherst

    Global warming. Solutions to this will create jobs, jobs, jobs!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
  93. John Gill

    It sure as hell is not repealling health care.
    We have problems galore to work on and this is going to be their signature issue?
    In 2 years we will simply be replacing these" me first all NO" Republicans with democrats who may not be any better. We may as well have a circular firing squad.
    As James Carville said it in 1992 to"it's the economy stupid"All these anti-Obama things are just going to be sand in the gears of government.
    My hope is that he vetos every stupid thing they send him, but still try to work on the real problems JOBS, JOBS, JOBS, period.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
  94. Gigi Oregon

    The most important issues is to bring jobs back to America. Bring are status back as number one. Review our education program. If the Republicans want to repeal the health care, they might as well start packing to go home. Jobs first is the priority and a better standard of education in America is the most critical of needs..

    January 3, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
  95. Tom

    Stupidity, sadly it will continue to prevail.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  96. Kathy, Glendale, AZ

    ONE WORD -– JOBS!! -- JOBS!! -- JOBS!!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  97. Michael, Springfield VA

    They can just go ahead and start over on the health care bill as far as I'm concerned. When it arrived on Capitol Hill it was about choice. When it left Capitol Hill it was nothing but a mandate to pay the insurance companies. How about starting with ethics and lobbying reform and eliminating the filibuster. Then maybe the rest of it will start getting done.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  98. Marta- Florida

    The most important issue is one that despite claims to the contrary has not really been addressed yet, Jack, and that's EDUCATION. Without a significant, radical overhaul of our educational system, everything else this country is facing is moot. We should be ashamed of our international ranking, and the lost generations of kids whose lives and earning capacity have been permanently impacted by the poor state of education that has developed over the last few decades.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  99. Janine

    The most important issue that needs to be dealt with is the divisiveness and mistrust that is choking any progress because no one can work together for any progress. Politicians need to put their egos and their own self interest aside and do the job they were elected to do.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  100. Mitch from Calif

    Securing the borders and deporting illegals plus going after companies that hire illegals would help this country in all kinds of ways.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  101. Jurgen R. Brul

    Dear friends,

    The Most Important issue facing country in 2011 is to be ONE under GOD, INDIVISIBLE, with LIBERTY and JUSTICE for ALL!

    Greetings,
    Jurgen R. Brul

    January 3, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  102. Marilyn Gabler

    Marilyn from Texas

    Before we do anything, we need to approve a budget. This should have been done at the end of the first quarter of 2010 and at least no later than the last quarter of 2010. How can we know what we can cut if we do not know where the money is going and how much money should go to what program?

    January 3, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  103. Daneeta Loretta Jackson

    Most important issue? Get our heads out of the sand and face the big white elephant in the room: the military industrial complex. War is what's dragging the economy down. War takes needed resources away from our more creative enterprises. War is why we can't pay for health care and good education for our children and electric cars. War is not the answer. It's dumb.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  104. Judy Mascolino

    JOBS JOBS JOBS! Until we get the middle class working again and therefore growing our economy (remember that there are MANY of us), nothing that the government does is seen as important. I am now so
    disallusioned with the huge deficit growth (giving unneeded tax breaks
    to millionaires that do NOTHING to create jobs, plus the millions of earmarks tucked into the package) that I am just hoping for that one
    "little" thing~~~jobs. I suggest the elected officials come back to reality, leave their sheltered lives just a bit and get busy helping the American people.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  105. Ian Goddi

    We need to get the US back to a healthy debt to GDP ratio. THEN I'd love to cut corporate taxes in half-to match Canada as well as the R & D tax. Those tax cuts are job creators.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  106. Frankie

    First the Republicans are going to filibuster themselves by reading the Constitution, and then they are going to pretend to repeal health reform? The biggest issue facing America is for them to grow up and act like Americans. America has always prevailed by being the country of Yes We Can, and I have a big problem with Republicans trying to turn us into the country of No just so they can make more money off of us.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  107. C. Kelley Sr.

    Jack everyone in public office is so concern about the national deficit so, If these public officials in Congress / House of Rep are so concern why is it that they keep giving themselves a raise? Just think of the money that the federal government could save with all these government officials take a pay cut .

    January 3, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  108. don gates

    Of course if is jobs, is there no possibility the health care plan will create lots of jobs? More hospitals, doctors, nurses, more of everything that supports health care by tax paying, newly hired men and women?

    The chances are better the republicans will not put forth their own better plan than they will suceed in repealing what has been passed.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  109. Reaity.com

    Come on...no one in this country can CREATE JOBS if two things are known by employers...# 1: the average "job qualified" American is NOT willing to work diligently on a job nowadays and number two, most products are successfully manufactured overseas now. With respect to these factors...the US is SUNK. Right now the main priority of this country SHOULD be to be stop wasting MONEY on spending trips that net ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to show for their happening...ie WARS, false claims of healthcare for the masses which will not happen with this president's PLAN, and bailing out BANKS...this country is going under...there is no denying that fact!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  110. Donnie H. Bay St. Louis Ms.

    The most important issue is for our leaders to stop playing politics, work together and actually pass some meaningful legislation that will help the country. The Gop has spent the last 2yrs stalling and hoping for a lackluster recovery because they knew that if things improved their chances to regain power diminished with every improvement. The country's failure is all they have to run on. The gop can't tout their accomplishments the last time they were in charge so they are stalling yet again with this farce to repeal healthcare. They know they can't repeal it but it gives them a chance to grandstand, stall and prevent other more meaningful legislation from progressing. They will then ask the American people "What have the Dems done "for" you?" Rather than "What has the Gop done "to" you? Hypocritical sanctimonious grandstanding...

    January 3, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  111. Rafael Lopez

    Unfettered cpitalism. That has always been the main problem with the US since Ronald Reagan. The rest of the issues are basically a smoke screen.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  112. Lou Blanchard

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New You Jack in 2011. It's not a difficult thing to make the connection that repeal of Obama Care is the most important and joined to the hip of jobs. It IS a serious job killer by the serious burden it will put on private employers and states. Mass. is proof of this just look at it's cost (growing) compared to the state's GDP.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  113. Deborah Seibert,. Co

    1. cut spending, including entitlements and ESPECIALLY FOREIGN AID.
    2. Create jobs that ordinary people can do, not just construction workers.
    3. Militarize the southern border. Shoot to kill. Deport illegals whenever and whereever they are found.

    Welcome back Jack. I missed you. If Wolf would just say you were not going to be there at the top of his broadcast, I could switch to something else.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  114. Jim Blevins

    You surely didn't expect anything else. We were i the great recession and people were frustrated. Lacking any competent person who said that they could fix the problem quickly, the people elected a bunch of nuts who said they could. Obamacare became the rallying cry. Ergo, vote to repeal Obamacare. Exactly what your would expect from a bunch of nuts. Just wait, the nuts now control the house - expect a lot more nutty behavior.

    Jim, Craig, CO

    January 3, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  115. Bob Schroder

    Provide more tax cuts by repealing the recently passed 911 Health Care Reforms.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  116. AB

    Happy New Year Jack! The most important issue facing the country for this new year is JOBS, JOBS and More JOBS!! The Republicans just don't get it. Their immediate agenda is repeal the federal health care law and to subvert the Obama Administration. They better work with the Democrats and the President in formulating strategies for putting Americans back to work and drop their plan to repeal the health care law.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  117. Joe

    Jack,

    Clearly the most important issue facing the US in 2011 is that our representatives in Congress are only thinking about themselves, their future, not our country's future. If those we elect would only realize our two-class society (rich and poor) will literarally make our nation fall from what was once a great country with promise, to a new subservient nation economically controlled by the new world powers (China, etc.) who are growing, only because WE (our elected representatives and our NAFTA trade policies) are allowing them. We are most likely the bigest consumer nation in the world, so why not increase tariffs; thus, we will create new manufacturing jobs (which usually create 5 service jobs for each manufacturing job). Jobs and feeling a sense of purpose in our life is essential; otherwise, we are heading in a direction of constant power struggles with our government and the people (you and me) will suffer.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  118. George, U.S. Virgin Islands

    Besides jobs, it's healthcare. If they repeal healthcare, they should lose their own. Let them go out and purchase healthcare like everyone else! If that happens, lets see how fast they backtrack!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  119. Jim

    The absolute disrespt people have for the opinion of others. We now live in a single minded environment where no one can accept the beliefs or ideas of others. We are right and everyone else is wrong and there is nothing that will change our minds. If we didn't think of it first it's not a good idea.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  120. Adam in New Orleans

    It's NOT jobs. The jobs issue is an effect, not the cause. Balance of trade is the second MOST significant issue. Fixing this promotes exports and gets you jobs. Unregulated globalization and so-called free trade agreements are destroying the United States. State capitalism, as practiced by places like China, are preditory and mercantilist. We're not playing by the same rules and are being crushed. Unfortunately, without campaign finance reform, nothing can or will get fixed!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  121. Kat in Tx

    Immigration.
    It effects the deficit, the economy, jobs, standard of living,,,

    it trickles down....

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  122. Paul Lundquist

    IMHO, the biggest problem to face us in 2011 will be the overspill of problems in Mexico. I foresee the drug war there spilling into the US, bringing violence, corruption (as if we needed more), and the export of illegal gains from drug sales out of the country. More money is lost to America through the sale and use of drugs here than any war, or tax loophole, or social program abuse. Central American and middle east potentates make money twice from us: when the government gives it to them to be our friend, and again from the manufacture and sale of drugs. Stop that and so much of our problems will go away.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  123. Nancy, Tennessee

    The most important issue for 2011 is sealing our borders. Our borders continue to leak jobs out of the country. Companies who choose foreign workers over Americans need to be met at our ports and land borders with high tariffs to bring their goods in to be sold. Sealing our borders will fix unemployment because companies who produce items here will be able to compete which gives our citizens a place to earn a living. Our borders have become our worst enemy.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  124. MIke in TX

    Jack the Karl Rove brand of politics does not allow for "what's the real most important thing to do". If I remember the count right there were almost 200 Republican amendments included in the health care bill. But for politics sake instead of saying here is what we have, here is what you have that we can live with let's work on the rest they want to waste our time and money playing their stupid political games. They spent 100 million in their efforts to impeach Pres. Clinton and embarrassed us all over the world (quotes for all over the world backed it up) and now their at it again. There is no positive in the next two year planning process only find the negatives, emphasis them, and to heck with what all of us of all parties sent them to do.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
  125. steve - virginia beach

    Many of our problems could be solved in one fell swoop by re-implementing our Constitution and ammendments as per the extensive explainations by those who wrote them. Then a Constitutional ammendment mandating fast-track impeachment of any elected official or member of the judiciary who fails or refuses to uphold and adhere to our Constitution, including the lawful process for ammending it.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  126. ryan vollmer

    Jobs, of course, but the new congress is going to spend all of its time
    fighting to dismantle everything Obama's put in place. Tackling unemplohyment isn't nearly as important as proving Obama wrong.

    Ryan
    Centerport, New York

    January 3, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  127. James

    Jack-
    The most important thing facing AMERICA in 2011 is Republican controlled congress, Republican controlled states governerships and Republican controlled states' assemblies. No plan for the little man!
    James in Houston, TX

    January 3, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  128. deirdre Kiernan

    Jack,

    If the republicans are so concerned about repealing the government health care bill, why don't they begin by refusing to accept the generous heath care benefits they receive once they are elected?

    It is interesting to me that they ran on a platform to end government spending, yet they readily accept for themselves the very benefits they state should not be given to other Americans.

    Ironic or hypocritical?

    January 3, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  129. Ramesh Shrestha

    Jack,
    Here is my laundrylist of things of utmost priority in 2011:
    1) waging war in Korean peninsula
    2) repealing and re-passing the healthcare reform
    3) Nation building in Iraq and Afghanistan
    4) 2012 presidential election and
    5) National viewing of Sarah Palin's Alaska and lobbying for extension of that puppet show

    January 3, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  130. Bob Doss in Spillcorn, NC

    Term Limits for Congress - because no other issue will get the attention it needs, so long as politicians are more interested in their own survival than they are in ours.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  131. Archie Phillips

    The most important question is why did all those birds commit sucide on New Years Eve rather than see the GOP come into power again...Are they smarter that most Americans?

    January 3, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  132. rick comfort

    We need to balance trade with China. Increase tariffs on consumer goods coming in to the level of their tariffs on US goods goiing to China.
    This would bring Chinese goods more in line with domestic goods and create good manufacturing jobs that would pay more taxes both local and Federal and help lower our debt.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
  133. Don

    Jack, as much as we need more jobs in America, I think hands down, the biggest issue of 2011 is going to be a severe shortage of money.

    Don in NC

    January 3, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
  134. Annie

    Let them attempt to repeal it – and show themselves for the plonkers they are – completely removed from reality – hell bent on getting one thing and one thing only – their own way – regardless the cost to the average American.

    Sick.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  135. BHB-Texas

    The most important issue facing congress is the spinless, whimps we elected. They have no love for the United States of America. They only care for the money they get from companies and unions and the power they accumulate as they stay in congress for way too many years. Like our elected officials, the American people have also become whimps who refuse to do with out the least little thing their hearts desire.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  136. Donnie H. Bay St. Louis Ms.

    To actually do the will of the people rather than the will of the lobbyist and special interests. It has been of the lobbyist for the lobbyist for to long.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  137. Irene

    Jack....I think we all know it's all about getting America back to work. JOBS...JOBS....JOBS!

    The Democrats shouldn't let the Republicans be a distraction from creating JOBS,,,AND The Republicans should NOT FORGET they were voted in because everyone was fed up with NOTHING being accomplished in the JOBS MARKET. It seems the Republicans are still the "Party of NO" and they are choosing politics over getting the American People back to work.

    JOBS mean everything to everybody!!!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  138. Griff

    "Impeaching Obama for misusage of a position he had no right to in the first place. Then beging the rest of the planet for an apology, and it won't happen again. Only then can I see the world trusting the USA, an d trade will return, which also means jobs."

    January 3, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  139. Joe

    Jack,

    We live in a world of narcissism (self-love) and until our congressional representatives realize a sense of community our nation will continue to suffer. If we do not have good jobs, then our nation is going to be filled with despair.

    Joe, Binghamton, NY

    January 3, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  140. david

    Jobs...jobs...jobs may be we could get back to the good old days of the Clinton`s administration.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  141. Judy

    That's a no brainer, it's jobs. The republicans will hopefully self destruct as they proceed with plans to spend tax payer dollars on phony investigations, and going through the motions of trying to repeal the healthcare bill. What a bunch of bums.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  142. Murilo

    I believe the most important issue in this country is immigration. Look at how much money 12 million immigrants paying about 5,000 dollars each to become legal in this country will make a difference: 60 billion dollars just for that fee, not counting all the travel they would do and also, instead of sending all their money to their country they would spend here in America.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  143. Latoya Beh in Norcross, GA

    I am a college grad with an undergrad in Accounting and an MBA. I also have extensive experience in accounting. Despite all of that, I have been laid off since 2008. The most important issue facing the country in 2011 is the "LACK OF JOBS." Even making yourself more marketable by going back to school doesn't help. Instead of wasting time trying to repeal healthcare, the republicans need to spend their time creating JOBS, JOBS, JOBS....

    January 3, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  144. Sean

    Republicans are up to their old tricks: this is the party of No as it relates to social issues, the rights of the poor, and African Americans but as it relates to giving the super rich a tax brake which they need, like I need another hole in my head / is what the Republicans stand for. I hope they Republicans continue to be the party of No as well as run their darling Shara Palin and we will have another four year term of Pr. Obama who was given a mess by the last president. I have not seen anything from the Republicans that warrant my vote. I can not believe the American people gave these people another chance to make more Americans lives worse by unemployment and being outright racists. The Republicans turn my stomach!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  145. Tonie from Broken Arrow OK

    These new Republicans are out of touch. They will also lose their jobs if they keep up with this nonsense. They need to figure out how to get jobs, jobs jobs and raise salaries for the working person, while giving us good government we deserve to protect us. It sure isn't cutting entitlement programs that have helped build the middle class. Most people would rather taxes go up.

    They need to recall the money they gave to the top 1%,and cut their own salaries , they complained about the deficit and they wanted to add 400 Billion for people who didn't need it. This is horrible for our country. This will do nothing but rasie the deficit with this game.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  146. colleen levitt

    Jack,

    The largest issue facing this country is a general lack of intelligence in our political institutions and citizenry. The Republicans first priority is to vote to repeal health care reform? Really...? With no hope of repeal why are they wasting the people's time? So they can keep a promise to a pack of morons that bought that campaign lie as a real possibility? Must we always placate the halfwits? There are real problems facing this country that need to be dealt with. We don't need a dog and pony show.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  147. Neven, Adams County PA

    I don't understand why Republicans want to divert the nations attention to bills and laws that already been voted on. They revel in the past, instead they should be looking toward the future and working across the table. Not picking a fight with the Democrats, while they are on the tax payers funding. WORKING TOGETHER is and will always be the most important issue on Capital Hill. For our government to start the climb out of this slump we need to create new jobs, regulations, and tax revenues legalizing Marijuana for responsible adults. Not to mention writing a law that all small and large businesses to build solar panels on their properties. This would help offset power consumption and create new jobs.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  148. Donnie H. Bay St. Louis Ms.

    Jobs and trade tariffs to level the playing field and return manufacturing jobs to this country. All the signs are there. If the Gop regain total control in 2012 then the 2012 Armageddon prophecy will be fulfilled.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  149. John Blue

    We need to do this NOW!!!
    Conduct an introspective reality check to determine just what values we share nationwide, and work on practicing them. If we continue on the road of political bickering, we can decide that we will resign ourselves to realizing much less than than our great potential.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  150. Ken in NC

    Facing the country Jack? Jobs, jobs and jobs. Facing Republicans, getting back behind the wheel so they can turn us around and head back to the cliff, Democrats, well they can't make up their collective minds on what's most important.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  151. Bill

    The answer is simple Jack. But, it's not jobs or security or the economy or taxes or healthcare. The answer is Global Warming, It C02 levels are not reversed today, civilization as we know it will no longer exist and all of the parochial issues, most think important, will simply be irrelevant.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  152. Ralph Spyer

    The Two Wars ,in Iraq we have lost over 5ooo thousand men if you count our pay mercenary. In Afghanistan the longest war in U.S. history with no end in sight ,and every year the American boys killed is highter than the year before 711 killed in 2010. What could be more imporyment than a American life

    January 3, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  153. Dennis Washington DC

    Repealing health care give me a break, The Republicans promised to cut taxes, cut spending, close the borders, balance the budget, jobs for everybody, end the war on terror, a chicken in every pot. And the Nationals are going to win the pennant. I’ll be home waiting for my chicken

    January 3, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  154. Corey Victor Mt

    JOB'S Deport illegals so the American people can have their old jobs back!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  155. Mike in St. Paul

    I think the most important issue is for people to calm down and stop fretting about government debt and pay off our own. At least we can do something about that. Instead of getting hysterical about the health bill, we should be worried about getting into shape so we won't end up in the medical octopus in the first place. More than anything, I think the people in this country need to get over the melodrama, turn off the TV talk radio and read a book not written by a Palin, Beck or Caff...nevermind. Here's some bipartisanship for you: Don't ask what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for yourself.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  156. Birddog in Mississippi

    The HCR act reduces our debt by 100 billion dollars in the next ten years. The Republicans are hypocrites.
    Repeal the tax cuts for the wealthy.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  157. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Laws that go before our Supreme Court Justices and the outcome of their decision will have a great impact on all Americans in 2011. Most Americans ignore or don't understand the power of these Justices.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  158. Al

    Welcome back Jack. Foremost issue is getting Congress and the Administration to forego petty politics and focus on investing in our collective future. Second issue is changing law and regulation to encourage small business and job creation. We paid a massive welfare check to big banks and investment houses, how about a small investment in Middle Class America?

    January 3, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  159. Tim in Texas

    It doesn't matter what the most important issue is. Republicans will do what they always do: give more to the rich and shrink the middle class. You saw it with the tax cut debate. Republicans care about nothing but making sure that the very wealthiest people get wealthier.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  160. Joel in Dubuque

    Jack, the GOP must protect the top 2%, after all, that's the people supporting them. If they would bring back half the jobs sent overseas, our deficit wouldn't be a problem with that tax base. It is still beyond me why anyone making less than $300,000 a year votes for any of them. If they get their way, in 20 years middle class will be judged on how good of a car you live in!!!!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  161. Mike F in Anaheim

    No matter what, Jack, we can always count on the party in power to act first on matters of political importance regardless as to whether such actions make sense or are founded on sane public policy.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  162. Karl in Flint

    The wars are a tie with jobs. Both need to be handled first.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  163. Frank Texas

    Main issue facing us is taxes. Do we spread them out to lessen the blow; or do we get hit with higher taxes later and who will I vote for next election, Since my fellow republicans insist on playing; "lets get the president."

    January 3, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  164. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Happy New Year Jack!

    Jobs and tax reform!

    January 3, 2011 at 5:55 pm |
  165. Dee from Virginia

    The economy needs work and they have the recommendations of the Commission now. Hopefully, each party will not run off and do their own thing, to the detriment of their constituents.The enemy of my enemy is my friend can no longer be the mantra. Both sides have to talk. No one person has the answer. We elected you to analyze and find the best solution. So, put the boxing gloves away, stop all of this drama, and get back to work. If you fix the economy, jobs will come.

    By the way, corporations have been hiring all along the recession, but their hirings have been outsourced overseas jobs. Fix that too.

    January 3, 2011 at 5:55 pm |