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July 28th, 2011
05:00 PM ET

Who's winning the debt ceiling battle?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

It's pretty clear who is losing in the whole debt ceiling stalemate in Washington - the American people.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) at a news conference earlier today.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) at a news conference earlier today.

They have a right to expect much more from the people they voted into office. Losers include those whose lives could be affected if a deal isn't reached in the next few days and their checks aren't put in the mail. Oh, and let's not forget the country's reputation as a whole. That's taking a helluva beating. Even if a deal is passed at the last minute, the U.S. credit rating could still be downgraded, leaving investors around the world wondering if the United States is still a good place to invest.

The folks on Capitol Hill don't seem to be too concerned with losers. So who exactly is winning here?

The House is expected to vote on Speaker John Boehner's plan in the next hour. Boehner told reporters on Thursday the measure will pass. Tea party conservatives have been whining and stomping their feet for days saying the Boehner bill doesn't do enough. But some last minute wrangling could sway enough votes.

That has House Republicans feeling pretty good about themselves. House Minority Leader Eric Cantor told the Senate on Thursday to accept the Boehner bill or the cut, cap and balance bill previously passed in the House or suffer the consequences of default. But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid doesn't seem to care about that. He has already said that the Boehner measure will die when it reaches the Senate. And the clock keeps ticking.

Where is President Obama in all this? For the last several days he has had no public schedule and has remained behind closed doors inside the White House. So inquiring minds want to know.

Here’s my question to you: Who's winning the debt ceiling battle?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

FULL POST


Filed under: Government
July 28th, 2011
04:11 PM ET

What's your view of the current state of the U.S. economy?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The general feeling about the economy in this country hasn't been great for a long time. And the stalemate on Capitol Hill over raising the debt ceiling has only made Americans more nervous... not just about the current state of their own households but about the future of the U.S. economy as a whole.

Unemployment's stuck at 9.2% and probably not improving much anytime soon. With all the uncertainty surrounding the debt ceiling, companies aren't exactly rushing to ramp up hiring. "Wait and see" is the prevailing game plan. Uncertainty is business investment's worst enemy.

Home prices are down 4.5% from one year ago. The housing crisis may not be over for several years. Bad news for a seller sometimes means good news for a buyer - but not right now. Even if you're lucky enough to get a mortgage, rates are going to be headed up - and if the U.S. defaults on its debt obligations, that will happen pretty fast.

Oh and your investments? If lawmakers don't raise the debt ceiling and the U.S. defaults on its payments for the first time in history, stocks could drop 30% over the following six months to a year. This is according to a new report from Credit Suisse.

Polls have shown Americans have been growing increasingly concerned with the economy, and the number of Americans feeling this way has been on the rise over the last few weeks. Nearly 3/4 of Americans in Gallup's Daily tracking poll say the U.S. economy is getting worse. That's up 11 percentage points since July 6. In a separate CNN-ORC poll, nearly six in 10 Americans now say that the economy will be in poor shape a year from now.

And in Washington the pathetic games continue.

Here’s my question to you: What's your view of the current state of the U.S. economy?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

FULL POST