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Congress got 25% richer during height of recession?
November 2nd, 2011
02:09 PM ET

Congress got 25% richer during height of recession?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

While millions of Americans struggle under a weak economy, members of Congress keep getting richer. A lot richer.

"Roll Call" reports that members of Congress had a collective net worth of more than $2 billion in 2010.

That was up about 25 percent from 2008, during the height of the recession.

And these wealth totals likely underestimate how rich Congress really is. That's because they don't include homes and other non-income generating property, which could come out to hundreds of millions in additional dollars.

This wealth is split fairly evenly between both Democrats and Republicans.

Overall, about 200 members of Congress are millionaires. Once again, this doesn't include the value of their homes.

There are even a handful of lawmakers who are worth tens or hundreds of millions of dollars.

The Roll Call analysis shows that 90% of Congress' increase in wealth since 2008 benefited the 50 richest members. Sounds a lot like what's going on in the rest of the country.

What a surprise. Congress is getting richer faster than the rest of us. One economist says aggregate household worth went up 12 percent from 2008 to 2010, about half the increase Congress saw.

Another expert suggests members of Congress do better with their investments than the average American because they are privy to inside information.

Really? Seriously? They would take advantage of that… something that is clearly illegal for the rest of us?

The bottom line is this body of lawmakers has next to nothing in common with the average American. Yet we keep sending most of the same rat pack back year after year.

Here's my question to you: What does it say when members of Congress got 25% richer during the height of the recession?

Tune in to "The Situation Room" at 5 p.m. ET to see if Jack reads your answer on the air.

And we'd love to know where you're writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.


Filed under: Congress • Recession
soundoff (238 Responses)
  1. Frances

    It means that they are part of the 1%. They are wealthy themselves as are their donors, that is why they won't raise taxes on the rich. They would like to cut Social Security and Medicare which of course hurts the Middle Class and the Poor.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  2. Charles, Lansing, Michigan

    The fact is that more than half of Congress are millionaires or more. That is why there is no way to get a millionaire tax passed. We are dealing with a gang of horsethieves

    November 2, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  3. Pete in Georgia

    Jack, does this question even have to be asked ???
    Our so called "Political Leaders" have been fleecing America for the past 200 years.
    Some things NEVER change.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:14 pm |
  4. DAN WILSON

    It tells me that the members of Congress are more concerned about themselves than they are about the people they represent.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:15 pm |
  5. Terry Wells -Hoosier Hillbilly-Greensburg,IN

    It wasn't from the stock market!

    November 2, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
  6. Russ in PA

    Why are you surprised? As Ron Paul tells you, the current fiat money system, managed by the FED, rewards those with first access to the money supply, while those in the lower class are stuck with devalued dollars. At some point people have to realize that the FED is there to support the large banks, not the average American. After all, it took $35 to purchase an ounce of gold in the early 1930's, and now it takes around $1700. Does that sound like a strong dollar to you? Of course, it doesn't hurt the Congressmen in that they are permitted to engage in insider trading, while punishing those of outside the circle if we do so.

    Ron Paul in 2012... Sounds like a broken record, eh?

    November 2, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  7. Joyce Peterson--california

    This is not surprising, they give themselves raises and everyone else takes pay cuts and furloughs and layoffs. It just stays the same government takes on the backs of the people and they dont care. I say occupy DC maybe the people should shut them down.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  8. Peg from NY

    It says that we are a Nation dangerously out of whack, Jack.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  9. Chuck Reichmuth

    It says that crony capitalism is alive and well and the foxes are guarding the hen house.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:19 pm |
  10. Jayne in NH

    It means we've got the best government corporate money can buy. In addition, if you happen to be in the House of Representatives, you only have to work 2 days a week for your $174,000 salary and solid gold benefits.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  11. Pat in Michigan

    Name Names Jack !We will do the rest in the voting booth!The public needs to know who is funding these people!

    November 2, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  12. Tom (Atlanta)

    Jack. That is an outrage. When a company is failing their executive's compensation should be and often is frozen. These people are running "our" country and we are financially failing; therefore, they are failing. They are lucky to have a job at all. We should freeze their compensation until we are out of this. We have all lost a percentage of our net worth because of this, and it is time that they share the burden not benefit from it.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
  13. Joe A.

    Jack,

    What it says is that they are ALL corrupt to the core and don' care about the nation that voted them into public office in the first place. They expect us to accept government sponsored solutions, except all members are exempt (in one way or another). They should all be held accountable by making them participate in the OBAMACARE mandatory program (no exceptions), and pay into ti at the same time. – no FREE rides any longer. They are all co-conspirators in destroying the middle class, and one are exempt from this. One term, One Shot – that's the way it ought to be.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:23 pm |
  14. Lori - PA

    Jack,

    When I read the question, the first thing that came to mind was a blinking neon sign that says, "Bought!".

    November 2, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
  15. Susan

    It means I'm sick to my stomach! We elect and pay these people to work for OUR needs, but they don't even know who we are. They need to be voted out of office and keep voting out until we get some people in Congress who remember what this country is all about.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  16. Evelyn Berryhill

    We have congress that is greedy and not worth being leader for ours country.

    Evelyn Berryhill
    Memphis TN.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  17. RickFromDetroit

    When members of Congress get rich during a recession I would say it was from insider trading which is directly related to bailouts authorized by the Congress. Once the insiders know when and who is going to receive funds and stimulus, it is very simple to have your broker place orders for the undervalued stocks that we seen a couple of years ago. This also works for government and defense contracts.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
  18. Rich McKinney, Texas

    The current salary (2011) for rank-and-file members of the House and Senate is $174,000 per year. They work on average 150 hours per year. Not bad work if you can get it plus television appearances and media events. We really can not be mad at them for making money though because we sent them there with our vote. They would not be in a position to make such money had we not put them there. We have no one to blame but ourselves.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  19. David in Tampa

    From their perspective, especially the Republicans, it says all is right with the world. From my perspective it says "Bought and paid for", "We love the Bush tax cuts because we are making out like the bandits we are", "Which is why we want less Government regulation and oversight." I would say the Devil is in the details, but it seems he is already running Congress. I hate being so negative all the time Jack but look what I've got to work with.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
  20. Nate NC

    Jack, it is called insider trading. Remember the whole debt ceiling thing? When you know what laws are going to go in effect at a certain time, it is easy to short sell your stocks and make a profit because you can create anxiety in the markets and alleviate that anxiety afterwards. Honest people try to follow the market, but the market is dictated by policies influenced by lobbyists. Therefore, why wouldn't Congress be 25% richer?

    November 2, 2011 at 2:35 pm |
  21. Ed from California

    Sweet!! Power to the people, power to the people, power to the people, right-on! It's no wonder why all of our jobs are in communist China. I'm just jealous I guess, Jack. I wish I had a Lobbyist too!! Along with no conscience.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:37 pm |
  22. Tom Bulger, Canandaigua, NY

    It says that 1% are over represented. It explains why there has been so much legislation transferring the nation's wealth from the middle class to the rich. Asking Boehner's Congress to end Bush's tax cuts for the super rich is asking gluttons to share the meal. No wonder Congress repeats legislation like our motto, rather than pay any attention to passing the jobs bill.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:40 pm |
  23. Dana Clark- Livingston Mt.

    I think the media should post the salary and pension plans for members of congress – most Americans would be shocked if they knew. I do not believe that we the people voted for their excessive compensation packages. The fact that congress got 25% richer during the height of the recession should first be verified and explained to us viewers. If they got rich on the tax payers dollars than it points to one more reason why we can believe our government is truly broken and our leaders are more interested in representing their own interests instead of the interests of the American People.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:41 pm |
  24. Annie, Atlanta

    Correction: It's says there's a lot of very rich people in congress, who have the opportunity to make money out of whole cloth thanks to Wall Street, an opportunity that passes up us commoners. We are represented by people who will not change campaign finance laws, because they benefit by the corrupt system as is. We are represented by people who think its ok to take medicare and Social Security away from the elderly, and that people should starve instead of receive food stamp help, but would never give up their benefits. And that's just the tip of the iceburg. Good God, we've lost our collective minds (and souls) and need to vote them out of office before they pick what little remains off our bones.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
  25. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Hi Jack. I'm surprised it's this low. They always benefit at our expense and especially from the lobbyists. We really need to vote all of them out with a simple message; "Term Limits, no pay raises or your next". I only wish the occupy folks would have this as their mission.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  26. David Doherty

    It says what I aways said, 90% of all politicians are only there to line their own pockets and service the public only if it happens to turns out by chance that they benefit from what ever scam their pulling at the time. Why is the occupy wall street movement not setting up camp on capital hill, thats where the real crooks are, after all wall street only does what Washington sanctions.
    Dave from NH.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:44 pm |
  27. John from Alabama

    Jack: It shows that the members of Congress are a greedy and selfish. While millions of people out of work go without the basic necessities Congress is making a profit. Down with incumbents, fire the bums, and recall are just some of the slogans people feel about Congress. Even though there is only a 19% favorable approval rating of Congress people keep returning same idiots to Congress. What is wrong with a nation that does not have the will or brains to vote them out of office.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
  28. Jim, Cranford NJ

    Insider Trading? What other plausible explanation can they offer? If Congress were on the Titanic we know who would have been first in line for the lifeboats.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
  29. Susanne (Germany)

    Something is rotten in the state of Denmark.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  30. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    This must be the group that is protecting the 1% from paying their fair share. As far as they're concern the trickle down theory is working fine. They feel the rich must get richer in order for them to share their wealth but instead they get greedy and want more money. I know one thing they did not get richer by putting more hours in Congress.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  31. Gary

    Hi Jack it just mean the the fat cat in congress have no clue what the 99% are going thru I want what they get in Medical bennies and there retirement pay for the rest of there life's Democrats AND republicans need to wake up, america needs to wake up and scream there heads off louder not just on wall street but from every corner of the counrty LETS GET TERM LIMITS STARTED NOW they dont need to get richer. Thanks Jack

    November 2, 2011 at 2:55 pm |
  32. Clephas from Austin, TX

    Is this really any surprise? Bribes in the form of financial 'advice' have long been one of the methods by which Wall Street types get their claws into politicians...

    November 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  33. Gary H. Boyd

    The English language has some wonderfully anthropmorphic collective nouns for the various groups of animals - a herd of cows, a school of fish, a pride of lions and so on. But what about Baboons - the loudest and most obnoxious of all the primates. Believe it or not - a congress. A Congress of Baboons. No wonder the Baboons in Washington got 25% richer at the height of the recession.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    November 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  34. Kevin H SD CA

    It means that criminals are people who get something for nothing, and we are a country led by criminals who create more criminals by supporting corporate welfare, racist welfare, and government gravy train welfare!

    We get what we reward! If it isn’t self-evident by now that we are a country controlled by mafia; then criminality will soon explode into the violent implosion caused by those who are supposed to protect our Constitution, and laws.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
  35. Harry Wortz

    It tell me that they are playing a game of divide and conquer for profit by trying to convince us that the extreme view points they focus on are the norm.

    The ONLY difference between democrats and republicans is the speed at which their knees hit the carpet when a lobbyist walks through the door.

    November 2, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
  36. Jk from Minnesota

    The American voters should now understand and no longer listen to or vote for any candidate using the fear mongering about "redistributing the wealth" and socialism and PLEASE ignore the special interest PAC attack ads!
    News flash to the voters – wealth has already be redistributed – to the top 1% as is still going strong! It confirms the system is broken and the Citizen's United ruling is going to make this worse if the voters do not educate themselves and only listen to the campaign ads and elect candidates that sign a pledge to accept ANGTHING from lobbyists. If they do – then vote them out next time.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
  37. Ron WPAFB

    Other than maybe voting for the wrong bad politician, the American People, the 99% have no fault in the plundering by the Banks, Wall Street, and worst of all, the completely treasonous Congress of The United States. For those reasons, why should the American People take Social Program cuts before Big oil Subsidies are stopped, before The 1% and major corporations pay their taxes and loop holes are plugged forever? Why, should the Military take cuts before Congress takes a pay cut? The Republicans have to go!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
  38. David from Herndon, VA

    My kids are getting old enough to start asking questions about how the country works. Checks and balances. Fair elections. Government by the people, for the people.

    I don't know whether I should play along for now or go ahead and explain that what they're learning is all fluff. The reality is we live in something between a kleptocracy and a plutocracy, where their votes aren't going to matter and the whole system is a complete sham.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
  39. pierre glenn

    This is American lawmakers getting rich ... do nt care abt middle n low income. It truly a sad thing they say feel america pain, feel there pockets getting rich.Bt American voter put them n office now how do voters fill now.2012 should record votes change structure of senate, rep , congress.Thanx Jack Columbia Mo

    November 2, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  40. Dave, Orlando, FL

    It says that we are all suckers and they don’t give a damn about us. As you say, we keep sending them back. So we get what we deserve, a bunch of people who get rich on our backs, and bribes (in whatever form they take) from those they favor with custom legislation.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  41. Floyd - Crescent City, CA

    It says Congress works for the 1%.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
  42. Bert from L.A.

    Hi Jack, it says those new so-called “persons,” i.e. corporations which have unlimited and secret free speech expressed in cash, have been “yakking” nonstop and Congress has been listening to every dollar! It says we need to gag corporations with an amendment saying “Corporations are property, not people! Bribes are corruption, not free speech!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
  43. Cal

    Hey Jack, Why should we NOT be surprised by the audacity of these people in Washington?
    There is NO WAY they can relate or have any sympathy to the poor and middle-class of this country
    who have made it as great as it is, or was! I am sick of the "lot of them" and they have no shame!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
  44. Kim , Dodge City, Kansas

    It says that we are as stupid as Congress believes we are. It has been this way since the original Congress that was heavily populated with wealthy landowners, lawyers, merchants, and anybody else who could buy their way in. This will never change, in fact, history tells us it will only continue to get worse until an armed insurrection overthrows those in power. Do we, as an abused citizenry, have the guts to take the next step? Only time, and history, will tell.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
  45. Paul From Austin Texas

    It just proves that to be elected you must be rich real rich. Also it shows we are rapidly approching a have and have not society with no middle class none.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
  46. Judy

    Once again it shows how greedy politians are!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
  47. Fr. Tony

    While they certainly haven't a clue about looking after us, they are certainly experts at looking after themselves.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
  48. Rick, Medina, OH

    Jack,

    Perhaps the 'Occupy Movement' is picketing in the wrong place ...

    Rick,
    Medina,OH

    November 2, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
  49. Steve, Clifton, VA

    Jack

    This is just another indicator that "Term Limits" needs to become law and that "Campaign Financing" by fat cats has become a way for the top 1 % income earners feel less and less concern for the middle income people or the people that they represent.. How many more bricks do we need to hit us in the fore head before we come to the realization that we have allowed greed and power to steal our democracy? We have allowed people with money to make a mockery of our democratic system.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
  50. Gail, Plano TX.

    It says, Jack, that the American people are fools!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
  51. Ken from California

    It says, maybe the Occupy people should be camping out on the steps of the Capital building in Washington D.C.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
  52. Ray in Knoxville

    Jack, it means they are not in the 99%, nor are they likely to understand, feel for or vote to help the 99%. I am the 99%.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  53. Terry Wells -Hoosier Hillbilly-Greensburg,IN

    insider trading
    Ponzi schemes
    mafia
    reverse robinhooding-stealing from the poor to give to the rich
    Obama has done his share by giving tax money to 'inities'connected to congressmen/woman -Reed & Pelosi to begin with
    pay-offs from lobbiests 'i'm sure is not included

    November 2, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
  54. Dan from Stewartstown PA

    Everyone thinks they elect the best people to Congress and the rest of the country elects the bad ones. Have citizens not yet learned that political ads and soundbites are carefully crafted to sway the uninvolved? They all need to go and their replacements can start out by running this, our country, without pre-existing conditions, old rules, power players or lobbiests.A fresh start is what we need to get America back on track to becoming the manufacturing leader of the world once again.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
  55. John B.

    This does not come as a surprise, Jack. The founding fathers that created this government were a bunch of rich guys that ran fancy plantations while their slaves did all their work for them. The only difference now is that we are the slaves who keep feeding the thirst for power and money of not only these politicians, but the corporations and lobbyists who keep adding fuel to the fire..

    November 2, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
  56. bud rupert

    Don' think it means that much Jack. Most of these people are pretty well off to start with. And lets face it with the kind of cash they probably have available they can grow their wealth with pretty conservative investment portfolios. But you have to have money to start with. The insider trading charge I doubt. Some may take the chance – but by in large, I think most do not.
    If you stop and think – you can take 200-300K (which isn't much for these folks) put it in a diversified no-load mutual fund and do pretty well. It's funny though – The richest ones up there are mostly democrats. Go figure

    November 2, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  57. Homer Patino

    If we were the ones Big Biz used to further their agendas, then we'd be the ones getting richer. Instead, they eye our wealth and monies for social programs for themselves since they have ruined our financial system. It's not liberals who want all your wealth, it's the rich, Big Biz and Wall St.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  58. Daniel H. (Middleburg, PA)

    Well Jack,

    One thing it DOES say is "the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer". And as long as Americans stay confused and patriotic they will suffer the consequences of conservative politicians. If Republicans win the white house and Congress in 2012 we are in trouble... they will take their agenda a step further by chipping away at Medicare and Social Security. Republicans will not be happy until middle-class Americans are FREE... free from good paying jobs, free from Social Security, free from Medicare, and free from health care... we are FREE alright... free to be idiots!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
  59. Greg in Arkansas

    Looks kind'a like our Democracy has been replaced by a Monarchy and we commoners will just have to scrape by, day-to-day to keep from starving or losing our homes.
    Congress will spend hundreds of millions of dollars next year trying to convince us to re-elect them.......they will tell us how they will "help" us but in reality, they don't have a clue......
    How about a "Job Swap".....?....All elected officials should be required to swap jobs with someone in their home state or district for one week each year, including pay, benefits, living conditions and ALL Congressional perks.......Then, they might be reminded WHY they were elected and WHO they are supposed to serve......

    November 2, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  60. Cliff Glass - Rego Park, New York

    Jack,
    Let us count the ways. They're in session for less than one-third of a calendar year, vote on their own benefit packages, perks, and pay raises, and can accept unlimited campaign contributions. Your question is a no-brainer, which unfortunately also describes most members of Congress.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
  61. Paulette in Dallas

    It says that we have some money hungry narcissists down in DC that don't give a hoot for the other 99% and who need to be booted out of office.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
  62. jimmy in greenville nc

    It just proves the point that the cream always rised to the top. Rich people are by and large also smart. And they know the right people. So they always get richer no matter what the economic condition. I think this is even in the Bible. Quit worrying about the rich folk and start worrying about your own bank account. If you wait around for the rich folk to give you thier money you may have a long wait.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
  63. Rob in NC

    It says the tax cuts they keep passing are working...for them and their friends. But don't worry trickle down economics will create more jobs. Funny how they trickle on us and tell us it's raining! Then we thank them and re-elect them, over and over again. Rob in NC

    November 2, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
  64. s in fl

    It means that business as usual in congress is lucrative. These traitors would sell their country, much less their own mothers. No doubt. I hear the word "socialist" thrown around a lot. What we really need to be afraid of is sociopaths.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
  65. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: A statement from the Congressional spokes person might read, " We appreciate the American people's support," or "I have been rich and I have been poor-–and rich is better." The rich get rich---the working class and poor get scre***-the central dogma of the US>

    November 2, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
  66. gunny

    Nothing new here. Politicians have been ripping the American tax payers off for years. I'm not surprised to find out the are getting richer. People keep voting the same idiots back into office. It will never change the rich get richer and the poor slide down hill slowly, in the mud. America has become a country of horay for me and the hell with everyone else.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  67. Dan in Albuquerque

    Jack, they have always been enabled by influential donors to get sweetheart deals on business, property and investments in exchange for supporting special interests. It's the way politics has always been, and anyone that goes into politics with high standards and idealistic goals soon finds just how nasty it is and how big-money influence makes them ineffective unless they learn how to at least play part of the back-room game. It means we should start a grassroots campaign to get legislation to eliminate 3rd party groups from donating to campaigns at all, opposite what the Republican Supreme Court ruled.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  68. Cheryl in Bluffton, SC

    It says our government is bought and paid for. And it means the Occupy protesters are onto something.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
  69. evelemon@live.comj

    Isn't insider trading illegal? But look what GWB got by with, the Federal Reserve, and the rest of the crap our politicians dump on the taxpayers. I'm so tired of the idiots who keep electing the same rats, but the US learning curve isn't improving. Eve of Texas

    November 2, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
  70. bonnie from NJ

    Why do you think they do nothing, they are members of the 1% who don't want anything to change. I really really hope that come elections we, the middle class, stand up and vote these worthless do nothings out of office. Let us not get fooled again!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
  71. Lene, IL

    It says that they are playing with a stacked set of cards. They are in a position to manipulate the game and they set us up to fail so they could benefit. That's what happens when you have too much power and are not accountable to anyone and you get to make the rules. This is no accident, it is a well thought out fleecing.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
  72. Alex in Bremerton, WA

    No wonder they pass laws favoring the rich! They ARE the rich!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
  73. Dave from Vancouver

    Stop complaining Jack! The consequence of democracy is you get exactly what you vote for...or didn't vote for. So keep it up Americans; keep voting for politicans or parties that help the rich get richer and spread the wealth from the bottom to the top because, you know, someday you may reach the top 1% too...Oh yeah!

    November 2, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
  74. Mitoosense Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    42% of the GDP occurs from government spending. Most of this spending is discretionary spending from Medi Care, Medicaid, Social Security deducted from payrolls. The reason your not a millionaire is, 42% of the time your not even in the game. The Leverage of spening your money is transferred to Congress by Congress. This is the system of Conspiracy between 112th Congress and Wall Street. Break this unholy bond and Uccupy Wall Street will disband

    November 2, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  75. Ray E. (Georgia)

    No kidding? Congress people are about 25 percent richer than 2008? Well you can't prove it by me but remember Jack, WHAT'S GOOD FOR THE BULLMOOSE IS GOOD FOR THE COUNTRY! Free Enterprise, you know.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
  76. Bob from Bellmore, New York

    You are so right Jack when you say they have nothing in common with the average American. And these are the same people that talk about equal opportunity for all. Can the stench get any bigger?

    November 2, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
  77. Larry in Houston

    Jack – Although I agree with what you are saying in your article.But where I came across a comment where
    I read regarding your article – and when I came to where you said that "we keep most of the same rat pack back" – year after year" Do you know the main reason that the people that vote IN the same 'ol bums ?? It's because they bring in millions & millions of dollars for their state. For instance, I used to live in a state where the population is now at 1.8 million, ( yes, the whole state) I remember voting for the "senile" Byrd way back in the early 1970's. Why ? because he brought IN Jobs for that God Forsaken / Welfare State. He brought in Jobs that were Federal Jobs – (Public Debt for instance) AND He brought Billions of Dollars in the State I used to live in, ever since the 1960's ( til he Finally Died in Office) as "Our" then Senator. Do you know there is only 3 Interstates that go through that State ? I – 64 / I – 77 / I – 79 . Where do you think all those Millions of Dollars came from, when all those Bridges were built in the last 60 years ?? I remember my Father once told me most of the roads in that State were either dirt, or gravel, til Byrd brought IN the Money from the Federal Gov't – and put people to work – building roads & bridges. THAT's WHY they keep putting those same old dirt bags, and the same way with Kentucky, I'll bet my bottom Dollar that 'ol "Mitch" McConnell will get VOTED IN again. WHY ? because he will bring IN Federal MONEY to Their State, same as the others that are voted IN year, after year, after year. ( I will be surprised if you actually Print this )

    November 2, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
  78. Doug Ericson

    It says the same old crooks, and how easily they compromised the Tea Party candidates that won seats in Congress. The powers that be have everything so rigged, that if you vote you lose, and that is just my opinion. Doug, Pepperel, MA.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
  79. Mike in Minneapolis

    It says it all, Jack. It really does. I guess I haven't been misspelling Capital Hill wrong all this time after all.

    November 2, 2011 at 3:56 pm |
  80. Michael, from Smiths, Alabama

    It tells me that a grass-roots party-and I don't mean the Tea Party-needs to step forth and tell Congress that the money they're making belongs to the American people. While I wouldn't go so far as to join the 'Occupy' movement, I would gladly picket in front of the Capitol just so my voice could be heard. We don't need the Tea Party because they're too Republican-oriented despite their claims to the contrary.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
  81. Steve

    It means I'm working in the wrong place.

    Mansfield, MA

    November 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  82. Ken - Kingsport, TN

    Jack, it just verifies that America is now a total plutocracy. Both parties are serving the most affluent in the society while the rest of America is left ot fend for itself. One could suggest not voting for an incumbant in every single election, except the real truth is that any national candidate from either party is just another figurehead for that plutocracy. I suspect that it is going to take another American Revolution to resolve what is going on in this country.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  83. Hans iin Alabama

    this is a capitalist nation (and proud of it) so it does not surprise me that our "leaders" practice capitalism. That they are totally out of touch with what is happening to the 99% is also not surprising. What is surprising is that, in a democracy, where we should all be voting our beliefs and principles, the rascals keep getting elected. Why don't people who make less than $50,000 vote only for people in the same economic bracket? Why do they keep sending multimillionaires to Washington when they know they will not be represented? We get the government we deserve!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
  84. MNResident

    CNN has been reporting on the "Occupy (Pick your City)" movement for weeks now, while the ONE place that we should REALLY be protesting/occupying is Washington, DC. It's the richest city in America (I can provide backup on that) and at least 6 of the ten richest counties in America are in the Washington DC metro area (I can prove that, too.). Until the rest of this country realizes the level of Grand Larceny that is going on in in stealing money from the rest of the country to Washington DC, this whole country is doomed, and it is not just members of Congress that are doing it, either.....

    November 2, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
  85. Baby in Florida

    I'm going to opine against the wisdom of my elderly grandmother here who once told a poll worker who had called her on the phone to ask if she needed a ride to the polls, and I quote: "No, I don't. What's the use of voting one crook out and another one in?" Still, the only way I can think of to in any way resolve this situation is to literally purify Congress and the Senate, and that means going out of your party affiliations, people, but we have to vote them ALL out each and every election unless or until all or some of them actually show some interest in representing the people who vote for them. This would be a "real life shock" for some of the career politicians if they were forced to behave like the rest of us on our jobs, i.e., do it well or get fired.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
  86. Dan Kash

    Jack, what do you expect? Really, if you were in congress and a millionaire what would any red blooded greedy American do! This is just a no-brainer! Untill we get the money out of politics the middle class, seniors and the poor will not have representation!!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  87. Sandstone.

    "All the more reason to trust them? If they made this large amount ilegally surely someone would bring charges? So they must be a private bunch of banker's you really need onside; much better than some King or people like Lizzie of London's buch who are a bunch of freeloaders! Of course I'm just guessing."

    November 2, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
  88. Dave - Phx

    That republicans are stupid for constantly blaming the democrats for everything, and that democrats are as big of crooks as republicans. Quit saying your congressman isnt the problem, he/she is.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
  89. rjwalker

    >>What does it say when members of Congress got 25% richer during the height of the recession?

    Ahhhhh.... the best Congress money can buy got even "better?"

    November 2, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
  90. Dan Kash

    Jack, what do you expect? Really, if you were in congress and a millionaire what would any red blooded greedy American do! This is just a no-brainer! Untill we get the money out of politics the middle class, seniors and the poor will not have representation!!
    Dan Kash Owens Cross Roads Alabama

    November 2, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
  91. Karl in Flint

    It says I need more then a 3.6% raise in Social Security and $10.00 drop in my Medicare premium if I'm going to keep up with the Washington elite that I pay to represent me. Is it because someone else is paying them more? I'm assuming that's the reason.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  92. Ronnie CRESTVIEW FLORIDA

    It's good work if you can get it.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  93. Dan Kash

    Jack, what do you expect? Really, if you were in congress and a millionaire what would any red blooded greedy American do! This is just a no-brainer! Untill we get the money out of politics the middle class, seniors and the poor will not have representation!!

    Dan Kash Owens Cross roads Alabama

    November 2, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  94. Lene, IL

    It says that they are playing with a stacked deck of cards and they're the guaranteed winners. They are in a position to manipulate the game and they set us up to fail so they could win. That's what happens when you have too much power and are not accountable to anyone and you get to make the rules. This is no accident, it is a well thought out strategy to fleece the public.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  95. John from California

    Jack

    It shows that Reagan's trickle down theory does work after all. He didn't clarify who would get the benefits, now we know. Sad isn't it Jack?

    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
  96. deborah ballweg Seibert, co

    Bribery is big business. Ask Harry Reid. He is the best I have ever seen.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
  97. Gordon NJ

    Well, at least we can be confident the 1% are well represented in Congress.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  98. Greg McCarthy

    Jack, With Congress so generously giving SS beneficiaries a 3% raise next year,it makes sense. Bananas ^60%,a bag of chips^30%,bread^30%,ANY insurance^,etc.,etc. As long as they are being 'fiscally responsible' with their income vs. expenditures and not overextending themselves,everything is fine. Do I really need to mark this as sarcastic? Greg M. FL

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  99. dave in nashville

    The real Rat Pack would have been great running congress, these new guys have no talent whatsoever but yet people trip over themselves to shake their hands....it's our own damn fault.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  100. Outis

    A few days ago the Atlantic claimed half of all workers in the US made less than $26,364 in 2010.
    That's enough voters to replace the entire congress.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  101. Lene', IL

    It says that they are playing with a stacked deck of cards and they're the guaranteed winners. They are in a position to manipulate the game and they set us up to fail so they could win. That's what happens when you have too much power and are not accountable to anyone and you get to make the rules. This is no accident, it is a well thought out strategy to fleece the public.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  102. John

    It seems that the cost of living for the average American keeps going up yet at the same time in order to balance this out, salaries don't. Unfair? But of course, when (the middle class) is made to feel guilty along comes a smack in the face from those whose cost of living indeed never goes up all the while making more and more for doing less and less. Does this seem fair? Well, of course not, but who am I to judge, I'm just an average Joe. I should be thankful that these millionaires are looking out for my well being as I sink further and further down the wage scale. At least they won't have to hear me suffer.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
  103. Dee in New Paris OHIO

    It means that at least SOMEONE is living the American Dream, even if it is merely a mirage to the rest of us!

    And it explains why Congress members want to keep getting re-elected! Where else can they be guaranteed such a cushy job, such great benefits, and such a bunch of mindless folowers!

    November 2, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
  104. Rich in Gainesville FL

    Just adds proof about the 1% versus the rest of us. But really, it's not about how much we make. That's just a symptom. The real divide is all about those who have power or influence power versus those who don't. We have a system where large corporations lobby for government to have more power and in return the government enacts laws favorable to large corporations. When the Tea Party and the Occupy folk realize their common enemy, we'll finally be on our way to fixing things.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:32 pm |
  105. PiedType

    It says, "Do as I say, not as I do." And most folks don't cotton to attitudes like that. Occupy Wall Street should make sure their message includes this particular part of the 1%, since this is the part that enables all the others.

    Susan
    Denver

    November 2, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
  106. Pete/Ark

    It says I should run for Congress...even the base salary would up my net worth massively;but no,people are judged by the company they keep and even money can't make me stoop so low as to part of that bunch.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
  107. Bill in Penna

    Jack,
    It means the 1%centers have let them enjoy the benefits of being good employees who can now say they look out for themselves and their benefactors, the very rich. We the people are too stupid to call an end to this disgrace. It was simply amazed listening to less than 30 seconds of a very popular right-wing-nut on his radio show at the lies being so eloquently told. The FCC rules for broadcasters require the licenses be used in the public interest. The radio frequencies are public property.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  108. Carnell Mosley

    The truth is if tax breaks worked we would'nt be where we are .

    November 2, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
  109. Paul P.

    It tells me why politicians cannot relate to everyday people. If they had raises structured to correlate with median, middle class wages, if they had to pay for their own retirement plans and buy the same healthcare everyone else does, perhaps they just me be a little more responsive to the needs of the nation as a whole. What do you think?

    November 2, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  110. Thom Richer

    What is to be surprised about? We have a failed government because of greed and corruption and blatant and unapologetic misrepresentation and this just corroborates that fact. After all, Jack, we had a president and vice president, Bush/Cheney, who have gotten wealthy beyond comprehension from wars they fabricated for profit and we didn't bat an eye and we continue their support. We have not had any representation from Congress in over 20 years and Corporate America has Congress in their pockets without any consequence at all. The rich get richer...the poor get poorer and the crooks go free with a justice system that protects the guilty and punishes the innocent. The only thing that surprises me is that it is not more than 25%...and I really have a hunch it is. Now we have candidates singing hymns to the Press Club, unable to debate issues in presidential debates and running religious campaigns. Can things get any scarier? You bet.

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    November 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
  111. heavyhorse

    Tehy are doing thier jobs in representing thier own class...the wealthy everything they do is to benifit the same part of society they feel a part of...we on the otherhand are simply the means to be able to do that..the voting public keeps putting them in there even though they have no intrest in us..what we need is a storming of the Bastille (Congress) and a guillottine in front of the Lincoln memorial, one in Wall street would not be a bad idea either..Jefferson said we would need a revolution every 50 years to keep the democracy going and it's now long overdue

    November 2, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  112. Valerie in Raleigh

    With congress so wealthy, how can they understand what the average family is dealing with? House payments/rent, health insurance, gasoline just to mention a few. Perhaps if their salaries and benefits were not so generous they might get the message. In these troubled financial times, I have never heard one single member of congress suggest that, to help the economy, their salaries, benefits and perks should be cut. Congress's improval rate is less that 10% – perhaps a suggestion of cuts might help restore the country's confidence in this most-honored body. It could happen and, hold on, I just got word that I won the Irish Sweepstakes. Will wonders never cease.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  113. heavyhorse

    They are doing thier jobs in representing thier own class...the wealthy ..everything they do is to benifit the same part of society they feel a part of...we on the otherhand are simply the means to be able to do that..the voting public keeps putting them in there even though they have no intrest in us..what we need is a storming of the Bastille (Congress) and a guillottine in front of the Lincoln memorial, one in Wall street would not be a bad idea either..Jefferson said we would need a revolution every 50 years to keep the democracy going and it's now long overdue

    November 2, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  114. jeff in hawaii

    Jack,
    I'm shocked you would ask such a question! Pointing the finger of blame at America's untouchables? I sure wish I was a member of a group that pretty much can only be prosecuted by members of the same group. It just goes to show how broken the system really is and how it will stay until we wake up.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  115. Emma in Baltimore

    It says congressmen are blinded by selfishness and greed. But it would be a lot more informative if we could see how much congressmen gained versus what they started with.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
  116. Brad, Portland, OR

    I bet the huge increase in their wealth is not only due to inside information, but outright bribe-taking. I'm sure they benefit personally when they vote the way a lobbyist wants them to. Our system of lobbying and campaign contributions is just riddled with corruption.

    In any case, this just lends credence to OWS contention that the 1% just don't don't understand the lives of the 99%, and mostly don't care.

    Nearly all members of Congress are part of the 1%.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
  117. Bernie of Lowell.

    Does that wealth include cash handed to them in the Capitol lobby or "frozen assets" in their home freezers?

    November 2, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  118. Bernie of Lowell.

    All Congress must recuse itself from any matters dealing with tax reduction for their REAL employers – the richest 1 percent of our populace.

    November 2, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
  119. mj

    Is it any wonder that Occupy Wall Street has gained momentum. Perhaps there should be an Occupy Congress, as well.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
  120. Sue

    It says they're self-centered and greedy. But as the saying goes, With their own interests coming first. But I guess people are content with that. They continue to be re-elected. And those that ARE new are just as bad as those who were there to begin with.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  121. calaurore9

    Nothing will change until we stop popping Pollyanna pills and believe career politicians are in it for anything but themselves. They fill our potholes, so we keep voting them back in.

    Carol in Northampton, Ma

    November 2, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  122. Dennis north carolina

    it proves that congress takes care of them self. the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  123. Gigi Oregon

    Now you know why the Republican party can set on their assets and don't give a care of concern for the American peoples sad state of affairs. The peoples jobs, mortgages, retirements, education, infrastructure, high ways, oil spills, corporate frauds, and debt ceilings etc. As long as there are lobbyists to fatten the purse... who do you think they are working for...cooperation why worry...don't hurry. They are getting rich sitting on their hands while the American life style declines. The people are deeper in debt and the congress is richer.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
  124. andy

    well jack i would be 25% richer if lobbists gave me millions of dollars over the past 8 yrs to bot do nothing in congress

    November 2, 2011 at 5:02 pm |
  125. LA Belle

    It says that too much of our tax dollars are being wasted on Congress' salaries, benefits and perks, to get ZIP from them in return. Why care about the rest of the people or this country's future when you're already part of the 1%.

    No wonder tax increases for those having incomes over $1 million is a dead issue. Greed and corruption rules with these guys.

    Should not this be the absolute reason to remove them all in November, 2012. Vote, America, and get it done; or go down with your country. This is just way to important to ignore.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:05 pm |
  126. TOM (INDIANA)

    This is why we need to amend the constitution that Corporations is not people and money is not free speech. We also can change the Robert's Supreme Court that believe that corporation are People by voting for Obama. Having a third party will not change anything but changing the constitution will help much better.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  127. karen wharton

    Congress is corrupt. America is a plutocracy, run by and for major corporations. The GOP aren't patriots, they are economic terrorists.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  128. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:

    I just read the question, I have got to stop paying attention to their collective abuses to the public and concentrate on the solutions, we all must do so. I like to quote the cartoon cat the cat.........dis is disspphicable !

    November 2, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
  129. Greg - New York, NY

    It means that Congress is pandering to Lobbyists and the weathy movers and shakers like the Koch Bothers, not looking out for the best interests of Middle America who put them in office in the frist place. For a group that spends more time on vacation & fundraising rather than actually working, a 25% increase in wealth is pretty staggering. Imagine if they actually worked full time? I'd like to see a few of them actually try to live on social security and without any health care benefits aside from Medicare to see how the rest of us live and struggle on a daily basis. What does it say when members of Congress got 25% richer during the height of the recession? It says we need to change our leadership in Congress and vote all of these folks out. This is completely unacceptable Jack.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
  130. Walt

    We keep voting them in because of pork and the education system.Why improve the education system it could cost them there jobs? Like the old timers said" keep them bare foot and pregnant" !

    November 2, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
  131. Jennifer M in Winnipeg

    It means that something is definitely 'fishy' in Washington (and Ottawa). But then look at any country, even the poorest countries ... the 'ins' are digustingly rich and the poor walk the streets looking for handouts. There is no 'middle income' anymore ... only the very rich and the very poor. It's time to take another look at Democracy ... it's not even close to what our forefathers had in mind.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  132. Scott Stodden

    Quite Frankly Jack It Says That Washington Politicans Don't Care About The Average American Citizens Who Are Working Hard And Struggling Day After Day While Congress And The Senate Do Nothing And Get Richer And Richer. Americans Are Struggling To Put Food On The Table, Struggling To Pay Their Bills, Trying To Find Ways To Do Whatever It Takes To Take Care Of Themselves And Their Families And Its Disgusting That Washington Lawmakers Are Getting Paid All This Money And Getting Richer And Richer And Nothing Is Being Done To Fix Our Economy! It Kinda Makes People Lose Faith In Government And Quite Honestly Im Already To That Point, I've Lost All Faith That Washington Politicans Can't Do Nothing To Fix Our Country And The Problems We're Facing!

    Scott Stodden (Freeport, Illinois)

    November 2, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
  133. Mycroft Lake Travis Texas

    Jack, What it say's, is that some are bought off by private interest groups and or lobbyists ( A high percentage by Big Oil), Financial Institutions, Wall Street and Corporations. All of which have been sticking it to the American People for decades. I voted for Obama because of his campaign promise to end Scooter Libby Justice, which I interpreted as holding White Collar Criminals accountable for their crimes. Three years into his Presidency, I haven't heard the President even mention it again. I'm sure there are some members of Congress that are completely honest like Dennis Kucinich and Barbara Boxer. Considering the vast demonstrations by the Occupy Movement and the high percentage of support they are getting from true American Patriots, I just can't understand why doesn't President Obama urge Eric Holder to get the Justice department busy investigating these White Collar Criminals, even if it means some of Congress and the Senate could be at risk. The American People have been the victims of these criminals far too long, we want investigations,convictions and protections. Can you dig it !

    November 2, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
  134. Bernie of Lowell.

    Congress is "on the take" for destroying our country's economy.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  135. BIll in VA

    Nothing bother me more than Congress passing laws that don't apply to them. They should be subject to Social security, Medicare OBAMACARE et al. That bugs me more than how much money they have/make.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  136. Ann from Charleston SC

    It says to me that we need to investigate and reveal exactly what is going on with our congressmen. Something has a bad odor here not only with their personal wealth, but the way they hang on so tenaciously to giving all the advantages to the wealthy and have such disregard for the common man.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  137. Ayo, Texas

    It seems wall street took its playbook from congress, those are the only places where performing poorly at your job is the way to get richer.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  138. NOwen - MN

    This is about as suprising to me as someone looking at me and telling me that eating certain poisons can kill you. Duh!!! It always suprises me how people can believe that Congress is looking out for the average person. Not only did they earn more money in a recession, you have to be weathy in the first place to even run. Have you ever noticed how much they can raise when they are running for office??? They should use that money for something more usefull, like helping the country get back on track. Why don't they fundraise to help the governement? If they can bring in this kind of money just to get into office, why can't they do the same to help the rest of us. Of course that would actually make some sense and that will never make it passed these morons in congress.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  139. Willy

    I don't think so if he was not convicted. These were inappropriate comments he made. Déjà vu of Clarence Thomas. Bill Clinton was left in office for doing more than comment while in his work office and the same people that say Bill Clinton did a great job would say Cain should not even run for office? It seems a little hypocritical to me. The people will decide.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  140. Nina Fox

    Jack
    It tells me there is too much money given to Congress. Lets face it, Jack, Congress are the highest paid prostitutes of all time. It also tells me that powerful and influential organizations control Congress

    Nina
    So. Calif

    November 2, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  141. Jon from Tempe

    It says that you like to report the obvious Jack. Members of congress making lots of money even when times are bad? This is new news? Report something that we do not already know Jack.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:24 pm |
  142. Stephen Pierce

    *Congressional Reform Act of 2011*

    1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman collects a salary while in office
    and receives no pay when they are out of office.

    2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security. All
    funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security
    system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system,
    and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for
    any other purpose.

    3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans
    do.

    4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay
    will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

    5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the
    same health care system as the American people.

    6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American
    people.

    7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective 1/1/12.
    The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen
    made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor,
    not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours
    should serve their term's), then go home and back to work.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  143. Jim Davis from Luray, VA

    Jack, It means what a lot of Americans already know-that the members of Congress have only their best interests in mind, not what's best for the American people.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  144. Larry L, Torrance, CA

    Members of the Legislative Branch are also members of the rich oligarchy of this country.

    Members of the Legislative Branch take care of the corporate and wealthy members of the oligarchy of the nation. And, of course, they take good care of themselves.

    We have the best Congress that money can buy. And it has been bought – lock, stock & barrel – by the wealthy corporations, the wealthy individuals and the elites of Wall Street.

    The rest of us scrape for crumbs. We're rapidly running out of cake.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  145. William Anderson

    It means that Washington isn't broken at all....in fact it's working quite well.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  146. John Fatte'

    In short, further down the river without the proverbial paddle.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
  147. Jk from Minnesota

    The American voters should now understand and no longer listen to or vote for any candidate using the fear mongering about "redistributing the wealth" and socialism and PLEASE ignore the special interest PAC attack ads!
    News flash to the voters – wealth has already been redistributed – to the top 1% as is still going strong! It confirms the system is broken and the Citizen's United ruling is going to make this worse if the voters do not educate themselves and NOT listen to the campaign ads and elect candidates that sign a pledge to NOT accept ANGTHING from lobbyists. If they do cozy up to lobbyists – then vote them out next time.

    (sorry about not proofreading the first one!)

    November 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  148. Linda in Arizona

    Nothing we didn't already know.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  149. Brandon, Los Angeles

    It means exactly what you said, Jack - Congress is out of touch with the people they supposedly represent. Out with all of them! It's growing more and more obvious that we are in serious need of campaign finance reform and term limits for Congress. How can we expect our do-nothing Congress to help us out, when they've been doing pretty well for themselves? Remember Jack, our politicians aren't representing the people that vote for them - they're representing the people that pay for them.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  150. William Anderson

    It means that Washington isn't broken at all....in fact it's working quite well.

    Naples FL

    November 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  151. Don, Toledo, Ohio

    Well Jack for one thing it means the “Occupy movement” is on to something. As of January 2010, the annual salary of each Representative is $174,000. The Speaker of the House and the Majority and Minority Leaders earn more: $223,500 for the Speaker and $193,400 for their party leaders. So where is all this other money coming from. Political donations from, you gassed it, the automakers, big oil, pharmaceutical companies, and insurance companies. I think it’s time we find out who the representatives are representing because it doesn’t seem to be you and me.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  152. Laith F. Gulli

    Laith, Columbus, Indiana
    Hi Jack:

    I means the average Joe needs Jack Cafferty to spell it out–plain and simple.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  153. John from Denver

    First of all, their the only people who can afford to run for these offices. So the people have no choice but to vote for them if they do choose to vote. But to me, it reflects how the richest people of this country are truly running the show. Government of the people indeed...

    November 2, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  154. Arlene, Roselle, Illinois

    Really Jack I'd love to give you an answer but you would blank out all my swear words.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  155. Tim Stewart

    Congress members are elected by the people, but are in business for their own welfare.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  156. Eli

    What does it mean? It means that the congressmen and women keep getting re-elected to their position, not because they're doing a good job, but because they get more money from their friends in the 1%! Congress should be taking a MASSIVE pay cut if they want to talk about not spending government money "Where it's not needed" and cutting things like Social Security and Health Care. The worst part is though, I'm not surprised. What ever happened to everyone being able to have the chance to help this country, not only the rich.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  157. Mel Hillman, MI

    You won't see them at an Occupy D.C.!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  158. Jeffrey in suburban Washington, DC

    It say what we already - or should already know: More than ever, our representatives in Congress are more about enriching themselves than their constituents or the nation's economy. And as you said, Jack, voters keep sending the same "Rat Pack" back to Washington. It's time to elect some new blood, and not just anti-everything Tea Party operatives.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  159. ed edmonds

    jack,have you ever seen a poor polititian,we could slow there wealth process by having term limits.senate and congress are the only political positions where term limits dont apply,why

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  160. lynda burgess-- California

    lets put congress on minimum wage, no benefits and no allowances for housing, gas or living. Then see how fast things change.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  161. Steve

    Jack,

    It says to me that we now have a House Of Lords, rather than an American-style representative legislature.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  162. Keith

    This is a perfect example of how the federal government has become obsolete. It's "time for change" and unfortunately electing politicians with creative campaign messages will not bring about the required changes.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  163. Stephen Pierce

    Jack, it means we need to pass a Congrssional Remorm Act fo 2011 setting limits on the terms one can serve in congress and also take away their self-pay raises. Congressional pay will rise by the lower CPI of 3% and also have the same healthcare as American Citizens.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  164. Mark Moore

    Jack, it makes me sick and gives me a feeling that I need to vomit. I worked hard for 30 in the military to draw a small retirement and these same rich congressmen want to cut my retirement while lining their very own pockets. I'ts no wonder so many Americans are protesting wall-street, I just wish they would protest Congress.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  165. Bit

    It means that the Tea Party got what they wanted: Less Government and More Riches!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  166. Ana in Phoenix

    It tells me that Wall Street, D.C., and corporations are working together to the detriment of all others.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  167. Beth Hancock

    It says that I should run for Congress, Jack.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  168. Jim

    Sounds like more of the same especially since congress just approved one of the lowest military pay increases in recent history and is proposing cutting military benifits with no end.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  169. Craig in Revelstoke British Columbia

    The current system of elections in America requires a person to be rich to be able to run. Then the rich people pass laws that benefit themselves? Who would have guessed? The system that US Elections use needs to change so normal people can actually run for office and have a chance. Or atleast if they keep the current system, make it so whoever raises the most money wins, then all the candidates give the money to the schools so they can afford toilet paper!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  170. stan

    Why is NOBODY talking about term limits on these self serving politician? Maybe OWS could add this to their "agenda"!!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  171. Madcow706

    Jack, you have to question the legitimacy of the democracy. If democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all the people have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives, then we the middle class and the poor are no longer part of the democracy, as Congress does not represent anyone that is part of the middle class or the poor. It also shows America now a society that has a caste system, and the rich are the ruling class, and their greed knows no bounds and the government will never stop it, as they are part of the problem.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  172. Cee.La

    It means that they peddle their message of division very well......Jack.....and because of it they keep getting re-elec ted.....You would think the masses would get smarter would,nt you?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  173. sanjeev gera

    Jack, it's disgusting. Utterly disgusting. But what can we do? We are compelled to vote for a representative, whether it be a Republican or Democrat. And when they reach Washington, the corruption begins. Sadly, this will never end...the 1% will keep on thriving while America will keep on suffering...

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  174. Lisa Bear

    They live in a bubble of safety! They have "socialistic" pay, health care and the nickle and dime the people. They are clueless. Unless they live under the same retirement, health insurance system as the rest of us, nothing will ever change.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  175. dennis butcher

    jack it tells me that the american people are stupid,,,,they keep voting same gangsters back in office,,,,,regards from leeds,utah

    November 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  176. Steve

    Enough with the lifetime politicians! It appears that we need to set congressional term limits and implement strong financial campaign reforms. Occupy Wall Street should be targeting them!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  177. Wayne Kleem

    This means that members of Congress knew the recession was coming and knew how to take advantage of it. Like, you know, they helped cause the recession.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  178. Burt Stern

    Jack, we always know where you are coming from. The fact of the matter is that anyone who had "investments" recovered at least 25% after the great drop of 2008. While the average American doesn't dabble in stock markets, etc. I guarantee that their 401(k) and/or pension plans went up 25% also. Would you have Congress deny themselves financial opportunity gain, like everyone else had the chance?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  179. Michael Romano-Philadelphia

    besides any impropriety or unfairness, it means that congress can't possibly understand what the rest of us are experiencing.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  180. Gunny Brown

    Sickens me to hear that. We always knew it, but out sucks to hear it factually. Has anyone done any analysis on how much we can save by cutting the budget of Congress? In the Corps, we lead by example... We would cut our budgets before touching our troops' money. Let's try that...

    November 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  181. John

    Jack,
    It means that the lobbyists are doing their job and buying the American Government one representative at a time.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  182. Andre

    it says that we as Americans are lost in the lies that comes from political characters. Most politicians are liars we just have to choose the lies that best fit our situation. So they say to us " who are you going to believe me or your lying eyes. We as Americans need to wake and see our government for what it is. A government for the politicians not for the people.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  183. Ed in Florida

    Simple 2 part answer that is not likely to ever happen.

    House: Term Limits and serious campaign finance reform.

    Senate – lets go back to the state legislatures appoint senators to look after the state's interest. Also still need term limits.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  184. Vinton Tarrant

    Just as in the last financial meltdown, Congress made the rules, and the banks, though hardly blameless, followed them, to both the political benefit of congress and the banks. Then, they bailed them out when the thing exploded. If we follow either the far right or left, we know who really makes out!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  185. Joan from Pittsburgh

    Come on Jack. They protect taxes for the rich; subsidies for the oil companies who made 41% profit while seeing how they can cut social security and medicare and any other programs that might help the not so rich. Congress represents the new constitution .....a government by the rich and for the rich!!!! Doesn't take a rocket scientist to see this however it seems the average American can be fooled....they keep voting the jokers in.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  186. janet a

    Jack, it means we need to limit their team in office to two years and not vote where the money is

    November 2, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  187. Tom from Nebr.

    I smell a rat. It doesn't surprise me in the least, but it is disheartening that even public servants are taking advantage of their position and are no longer responsive to the will and needs of the people.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  188. John Saunders

    Just what the American public needed to hear. It seems the only raises given out now are those in the laziest sector. Politics truly is a business. I was always led to believe these elected officials were "public servants". Lets now call it self-service.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  189. C. D.

    Is it any wonder that one must have money to run for office? It seems that public service is secondary to protecting their own intrest. You are also forgetting that they also have health care for life as well. That adds up quickly as well

    November 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  190. James

    It clearly confirms once again that current policies favor the wealthy at the expense of the majority of working Americans. When are Americans going to wake up to that fact and VOTE to support candidates that are wanting to bring justice and fairness to all Americans, not just the priviledges and influential. No wonder so many people are taking to the streets. I hope changes are made before it turns violent!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  191. Ron Balouville CT

    Jack i am outraged that they got richer while we have people up there in washington getting richer because they themselves help the rich by making the rules that keep them ultra wealthy. We are the ones to blame tho we keep re-electing these people into office. will we ever learn? probable not. it wont be untill we are all living on a reservation for all us slimimy poor people that the rich put us on. think im kidding? we are almost there already and with people like Mitt Romney wanting people to lose there homes.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  192. Gerard, Newfoundland, Canada

    It is proof-positive American politicians are in the game for their own prosperity more so than the prosperity of the everyday American citizen. Citizens should have zero trust in their politicians and in corporate America. Both games are intertwined and broken. It may be time for the legal system to deal with the cronies on both sides. Supreme Court...time to step in the batters box.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  193. jim

    The fault dear jack is not in the "stars" But in ourselves...who keep sending these folks back. They're like old soldiers....whoops more like the energizer bunny...they keep running.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  194. Paul - Harrisburg, Pa.

    It says just what I have been telling you for several years now. It says that, this country is run by nothing but Two-faced, lying, thieving, bought-n-paid-for TRAITORS to the American people. And I think it is about time that we start treating them for what they are!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm |
  195. Angela Charlotte, NC

    Does that mean they all walk along with one hand behind their backs palm open? Funny how congressmen regularly offer to double or triple match our donations. They can't be that generous with their own money can they?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  196. DK.Kelly

    "The Pot Calling The Ketlle Black"! No kidding Jack!! What else is new?? Duh, and we wonder why people are protesting?? Like I've said all along, they need to be protesting against the crooks that take money as "campaign contributions from corportations" that undermine taxpaying Americans. Oh no, we couldn't stop that could we?? Brings a new meaning to the term, "Land Of The Free". How about, "Land Of The Free To Take, and Take, and Take."
    Jack, it's not a joke anymore. People are getting fed up. They are getting tired of getting the shaft. Wake Up America!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  197. Michael, Bellevue, Nebraska

    It means that those in Congress, who balk against finding revenue, in these hard times (aka taxes on the rich), are barefaced hypocritical liars when they say that this is what "the American People" want. Now we know who "the American People" are: its the 289 greedy Republicans in Senate and Congress. They – and the people who continue to countenance them as their representatives and Senators are what is wrong with America.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  198. Tom Bateman

    It says congress is part of the problem not part of the solution, they are obviously part of the 1%, not part of the 99. And why do we keep sending these clowns back to Washington every election? The system is broken and, love you Jack, but you my friend and the news media is part of the system.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  199. Jorge Munoz

    How can Congress consider cutting 30% in Medicare reimbursement fees when they continue to increase their personal wealth by 25%!!! I suggest we adjust the salary of Congress first before we consider cutting any more benefits to our senior citizen population...

    November 2, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  200. Troy Owen

    They ALL make me sick. I hate to say it, we need to convict them or end them. That may seem strong but they are KILLING us!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:32 pm |
  201. Neil Johnson, (Carson, California)

    Why is Congress 25% richer but we are not? Its because they actually have jobs. Unlike us.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  202. Karen

    The very questions I ask myself, but I'd like to ask of "our" congressmen.  Where's the journalistic pursuit of this CNN?  Put Drew Griffin on the case.  What good are your financial reporters? Get to work, would ya?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  203. janet a

    Jack, it means we need term limits and vote where the money is not.. We keep voting the rich in. We need to vote for the middle class

    November 2, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
  204. Johnnie

    Jack, I am with the poster who said"Name names and we will do the rest." It is no surprise, but it is depressing. And, they wonder why folks are occupying everywhere they can to get some attention for the rest of us. These folks are out of sink with the people. And we think Marie Antoinette gets a bad rap?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  205. carenot

    I would like to know what Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich are worth.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  206. James Perigo, Oklahoma

    Not shocking! They have been doing it right in front of our faces. These manipulations by congress and government both state and federal are in large part what is literally starving this country. For congress to get 25% richer and government to be the largest entity with an increase in employment rather than a reduction during these economic times is a "slap in the face" of all U.S. citizens. This country is repressed by a congress, driven by greed and sitting in the back pockets of Wall Street and oil. I hope they are happy with their new found wealth but what is its real value? How valuable is the dollar, or real estate, or investing? The value of these things is almost completely gone. There is no trust between the people and the government anymore. I think we are all just waiting for what will happen next!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  207. Paul Gerard

    Time to bring back the Tar & Feathers! BUT I'm not sure if we should use them on Congress or on the rest of use who keep putting back in office!?!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  208. Frank, Washington,DC

    This is the reason why they will not back the President. Why would they raise taxes on themselves and their buddies. WE are sick and tire of the folks we've put in Congress. They just don't care ! As soon as we all understand this we will really be making change.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:34 pm |
  209. Marcus

    Does anyone else find the current socio-political-economic environment similar to that preceding the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution in Russia? The frustrated majority rose up against the rich factory owners, land owners, and government to attempt the creation of a middle class because there was none. We all know how that turned out. But with the vanishng of America's (and the world's) middle class, I fear that's where we are headed. The governement and the banks and big business are in for a rude awakening.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
  210. Che Ferguson

    Jack if I became 25% richer off of the unemployed people back, I wouldn't pass a jobs bill either. I'm just saying, would you?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
  211. Rick from Venice, Florida

    We need to vote all incumbents out of office. We need to start over. They all have to go because they are all part of the corrupt system. This is all our own fault. We watch them steal and plunder with their ear marks and just keep on voting them in. Now is the time to get rid of them all and start clean.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  212. Susan from Idaho

    Boneheads are voting for the same Charlestons
    .

    November 2, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  213. Linda Drum

    So let me get this straight. The vast amount of the members of Congress are millionaries and yet taxpayers contribute 75% to Congress' health care ???? I fell like I live in an alternative universe!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  214. Randall, Lexington, SC

    You have heard about " letting the fox guard the hen house". So what happens when the farmers keep trucking in chickens every day to keep the foxes fed. Who gets rich. The chickens, the farmers or the fox. The chickens die, the farmers go broke and the foxy Congress gets rich.............Hello?.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
  215. John Saunders

    Public servants? Really? Self service is more fitting. I think I'm going to use my 1% raise and start making campaign signs! I can make shady deals and lie as good as Obama. Any supporters?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
  216. Stephen Pierce (Ridgefield,WA)

    (Sorry if this is a dublicate) Jack, it means we need to pass a Congressional Reform Act for 2011 setting limits on the terms one can serve in congress and also take away their self-pay raises. Congressional pay will rise by the lower CPI of 3% and they will also have the same healthcare as American Citizens.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  217. Laura - Upstate NY

    It shows me that we need to remove ALL incumbents from office and start over.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  218. Debbie from Huntington, NY

    Isn't this the point that OWS movement is trying to make? Our politicians are bought and paid for by Wall Street. Therefore the politicians vote in favor of the wealthy, and that obviously includes themselves. They're just scratching each other's backs. Our political system is broken and beyond repair. We need more than change...we need something different.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  219. curtis in philadelphia

    What does it say Jack? Who knows? I just hope no one is surprised.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  220. Sandra

    I wrote a letter some time ago to President Obama suggesting the Congress needs to take a pay cut so they can feel some of the pain our unemployed population is experiencing along with all the cuts in important programs that Republicans insist are so important. My son was laid off 3 yars this January and even tho' his skills are excellent–he builds homes, remodels and repairs any and all building situations. He is constantly looking for work, he loves to work and build but we are located in Atlanta, GA and Atlanta is high on the list of the localities where the worst unemployment exists, especially in construction. Congress has no regard for their constituents unless they are getting money from them. Republicans don't deserve a paycheck and I hope they are thrown out of office next year.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
  221. Daniel R Jenkins

    Daniel from Simi Valley, CA
    There are two things wrong with this country, professional politicians defined as serving or running for more than two terms and those who give up personal integrity for a job. This past presidential election I skipped the first position because I did not believe any candidate could do the job. So far the same is true this time around.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  222. Judy, Deep South, Mississippi

    For me, this situation is the heart of Occupy Wall St. Our government was established to be of the people, by the people, and for the people. That is no longer the case. Is it of, by and for the highest payer–and that, citizens, is not you nor me. The big corporations are the employers of Congress; Congress is paid to pass laws that advance and protect the corporate profits- tailor made for the highest lobbyist – think big oil, telecommunications, drugs & medical, banks & investment. The only answer is to scrap Congress–shut it down - they are not indispensable as they would have us believe. We can live with the multitude of laws and taxes we now have. Take some time and start over. Abolish lobbyists and donations, live on what the salary for the office pays – if he/she doesn't like it, then don't run for office. Send every one of these leeches back home and let them live on their millions. Good riddance.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  223. Greg from VA

    maybe we need to occupy Congress. This is ridiculous.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
  224. Dana and Chris in Valdosta, Ga

    In our opinion, this means that these members of Congress have forgotten one of the primary responsibilities of the job. They are supposed to represent the citizens and instead are representing their own private interests. The fact that they got 25% richer while the average American is struggling to put food on the table and wondering if they will still have a job is disgusting. This demonstrates how unequal the distribution of wealth and priviledge really is in this country- if you don't already have it, you are not likely to get it.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
  225. Jyothi, St.Louis,MO

    Rich people getting richer is not a good sign for any country's economy. A country's economy would be on the positive track if the poverty reduces, poor people get out of poverty and finding right jobs becomes more than just a dream.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:45 pm |
  226. Dave S in Decatur Michigan

    This proves we do not have a goverment of the "people," by the "people," or for the "people." Our government is largely comprised of the well connected and highly advantaged portion of society. But what can we as voters do? People say if you don't like them, then vote them out...? Well we can only vote for who is on the ballot. If we don't like the incumbent, then our only other choice at the ballot box is another well connected rich person. Bottom line, average folks (middle class reasonable working people who could work together to acheive compromise on what is right) cannot get into office because in order to get on the ballot, you have to be well connected (a campaign and funding from special interest). The average Joe or Jane can't get into goverment service on the national stage, and probably never will unless somehow we can change the rules to exempt rich well connected persons (the 1%) from getting on ballots in the first place.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:45 pm |
  227. MIke Goldstein

    For months now, the right has been saying. "What is the one definitive message of the Occupy movement.. and to be honest. I found it hard to nail it down to a one liner. Thanks Jack.. THIS IS THE ONE LINER!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:45 pm |
  228. Martha

    I feel angry, frustrated, helpless, but not at all surprised. And that is the saddest comment of all. The people making the decisions for all of us common folks have the power and, in their opinion, the right to live on a higher plane than the people who hired them. We all know this, but we are afraid to look it in the eyes. Because if we took it out of it's dark little hole and really examined it, we would have to face the fact that our "public servants" are actually serving a soul-collecting master known as "Greed".

    November 2, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  229. A.K.Dolan

    This again reaffirms my belief that there needs to be a big paycut for members of congress. They receive big salaries on top of great perks, with generous budgets to spend on their "need". There is no way they are in touch with the average person whom they are supposed to represent. While a great many of us have either lost their jobs or have taken big cuts in order to remain employed they are getting richer! And then they drag their feet and stone wall on getting anything accomplished. I say clean house on all of them, lower the pay, and set term limits. Cut the benefits after they are out of office. This would help along with cuts in other wasteful areas to cut spending in Washington.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
  230. JR

    The reason is that American voters are ignorant of the true facts; facts pertinent to the betterment of their life...They are hypnotized to react to what is of no real importance nor consequence to them: Entertainment, racism, Gay rights, abortion; just to name a few

    November 2, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
  231. Brandon in Kentucky

    As a person who studied political science in college, I can understand the need for a staggered style election of our very important political figures. However, it now seems that the politicians are more interested in playing the political game instead of doing the work we as a country need done. I am tired of the attitude that a single letter next to someone's name (R or D) garners more attention from the other side of the isle than the idea.

    I look for ALL nationally elected politicians to be recalled to their districts and have to face their constituents to answer their questions in order to be given the trust back that many Americans feel has been betrayed.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:50 pm |
  232. Peter, Tarrytown, N.Y.

    $2B divid by 535 = $3.73M can they identify with me? doubt it. We know how much they earn. We can find out how much they were worth when thay started in politics, Where did the increase come from?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  233. carenot

    Stephen Pierce
    *Congressional Reform Act of 2011*
    I like the way you think. It should be that way.

    November 2, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  234. Greg from Moseley,VA

    Why aren't we cutting their salaries or stopping their raises. I say Occupy Congress!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  235. Alan

    Is this Congress the same Congress that prevented SENIORS and DISABLED VETERANS from getting raises in Social Security and Disability in 2009 and 2010?

    November 2, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  236. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:

    If Americans vote them out, they get their platinum parachutes, an even more expensive issue, then they become lobbyists and the platinum becomes like...iridium or some kind of "um".

    November 2, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
  237. Mikayla

    It says that the congressmen are giving themselves a raise to make more money and they need to stop! How else did they increase their income by 25%?? In the meantime, those who they represent may not even have jobs. They need the money a lot more than the congressmen do. Imangine putting your trust into someone to help you, and they end up making you wonder how you're going to provide for yourself and your family. Unfortunately, people will always be selfish and think only about themselves. We, the people, should make sure we elect those who will not abuse us and take our money. Where is the honesty? Its just sad...

    November 2, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
  238. jennifer lewis

    If that doesn't say exactly how Congress relates to their citzens. How much clearer does it need to be that they can not understand what the average american is going through? They are apart of the 1%!!!!!!!!!! DISGUSTING!!!!!!

    November 2, 2011 at 5:52 pm |