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Would you want to be a member of Congress? Some of them say the job sucks.
March 8th, 2012
03:42 PM ET

Would you want to be a member of Congress? Some of them say the job sucks.

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Pity our poor Congress.

With many members of Congress calling it quits this year - some say it's because the job just sucks.

Politico reports that lawmakers young and old are leaving public service for the private sector because "the thrill is gone."

They say it's just too hard to get things done with the gridlock in Washington.

Republican Senator Olympia Snowe made a splash with news of her retirement - highlighting the "dysfunction and political polarization" of the Senate.

Democratic Congressman Barney Frank has said he was frustrated because the public no longer tolerates deal making.

Retiring four-term Oklahoma Democrat Congressman Dan Boren tells Politico, "I'm used to being a player. You want to get things done for your constituents. If you can't ever become speaker or a committee chairman, why are you doing it?"

For some lifers the job just isn't as prestigious as it used to be - plus these days nobody likes them much.

They can't earmark money for constituents, they need to maintain residences in two cities, fundraising is a headache, and a lot of perks have disappeared thanks to ethics rules. Awww…

Oh - and their pay has been frozen for 3 years - at $174,000.

Not quite a hardship for millions of Americans dealing with extended high unemployment, soaring gas prices and plummeting home values.

Want more?

Other lawmakers cite the constant media presence in the era of blogs, YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook. They worry about having any little thing they do or say splashed on the Internet.

Here’s my question to you: Would you want to be a member of Congress? Some of them say the job sucks.

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Craig in Tampa, Florida:
Lowest I ever sank was selling furniture and car insurance. Never been a car salesman or member of Congress. Since I like to look at myself when I shave in the morning, being jobless or homeless is preferable to me.

Ken in New Jersey:
Yes, I would love to work 120 days and make $174,000. If they think that sucks then let them take one of the newly created Obama jobs at McDonalds or Walmart.

Terry in Virginia:
Yes, but only if Congress started fresh with no incumbents when I took office. We need to get rid of the career politicians in D.C. They aren't part of the problem; they ARE the problem. Boot them all out. We the People deserve better.

David in Massachusetts:
I would love to be in Congress. I'd get a 400% pay increase.

Kyle in Denver:
Whaaaa, Whaaaa, Whaaaa... I have never seen such a bunch high-paid, overly self-important employees do so little on the job. What a bunch of complainers. Their situation was mostly brought about by their own intransigence and flat-out unwillingness to do their jobs.

Mark in Florida:
No, ultimately the position corrupts. The party will isolate you if you go against the agenda. There is no prestige in it anymore; life is lived in a fish bowl. Every vote cast makes enemies. There are a lot of ways to survive financially, a life bowing and scraping for money and making promises and supporting the unsupportable triggers sending underwear photos on the internet. This is not a career I would enjoy.

Robert in North Carolina:
Absolutely! I think I would be perfect. I am not too smart and I can spin a yarn with the best of them. I have a lot of ambition but am not willing to work hard. Then there is that nice retirement and all those lobbyists who love you. Jack, I think I could do it. Send me a donation and I will get started on the campaign. Make the check to "cash." Thanks.

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Filed under: Congress
soundoff (167 Responses)
  1. robert in greenville north carolina

    Absolutely! I think I would be perfect. I am not too smart and I can spin a yarn with the best of them. I have a lot of ambition but am not willing to work hard. Then there is that nice retirement and all those lobbyists who love you. Jack, I think I could do it. Send me a donation and I will get started on the campaign. Make the check to "cash." Thanks.

    March 8, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
  2. riley oday

    No I would not. They are terriable at what they are supposed to do. I could not be part of that for any amount of money.

    March 8, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
  3. Paul From Austin Texas

    Sure the job sucks but once someone gets the job they tend to stay and start sucking up the money each day.

    March 8, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
  4. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: Let's be honest---it is not that the "job" sucks--it is those who are in the "job" that SUCKS!

    March 8, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  5. Tom Bulger, Canandaigua, NY

    If the alternative were the schmuck we have representing us now, most definitely. All I'd have to do to be an improvement would be to not throw monkey wrenches into the works. Look what the president accomplished despite the gauntlet that the TP put up. Imagine what would get done.

    March 8, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  6. DT - Saint Paul, MN

    How insulting. Sucks compared to what? Permanent vacation with pay? They shouldn't worry though. People have had it and we're ready to recycle these bozos.

    March 8, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
  7. Herman Portland OR

    Yes, I feel that I could make a contribution to the people that elected me. I think that the reason that some people that are in Congress are not comfortable with their job or think it sucks is they can be voted out as easily as they were voted in. Yes being accountable makes some in Congress uncomfortable dealing with the realities of their job.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
  8. Alex in Bayonet Point, FL

    Well Jack...
    Who would want to become a part within a broken-down machine?
    But for those in Congress who say the job sucks, I say pack up and get out – we don't want you there anyway!
    All jobs have certain aspects that are unpleasant. Certainly, if you lose heart in what you're doing its time to move on –
    Honestly, Jack, some of these folks have been on the dole for so long I wonder what they'd have to do if they had to find a "real job" without the big bucks, the expense accounts, the wining and dining on our dime, and all the other billions of dollars of perks they enjoy!

    March 8, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
  9. Bill of New Mexico

    Sure!

    I think I could learn to sell out to the highest bidder.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  10. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    I think it is a pretty good gig. All you have to do is vote along party lines and try to make your president look bad. For that you get paid a decent salary. You are allowed to use insider trader information to improve your way wealth by millions. This is illegal for anyone else and comes with a jail sentence. You have a great retirement plan along with the best medical insurance that covers you after retirement. Even when you retire you can get a job with some lobbyists firm and call yourself a consultant. I guess the only people complaining are the ones with morals and a conscience.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
  11. Jayne in NH

    "Boo freaking hoo" is what I say to unhappy members of Congress. They make about $175,000 a year, have the best health care and benefits money can buy and when they retire they still rake in government loot and usually end up with fat cat lobbying positions. Would I like to be a member of Congress? Heck yes. Did I mention the free travel?

    March 8, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  12. Connie from Logansport,IN.

    Yes, I would love to be a member of congress , then I could tell them it is not the job that sucks it you. FYI if it sucks don't run.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
  13. Emmett M. Smith

    No, Jack, I wouldn't want to be a member of 'congress. It does serve a useful purpose though. Congress remains the world's largest haven for people with mental problems!
    Emmett Smith,
    Mobile, AL

    March 8, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
  14. Loren

    If it sucks, then quit, they certainly aren't doing any good for America.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
  15. Noel Sivertson New Mexico

    In no way, shape, or form would I want to hold an elective office. You see, once I took a sick day from work and went fishing. If the opposition ever found out about that they would hound me out of office.

    Noel

    March 8, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
  16. Ed from California

    I had an old boss many years ago say to us, "If you don't like your job.......quit"!! Our hired help have it to good...free lifetime medical, pension, a great salary, and they don't even work hard. Would I like to be a member of Congress? Sure, but they would kick me out on the first day. Because, I'd be for the People and by the People looking out for the collective well being of all Americans and not just a single group, that's what they're sent to Congress to do in the first place. Now, they're shills for the Lobbying groups, special interests, and not for the American economic health and vitality of all Americans. I would be for getting all of America back to work. By helping to get all of the outsourced jobs back to America.....that would be JOB # 1.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:23 pm |
  17. Richard Texas

    Sure Jack. I would love to be a congressman. If this job is so bad then why do people stay with it for 40 and 50 years? You don't see congressmen quitting for a better job especially now that there are no jobs available thanks mostly to them. Congress members and weather men have it made. It is the only two jobs in the world that I know of where you can be wrong most of the time and still keep your job.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  18. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    Great question Jack!! I have always been perplexed by the question as to why Senatorial and Congressional candidates spend tremendous amounts of money and campaigning resources in an effort to go a place that they say is the worst place in America. A place that they say they that despise. Why do they work so hard to go to that infamous place called "Washington D C"? They complain that U S Senators and U. S Congressmen in Washington are the core problems for the state and condition of this country and collectively make up a cesspool of corruption, wasteful spending and are power drunk people looking to stay in Washington for life long careers as politicians. If Washington is so very bad, then why spend millions of dollars and countless hours trying to get there? If they hate the job why don't they just quit? Why do they work so hard to be re-elected immediately after they are elected? The answer to these questions will tell us exactly what is wrong and broken in Washington, D.C. Are they admitting to being schizophrenic?

    March 8, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
  19. Doug Ericson

    The Speaker of The House, ( John Boehner), and the Senate Majority Leader, ( The Dahli Donkey Harry Reid), have real power. Some of the Committee Chairmen or Women have a lot of influence. If you have Presidential aspirations Congress is a good springboard. If you are Lindsay Graham, the nicely patinaed furniture provides a good spot to rest your heels on while you wait for the big job in 2016. To be a rank and file member seems tedious with all the ringamaroll that goes with the job. The New Tea Party members got compromised before they even sat down at their new desk. The Democrats claim they are obstructioist but they are not even that. John and Harry can pass whatever they want without their votes, ( the tea party members ), and they do whenever they can agree to. Remember the last couple of budget deficit extensions. So no thanks, I'll keep my job as a House Husband here as long as I can cut it. Thank God for the Woman's movement and all the power they have gained in the workplace. Doug, Pepperell, MA.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
  20. ken, atlantic city, nj

    Yes I would love to work 120 days and make $174,000. If they think that sucks then let them take one of the newly created obama jobs at mcdonalds or walmart.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
  21. Conor in Chicago

    I would love to be a member of Congress. Spending my days addressing the needs and concerns of my fellow citizens, making my nation a stronger and more prosperous place, and making a darn good living all at the same time? Sign me up. That’s the dream isn’t it? Oh wait, this is America. I have to sell my soul to the 1% and try and reason with the most under-educated populace in the Western World in order to get the job. I also have to spend 85% of my term raising money, executing the will of my richest contributors, and of course, try to reason with the must under-educated populace in the Western World. Nevermind.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  22. MARK, OKLAHOMA CITY

    Are you kidding? Of course I would. It would be like drawing welfare, unemployment, disability pay and social security all rolled into one check just for showing up and doing NOTHING all day! Where do I sign up?

    March 8, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  23. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    Sure Jack, two years, work a few days a week, go on CNN with Wolfe and complain about someone else; free travel, under the table deals so my great-grandkids will be set for life; excellent pay and medical benefits. This would be a cake walk compared to serving in the military during Viet Nam or washing dishes for minimum wage. And after that become a CNN news contributor or that other network for big bucks.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  24. curtis in philadelphia

    Jack, let me get this straight: a $174,000 a year, plus awesome health care as fiscal compensation to do absolutely nothing? Where do I sign?

    March 8, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
  25. Terry in Virginia

    Yes, but only if Congress started fresh with no incumbents when I took office. We need to get rid of the career politicians in D.C. They aren't part of the problem; they ARE the problem. No member of Congress should have a better retirement system or better healthcare coverage than the average working person in this country but yet our elected representatives make six-figure salaries and live like kings and queens compared with 99% of us. Power corrupts? Only if you let it and these jokers are the most corrupt I've ever seen. Boot them all out. We the People deserve better.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
  26. jenny Sills

    How much does it pay and do they have medical coverage? After considering that I would more than likely still say no.. There is no amount of money/benefits to make the job interesting to me. I despise politicss. Except of course to comment on political blogs such as yours and to vote.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
  27. David of Alexandria, VA

    Probably not. I didn't have that good a time in kindergarden. Too much name calling, hair-pulling, toy-grabbing, noise for noise's sake. Funny how we all seemed like perfect litttle adults when we got there in the morning. Must have been something in the KoolAid or graham crackers. Maybe they should check the water coolers on Capitol HIll.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
  28. Dave - Phx

    Who wouldn't love a job where you don't have to work more than half the year, get lifetime health care, and come out a millionaire no matter how crappy of a job you do?

    March 8, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
  29. texastee10

    No I would not. Congress is the 21 Century's version of the Hatfield & McCoy. Democrats worked with the Bush Administration. Since Obama was elected just one person could vote for all republicans, that vote is NO, NO, NO. Compromise? you've got to be kidding. Keep going to the right until you cannot go any further. The few reasons to run for Congress is that you are likely you'll leave wealthy, you'll have a great pension and you'll have health care for life. All the things few citizens will obtain.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
  30. Jenna Roseville CA

    Would you want to be a member of Congress? Some of them say the job sucks.

    I would LOVE to be a member of Congress. I would work to do the following:

    1. Term Limits for all branches of government and supreme court – 12 years max for each level – Congress 3-4 year terms, Senate 4-3 year terms, President 2-6 year terms, Supreme Court 1-12 year term

    2. No pay or benefits for life for those that serve. This would end for Senate, President, and Supreme Court. To serve is a priledge

    3. Public Financing or ALL candidate – end of citizens united

    4. A new and improved Fairness Doctrine with TRUTH IN BROADCASTING.

    5. Limit to how long a candidate can run for office – one who is not an incumbent shouldn't have more time to campaign than one who is in office. Plus the incumbent needs to focus their time on the job they were elected to do verses campaign for their next term in office from the day that they were sworn into office.

    6. Make all elections vote by mail. Ballots to be returned by 10/31 and the results announced on 12/31 – inauguration the 3rd Monday of January the following year.

    Since all would be updates to the US Constitution, this would have to be done through Congress.I would work across the aisle to get this done.

    Question is why are we NOT seeing this now in our current Congress?

    So YES I would love to be elected into Congress. It is time to get the nations work done and stop playing politics!

    Jenna
    Roseville CA

    March 8, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
  31. Steve Paul

    Yes. To an individual they are all millionaires or soon to be. Saying the job sucks; does that mean they aren't being lobbied heavily enough? They simply aren't doing their job and that is to get along, do the right thing and always, always, always think of us poor Americans who rely on them to be honest, forthright and un-selfish. I know that's a pipe dream but puuuuuulease don't tell me the job sucks. WHy would they spend so much effort and MONEY trying to get the job and keep it if it sucks? Another Gongressional lie!

    Steve
    Nashville, In

    March 8, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  32. Ken in California

    No job, and unemployment sucks for millions. Now that really sucks. Where was Congress when that sucking sound was our jobs leaving the country?
    We suckers keeps voting for these suckers over and over, and that really sucks.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  33. CRAIG R. MCNEES

    tampa, fl lowest i ever sunk was selling furniture and car insurance. never been a car salesman or member of congress, as i like to look at myself when i shave in the morning. being jobless or homeless is also preferable to me.

    March 8, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  34. susan in Ohio

    I think being a member of Congress would "break me" as it eventually breaks 99% of them. Here's how it works:

    You have a bill you want to see pass and that you've worked hard for. Let's call this the "good thing." However, something you do not want to see passed gets "attached" to that same bill. Let's call this the "bad thing." So you can either vote for your bill and in the future be accused of voting for the bad thing, or you can vote against your bill, and be accused of not supporting the good thing. It's the game they play. And it stinks!

    S.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
  35. Rich in Gainesville FL

    I'd take the job in a second even though I completely agree that it really does suck for all the reasons they give. But it's public service, or at least it's supposed to be, and that usually means sacrifice. Quit bellyaching or stand aside and let the next guy take your place.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:02 pm |
  36. Karl in Flint, MI

    I could use the money but not the aggravation. Just listening tot hem gets on my last nerve. There are too many new ones that are too stupid to govern and I would probably end up in jail for assault tor worse.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
  37. Marc J. Yacht MD, MPH Hudson, Florida 34667

    No, ultimately the position corrupts. The party will isolate you if you go against the agenda. There is no prestige in it anymore; life is lived in a fish bowl. Every vote cast makes enemies. There are a lot of ways to survive financially, a life bowing and scraping for money and making promises and supporting the unsupportable triggers sending underwear photos on the internet. This is not a career I would enjoy. Being a medical doctor, with all the headaches of liability, regulation and misguided patient expectations still provides personal rewards and satisfaction few politicians can ever hope to feel. They're too corrupt and they must be to survive.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
  38. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    YES!!! I could get my book published for free and go on all of the talk shows and promo it. If these people say the job sucks then they should resign today and let someone else take their place who can get something done. Actually, they should all quit and then they can get a job for minimum wage and see what it's like for most people in this country today. We should send them some cheese to go along with their whine.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  39. Kevin, Chester Springs, PA

    Sure... I'm an Independent who has voted for both Democrats and Republicans. I would reach across to both aisles to get stuff done. And I wouldn't get so darn ideologically hung up so as not to govern at all. Compromise is not a bad thing. If I only lasted one term, well, so be it. I'd be proud to have honorably served my district and my country for at least two years.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  40. Eve of London, Texas

    We know congress has no scruples, but for them to say "it sucks" is sooooo brazen. These parasites are hanging on to get more money from lobbyists, government benefits, etc. How sick are the voters for putting them back in office. Eve of London

    March 8, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  41. Annie, Atlanta

    As someone who has been looking for a job for over a year and a half now, making $176,000 a year plus benefits for working approximately half a year does have its appeal. I think the whiners should join the ranks of the unemployed and let some of us who would appreciate the job take over.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  42. Rick, Medina, OH

    Jack,

    Three decades ago, I was a 2-term councilman in a city of 100,000. (It's a part-time job with no staff and paid about enough to buy lunch.) My ward consisted of 3500 families. Between that role and my paying job, I could barely keep up with 80+ hour weeks. I can only imagine the demands on a member of Congress.

    Rick,
    Medina, OH

    March 8, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
  43. jk in MN

    I wouldn't be beholdin' to the Lobbyists if I were there, Jack that's for sure. I find it repulsive. I wouldn't want to run because I am a single woman by my choice and I wouldn't want to have my character dragged through the politcal mud puddle of wondering why I am by the Rush Limaugh's and the SuperPACS of this country and their "free speech rights". I'm not in the 1% and wouldn't be able to afford to fight the misrepresentations of truth that I see these sources spew. The country really needs to find a way to enact meaningful campaign reform.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
  44. Charles - San Antonio

    Who wouldn't! If I were a member of congress, I would balance the budget, stop the wars, ease the gridlock between the political parties, reduce the deficit, solve the social security and medicare problems, and fix our economic problems. Everybody would have a well paying job and have access to afforable housing. That is my pledge to the American people.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
  45. Mr D

    It beats cleaning toilets. But the two jobs are highly related. However, the congressional jobs entails flushing money down the drain.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:13 pm |
  46. Joe from Missouri

    Excellent lifetime health insurance in a world where insurance premiums are skyrocketing and politicians are trying to make it so that fewer and fewer people are insured. That sounds pretty good to me.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
  47. Paul - North Carolina

    No thanks, Jack. I'd rather have your job.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
  48. David in Tampa

    Yes Jack I would. At least I would have a job and some steady income. Being a Congressman or Senator doesn't suck it is the political party system and pressure from party leadership (that joke is on we the people) to represent the best interests of the party and ideology instead of the people of this nation. What is going on at the national and state levels of government is a disgrace. Good people do not want to sell their soul to special interest groups and party bosses so they don't get involved.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
  49. Jay

    Well, Jack. I think they all figured it would be an easy job, jet-setting around the world on fact-finding junkets paid for by the taxpayers (and of course their wealthy donors). The truth of the matter is that from most of America's standpoint, it's congress that sucks. Sure, I'd take the job, without all the benefits too. Certainly couldn't do much worse than the clowns we have now!

    March 8, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
  50. Gary H. Boyd

    Jack, your question is timely because just last week I wrote my Congressman telling him I believe the once revered position is now a disgrace. That he's running for a second term brands him as among those with absolutely no shame.
    He has not responded. I doubt he has the guts.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    March 8, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
  51. Tyler Stone

    I would love to be a member of Congress. Think about it; a good salary, a certain amount of fame, and knowing you have helped people. Imagine you were a sponsor of the repeal of DADT. How good would that feel?

    March 8, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
  52. Sylvia in San Diego

    Absolutely!! Who wouldn't want to get paid a big salaries ($200K plus) for doing very little and then retiring after 4- 6 years with a full pension..... Not to mention that they are exempt from Obamacare so they get the very best medical care and also they are previe to "insider information" which until recently, they could use to personally profit from. The rest of us would be investigated and charged by the SEC for insider trading. This is my next career move!!!

    March 8, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
  53. Dan in Albuquerque

    Jack. I would, just to blunt the GOP effort to destroy the governmrnt and middle class, but I'm a few years too old to do it.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  54. david from herndon, va

    Lots of jobs suck. Not too many jobs guarantee you lifetime healthcare and lead you straight to K-street careers where you earn $$$. Tell them to quit their crying.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  55. Don Desaulniers (Belleville, Canada)

    No, I wouldn't want the job. Despite the good pay and benefits, plus the prestige, being away from one's home for lengthy periods of time is devastating to maintaining a happy family life, almost as bad as being in the American military.
    An even larger problem must be the rapid decline in self-esteem, given the necessity to cater to lobbyists and large donors in order to get re-elected. No job that entails selling one's soul to succeed is worth the salary.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
  56. Jeff In Minnesota

    I don't understand why anyone would want to be an elected official be it Congress or even the Presidency in today's political climate. There is no respect for anyone. You're constantly under the scrutiny of the media for every little hiccup that occurs because of the 24/7 news cycle. Your constituents are totally unreasonable. Of course the job sucks. If you had to live your life under a microscope, would you like it? But given the plush health/dental plans and the retirement benefits, I suppose I could put up with a lot.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
  57. Kirk (Apple Valley, Minnesota)

    Did you say that members of Congress say they suck?

    March 8, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  58. Cliff Glass - East Rockaway, NY

    Let's see – lifetime medical coverage with a 75% taxpayer subsidy after 4 years in office, an average of between $1.5 and $2 million per year to defray office expenses, travel junkets to examine trade policy in Tahiti and other global "hot" spots, lobbyists covering all out-of-pocket expenses, and judging from the recent Congress, pay is not linked to performance. Where do we all sign up ?

    March 8, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  59. Sandstone.

    "I just want to be a member of the human-race, and then be allowed to get on with my life, without other's telling me what I should do instead of what I WANT TO DO within what I can do ethically."

    March 8, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  60. Mallen L. Marlowe

    I would love to be a member of congress! Senate more so than the House of Reps though. Why the senate you ask? Because the terms are longer, there are only 99 other people i have to deal with instead of the 434 in the House of Reps. And I would take Joe Biden as a boss over having to listen to Boehner any day. -Holden Beach, NC

    March 8, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
  61. Janie

    I would love to be a member of Congress. I have lots of ideas on how to change things in America for the better. I feel our current Congress is "asleep at the wheel" and all of them need to be voted out of office this election. Bring in young blood with fresh ideas, start term limits, and cut their salaries so they can feel the economic pain the rest of the hard working citizens are feeling.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
  62. Kay

    Not with the way things are today! Media will have discussion after discussion about trivial things like Romney saying his wife has a couple of cadillacs (big surprise) BUT then they won't ask questions to someone like Kathleen Sebelius such as why birth control must be avilable with no copay but not life saving drugs

    March 8, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
  63. Ernest Perol

    Honestly,I won't answer the question,because I'm not on the position to be there.
    My question for whoever said it is: Why would you say Congress job sucks and you brainwash people to vote for you so that you can be in Congress? (From: Miami,Florida)

    March 8, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  64. Pete in Florida

    I used to be part of a Senator's staff, and probably had a good chance of being a Representative if I'd wanted the job. Truth is, the job DOES suck.....if you're honest, reliable, trustworthy, intelligent, reasonable, and care more about our country than you do about your party. The good ones leave when they realize they can't change the system, and the rest stay because the system changed them.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  65. Lee - Keystone Heights, Florida

    Lets see, a six figure income, free health care for the rest of my life, a great pension after retiring, and only having to work about 9 months of the year.....what sucks about that? In these past two or three years I have often thought of running for congressional office. It seems to me that I am as qualified as the majority of persons currently holding office, and perhaps more so, since I am interested in getting things done and moving the country forward. The bad news is that I have no backing or financial sugar daddy to bankroll my attempt. Regular people like me have no chance of being elected because we are not rich or connected. Sad but true.

    March 8, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
  66. chris

    really it sucks making 172,000 peryear vote to increase your salary while denining more hike in minimum wage work 100 or so days a year stay for life don't do crap for people and pass bills like obamacarr and like those wihtout reading it get free or low cost health insurance get carts primary transporptation on planes and work for life without doing for your boss the taxpayers he i'm in

    March 8, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  67. Nora H G Corpus Christi

    They suck more than the job ever could. What did they think they were signing up for?? No I would not want to be a member of those morons!!

    March 8, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  68. Chris from Florida

    Yes I would and I would promise to have only one term, liist on my web site every meeting I have, and disclose any communications that appear to be self-serving by a member of Congress. Of course on that premise you can bet I would have no committee assignments!

    March 8, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  69. Ralph Nelson

    Yes, but my health prevents it. Why? Because I believe we are very close to a "Stooge Presidency" elected and controlled by the Koch Brothers, ALEC (Big Business), and the Republican Party. Already we are fourth in income inequality in the world behind Mexico (controlled by 16 families and world's richest man, a monopolist))..

    March 8, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
  70. Gigi Oregon

    It's the only Job in The united States that pays too much for so little work. I would be embarrassed to show my face. They are shameful when they call the poor lazy. The elderly should have planned better when they find themselves in a reverse mortgage situation. Don't blame the mortgage and banking frauds shelled out to the people. And no one went to prison thanks to Congress. But then again there is insider trading, bribes etc... Yes, the job sucks at least it will on "Judgement Day".

    March 8, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  71. Dick Mellinger

    Beats working for a living!!

    March 8, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  72. Ted

    Congress is there to take the blame when things go bad....Like right now the president says things are getting BETTER...It's because of HIM, not congress. ..BUT if things go BAD it will NOT be his fault,It will be the fault of congress. That's why congress sucks. ...( The president cannot blame Bush anymore ,or can he )

    March 8, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  73. John

    I think I would be an effective leader in Congress especially for veterans, poor, disabled, and others that have not had the best representation in Washington,

    March 8, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  74. Mitch Dworkin - Dallas, Texas

    Only if I thought that I could make some kind of a positive difference even if it was just for one term (country before self)!

    March 8, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  75. Keith

    You bet! my slogan would be: "use common sense!" This is, instead of the current trend of being
    "backwards!"

    WI 53207

    March 8, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  76. Montana

    Im 17 and i want to be in Congress. I think the job sucks because of the two extremes of radicals from each party making it difficult to get anything done..

    March 8, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  77. Renee

    It's not a question of wanting to, it's a question of being qualified. I could never lie through my teeth and sleep at night. And while I'm sure all the big business/big oil kickbacks are great for the bank account, again, I like sleeping. I believe freedom means freedom for everyone, not just those who agree with me. And, oh yeah, I still believe the founding fathers knew what they were doing when they decided to separate church and state. It would appear that I'm grossly unqualified. If only I could get over that sleeping thing.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  78. Mike

    Yes. Too many congressmen and women approach the job with the wrong focus. The focus shouldn't be "what can I get for myself," but "what can I do for US citizens." It is just a matter of adjusting your mindset from the start.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  79. Rick W.

    I would very much enjoy being a member of congress, although I wouldn't have very much funding. The idea of our most powerful politicians catering to the lobbyists makes me question my patriotism. And of course their hours of service a year is far more appealing than my last job, which required 365+ days in a combat zone.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  80. Devin

    Well for 170 thousand a year anyone would take that but boohoo, guess we get what we pay for that would be the day. I would propose they take a pay cut to 70 thousand a year and than they can talk about cutting our welfare programs. (even though most of us only make 24000)

    March 8, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  81. Carmen Capato

    Jack. The job dose not suck "THEY" suck

    March 8, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  82. Daniel Cote

    I would love to be a part of congress, what they need to do is take a vacation to Afghanistan for a year or so and get in the trenches with the real hard workers of this country and maybe then we would see them cry for 1500 a month. Oh and wait if you dont get shot at that day you wont get your extra seven dollars for being in a combat zone. What a joke.. where do i sign up i'd love to show them what a hard days work is

    March 8, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  83. Matt in New Port Richey, FL

    Yes, I will take the $174,000 to do nothing.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  84. Adam Missler

    For $175,000 for half a years work it can suck eggs.Poor poor babies.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  85. vladamiric

    To make a difference by helping those who are legal citizens of ones country is the greatest honor I can think of so yes I would. Times change and with it so does the establish political code. The days of the good o boy network is over and modern political concepts lead by we the youth is needed. Those members of the old guard who say the job suck must look in the mirror and say, I am part of the reason it sucks.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  86. Bob from Bellmore Long Island, New York

    For $170,000 a year I'd shovel elephant dung in a circus. Oh wait, they're the same jobs.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  87. frank dileo

    Sure! For 174k ill try anything! Besides with the precedent set no one should have too many expectations of me. Its the next best job next to being a weather man....always wrong yet always has a job

    March 8, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  88. deborah ballweg Seibert, co

    They all got caught with their hands in the cookie jar. That's what they are upset about. If it were business as usual, they would be staying. I could not be a member of congress because of the hatred I feel for the other side of the aisle. I would NOT refer to them as "my friend on the other side", I would refer to them as my enemy.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  89. Jerome from Louisville

    Yeah, I'd take that job any day of the week. I'd set up the typical "auto-reply" on my e-mail system for all my constituents, try to last a few terms, hire a fat staff to let me know where all the finest restaurants are, tease the lobbyists, vote my conscience, save my entire salary and live off "the land", and finally, fade off into the sunset with my ridiculous pension, my 4 years of salary, and the money I got from guys like Newt Gingrich during my tenure.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  90. Bud

    Jack, I'd rather have a colonoscopy. But if drafted I will run, and if elected I will serve.
    Actually, one would think it an easy job if all one intends to do as a Congressperson
    is to vote the way the majority of one's district dictates. That should be a no brainer.
    I can't imagine what is so hard about that.. and the perks are great.
    Bud
    Jax, FL

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  91. ken from connecticut

    If someone has the heart to " Go For It" because they love this country and wants to do something that will help to improve things, that's great! But upon entering the indoctrination begins, and those entrenched powers will prevail over you. Would I want to be a member? Not for a second.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  92. Ed in California

    As to me being in Congress, YES sure. Many honest people would like to help the country out. Unfortunately, honesty and good intentions are not tolerated at that level of office.

    Look at Barney Frank, he is probably afraid of an upcoming indictment and can't make as much now because of the limits on entitlements and selling out. Sounds more like a threat to leave and take his toys with him if the rules aren't changed in his favor.

    Come to think of it, possibly the truly dishonest aren't tolerated in Congress anymore either and they are just having a tantrum....maybe we do have a chance after all!

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  93. Ted

    I would make a great congressman,senator,or president. I can lie with a smile. The only reason it sucks is because they suck money out of us for themselves.I could do that.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  94. King from Indiana

    Good news! Now, more people will find jobs in the private sector instead of following the paths of the likes Sen. Marco Rubio and V.P. Joe Biden who have been on the public dole most of his adult lives.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  95. Mitoosense

    What their really saying is serving the party and Oligopoly system while they service their own personal greed sucks. Representing the people is rewarding. Do the right thing by the people and let the chips fall where they may.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  96. George

    Jack.. you would make a good congress man.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  97. Larry Feierstein-Denver

    Since my congressman, and senators work for me (supposedly) they would have been fired by now, just the way Mitt likes to do it. Based on the inflammed way our political system functions,noone would want that job, no matter the pay. They start off adversarial and end that way. Venom never ends in DC. When will they (and we) ever learn?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  98. Jay

    When the only job I can find as a student has wages between $8.00-$10.00 an hour part-time, and I have to go to school on top of it; I may as well bag it and run for Congress. I can do less, make more, and based on recent trends with Congress, I don't need improve myself intellectually or morally and I work harder than most of them so more would get done.
    Salt Lake City, Utah.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  99. Name*Zac

    I would love to be a member of Congress. I think if we had some middle class Americans at the wheel of our country we would get more done and actually save money doing it. I for one would take half that paycheck and be grateful for every penny.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  100. Name*chuck patel

    Yes,why not. I would work for free, I couldn't ask for pay for doing nothing

    March 8, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  101. Jason N.- Lacey, Washington State

    That is actually my plan. I'm currently an officer in the military and when I'm of age, I plan to continue that service by working with others in Congress to continue the traditions enshrined in our Constitution (and no, not the strict constructionist interpretation, pretentious as they are with that self-declared title). As to which party, let's see where they stand in another decade and who best fits in my values.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  102. Susan - Laguna Hills

    I would definitely take the job. Since when you can find a job that is
    - Rarely get fired
    - Getting paid rain or shine and recession free guarantee
    - Screw up the whole country irresponsibly and yet, you can always blame it on the "Bypartism" issue.
    - Allow you to call yourself "Insider" or "Outsider" based on the circumstances.
    - Getting all media attention with Good or Bad news but at the end you are still in one good piece – Untouchable.
    - Allowing you to critize the President publically when you feel like it.
    - No defined retirement as you get to continue to PLAY inside the circle as long as you got on the seat once.
    Best of all, with full benefits plus an undertable bonus package from private sectors.

    Do you need more?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  103. Danny Los Angeles ca.

    With oppertunity disappearing everyday this is one of the few left,seems you can expand it to a family business also while getting the best investment advice and a great healthcare plan and a pension I might kill for.and don't forget the perks and favors why not I actually thought about it our guy needs to go he made it a very lucrative venture.i don't know if his neighbors want him to stick around once he retires as most have suffered under his watch.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  104. kyle in Denver

    Whaaaa Whaaaa Whaaaa.... I have never seen such a bunch high paid, overly self important employees do so little on the job. What a bunch of complainers... their situation mostly brought about by their own intransigence and flat out unwillingness to do their jobs in favor of making political brownie points trying to blame the other party for all the ills of the nation. They really, really do not see the power they have to make changes that mean something positive to 99% of the people of our country.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  105. King from Indiana

    For the coup-de-grace, how about making them work, 8 to 5 for the whole year?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  106. Lance from Buffalo

    I might not do it, but they are doing exactly what we pay them to do. Fight to the bitter end for those who elected them. Every year they reallocate districts to entrench their political positions, pushing moderate clear minded centrists out of the public discourse and elevating the most extream views of both parties. They don't even realize they are slowing killing us. LIke the boiling frog syndrome. If we passed a law stating that every elected members district must be balanced between both parties, more sensible people would run and have a chance of getting something done.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  107. David -Sandwich, MA

    I would love to be a congress member. I'd get a 400% pay increase. The more extreme one party gets the further the other party goes in the other direction. What we need is a speaker that is like Tip O'Neil in the 80s, regularly working on both sides of the isle. I will throw my hat in the ring as that person.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  108. chuck crites

    no. It seems they are corrupted when they are elected. They get rich and try to promote the party but do little to help the country. I guess if you are greedy, it would be good but if you are a patriot, it would suck.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  109. Archbishop RE Lee

    Yes i would love to be a member of the US congress,to help the democrats drive out the obstructionist from both sides of the Isle America is doomed to destruction as long as it remains divided and this vitrual hatred exist. I believe now the republican party is the party that harbors hatred of all life they pretend to protect the unborn, while they blatantly attempt to kill all the living,women people of color,asians, hispanics,etc. and only God can help the other nations. I love America and all its citizens,Gays, also it takes all of us together to be what we should be. God Bless President Barack Hussein Obama.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  110. GeorgeGray

    Jack, nobody alive has signed, ratified, approved, or otherwise validated the United States Constitution. So, a Congress operating pursuant to a Constitution of questionable validity is itself questionable. Since when are you and I bound to documents we haven't signed? The gov't is going to have to send around agents to meet with you and I and others, and bid for a waiver.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  111. Peter

    "They say it's just too hard to get things done with the gridlock in Washington."
    It think it would be more fair to say "hard to get things done when they ARE the gridlock in Washington."

    March 8, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  112. Sarah

    I would not run for congress because I would run my mouth too often. I strongly feel that the members of congress get too many perks and are in a "bubble" so to speak. They make more than twice the money as an average American and get perks from lobbyists and are too easily influenced by big business. Their ideas are skewed and their vision of what the American people want and what we actually want are two different things.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  113. Gene

    I would love to be a member of Congress. Where else can you get paid $175,000.00 per year plus perks for doing nothing. If the job sucks, why do they sell their souls to special interest in order to keep getting reelected? Could it be because of the lucrative retirement and medical coverage they get. I think it is the members of Congress who suck instead of the job sucking.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  114. King from Indiana

    Good news! Now, more people will find jobs in the private sector instead of following the paths of the likes Sen. Marco Rubio and V.P. Joe Biden who have been on the public dole most of their adult lives.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  115. Michael Bindner, Alexandria, VA

    Yes,. I would love to be in Congress – but I would like to be accompanied by enough fellow left-wing libertarians to actually get something done (although even without comrades, the job does have its perks).

    March 8, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  116. chuck patel, Rome ga

    Yes, why not, i would work for free, I don't want to get paid for doing nothing

    March 8, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  117. larry mn

    You bet. Once you get rid of the ones that think the pay is not enough, you are half way there to functioning again. That is the problem, these people are so far from in touch with the average citizen. They follow the money. As far as some quitting because of the gridlock, I can't really blame them, but if you get rid of the first that I spoke of, the going might get better.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  118. @rocketjohnnyk

    Since I live in DC, I wont burden the Revenue office with write-off of a second residence.
    Alas, I live in DC, so running for Shadow Senator sounds sinister, and not getting a floor vote in the House means I will hardly work at all, so I'll probably end up always in my high school buddy's places on H Street NE as Joe Englert owns the whole 'hood, n being a Night Owl I'll probably end up with Marion Barry.

    I am currently a Human Spaceflight Engineer, so since Congress continues to kill that, rather than collect unemployment, or work for China, I guess I better run for Office.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  119. Doug (in Ohio)

    Definitely! Where else can you work fewer hours than a teacher, make 3 times the salary and have essentially no job description?! Sign me up! Then after my one term (I don't want to be greedy and stay too long!), let's change the pay structure to a performance-based compensation program – pay members of Congress minimum wage while increasing teacher's pay to the match the level Congress makes today! All in favor?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  120. Travis

    Hey jack,

    To answer your question, yes I would like to be a member of congress. Matter of fact that's my goal in life, I'm 15 years old and even I can tell that our great country is in trouble. It seems like our rights are being stripped away left and right, our debt is out of control and much more but instead of complaining like everyone else I'm going to do something, join congress and make our country great again. Yes it's a high pressure job but what were you expecting, your in charge of the future of the country.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  121. Rich Smith

    I'd love to be in Congress. I feel the issue with the country is the lack of balls the Democratic party shows in support of our President and/or their ideas. People tend to forget that one of the leading reasons for the big switch in the mid term elections was partially due to the fact that Dems in those seats lost support of who they represent due to being political and not for the people. Furthermore, the GOP is doing the same thing, they just make sure a mic is always on when their ideas are discussed so to speak. We need Democrats who will stand for those who voted them into office. We have enough Beverly Hills CA & Greenwich CT style representatives with loud voices. Its about time someone stand up for the little guy.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  122. Rebecca from Georgia

    Yes, I want the chance the make a difference.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  123. Stephen

    Yes, I would like to be a member of Congress. The problem is we have too many people in Congress who are not wiling to fight for their beliefs or those of their cosituents. Get some when in their with some youth that will not back down until the members agree to do what is best for those in need and not what is strictly at the parties core. Take a look in Texas around 2016 when I am out of the military and you might see a former soldier preaching some of the following: 1. Better coverage and oversight for Veteran's Benefits. 2. Removal of Congressional retirement as it currently stands to prevent members from gaining retirement for one term. 3. Making Congress buy into a health care plan similar to the military and the rest of low level government workers such as DoDDS Teachers. 4. Requiring a balanced budget be planned and agreed upon before raising the debt ceiling. 5. Measure requiring Congress to form, and approve a budget no later than the end of the second quarter for the next Fiscal Year. Example: Budget be approved for 2014 no later than the end of the second quarter 2013.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  124. Ann from Charleston SC

    You make it sound so irresistible, Jack, how can I say no? I don't have the temperment for all the haggling, so I'd never make it in Congress.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  125. Sandra

    Are you kidding? They have the worst bosses of all time, us. We are too opinionated and many of us won't budge for anything. We are wishy-washy and uninformed on most topics. We expect Congress to have our religious beliefs and follow our values while living under a microscope at all hours of the day. So no, why would anyone want that job?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  126. A.J. Platt

    There's a Congress?
    Chicago,IL.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  127. Jacob S

    While that salary is much more than most Americans, it doesn't mean that their complaints aren't valid. Most of those left could be making much more money if they left and worked as a lobbyist. How can we expect to have quality lawmakers when we assume that every congressperson is corrupt and only after money and power. Who would want a job that no one appreciates?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  128. Archbishop RE Lee

    Jack there is nothing wrong with politcs, the problem is the politicians Americas form of politics is what made it the envy of the world a place where everyone was acknowledged.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  129. heh

    $174,000 deosnt even pay for the costs of living in DC.
    Would you take a job that costs you more than it pays?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  130. Lynn

    and just what is the retirement plan for members of the congress or senate?? I bet they have guaranteed health benefits as well as a hefty monthly pension all at our expense! I would love to see them treat themselvesas one of US and take away their own benefits as quickly as they attack ours! Lynn

    March 8, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  131. Guy - Texas

    Eliminate lobby jobs and their influence......then watch former congressmen find out what it's like to be unemployed! Being a congress person is not so difficult.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  132. Layne Alleman

    Jack, With the crop my district have voted for in the last 30 years or so; batcrap crazies or crooks, I'd have said yes a year ago, however, we suddenly have a candidate in Tammy Duckworth(a war vet.,positive rather than negative thinker) who may be able to make a difference. So, for right now, no, I wouldn't (for now). Layne A. Antioch, Il.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  133. Bill

    Jack – of course they think the job sucks – they suck more.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  134. Bob in Kansas City

    It sucks because of two things-Democrats & Republicans, not necessarily in that order.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  135. Corky Oakes

    Yes I would. I am not a "party line" citizen. I care deeply about the common person in this country, understand that compromise and negotiating are what ought to happen in Congress–what used to be the norm. I would answer to no one except my constiuents. The frustration is that I doubt the party I'm registered with (D) would even approach me if I were to express interest! Such games! Good grief. Sacramento, CA.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  136. Susan from Idaho

    In a word, MONEY and free benefits for life. If they think their job sucks they should try trash collecting or milking cows.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  137. Cee.Louisiana

    How they do whine.....they lead the best double standard life in the world, they make almost $200,000 a year, have very good healthcare, and retirement.they can insider trade, all the while telling us what we can and cant have......and then go to work as a lobbyist, making obscene amounts of money.......poor babies.......

    March 8, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  138. Mark from Arizona

    YES, I would love the job. How hard can it be? Smile, make some promises and never deliver. As long as they never pass or enforce "truth in advertising" against politicians it is a hell of a job. I know most of them have the basic mathematics skills to do the job, but most of them have forgotten how to "subtract" they have the "addition" down perfectly. Boo hoo the media catches them doing shameful things and they get busted. Newsflash...it isn't the media it is you. Live a life that is good and praiseworthy...hocus pocus...no media problem. Good riddance....But send money soon and I will jump on the ticket. But only for 2 terms, then it would someone elses turn to serve..oh and when I leave no payements or benefits. The American people shouldn't be indebted to me for "serving". Thanks

    March 8, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  139. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:

    Sure I would like to be a congressman, but not a member of the current congressional milieu. Congress is not a membership, it is a political population, the former implies contributory worth, the latter implies suspicion and disgust. For those claiming the job sucks I wonder if it is because they could not turn it into the usual family business in "public service"?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  140. Al

    To all of you who say that current congressional leaders suck, how many of you are going to actually vote, or vote against your incumbent?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
  141. Stephen of Copperas Cove, TX

    Jack, what could be better? An office in your home state as well as Washington, $174K plus salary not including al the perks for things such as travel and events, free healthcare on the backs of your tax paying constituents, the ability to vote for your own pay raise while soldier on active duty receive food stamps (there are some that qualify and yes I have served with them), the ability to turn your back on the people that put you in office because you are too stubborn to break party lines and do what is in the best interests of the people of your district/state/country.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
  142. Gary in San Jose, California

    Great question! Would I "want" to be a member of Congress? No. The job sucks by design. You can either make the people who fund your campaign happy or you can make your constituents happy. Even if you take the high road to making your constituents happy you can't make them all happy. With that said... would I do it for my country if called upon? Absolutely.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  143. Ezra

    They are leaving because they can make more money as lobbyists.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  144. Joseph, FL

    This question has many facets to it. First what needs to be said is media and technology are evolving so rapidly, too rapidly for a town that is ill-adept to cope with quick change. That's why many tenured statesmen are dissatisfied with their job.

    Second, when you have 100 senators and 435 representatives, many with opposing spectrum ideologies, good luck trying to get them to cooperate. U.S. citizens need to stop blaming Congress and start blaming themselves- they elect who represents them. Congress is a reflection of active U.S. registered voters, if you're not happy be more proactive to change the system.

    Third, it's not an easy job, and it's not a 9-5er as so many believe. Although some may want to run for office for 'non-public service' reasons, I would want to be a Congress member knowing that I'm charged with representing my district and their interests, not my own.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  145. Branden from Springville UT

    Yes, for the pay alone I would. However, I'm an Independent and if a bunch of other Independents were voted in I imagine a lot might get done. At the very least, I could cast my vote for what's best for Americans and not be ruled by partisan politics.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
  146. Pete/Ark

    Just like my current position, a job is very much you make of it Jack. For $174 K a year I could convince myself it is a GREAT job.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
  147. Randy

    YES! Then my wife would miraculously get offered lobbying jobs and boards of directors chairmanships in the industries I just "happen" to have oversight of. The hardest thing to do is telling the American people who pay the bills that we can't afford anything that benefits them because the rich and a foreign "ally" need endless wars, foreign aid,and tax cuts.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
  148. David C. in Woodbury, MN

    I think the issue isn't that the job itself sucks. I think it is all the partisan bickering that goes on that makes the job so difficult. I believe that those who enter public service go in with the intention of doing good, but when they get there they realize it isn't as easy as they thought it would be to make change. I know that if we had term limits things would work so much easier because you wouldn't have to be dealing with someone who has been doing it their way for so many years. Because we are a nation divided, by extremists on both the right and left, it makes it difficult for the majority who are in the middle to understand why things have gotten so out of hand. My main concern would be how we as a nation could move forward together to ensure that all citizens of this country succeed, not just the wealthy, but the poor, and middle class. If our nation is to become better we need to understand that we are a nation made up of many races, social and economical classes, and religions. It appears that the members of congress seem to forget they are representing all those facets of this nation, not just themselves.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  149. Thom

    Jack, I would definitely be a congressman for one simple reason – to bring someone to Washington who cares about and will ACTUALLY REPRESENT their constituency, instead of how the current congress cares only
    about their wallets.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  150. King, Indiana

    I would, but I hate begging for money!

    March 8, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
  151. Brian Samuels (Chicago)

    If you're unemployed like Joe Walsh was and owed a bunch of back child support......I would run for office, make a lot of noise, get elected, and have the tax payers pay my child support.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
  152. Brian Betz from New Jersey

    Absolutely: I have legitimate grievances with the way our political system is "working" at this juncture; I'm willing and able to represent a district and get things done. If that means reasonable compromise, so be it. I'm more than willing to sponsor common sense bills (I'm sure that this will immediately invalidate any and all of my opinions, but I'm a firm supporter of the legalization movement (gay marriage, marijuana)); I believe in separation of church and state, while simultaneously supporting the free expression of all religions, et al; bottom-line, I want to go into politics, because I want to make a difference–for the better–for this great country of ours.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  153. Randall Fox

    The job doesn't suck, they just suck at doing there job. That is, when they are even around to do it.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  154. Donaldo in ATL

    No thanks. You can never make everyone happy. Somehow we have lost the purpose of public service. We should cut their pay, make them all volunteer or part time paid, then only people with real experience or can afford to run, will represent us, they won't need to fundraise, cause 99% of us would not qualify. Then you would have 1% running the country, about the same as now.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  155. Jack In Silicon Calley

    In terms of income, it should also be mentioned that "Lobbyist" is a bad word, and trading based upon insider information has been taken away. $174,000 compared to the average American is not much, but we know that politicians consider themselves above the average American.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:43 pm |
  156. Bob

    Jack I feel like a lot of them will not have to worry about it when election time comes around. They will be replaced.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:43 pm |
  157. Jack NYC

    No. I would not like the job. Why? Because I'm a pragmatist and there is no room in the present climate fro anyone who is willing or looking for compromise/consensus. I can't deal with extremist ideologues.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:43 pm |
  158. John

    Most definitely yes! we need some rational, pragmatic thinkers in congress, not someone who puts ideology above getting the job done. remove the campaign finance issues where people sell their soul to the highest bidder to get elected.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
  159. Kuhn

    I surely would

    March 8, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  160. Juxtapoz

    Jack,

    If YOU, who supported the trillion-dollar debacle in Iraq were held to the same standards as Congress, and had to justify your continued employment to a few million people while constantly raising millions just to stave off challenges from hot-out-of-college newbs, we'd probably hear the same whining. I don't want to be a member of that cesspool because I think Congress is worthless, but then again, so is the infotainment "news" media.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  161. RE McCray

    Congress needs to stop whining ... and do their own job. Period. If they put as much effort behind yelling across the aisle and scheduling TV interviews and barking rhetoric on the news, imagine how much work they could get done doing their jobs. I don't think that the American people voted for the yahoo's in Congress to be the next reality stars of American politics.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
  162. Scott F

    They whine about everything and accomplish nothing. Their my way or the highway ideology is destroying this country. Go home and get a real job where you are actually accountable for your divisive rhetoric and incessant lying. You are overhead we cannot afford both financially and ethically.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
  163. joe.e.inidaho

    Its ilke Pres. Adams basically said... Never trust someone who wants to make politics a career. Personally i think stagnation in government is not a bad thing it just makes sure that unstable people dont completely destroy our great country too quickly. When is the last time you made a bad choice when you pondered on and discussed a solution with others with sincerity?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
  164. Derek

    I would love for someone to make me a Congressman! And I would become the most hated Congressman by other Congressmen after my first couple of speeches, because I would do nothing but call out other politicians. Of course, we're assuming I get made a Congressman without an election or spending the next 10 years building my political profile and spending millions of dollars I don't have, correct?

    March 8, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  165. Charlotte

    Hmmm. I can imagine how a lot of people on unemployment would be happy to take their jobs for them if they hate them so much. Even some people flipping burgers or picking lettuce who would be willing to swap.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  166. Jim

    As Mark Twain once said – "America doesn't have a permanent criminal class, unless you include Congress."

    March 8, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  167. Eugene Myers Flat, CA

    Jack,, congress sucks. They're a bunch of pandering and feckless criminals.

    March 8, 2012 at 4:58 pm |