If Congress won't fix the economy, what will it take?
April 19th, 2012
03:27 PM ET

If Congress won't fix the economy, what will it take?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Congress won't do anything to fix the economy - that's the disturbing result of a CNN Money survey of economists.

Despite the huge issues on the horizon - a $15 trillion dollar debt, $1 trillion annual deficits, jobs, taxes - we can once again expect our Congress to do nothing.

Although the economists polled in this survey have lots of ideas about how to jump-start the U.S. economy, they don't expect Congress to act on any of it in the near future.

One economist put it this way: Congress will act "two weeks after a sudden freeze in Hell."

These experts are most worried about a weakening in economic readings - especially job growth.

So what would help? They'd like Congress to pass comprehensive tax reform, which would likely lower tax rates for corporations and individuals while eliminating many deductions and loopholes.

Most of these economists also support some extension of the Bush tax cuts and an extension of the partial payroll tax holiday.

The survey also found 40% of these economists want Congress to repeal Obamacare and about a quarter support the repeal of the Dodd-Frank financial services reform legislation.

Some of them believe the economy will be best off if Congress does as little as possible.

Looks like they'll probably get their wish.

With lawmakers in re-election mode we can't expect much action on the economy - or anything else for that matter. Pathetic.

As if to prove this point - late yesterday Senate Democrats canceled the votes on next year's budget. This would be the third year in a row that Congress fails to produce a budget, which is their job. Like we said, pathetic.

Here’s my question to you: If Congress won't fix the economy, what will it take?

Tune in to the Situation Room at 5pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.

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

Posted by
Filed under: Congress • Economy
soundoff (175 Responses)
  1. MNResident

    The whole premise of your question is faulty, Mr. Cafferty. Neither Congress, nor ANYONE else in government, can fix the economy. The only thing government can do is mess it up. What WILL fix the economy is the American people themselves, IF AND ONLY IF they acquire the desire and "can-do" attitude that seems to have been replaced by a "I got my government chek, you try and get yours" mentality.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
  2. JD in NH

    Corporate patriotism. Stop shipping work overseas and pay Americans a living wage.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
  3. Lee C.

    It will take a new congress - vote the rascals out! Don't complain about it
    if you don't vote.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
  4. ImALibertarian

    From near Houston

    The economy won't be fixed until someone who respects constitutional limits on authority (like Ron Paul) begins to veto socialistic spending bills and puts a stop to the debasing of the US dollar.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
  5. bud rupert

    Your question assumes that they have some clue on what to do. Both sides speak in platitudes and use 100 year old rhetoric that is built on illusion. Balanced budgets! Tax the rich! Reduce taxes across the board! Less regulation! More regulation!
    None of those things in-and-of themselves will fix anyhting. Frankly, things have been going down hill since the late 70's and we won't get things back on track by changing congress and the presidency every 4 years. It will take the private and public sectors working together to make meaningful progress. Whatever that means

    April 18, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  6. tom Bulger, Canandaigua, NY

    One of the things it will take is an acceptance of the technological revolution. Artificial intelligence and robots will eventually make all human workers surplus to need. Just because a surgeon can not operate any longer does not mean that he/she should suffer poverty. Political reality needs to come to grips with actual reality and start tending to the welfare of citizens. In the very near future no human will be "employed."

    April 18, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
  7. Russ in PA

    Congress will fix nothing. Too many people have been wrongly informed by the public school system, the MSM, and politicians that government can "control" an economy, and look where that got the USSR, and every other attempt to "control" their economy. Why is it that the two greatest depressions/recessions occurred under the watchfull eye of the Federal Reserve and government? Because both parties have distorted the free market and the value of our currency. Nothing will change until the US returns to it's free market and sound money roots. To think otherwise is to repeat the Keynesian history again and again...

    Ron Paul in 2012...

    April 18, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  8. Connie from Logansport,IN.

    Well if they can beg Grover Norquist to let them out of there pledge to not raise taxes, if the President some how became white or they had their pay decreased, Ok, Jack nothing.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
  9. Ken in Pinon Hills, California

    It sure won't come from the private sector. A fifteen trillion dollar national borrowing debt, and trillions in taxes spent on defense, entitlements, state grants, pork barrel, and a list almost infinite has gone into our collective pockets, compliments of Congress. The Republican Congress say's no more, and by the way, lower taxes so the private sector, the job creators, can provide jobs.
    Let us stop kidding ourselves, we are three hundred million souls who can't hold our collective breaths depending on a myth. The myth business can provide a job with livable wage, comparable to what the big government trickle down can give us. We have a problem.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
  10. Peter in B.C.

    complete bankruptcy. No salaries, not benefits, no nothing. Not for the citizens, just for the politicians.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
  11. Paul From Round Rock, Texas

    It will take a term limit law and a vote them all out campain to light a fire under their rears. The term limit law looks slim at this time so the latter would be the key. Congress needs to prove to the public they have enough guts to get things done and not just fight against everything. It is not any one party either it's all of them that's why I say vote them all out.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  12. Mel - Houston

    Maybe we need to look at the state of Wisconsin for an answer to that question. Maybe the constituents of a congressman or senator need to have recall elections for candidates that run for office saying one thing and doing something completely different once in office. Another option is to have an oath of office between the congressman and his constituents. This oath would require penalties in the form of large sums of money to be put into the public coffer if he developed an alter ego once in office. Grover Norquist has to have a firm grip on the politicians that sign his pledge. Use his method as a model. His model seems to work quite well.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
  13. Noel Sivertson New Mexico


    April 18, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
  14. jk in MN

    The electorate to educate themselves on the problems in Washington (and NOT be swayed by all the negative and deceptive advertising from the SUPERPACS and the pundits) and an independent group that has enough clout and has a sole purpose to fix the economy and not touch the divisive social issues to get candidate on the ballot that are not beholding to all that lobby money. Short of that, it may take calling a continental Congress to fix things – I worry though that the powerful billionaires would hijack it for their own selfish interests. I hope it can be fixed – it's so corrupt it makes one want to start all over – pretty sad for a government that is supposed to be of the People, by the People and for the People I'd say.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:46 pm |
  15. Herman Portland OR

    Holding Congress accountable seems to be the next step. How about a mandate from the people making them agree to do what is right and not tax us or spend our hard earned money and just demand we pay more. The Idea of shrinking the size of government and balancing our budget just like most all Americans have to do is the right thing to do. If they can't compromise we either need to fire them or vote them out.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
  16. Gerry

    The Congress couldn't fix a toilet let alone the economy. Eventually private enterprise with American know-how will bring the economy back. It will take a long time but it will happen. Trying to keep the government from picking the pockets of free enterprise as it progresses will be the real challenge.

    Ash Fork, Az.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
  17. Gary in California

    We need an economic breakout initiative to drive growth the way the internet and interstate highway system drove growth. Think about all the economic activity that would result from converting cars to natural gas. Think of all the jobs created by spending money here on natural gas instead of sending money to the Middle East. Then you have all gas station upgrades, new car sales, old car conversions, and increased tax revenues from higher economic activity. Whatever the breakout initiative is it must have economic leverage.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
  18. David ullman

    This one's easy: a new, totally new congress. Intelligent men and women capable of putting the good of the nation ahead of the good of the party. Yeah, I'm a dreamer.

    April 18, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
  19. Susan-NJ

    Congress and the President past and present broke the economy it's time for the middle class that have been their target of destruction to fix it. It's a big job but we can do it.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
  20. Rich in Gainesville FL

    Your question presupposes that a solution gets implemented without Congress, the same Congress that is a central cog in our process of government. From that, one can only conclude that a change in our process of governing will be needed. Or put another way, it's going to require revolution. Which could be great, for those who survive. The whole subject is as depressing as hell.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  21. Doug Ericson

    A severe depression. Doug, Pepperell, MA.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
  22. Steve, Clifton, Virginia

    Jack what you mean is if "this" Congress won't fix the economy, what will it take? As tax payers we elect and pay Congress to solve national problems and if they can't do their jobs, as seems to be the case with this Congress, then it's our jobs to replace them and elect and pay someone who will get the job done.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
  23. Loren

    An act of God. Actually, so long as Congress and the President stay out of the way, the economy will fix itself. It is the nature of man to want to work to improve his lot, and even more so for Americans. Every time Congress or the President, and not just the current one, try to tweak the economy, they end up doing more damage than good. The Internet bubble? Failure to enforce existing law. The Real Estate bubble, Congress and Barney Frank circumventing long-standing risk rules to benefit their friends and financial backers. The tanking of the financial industry. Well, that's a bit more complicated, but blame Barney Frank just for sport. The decimation of the U.S. manufacturing base? Blame President Clinton and his desire to make things easier for Walmart.

    So, the answer is, so long as Congress and the President keep their hands off, the economy will do fine on its own.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
  24. Ron WPAFB

    I would say ,Vote them out! But, afterwords the GOP will simply turn it around and say it was a referendum on Obama and the Democrats! And then th news media will change some of the focus by interjecting a different noun or adjective to put some more lipstick on the pig and make up a new story! If I have to pick right against wrong, the Dems are more right than the GOP. Lets face it, we all know all that money corrupts and there isn't an ounce of honor left on the hill. The GOP is trying to destroy everything that makes us better. Against environment, against Women's Rights and in another breath claim to be for them??? Against Health Care for everyone, except the rich! Against education unless you have big money! They have had numerous opportunities to pass Jobs Legislation but because they didn't think it up, rejected it to, "Get Obama Out"

    As long as the GOP mantra is only, "To Get Obama Out", "To Defeat Obama", "To Take America Back? Form who", As long as that's their focus, then obviously it isn't the People!
    Obama is a good man with real honest concerns and hopes for the United States of America, anyone who can't see that, is guided by fools! Send the GOP Packing, it will be a very good start, the right start!

    April 18, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
  25. Bill of New Mexico

    It will require the failure of the US Government!

    Then, and only then–will the creditors have the power to fix our economy.

    I would suggest tearing the border walls down for the people who wish to flee.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
  26. Riley ODay

    Don't know what it will take but I'm sure its not changing any time in the near or far future. Probably when its too late.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
  27. costelloreport

    It will take the citizens of this country electing more people in both parties who are willing to compromise and work with the other side. We currently have people in Congress with very extreme views and those extreme views don't allow for any work to be done. Elect people who can compromise, in either party, who will work with the other party to get stuff done.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
  28. Adam Ratliff

    Its simple....Fire the standing members of congress and start fresh!!!! The only good from this do-nothing house and senate is America gets another reality show to watch everytime they turn on cnn or c-span. Ive seen 10 year old girls who dont bicker this much. What a shame 🙁

    April 18, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
  29. Eric - Houston

    While there are things Congress could do to make the process less painful, if they would just stop spending us into oblivion the market will fix the economy eventually.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
  30. Gary H. Boyd

    The word "Revolution" comes to mind Jack. We did it before and we can do it again. England wasn't listening then and Washington isn't listening now.

    Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona

    April 18, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
  31. bob z. from pa.

    the senate has done nothing under obama our bigest problems keep being put off. the only thing these people worry about is the election . they all should be voted out.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
  32. Ed from Texas

    The people to change Congress.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
  33. Ak A moha

    well jack if they want do there job, is easy, less then shift..

    April 18, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  34. Bizz, Quarryville Pennsylvania

    It will take the voters voting people out of office and replacing them with men and women that did not take a pledge to Glover Nordquist tying their hands behind their back on what they can do about the economy. I want people in their that only take one pledge, the one they must take to be a member of Congress and get down to work, by compromising and working together.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:34 pm |
  35. Pete in Georgia

    What will it take ??
    A President................a leader far, far different from what is pretending to be one today.
    A new administration that doesn't exist only for hidden agendas and deception. We need a new leader who understands and supports FREE ENTERPRISE, who isn't jealous about wealth and understands that profit and wealth creates growth and jobs, and that BIG GOVERNMENT is the poison that is killing America.
    A true, common sense, non-socialist leader will get congress behind the engine of free enterprise and put this country back to work and bring jobs back home from accross the globe.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
  36. Larry Barnett

    Unfortunately, it will take the American people to vote the present congress out of office and replace them with people who do what it best for this country instead of worrying about voting their party line. Both parties have been guilty of this.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
  37. Ray in Knoxville

    Jack, it's going to take a majority of Americans having money to spend. For the past 30 years or so, this country has been losing good paying jobs and replacing them with lower paying jobs and, finally, American workers have been squeezed dry and can no longer afford to support our economy.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
  38. Mike Robinson

    Cut government spending by 40% and revise programs – THEN cut taxes. Why? The Federal government borrows 40% to pay for itself. In order to help the economy, the weight of the federal government must be reduced, with a balanced budget. The money taken for taxes will be free to circulate in the economy based on supply and demand. And audit the Fed. –Mike Robinson, Annapolis MD

    April 18, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  39. Tom (Atlanta)

    Jack, I believe that the private sector will fix itself because that is who we are. Now the rate at which we fix ourselves is definitely effected by the government at its policies. By its very nature many times our government hinders our growth; they say they're protecting us. But, in reality, I don't believe many really understand business. When Steve Jobs met with the President he said all he heard was reasons we couldn't do the things he suggested. I really think it is another 'Scorpion and the Turtle' saga. "I can't help it. It's who I am". Jack, well just have to do this our own way in our own time.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  40. Greg Turman


    Since the democrats took control of the whitehouse, senate and house in 2008, there has been NO budget passed.
    Dodd, Frank and "cornhusker" Ben have done cut and run. Won't take much to weed out the rest of the senate in November.
    Gregory Turman

    April 18, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
  41. Simon/Orlando

    You're assuming that government can fix the economy. What they need to do is cut the out of control spending, get out of the way of the private sector, and let the economy fix itself.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
  42. robert goodman

    When we get rid of the people who signed the pledge, because they do not serve we the people.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
  43. Jack in PA

    Sadly, It will take a revolution or complete collapse of the dollar
    which would lead to that revolution. At present the fox is watching
    the hen house. Even the most ethical is corupted once they arrive.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
  44. Nate NC

    Why would Congress fix it in the first place? Our economy is a product of our current society which is used to making money off of other people. Especially since people are not as aware of the security flaws within technology. Whether a drug dealer switching to tax refund theft with false debit cards or a government official stealing taxpayer dollars, there is seemingly no need to perform honest work.

    April 18, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
  45. lou

    Do you think they can just pass a bill to make the debt disappear? They can't pass a bill to make economies overseas more stable, which would keep our markets from freaking out. They can't pass a bill to eliminate the glut of baby boomers who are eating up the lion's share of social security and medicare. About all they can do is tinker with the tax codes and eliminate programs. Neither of which will 'fix' the economy.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
  46. ken, atlantic city, nj

    Since the founding fathers did not give voters the right to referendum for federal issues there are only two things that can be done if congress won't fix the economy: revolution, or vote them all out, and keep voting them out until they do want you want. The dems and pubs whining and blaming the other party for a bad economy won't do anything to fix the economy. Congress and Obama are all on the auction block to the highest corporate bidder. Voters first need to realize that Congress does not care about main street.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
  47. Greg McCarthy

    Jack, If we are to leave this to Congress,it will take some cooperation,not corporation,between the 2(or 3) parties. In their effort to oust Obama which was their 'sole purpose' since Day 1,the GOP has done little for 'the people' whom they may,or may not represent,but everything they can for the corporations which they seemingly do fully represent. Greg M. FL

    April 18, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  48. Susan Frost

    Obviously, it will take a new Congress – throw the bums out!

    April 18, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
  49. Kyle S Irvine, CA

    government cannot fix the economy, only business can. I agree there needs to be tax relief for individuals which will help the suffering retail markets bounce back and corporations can start reinvesting again which will lead to more hiring. The economy is a cycle and we've seen some growth but not enough secure President Obama a second term.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
  50. Susan Frost

    Obviously, it will take a new Congress – we have to have a Progressive Super-Majority. As long as the teabaggers and corporate whores are running the show, nothing will improve.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:11 pm |
  51. calaurore9

    Who is pathetic? We keep voting for these weasels. But, the economy is global and cyclical, so they can run and hide until the upturns return.

    Carol in Northampton, Ma

    April 18, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
  52. Larry in Houston

    If Congress won't fix the economy, what will it take ?? First of all Jack, you are using the words I use most, when it comes to politics. I'm sure you didn't steal my words from me, because I use the term "Pathetic" & "Pitiful" in a lot of my comments.
    Answer to Your Question : Congress is listening to the people that Voted them IN. ( remember the Tea Party ? ) But, as soon as the next mid term election comes up, things will change at That Time, in my opinion. Late yesterday Senate Democrats canceled the votes, Hmmmm wonder why ?? Could it be they are Waiting on a Democratic Congress ?? ( Instead of a Republican Congress ? ) Nevertheless, the Taxpayers are the ones who end up paying for elected people who are "do nothing people"
    Larry IN Houston

    April 18, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
  53. Phil, georgia

    Bottom-Line...It will take getting Republicans out of office because they are Hell-Bent on just having power nomatter who it destroys. They will Denounce any firm beliefs of policies, anything to be on the other side of a democrat just so it will be a contrast and they can say vote for me because I stand for something else even if its destroying America. Any solutions, Creativity, all of the above approaches have come from the Democrats and only was able to be implemented when they had a majority vote and when Republicans had majority-they were known as the "Do Nothing Congress"

    April 18, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
  54. Kim , Dodge City, Ks

    Rebellion, pure and simple. There will be blood in the streets because the government and their corporate masters won't hesitate to use the military against it's own people. Unfortunately, as long as the cheese burgers are cheap, and the cable is working, most of America is too un-organized and lazy to demand a reformed government.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
  55. james in greenville NC

    Economy, heal thyself. I remember the quote, "Physician, heal thyself." I think that quote is from the Bible, or maybe Tupac. At any rate I think the economy will have to heal itself. Government can't do much about it anymore. The politicians have all these grand schemes but in the end the economy goes in whatever direction it chooses. Congress certainly cannot do it. The reason we send those guys up there to Washington is to get them out of our district.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  56. Pete in Florida

    The only way we will EVER get Congress to start acting responsibly is to fire EVERY LAST ONE OF THEM, EVERY ELECTION, make lobbying and private campaign financing illegal, and set term limits of ONE 6-year term limit for all, with 1/3rd of all seats up for grabs every two years.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
  57. DaleW in MA

    A constitutional amendment getting corporate money out of the process, and term limits of 2 consecutive terms. The founding fathers really didn't envision career Representatives and Senators. Make them go 'home' and earn a living in society every 3 terms.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
  58. Max Brooks from Florida

    Drug legalization wouldn't fix our economy in one fell swoop but it would certainly help. (And it would put an end to the drug cartels and the tens of thousands of innocent deaths every year)

    April 18, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  59. Cy Gardner

    The Democrats want to solve problems, The Republicans just want to get paid. And paid. And paid some more. The GOP answer to every problem is don't make the rich pay taxes or obey any laws. If the American people get cheated out of their votes or fall for the hundreds of millions of dollars worth of lying Republican ads and give more power to the GOP, the middle class, our democracy and our future are doomed. cy from arlington, va

    April 18, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  60. Renee, Illinois

    The solution as always is in our hands. Stop listening to the bipartisan rhetoric and VOTE THEM ALL OUT! If we show congress once and for all that not doing their jobs means they lose their jobs (just like the real world the rest of us have to live in) then we'll get some action. Of course, that's not going to happen. The politicians know this. Why do you think they concentrate so heavily on dividing the voters? Keep us all bickering about partisan issues and most of them will get re-elected. That's the whole idea of divide and conquer. Forget the war on women, Christmas, etc. The real war is politicians against us; if they can keep us divided we'll never realize the true enemy is a bunch of lazy congressmen who just want to stay in office, no matter what.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  61. Brad, Portland, OR

    We have a free market economy, not a Soviet-style command economy. It's not up to Congress to fix the economy... not that the Republicans would allow it if it were possible.

    The better question is, if private corporations won't fix the economy, what will it take? Corporations are experiencing record profits, and tax rates are at historical lows, but they're not hiring Americans or raising worker salaries. They're still outsourcing jobs overseas, and creating new jobs in China and India.

    Do we need to start raising tariffs to make it more expensive to send work overseas and import the products made back to the US?

    April 18, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  62. Karl in Flint, MI

    What's to fix? The majority of Americans love OUR Congressmen and Senators and it's all that other guys fault. What it is going to take is people not buying into their local politician's brainwashing ads and consider realistically whether their representatives on the national scale are the solution or the problem. We get what we vote for. Don't worry, the economy will survive, one way or the other, the rich will see to that, but whether there is a middle class in that future and not just very rich and very poor, is what people have to wake up to. Unfortunately too many of my fellow Americans aren't that smart and won't wake up until its way too late.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  63. Kevin SD CA

    The whole Country needs to revolt and not pay their taxes until government slashes its pay and starts solving problems like the rest of us!

    April 18, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  64. Brian Samuels (Chicago)

    The problem we have in Congress Jack, is everybody thinks their Congressman is okay, it's the other politicians in Congress that are the problem. So, when Congress is deadlocked, like they are now, they should be forced into 'Lame-Duck Run-off Elections' Instead of voting for your own Congressman, you would have to vote for your neighbor's Congressman, and in turn another district would be forced to vote for yours, etc. This would force Congress to work together to fix the economy, or be forced into a Lame-Duck election. It's called putting a fire under their ass.

    April 18, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
  65. Kevin, Chester Springs, PA

    A Democrat-controlled House. 60 Senate Democrats. Obama in the White House for 4 more years. And less spending and more revenue. A piece of cake!

    April 18, 2012 at 3:53 pm |

    Jack, what it would actually take if for EVERY SINGLE MEMBER of the House and Senate to be voted OUT of office the next time they are up for re-election.....then and ONLY then, will the Congress know that if they don't get their "stuff" together and straighten this country out financially, then they are lame ducks on day one of their term!!

    April 18, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
  67. Richard Page Rapid City, SD

    i propose congress and the senate work for minimum wage, jack. and no cost of living increases, either. given their level of productivity, they are terribly overcompensated. working on the people's behalf for minimum wage might be the best incentive to actually move this country forward.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
  68. Paul in NC

    Congress will fix the economy when the voters fix Congress. That means expunging anyone affiliated with the tea party and everyone who signed the Norquist pledge. Replace those lugs with candidates from either party who stand within shouting distance of the center. Appoint only the most moderate and rational of those to all the congressional leadership positions and work on true bipartisan legislation designed to confront our eceonomic issues head on. It's a simple solution; and as likely to happen as a successful North Korean rocket launch.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
  69. Gigi Oregon

    In my opinion, The Republican Party has refused to help with any meaningful progress to help our budget, jobs and debt so that...it will look bad for the re-election of President Obama. Where do I get this from...right out of the mouth of the Republican party. They have acted childish over the entire 3+ years. Do they really think I, as a conservative Christian, knowing my scripture would reward them with my vote in November 2012. And if they would turn the other check from now to November it would not erase their bad seeds of hate. I believe God is blessing President Obama.. and only He will be able to turn around the mess of the last dozen years. Caused by the "religious right". In My opinion.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
  70. deborah ballweg Seibert, co

    A change in the white house, the makeup of the senate and more tea party members. Then maybe we can get to term limits. If we could get those assholes to stop running for re-election, we could get something done.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  71. Dan in Albuquerque

    When we no longer have half of congress obstructing anything the president does, then much of that half of congress needs to be voted out. Only then can Obama use a deliberate, long term plan to bring us out of the mess caused largely by the last administration. The American people gave a 2/3 disapproval rating to Bush when he left office and that says it all.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  72. Mark in BC NV

    Instead of taxing the millionaires who actually create jobs with their spending, our Socialis Federal government, aka People's Democratic Socialist Plantation Party wants to raise their taxes. And when that isn't enough, they'll come back for more. Our debt and deficit problem isn't our not enough "taxing" but the BS spending on the State and Federal levels. The Feds need a 30% employment force reduction asap. and I don't mean the military who actually do something. In the age of electronic media, the USPS can be cut back, no more Saturdays, no junk mail, etc. Combine or get rid of all these departments that don't bring value to the people. Run the government like a business and quit wasting our money.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  73. Bob Kansas City, Mo.

    There's a simple answer, another great depression or term limits.....career politicians aren't going to fix a flat tire much less the economy if reelection is jeopardized.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  74. Leta

    Vote all the Republicans out, their only goal is to defeat President Obama. Meanwhile the President
    is trying to

    April 18, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  75. Mr. D

    We need to let the GSA or the Secret Service handle all the problems we are facing. They seem to be able to get "things" done. In the meantime Congress can get ready for their summer recess and going on the road politicing so they can return to office and continue to do nothing.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  76. RickFromDetroit

    If Congress can't fix the economy it won't get fixed. The problem with the economy is the anemic consumer spending that is being generated by the 45% of the Americans who are classified as low income or poverty. These people are part of the 47% of Americans who are not paying any income tax, therefore tax cuts will not improve their anemic consumer spending since they aren't paying any taxes. Tax cuts for the wealthy will go directly to wall street and the business sector can't expand until they have someone to purchase their products.

    If we want to see the economy blossom then we should try this:
    [1] Issue a $10,000 voucher for the purchase of a new car to all Americans who earn less than $30,000 a year. NOTE: The "cash for clunkers" was a big success.
    [2] Issue a $5,000 voucher for the retailer(s) of your choice for all Americans who earn less than $30,000 a year. NOTE: The tax rebate of 2009 was also a big success.
    [3] In order to keep the stimulus moving for the "long term" send the vouchers out monthly by the first initial of the last name. This should provide the economy with 26 months of strong growth and keep the economy moving do to the increase in consumer spending.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  77. Tony from Southport

    My God man, have you not been listening? Obama has to go. Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi have to go. Democrats in the Senate HAVE TO GO. This is not a difficult question. Vote democrats out in November and let's get the country back to work and headed in the right direction!

    April 18, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  78. AB

    It will take President Obama lighting a fire under Congress to get to work fixing the economy by taking his case to the American people. Congress has to cooperate with the President to get things done. Or President Obama can delay a recess by holding a special session until these economic issues are satisfactorily addressed.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
  79. Michael Bindner, Alexandria VA

    Congress is not about to do anything about underwater mortgages held by the government. They should be sold to the Federal Reserve and written down, with payments adjusted accordingly for all borrowers (not just those in trouble). TARP already includes provisions for position limits in the oil market. Once the final rule gets out of federal court, it should have a huge impact. Even though the current Congress is useless, the last one did some good work. People may just remember that on election day.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  80. joshua

    2010 was a good start. Getting Nancy Pelosi out of the Speaker's chair will help. Next, we have to vote Obama out of office and get someone in who puts the American people ahead of their party's desire to protect their voting block. Next is to vote Harry Reid out of office. We had two FULL YEARS of Democrat control of the White House, the Senate and The House of Representatives. They had a super majority and didn't need a single Republican vote to pass anything they wanted, but chose to go after spending programs to benefit their major party donors on Wall Street and their Union buddies. So getting rid of the TAX and Spend liberals will do wonders to get our economy moving again. Once businesses know that Obama can't implement any more of his anti-business programs and executive orders, they will start to invest in new plants and expansions and our economy will start booming.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  81. Steve, NY

    I thought that it's Obama's responsibility to fix the economy. That's why we elected him. The media blamed Bush for the bad economy. Why wasn't it Congresses fault then when the Democrats were in power in 2006-2010.
    We have a double standard here.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  82. Paul P.

    People need to take a stand and together vote every single member of Congress out at the first chance to send a message that bickering, pledge signing and inaction won't be tolerated. Getting tossed out on their behinds and told not to come back is the only thing we the people can do. Putting them back in merely tells them we expect more of the same.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
  83. Conor in Chicago

    Until both parties agree on what constitutes reality there will be no fixing the economy.

    One party believes in regulated free markets, a tax structure that is progressive so that the necessities of society can be properly maintained, and a social safety net system that is guaranteed by the government so that society can count on it being there when needed. Cost is a secondary issue since meeting these obligations are considered the primary objective.

    The other party believes in unregulated markets, a tax structure that benefits only the individual, forcing all individuals to fend for themselves no matter what their circumstances are, and believes that nearly anything that exists , whether it be social safety nets or picking up the garbage, should be governed by the free market and have a profit structure since this will maximize potential and efficiency. Cost means everything since the driving force behind this world-view is freeing up as much of one’s profitable labor as possible, so it can be reinvested into society as a profit making venture, which will in turn solve all of societies’ problems because there is a buck to be made doing anything.

    Both views are completely intractable. If you believe in one whole-heartedly, you, by definition, cannot believe in the other one. There is very little grey area. And, so long as every single person in our government refuses to budge on these positions nothing will ever get done ever again. It’s that simple. Either start electing ideologically flexible people into our government or start making bets on the day we collapse from total inaction.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
  84. Al - Orlando

    Invasion by somebody who is willing to bury our debt

    April 18, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  85. Nancy, Tennessee

    If Congress cannot fix the economy, the American people need to fix Congress. We need a few good men and a few good laws that will help bring this country back. The first law should be that the U.S. cannot go to war without the written consent of Congress. That way when it is time to fund the war with taxpayer dollars they will be accountable.
    War and job outsourcing to other countries has put this country on the brink of economic disaster.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  86. Kevin in CA

    Can't be done by Congress or anyone else for that matter. It'll take a complete economic meltdown and ensuing social upheaval to change anything. Until then, the 1% er's have a strangle hold.

    April 18, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  87. Linda King

    Most of the comments your getting Jack is that the economy will fix its self. Funny thing is that "they" can make it collapse but they can't fix it. We made a lot of mistakes, bailing out corporations was the biggest. Allowing Wall-Street to run mad and do things that shouldn't have been done. Look to the past to fix the present, if not it ain't ever gonna be fixed. We will just see it happen again and again. They know how to start a depression, they better get some talent and know how to make it go the other way. And that is the problem, they don't want a thriving economy. Linda, Atlanta, GA

    April 18, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
  88. Ted

    Obama knows how to spend money. We need someone who knows how to make money. The dems controlled congress the first 2 years of Obamas term....THINK

    April 18, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
  89. Troy Smith

    No politician WILL do anything to fix the economy because it would be political suicide. The only person who offered a real plan was Ron Paul and he lost every primary. The answer to our problems to stop spending so much. We need huge spending cuts but noone wants their stuff cut. Big spending cuts is the answer but it also guarantee's your opponent will win the election.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
  90. Phyllis G. Williams

    If Congress won't fix the economy, what will it take?

    America is said to be the land where "money grows on trees"
    why don't you get an honest man (say yourself) to accept contributions
    for the deficit. Those who know that "He that loveth silver shall not be satisfied with silver"
    "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return" , " God will answer him
    in the joy of his heart" (Eccle. 5 : Job 1: 21) will contribute, because they have billions lying
    dead in the banks when they could be getting "treasures in heaven" (Matthew 6: 20) (smile)

    April 18, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
  91. Tyler

    Kingston NY

    The people need to let the government know that they are fed up, and I don't mean the Tea Party or Occupy Wall Street. The protests need to be bigger than that. Americans are concerned about real issues, unlike the high school style drama happening on Capitol Hill.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
  92. Fernando from dallas tx

    If congress and obama wont do anything about the economy then I dont know who can. Why bother fixing something thats irrversible? I dont know about you jack but im getting very scared about the future. I guess Americans will have to start counting their blessings.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
  93. marybeth, massachusetts

    Jack, where'd you get those facts? Fox News? The Heritage Foundation? And where have you been for the last 11 years? De-regulation is one of causes of the economic pickle that we're in. If you don't have cops, the criminals take over. Same with corporations and the financial services industry–Congress repealed Glass-Stegall, and in less than 10 years, we're in a depression like the one the country faced after the 1929 Stock Market Crash.

    Congress is bought and paid for by corporate lobbyists, big business, and special interest groups. They no longer represent the people or our interests. Their main goal is to shovel as much money, wealth, and largesse to corporations and the wealthiest people as possible. Everyone else be damned, you're on your own.

    The economy won't improve until people start spending money. People won't spend money until they have stable jobs that pay enough for people to live and save for the future and to have extra money. If you're not working, you're not spending money on anything other than the bare necessities of living (rent, food). If you're working at a low-paying job, or had your hours or salary and benefits cut, then you're not spending money either. You have to get people working again, and pay them a decent salary, and once they start spending, then the economy will improve.

    The other problem is that we don't make anything here anymore. Everything from tvs to flyswatters to dishes to toilet paper to clothing is made in China. Bring manufacturing jobs with decent salaries back, get people working again, and the economy will improve.

    Government can help the economy if it chooses. Right now the Republican-controlled Congress is deliberately choosing NOT to help the economy because they want people to suffer because they think it will produce a political windfall for them and because they don't care about the people unless those people are corporations. Even Reagan believed that government should "prime the pump" (invest money and resources in the economy, in research, etc.) as a way to stimulate the economy. Even he recognized that leaving everything to the private sector doesn't work.

    Since Congress doesn't want to do its job, the way to fix things is with a revolution, otherwise we'll be like Rome in 476 AD, weak, corrupt, and about to be invaded and vanquished by barbarians.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
  94. 2011 Eyes

    If they couldn't figure out that 2 wars, Trillions of tax dollars to foreign countries with tax cuts for the wealthy wasn't going to work, then we need to make the change in November. It's way over-due.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  95. gg

    when you replaced MADE IN AMERICA for SOLD IN AMERICA what did you think was going to happen every body working at wall-mart. take away the politicians pensions going back 30 years. maybe the next crop will work for the american people

    April 18, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  96. Thom Richer

    A completely NEW Congress from the top down. Those who are now in Congress have not, do not and will never represent the working men and women of America. Until we have people in Congress who respect the people and are there for the sole purpose of representating the people, nothing will change. The world is being taken control of through economic means rather than by force as was Hitler's means. We called it "World Domination" then. Now we have a softer more "friendly" and devious name for it..."Global Economy." Keep the majority in poverty and the few will have control without weapons. If we are to have a strong, working and secure economy we must first have economic autonomy.

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    April 18, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  97. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Mr. Cafferty:
    I have thought about this many times and it would have to be "spontaneous itegrity". This is because if any of the leaders and capitalists thought about it for a moment, the answer would be...."nah". In other words they would rather risk spontaneous ignition than do the right thing for the U.S.A.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:33 pm |
  98. Palin Power

    It will take Palinomics to completely fix this economy. Electing Sarah Palin as our next President is the first step to quick and complete economic recovery. President Palin will completely clean up our corrupt government and make it truly work for the people. The Palination will truly be the country of jobs and opportunities.

    April 18, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
  99. Jenna Roseville CA

    If Congress won't fix the economy, what will it take?

    Simply Jack, it will take a SUPER MAJORITY for Democrats in the House and Senate and Congress. The GOP has abused the fillibuster since president Obama took office. So let the party of NO sit by the sidelines and let the ADULTS get the job done.

    Roseville CA

    April 18, 2012 at 5:42 pm |
  100. John from Alabama

    Jack: Congress must change back to the Democrats, so those who only know how to say, "no" will be gone. If your not part of the solution, you are part of the problem. The Tea Party wing of the Republican Party has decided nothing will be accomplished in Congress. The Speaker can not control is own members, and the Democrats do not have the votes to accomplish anything. It is a terrible situation, and the citizens are paying for this no win situation in Congress.

    April 19, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
  101. Joseph Kavanaugh

    Jack, A lot of people are muttering the word REVOLUTION. Unfortunately, to turn the boat we are on before hitting the great fall's, only a heroic act, loss of life and pure love for this country will resolve and restore historic values that were distorted over time. There is no quick fix or anything that can be drawn up on paper that can be voted on to redirect all the indifferences and fraud currently going on here in America. To do the right thing means making those who oppose will be unhappy, then so be it.

    April 19, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
  102. Gordo from NJ

    Bulldoze K Street and whatever form of fungus grows out of the ruins, make all elections 100% publicly funded, and outlaw all campaign donations. Eliminate judicial elections. Elected officials should have no other sources of income outside their government pay check. Finally, all states should follow Vermont's lead by amending their Constitutions to abolish corporate personhood.

    April 19, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
  103. Joanie Bach

    The debit is not fixable....it's a disaster. Five TRILLION dollars spent alone by Obama and his group in 3 1/4 yrs is unimaginable...so stupid. Stupid has risen to the surface however. Is their agenda something else? We don't know.
    75% of Congress needs to be voted out soon, and pray that someone can come up with a solution.
    Joanie B

    April 19, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
  104. Kim , Dodge City, Ks

    Why would Congress want to fix the economy? It works just fine for them. By creating the illusion that we need them to solve our problems, they can perpetuate an enless supply of money for themselves through taxes, bribes, and kick-backs from corporate cronies. Sure, it's fun to ask the question, but deep down we all know that Congress has given up on being concerned for the well being of American citizens a very long time ago.

    April 19, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  105. Loren

    A President with a sense of responsibility to our country. Apologies to Barack Obama, but I've never felt that either he or the Democratic Party has any particular love for the history of our country and its process of evolution, their preference appearing to be to want to start all over in some kind of wonderland where the rules of nature don't apply. The Republicans talk a good game, but when push comes to shove, their desire to be reelected causes them to throw reason out the wondow. Having a leader who has a real understanding of our country's history, and not just what's pushed in the acdemic circles of the East Coast, might have a chance of bringing both the Republicans and Democrats back to reason and stop their self-dealing. While I have my doubts about Romney, he is more likely to be that voice of reason, then Barack Obama, beholden as he is to the Chicago style of politics, with its promise the masses anything, but deliver for your friends cynicism.

    April 19, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  106. Teresa Charlottesville, VA

    Take the filibuster GOP out of office, vote in people who have ideas that won't make the rich richer and the poor poorer. Instead of financing wars, increase subsidiaries to business that create jobs for clean energy, and manufacturing. Tax corporations more for moving jobs overseas. Stop giving incentives to rich corporations that can't prove they have created jobs. Make the trickle theory begin with small business.

    April 19, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  107. David in Tampa

    You have that wrong Jack. It's not that Congress can't fix the economic mess they created, it's that they don't want to fix it. They are having too much fun playing politics with those less fortunate or already devastated (80% of the population) by their greed.

    April 19, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
  108. anination7

    Many people think a new congress would magically fix everything but I'm not buying it. If Republicans take over in November the Democrats will just vote against them. Also cutting the pay or time a person stays in congress is idiotic. The only thing we would get out of that is more lobbyists being paid by companies. Lets just hope I'm wrong and they do something before it's too late.

    April 19, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  109. Mitoosense Ft Lauderdale Florida

    A moderatly organized third party would be an excellent start. Change the primary to best 4 instead of Republican or Democrat

    April 19, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
  110. barbara in nc

    We got in this mess under a republican - and his people got wealthy. Do you really think another republican seeking wealth for his friends is going to fix it? ha ha ha ha ha

    April 19, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
  111. Fred M Tolleson

    Mr.Cafferty, you hit the nail on the head again – this time congressional inaction will cause the Republicans to be slaughtered this fall. Not only is Mitt Romney going down, you could speculate that the House will return to Democratic control and the Senate will pick up 1=2 seats on the Democrats side. The other really good news is that the Tea Party and the nutty right wing will take a good share of the responsibility for this radical turn to the left by the electorate!! I love it!!

    April 19, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
  112. Pete in Florida

    There is no problem so bad that the United States Congress can not make it worse. Seriously, Jack, when was the last time you saw our Congress do ANYTHING really really well??? Whatever they finally do about our economy, you can be sure that it WON'T be an improvement. Let's put the Repubs back in charge of everything – after all, that went really well in the Bush years. Oh, wait......

    April 19, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
  113. dan from PA.

    Mitt should just write a check! He's been buying the Republican nomination. He's a hedge fund salvage specialist, so maybe he could buy the USA, fire a bunch of us, and just sell off the parts. He could talk to some of his buddies where he keeps his Swiss bank accounts to help with his leveraged buy-out. In the meantime, I'll be living in a dog carrier on my way to Canada.

    April 19, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  114. Ted

    Re-elect Obama,let him spend 5 trillion more dollars that will bankrupt America and then ask China for a bailout.....It will be wonderful too because we would be all covered under Chinas' healthcare system too.

    April 19, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
  115. George in PA

    Jack, I agree the situation is desperate! Perhaps if we each took a dollar bill out of our pocket and turned it over and read IN GOD WE TRUST, we'd find an answer?

    April 19, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
  116. Oliver El Paso, TX

    When you have the speaker of house showing discontent to the president of US, who openly has said that he will be against any proposal by the president. This is a conspiracy to drag down US government. Just see the interview with Charlie Rose, you can see his expression of discontent to the president, lets hope he is replace, Gingrich believe that no one could throw him out of office look what happen to him.

    April 19, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  117. KWardsky10

    Sorry Jack.... It's NEVER going to happen. With all the time the President and Congress spend on condemning each other over who was raised poorer and who "understands" the pain of the middle class, they have no time left to actually try and work together and solve it. All I know is that they ALL are getting paid pretty well. Maybe Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney would like to join my family on vacation this year, we are going back to the Delaware Shore for 3 days. They might even chip in for the rental...

    April 19, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
  118. Ralph in Oklahoma

    Same things it always takes to fix tough problems. Imagination, determination and elbow grease. Three things we once had in spades ... when jumping into the fray and rolling up our sleeves seemed a better idea than pointing fingers at puffed-up politicians promising post-recession prosperity in presidential-campaign prognostications.

    April 19, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  119. pat in michigan

    That is a no brainer. Replace Congress.Entirely. Why would you let any of these people stay when they won't do their job?I don't care if the Democtatic candidate says they tried. They didn't try hard enough. The same goes for the Republican Candidates. The mantra in this election cycle should be "None of the above"

    April 19, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
  120. Cliff Glass - East Rockaway, NY


    The problem is that Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Men might as well as been speaking to the American electorate and Congress when he said, " you can't handle the truth" Entltlement cuts, reduced spending, and tax increases need to part of any economic plan and their is no stomach in Wasington for imperiling their own re-election nor in the country for self-sacrifice.

    April 19, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
  121. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    We can all stop expecting this Congress or any future Congress to fix this economy, it's not going to happen anytime soon. We can't admit to countries like China, Brazil and a few other countries, whose economy is growing, that ours is fixed but shows no growth compared to theirs.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  122. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Vote the scum bags out of office, they won't suffer to much they will just take their lobbyist money and go home which is what they should do. I've never saw such a worthless bunch in my seventy years on this earth, if they couldn't tell a lie or take a kick back from some industry they would be lost, they are just pure stupid, don't know what the work NO means.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  123. Thinkforyourself, OK

    Elect Tea Party conservatives, throw out all the Marxists and Socialists.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
  124. Terry in Virginia

    Congress could fix the economy IF they stopped acting like tyrannical children who think everyone except the wealthy should bow down before them. It's overdue for them all to take a major pay cut, have their privileged retirement funds merged into the same Social Security System that's good enough for the rest of us, lose their high-end health benefits in favor of one comparable to that the average American pays for, and work a 40 hour week, not a 40 hour month - if that. These men and women work for all the people and since they clearly are loathe to do so, it's time to fire them all come election day.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  125. Tom, Virginia

    Jack, sounds like the economists have the right idea. If we reform the tax code, remove deductions and loopholes, reduce tax rates both corporate and individual, and reform the affordable health care act rather than eliminated it. I think we would finally be on the right track. But to expect Congress in the Republican or Democrat to vote against special interest groups and to with right for the American people as a joke. They've made that very clear. One of these days the Wall Street protesters are going to realize their agenda and begin protesting Congress

    April 19, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
  126. Dave in alabama

    Does it really matter what we think?

    April 19, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  127. John from Florida

    A major overhaul of congress. They are no longer for the people.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  128. Larry Feierstein-Denver

    The system is and has been broken for years. The only thing that will change it? a strong sensible third party? Change in the campaign and tax systems and HONEST policitians who dont take any money from any lobbyists. Not in our lifetime.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  129. Peter, Tarrytown, N.Y.

    The best government is no government. We're Americans. we can take care of ourselves.
    Start with elimininating all regulations. Let every business operate in what ever manner they choose regardless of how it might impact us as humans.
    Eliminate all taxes. we can plow the street in front of our house and fix the potholes. We can dig our own wells for water. We can arm ourselves to protect us from bad guys. We can fight our own fires using our well water. Grow our own food, both plant and animal.
    Home school our children. They can tailor their education to fit their religious/ideological beliefs It will get women out the the workforce and open up more jobs for men. It's a start.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  130. Michael, from Smiths, Alabama

    Two words, Jack: New Blood. Time to kick out the so-called Tea Party, who act more like spoiled brats than Congresspeople...and perhaps lock the halls of Congress and tell everyone they cannot leave until they pass something to get the economy fixed.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
  131. Mike in Minneapolis

    We as individuals need to reflect on our individual lives. Instead of worrying and complaining about the national debt, now is the time we should pay off our own credit cards. The healthcare bill might be overturned, so instead of obsessing about that, now is the time to get in shape and avoid the whole system all together. Most people are not doing what they want to be doing, and what they want to be doing is something at which they are probably very good. Now is the time to focus on that instead of looking for another job as a corporate shill. Now is the time to worry about the pennies. The dollars will take care of themselves.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
  132. Mark...in Houston

    The machinery that runs it all needs to be stripped down and replaced along with all those who depend on it for political power and wealth. Kicking them all out has been bandied about for ages...it doesn't work, too many voters are easily influenced by the snake oil salesman who will say and promise anything to gain office...at that point all you end up with is a fiercely divided electorate which pretty much hates the other side based on rumor and lies and the dysfunction in DC continues..

    Short of some form of revolution...I see no hope. But that probably wouldn't work either, the country is simply too divided to unite behind a common cause.

    So the final "what will it take" is probably going to end up being no change that will make a difference resulting in the destruction of all of us..including those who perpetuate the problem. The cancer will be destroyed when the host is dead.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  133. Annie, Atlanta

    When jobs return our economy will improve. Our jobs won't return until our wages and benefits are lower than those in China and India. We have a ways to go, but our corporations, with an assist from our politicians, are working on that race to the bottomt as we speak.

    April 19, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
  134. Larry in Houston

    To be perfectly honest, as long as we're 15 trill in hock – it really doesn't matter who gets IN, as our next commander in chief, because Neither one of them will be able to Fix the economy. And we already know Congress isn't going to do anything. It seems like the congress people gets elected for one thing, benefits / Pay & all the 'perks' – – by the time Romney's 3rd year in Office, we will be around 18 trillion – we're sunk. And wait til Romney cuts out all the post offices they keep saying on that T.V. commercial. Remember one thing : Once they "Cut" and it works, even though whatever has been "cut" works, even if you cripple along with it working, we will Never, Never go back to What It Once Was, ( and I mean Never go back, what it once was) Pitiful, isn't it ? Vote Democrat – 2012

    April 19, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
  135. Brian K

    We need to have an adult conversation about what we want govt to provide and make sure we pay for it today, not tomorrow or 10 years from now. We need an immediate 50% cut in the Federal budget to end deficit spending. That means cutting Defense and Entitlements. No one wants to admit it, but Entitlements must be cut. They cannot be paid for no matter how high you raise taxes.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
  136. Donna in Arizona

    This "democracy" failed a long time ago. That's why Congress doesn't do anything anymore! They are completely ineffective at finding solutions to America's problems because they are SO out of touch. Our illustrious leaders are rich people who are merely collecting their generous paychecks, enjoying the best health insurance available, and perks the average American can't even fathom, riding to and from the airport in limousines so they can travel the world in private jets on our dime. These are the same people who have sold-out America and lined their personal pockets in the process! They and their families are set for life! Why would they change a thing?

    April 19, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
  137. stephen hapke

    The voters to throw out every Republican they can–with a Democratic President, House and Senate and the President never coming up for re-election maybe they could start to fix the shift in the economy that has taken place over the last 30 years–more and more money in the hands of fewer and fewer people.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  138. Ethan

    They won't do anything at all. It's gonna take protests, sit-ins, and yes maybe riots to get it through their thick heads to DO something. Being a Congressman/woman is not a job, it's just getting payed to do nothing over and over again.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  139. Daniel

    Jack, you know what it will take. A majority control in both the house and senate in order to get bills and measures moved on into laws. Political gridlock will only be what it is now. Nothing getting done, blame here and there on both sides. Play me a small violin of sympathy.
    When Nov. 2nd comes and goes, so will the bills and laws.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  140. Joel

    Nothing. America's an oligarchy. Get used to it.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  141. bemusedvoter

    Why do you think Congress can fix the economy? All of their experience cuts the other way: messing it up, and at great expense to taxpayers. The best thing that could happen is to erase ALL the mindless financial regulation and legislation and START OVER. There is legislation on the books today that is over a hundred years old. Do we REALLY think centarian legislation is still right for today?

    April 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  142. Dan Louisville, KY

    It will likely take a Constitutional Crisis, like a President telling Congress that if they won't do their Constitutional duty by a certain deadline, that he will do it for them. However, the President, too, seems reluctant to put the bell on the cat.

    I recall Obama campaigning in 2008 stating that the current levels of entitlement spending are not sustainable, and when elected, he increased them. That is not to suggest the GOP field holds any hope. They want to protect the wealthy, ignore the poor, and pass laws against birth control, evolutionary science, environmental protection. Outrageous fiction!!!!

    Maybe we need a taxpayer lawsuit filed on behalf of future generations challenging the ability of the Congress and the President to borrow money for current expenditures without the guts to generate the revenues to pay for it, in effect taxing future voters who cannot vote these clowns out of office. Talk about taxation without representation. If we immediately got to a $100 Billion per year surplus, we would still have a debt 100 years from now.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  143. perry from albuquerque

    lets outsource their jobs like they did to us.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  144. vladamiric

    Its simple Jack Revolution! Or a mandate requiring all members of congress to live one year on public assistance below the poverty line would do just fine, but that is unrealistic so I say Revolution.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  145. Josh

    We need a revival of a space program. For every $1 spent on the Apollo program, $14 was returned to the U.S. economy through creation of jobs and products. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics(STEM) is a key driver of economic growth. America has been on a downward spiral in the STEM fields since the 1980s. China has some of the brightest minds in these fields, and their economy is booming. If we want to fix the economy, we need to revive interest and production in these fields.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  146. Steve

    Congress won't do anything about the economy until their paychecks are directly attached to how well the economy is doing.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  147. Louis

    Only 1 thing can fix those idiots jack, TERM LIMITS! Problem solved.
    Houston Texas

    April 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  148. chris north bay ontario

    maybe they could setup a ponzi scam. stupid me that's already being done

    April 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  149. Rick from Ohio

    It will take a new primary system. An open primary in all 50 states that has the two candidates who end up with the most votes running in the fall. This is one way to take control of the primaries away from the far right and far left and return it to the middle right or left. This is the only way that allows representatives with differences to work together without division. It is unfortunate when you feel you will be voted out of office just for talking with someone from the other party.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  150. Eric in Hoover, Alabama

    Unfortunately, Jack, while I know there are some good people in Congress, many of them have bought into that culture. Washington's bubble works to slowly corrode even the best and brightest of our nation, as you've no doubt seen in your time covering the beltway. Its like a morality acid bath. The country is on fire, the basement is flooding, the foundation is cracking, and the roof wants to fly off and not pay its taxes. Oh, and the entire shebang is about to slide off a cliff into the sea. All the pretty furniture we have upstairs is just damaged goods at this point. Despite all the better men we send to Washington, I'm an leaning towards advocating a Fire Sale. Everything must go.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  151. Darrell W

    I don't see a problem. All Democrats know that money grows on trees. Geesh!

    April 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
  152. Janice Payne, Plainview, TX

    Jack, STOP referring to the Democratic controlled Senate as "Congress" when talking about not voting on a budget. The liberal media is once again trying to tarnish the Republican Houseof Representatives by tieing both Houses of Congress together. Shame on you!!

    April 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  153. JJ from Arkansas

    Elect more centrists who will work across the aisle. In 2010 the far left labeled Arkansas US Senator a DINO. The far right llabeled Lincoln a liberal. Neither was true. She was a centrist and one of the few Senators who tried to look for bi-partisan solutions. Congress is now, more than ever, packed with rabid lefties and righties. In their minds, compromise is cardinal sin. As long as this situation exists, Congress will be in permanent gridlock.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  154. Essie

    Congress is pathetic!! They are only sitting on their hands so they can erroneously say that Pres. Obama has failed! This is simply EVILNESS at its best! We can only pray that GOD is with our President, and evil shall not prevail! ~OBAMA/BIDEN 2012!!!

    April 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  155. Fin - Birmingham, AL

    The coming of an Economic Savior of the stature of a Buddha or Christ.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  156. Dale N.M.

    Jack this solution is simple; vote the ones out who do not want to fix the economy, try to get a do-nothing government doing something again.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
  157. Peter in VT

    Jack, staggered term limits would be a start. We in Vermont have two Senators that have brought home more pork than a pig farmer. That's fine for us, but bad for the country.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  158. Prameela

    The only way Congress will ever fix this economy is if they are in as much trouble as we are.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  159. robert bartosh

    There is nothing to do but sit back and relax... since the millionaire job creators did not get an increase in taxes.. They have not been hurt and can now start creating the millions of jobs the republicans said they will create if they are not taxed at a higher rate...

    April 19, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  160. Tim

    Why Jack, I'm surprised at you. While the 1% get to keep their tax cuts, anyone that protests will be subject to arrest while being called "lazy". No matter how little the rest of us have to live on, Congress still manages to vote themselves pay-raises, receive lifetime benefits, and are always open to getting some bonus checks from their corporate sponsors. Thanks to fancy labels like "lobbying", even legalized graft is a well-oiled cottage industry. Do they really need to "fix" the economy, further? It's already as "fixed" as pro-wrestling.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  161. CharlieO, Sevierville, TN

    How about a national referendum to pass a law tying the salaries of lawmakers to their performance? However unlikely, it is about as possible as anything else. Otherwise, throw all the bums out and start over and eliminate all lobbying.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  162. WR Jones, New Port Richey, FL

    It will take the impossible, stop electing lawyers! You ask them questions you get spin, you ask them for facts you get stonewalled, you want action you get well planned excuses, you want an honest player and you get a weasel that lies to stay in office.
    The current crop of Senators is heavy with these weasels that won't commit to a budget because they fear appearing in front of the American public and explain why they voted left or right... they are cowards.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
  163. Stephanie H

    Honestly Jack I feel that the only way we'll get Congress to make some–any decisions about the economy and job growth if they were to suddenly find their jobs at risk. Basically, we have to hit them where it hurts–their cushy way of life. If they understood how much it's hitting the rest of us, as opposed to their guaranteed job security and decent income, maybe they'll think about someone other than themselves and maintaining their way of life. I'm 27 & have been jobless for 2 years. I'm getting my B.A. next month but excepting to fight highschoolders for a job. One can only hope they appreciate our reality and act accordingly.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  164. Pete Veslocki

    Replace Congress.
    And the Predudent!

    Send them all home without pay or pension.

    Elect new Senators and Congressmen and Predudent who will get our economy going.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
  165. Greg Dupree II

    It's time to let them all go! They all need to lose thier jobs! Lets clean out Washington this election!

    April 19, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
  166. Danny Los Angeles ca.

    The next election will tell a lot.this has been nothing but a stall tactic,four years is nothing for these guys to try and steal an election.their goal is to repeal healthcare and any oversight on wall street or on corporations.they like things just the way they were with bush.heads up guys news alert trickle down economics is a failure.corporate dominance is displacing small businesses employees and owners at alarming rate.yes increasing corporate market shares.but at the same time killing the middle-class and the consumer base were already seeing the impact with America's number one retailer saying that their core customers are running out of money. Jack Americans are losing ownership in America at alarming rates.we need a clear path to home ownership and shareholder security in America's greatest company's.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
  167. Michael in Albuquerque, NM

    The government has no power to fix the economy. It feeds off of the economy, and gives contracts to croneys so they may have their hands in tax payers pockets also. To pay for anything the government borrows money from bankers that create money out of thin air and then charge interest on it. That's is where the majority of our tax dollars go. I suppose congress could print interest free United States Notes instead of borrowing Federal Reserve Notes, but the last few presidents that tried that were shot dead in public. So, maybe the government will just let the economy take care of itself.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:33 pm |
  168. Steven

    We should make a third branch to congress that uses the Internet to collect votes for bills from the people but make it a 2/3 majority so you would just need one branch and the people to pass a bill and if the house and senate agree but it's not to popular it can still get done but if it's a 80 percent vote from the people it should have veto power like Facebook Domacracy I think the founding fathers would do that if they had our technology and I forgot to put I'm from NYC

    April 19, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
  169. Pamela from NC

    Because the "general" news media is more interested in titilation then providing solid journalism, it is unlikely the American public will ever become truly informed and will always vote based on reactionary responses and propaganda. Therefore it is going to be hard to "fire" and rebuild Congress for many, many years. Why should members of Congress act? They are "hired and paid" by large corporations and special interest groups. And our Corporations (I am a small business owner) are driven by stock owners dividends and not strategic planning for public wellbeing or even longevity. Example: Monsanto with the GMO seeds and lawsuits againest farmers refusing to use their products. Large corporations are going to continue to serve the pocketbook. So, bottomline, the country will have to continue to decline until the voting public (hopefully rationally and thoughtfully) get fed up enough to rebuild Congress and also vote to control election donations by Cspecial interest groups, corporations, etc. I personally think campaign funds should only use "reasonable" allotted public funds and no "fund raising" donations. In the meantime, all of us are on our own and need to plan/prepare accordingly. Very sad.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
  170. Jeff In Minnesota

    It means that we have "girlie men" in Congress. I'd like to avoid tough decisions just as much as the next person, but I don't always get that option. Congress needs to step up and do the right thing even though for a lot of Senators and Representatives, it will mean they will not be re-elected. Sorry, but we elected you to do the people's business and sometimes that business sucks. Welcome to the real world.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:42 pm |
  171. art

    A start is term limits, # 2 Freeze the % amount that the budget increase

    April 19, 2012 at 5:42 pm |
  172. Jon, Too close to DC

    Strange how in three years a democrat controlled senate has yet to put a budget out there. A republican house has at least tried. It also strikes me as kind of funny how the democrats haven't tried to pass a budget since Obamacare became law. How will we pay for that again?

    April 19, 2012 at 5:43 pm |
  173. Stephanie H, from Plattsburgh NY

    Honestly Jack I feel that the only way we'll get Congress to make some–any decisions about the economy and job growth if they were to suddenly find their jobs at risk. Basically, we have to hit them where it hurts–their cushy way of life. If they understood how much it's hitting the rest of us, as opposed to their guaranteed job security and decent income, maybe they'll think about someone other than themselves and maintaining their way of life. I'm 27 & have been jobless for 2 years. I'm getting my B.A. next month but excepting to fight highschoolders for a job. One can only hope they appreciate our reality and act accordingly. (Trying to override my older comment with my city and state in this one!)

    April 19, 2012 at 5:46 pm |
  174. Cheryl Lake Tahoe

    Put all Government workers on the Social Security and Medicare system. It'll get fixed in a hurry. Disallow Congress from voting for their own pay raises. They managed to stop the insider trading scam and as long as social media can watch everything they do, they'll be forced to do their jobs. Integrity is what you do when nobody is watching. That sums up our Government.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:48 pm |
  175. kejuan

    Point blank a more moderate congress. Not a didvided congresss whose "number one goal is to make Obama a one term president". And how do u do that ? The economy stupid!

    April 19, 2012 at 5:50 pm |