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SCOUTER-Terry

Ten reasons I’m voting for Obama and against McCain

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I always get tickled at the argument for Bush's low ratings by pointing to the lower ratings of the "Democratic" Congress. The Congress is "Democratic" by the narrowest of margins. While 51% of the disgust is with the Democrats in Congress, we have to keep in mind that 49% of the disgust is with the Republicans.

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Yeah, Beaver, it is a funny point. And I would guess a ton of the disapproval of Congress (from the Right, Left and Center of America) is driven by frustration... frustration over how ineffective Congress has been in balancing President Bush and enacting a vision for America. My disapproval of Congress has less to do with their action than their inaction.

 

 

TERRY HOWERTON

 

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My calculator tells me the US House is 54% Democrat, 46% Republican.

 

Funny, my disapproval has to do with their action - spending like drunken sailors, pork-barrel projects for everyone, budgets hundreds of pages long - long enough that no one can read them all before they vote.

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Funny thing - I posted a reply a while back but it seems to have vanished in the ethers. So I'll try again.

 

Brent, you claimed that pack's opinion of Bush was "extreme." I pointed out that based on the evidence, in fact pack's view is pretty mainstream, in that the great majority of Americans seem to share that view. Your argument about Congress is (at best) a tangent.

 

But, if you want to talk about Congress, yes sure, their approval rating is horrible (between 18-20% right now depending on the poll). Beaver and Terry have hit on some good explanations for why this is the case. Let me also just point out that the Congressional approval ratings in late 2006 - back when the Republicans were still in control - were just about exactly where the approval ratings for Congress are today. So I don't think it makes a lot of sense to try to hang this on one party or the other.

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Just an FYI, all the Senators and Representatives from both parties and all states stink except for those from Oklahoma. Those guys are great!!! ;)

 

An interesting exercise would be to see how your local guys poll at home as opposed to how Congress polls nationally. I'd bet a dollar to a donut that you would see an astronomical difference. That is kind of telling isn't it? The reason all of those bums in DC are there is because we elect heroes back home.

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The reason all of those bums in DC are there is because we elect heroes back home.

I would suggest that the reason all those bums are there is because they aren't term limited. We don't elect any heroes here. We elect the least worst bum we can find and send him/her back.

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While I don't like career politicians, I also don't like term limits. The funny thing about term limits is that one side is for them when the other side is in power and against them when they get back in power. It is kind of like the filibuster. Why should a person have to step down after X number of terms? Does your boss get replaced every 4 years? Does your spouse? If someone is doing a good job representing the people in their "district", the people should be able to keep the person in office to continue doing the good job.

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Lisa,

Congress rated at 29% (CBS/NYT)for 10/27 - 31/06.

 

Congress rated at 15% (CBS/NYT) for 10/25 - 28/08.

 

The Democrat controlled Congress approval rating is half of what the Republican controlled Congress was from 2006.

 

Neither is anything to be proud of.

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We have plenty of other term limits - POTUS, governors, even my county CEO. I am in favor of them because we need citizens in congress, not professional politicians. Politicians have power for 6 - 12 years. After that, they gain absolute power, which corrupts absolutely. Send them back to be citizens again, and bring in a new batch of citizens to govern.

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Yah, I have to agree with BA on term limits, eh?

 

Watched it a lot in state legislatures. Guys who've been in a long time get set in their ways, don't listen to new ideas. They've made their friends, and are "bought and paid for" by da lobbyists. Even worse at the federal level, where there's a lot more lobbyist and out-of-state money propping these fellows up.

 

Lots of smart people with good values in the country, eh? No reason one person should stay around long enough to be Lord of the Realm, whatever the realm/committee should be.

 

I reckon, though, that the reason the Democratic Congress has such low approval ratings is because the people wanted and expected them to stand up to and reverse George Bush's policies and errors, eh? That's what da election of 2006 was about. Instead, Reid and Pelosi have mostly rolled over on every issue. No courage at all. They've been in too long. They start to think that beltway and congress stuff matters more than representing the people. They worry about news cycles and perception rather than what's right.

 

So core Republicans don't like Congress because it's Democrat-controlled. Democrats don't like 'em because they've been "do-nothings". All of us disapprove because of their caving in on the Bush bailout barbeque with Pork. Only thing that makes their approval ratings lower than Bush's is that the core Democrats are better at evaluating the performance of their guys than the core Republicans are at evaluating Bush ;)

 

Beavah

 

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While an incumbent has an advantage, they do not stay in office by default. They have to be elected by their constituents. Free and open elections are as American as capitalism and free trade. Government regulation in any form is typically not a good thing.

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You guys do not want to have term limits. And I will give you a couple of reasons. First, having term limits is undemocratic. If the people want to keep electing someone to an office that is their right.

 

But lets say there were term limits. What would happen? In DC right now is a cadre of "staffers" who in a few months will be out of jobs as their Congressman/Senator will lose the election. They aren't too worried as the new people comming in will also need staffers and most often hire those with experience. The new Senator needs help finding a residence, the Senate train, all those things. How to find his office, the party caucus room. All the stuff a staffer does. If the newly elected politico gets to hang around for a few term, reliance on the staffers lessens. But if we keep changing over politicos the only constant in the mix is the staffers, unknown, faceless bureaucrats shaping attitudes who have no accountability. Not my idea of a good situation

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YEah depends a bit on the exact poll. Looking at an interview with the Pew Center's Andrew Kohut (as fair as they come, that guy), I see that on October 19 2006, Kohut was reporting a 16% approval rating.

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/politics/july-dec06/congress_10-19.html

 

But more importantly perhaps, is to look at who disapproves of Congress and why. In that regard I found this report to be pretty interesting, coming from Gallup (again, a well-regarded professional polling organization). This summer, they found that Congressional approval was at 14%, which was apparently the lowest rating in the 30+ year history of Gallup asking that question. Upon furhter investigation one thing they found was that the biggest drop in approval seemed to come from Democratic voters, who felt about the same way about the Democratically controlled Congress in July 2008 (11% approval), as they did about the Repubican controlled Congress in October 2006 (12% approval).

 

Edited to add: OOPs, I forgot the link the first time. Here it is: http://www.gallup.com/poll/108856/Congressional-Approval-Hits-RecordLow-14.aspx

 

While it may shock you to learn that I'm not too impressed with Nancy Pelosi and friends myself from time to time, the numbers in the Gallup poll do seem to support what Terry said in his recent post, that people are frustrated with Congress, and specifically that Dems have been frustrated with Congress' seeming inability to make much of a difference in the Bush policies of the last few years.

 

Anyway, my larger point was that it is sort of goofy to blame either party exclusively for low Congressional approval ratings because there's plenty of blame to go 'round, and voters of most stripes are in a pretty ugly mood these days.

 

As for term limits - people might want to consider the downsides. Living in MI I can tell you that even many former supporters have changed their minds after giving this a whirl. We have term limits on state legislative offices. The result has been huge turn-over meaning lots of inexperienced folks who are inept and can't really be held accountable in the longer run because before you know it they're term-limited out of office. Also a big increase in nasty partisanship of the cheapest/lowest sorts because hey, you're only going to be in the legislature for a short time so why bother with bipartisanship, compromise, and common sense. Just play attack dog to your heart's content and while you're at it you'd better bow lower to those "special interests," which could set you up nicely for some other job when you are term-limited out in a couple of years. There's a reason this state has been run into the ground and it isn't all the fault of Ford and GM.(This message has been edited by lisabob)

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Terry, I just want to address one point you made..

 

6. President Palin, and the simple unseriousness of Republicans

 

Last I check, it was John McCain's name on the ballot for President; not Sarah Palin.

 

People have talked about how little experience she has and all that. Well, I look at it this way: IF Obama is elected today, then he WILL become President of the United States of America on January 20(or 21), 2009. IF McCain is elected today, Sarah Palin MIGHT become the President of the United States at some point..

 

Both of them are scary, but I feel we may be better off with a "might" than a "will" when it comes to inexperienced politicians.

 

Both Obama and Palin are inexperienced.

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hops,

 

Granted, they are both inexperienced. Having said that, would you want an inexperienced person who has been studying under the best minds like Warren Buffett and Colin Powell for the last two YEARS or an inexperienced person who has been studying for the last two MONTHS? If it were brain surgery, I know which I'd pick.

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