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    Dobbs: Lame ducks in a row

    Dobbs: Lame ducks in a row - CNN.com

    By Lou Dobbs
    CNN
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    Editor's Note: Lou Dobbs' commentary appears weekly on CNN.com.

    NEW YORK (CNN) -- President Bush isn't the only lame duck in our nation's capital. All 435 congressmen are up for re-election next year, and so are 34 of our senators. That's a total of 469 lame ducks, the way I see it.
    Lou Dobbs

    There are a lot more "lame ducks" in the nation's capital than in previous years, according to Lou Dobbs.

    For the record, there are 245 Democratic and 224 Republican lame ducks in Washington. And with the rising registration of Independents across the country, next year may be a bad season for lame ducks.

    With the electorate asserting a strong impulse to be independent, and with populism exerting a significant influence in the 2006 midterm elections, there is a possibility that all of those incumbents in the House and Senate may have to consider the possibility of actually having to represent their constituents and the popular will, rather than corporate America, socio-ethnic special interest groups and the tens of thousands of lobbyists who represent every interest but that of the common good and the nation.

    But unless the registration of independents continues to build, history still favors incumbents of both political parties. The success rate of incumbents in the 2006 midterms did decline significantly from the 2004 and 2002 elections. But even so, the incumbent re-election rate was 93.5 percent, down from 98 percent in both 2002 and 2004.

    I'm an Independent populist, so I look at the incumbent success rate as something akin to a recidivism rate. I'm hopeful that the electorate will be the ones who learn from the mistakes of their elected officials. It's probably too much to hope that our elected officials will learn from the errors of their ways, failing in so many ways to represent the people they will be asking to return them to office.

    Also, the Democratic and Republican presidential candidates may begin to take a greater interest in dealing with real issues confronting this country and less interest in the partisan nonsense that now passes for political discourse. We can only hope.

    President Bush's approval rating has reached a new low for his presidency. The latest USA Today Gallup poll reveals a new high in opposition to the Iraq war and the President's role in the immigration debate as the reasons for the loss of confidence in him. The poll shows only 29 percent of Americans approve of the president's job performance, which means that during his presidency, George W. Bush now has both the highest presidential rating in Gallup's polling history, at 90 percent, and one of the lowest. Only Harry Truman, Richard Nixon and Jimmy Carter had lower approval ratings.

    But again, President Bush isn't alone. The American public has the lowest confidence in Congress since Gallup began asking this question in 1973. A recent USA Today Gallup poll shows just 14 percent of Americans have confidence in the job Congress is doing.

    It's beginning to look like the American people may finally have had a bellyful of elected officials who do little more than shill for lobbyists, ignore the interests of America's citizens and perpetuate rather than solve the problems facing this nation.

    Could it be that we are seeing the awakening of the American people to the political charade that has been perpetrated for too many years by both political parties in Washington? We must do more than hope.
    This has to be one of the best OpEd pieces I've ever read. Most of us agree that Bush hasn't done a great job lately in the White House, and the approval ratings show it. But for Senatorial and Congressional Democrats to jump all over that is hypocritical and ridiculous because their approval ratings are even lower than the President's. I think Lou Dobbs hits the nail right on the head with this one - all of us are tired of the political games our leaders are playing with business, special interest groups, etc., and would rather they got back to the issues that matter most to us constituents.


    Chuck Lidell: I paint my toenails with pink and black polish. Problem is, I get more paint on my toes and on the carpet than on my nails. Any advice?
    Maria Sharapova: Don't you beat up other guys for a living? I don't know how to answer this.



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    Re: Dobbs: Lame ducks in a row

    I completely agree. I have a growing sense that people have gone past past anger and apathy to a whole new level. It's really about time. Hopefully people keep paying attention, and stay involved.



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    Re: Dobbs: Lame ducks in a row

    He's right, these people need to do their job. I'd get fired if I fought with my coworkers and got as little done as these people.



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    Re: Dobbs: Lame ducks in a row

    Quote Originally Posted by jdoggivjc View Post
    I think Lou Dobbs hits the nail right on the head with this one - all of us are tired of the political games our leaders are playing with business, special interest groups, etc., and would rather they got back to the issues that matter most to us constituents.
    Actually, I think this is part of the problem. When you ask people about politicians and government in general they tell you they don't like what is going on and think it is corrupt. However, when you ask people specifically about their representatives to government you get a far more positive response. It's the old..."most of these politicians are crooks but my guy is a good guy" line.

    Why is this?

    Simple...we have let government take our money through taxation to the point that the Federal budget is over $3 TRILLION annually. My small hometown in Iowa got a brand new post office a few years ago. They did not need it (but don't tell that to the citizens of my hometown that have great civic pride over the new building and appreciate the congressman that helped make it happen). Or what about the so-called "Bridge to Nowhere" that is being built in Alaska, I believe. Most of us look and say "why spend hundreds of millions of dollars on a bridge that will only benefit a few hundred people" but those citizens in Alaska think they need it and will probably be grateful enough to re-elect the politician that made it happen.

    The bottom line as I see it is that our politicians are controlling too much money. We need taxes to be reduced and the size of government (in terms of $ spent) to be reduced. Until this happens we will not see the end to career politicians and the lobbyists...because as it stands now they control so much money that being a politician is a very lucrative and powerful profession and anyone in business would be an utter fool to not hire a lobbyist to work on their behalf.



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    Re: Dobbs: Lame ducks in a row

    Quote Originally Posted by cyclone#1 View Post
    Until this happens we will not see the end to career politicians and the lobbyists...because as it stands now they control so much money that being a politician is a very lucrative and powerful profession
    No offense meant, but this is nothing new and doesn't go to the core of the issue that more and more Americans are registering independent to show their dissatisfaction. Robert Byrd from West Virginia was a KKK organizer as a young man, yet the fine citizens of WV return him to office because the state gets back $1.80 for every $1 in federal taxes they pay (not an exact number, but in the vicinity). I am a firm advocate of term limits...

    As for registering "independent", I've never been a "party member" and I've "protest voted" for an independent Presidential candidate at least three times! It's not the candidates or congressmen who are corrupt; it's the two-party system! I know neither of the existing major parties represents my belief system....

    I've never paid much attention to Lou Dobbs, but I might start now...


    Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please. - Mark Twain

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    Re: Dobbs: Lame ducks in a row

    Can you say line item veto?



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