Nobody likes Congress.
Its approval rating has dipped to 15 percent and shows no sign of improving. It’s ironic that Americans just chose who they want to represent them in last November’s elections and now, only three months later, this Congress is only slightly more popular than the group of officials we chose in the previous election.
Why do people disapprove of the 113th Congress?
A recent New York Times article noted that people who view Congress positively tend to have a better understanding of the institution. They know what to expect and what not to expect.
The people who approve of Congress are mostly those who either dislike President Obama or are just optimistic in general. Both of these groups see the part of Congress that the Framers intended: Congress and the president should be antagonistic, and the friction of their disagreement would include all the voices needed to represent those in the country.
The friction that occurs between rival groups, however, usually leads to stalemate. People do not want to see Congress sitting around trying to compromise. We want our government to be working and putting their tax dollars to work through infrastructure, schools and Social Security checks.
However, the compromise to get all of those things leads government to a standstill.
We slid over the fiscal cliff earlier this year, and we are about to go over the “sequestration falls,” where there are sure to be sharp rocks waiting for us at the bottom.
Overall, there has not been an immediate change to the government when these things happen. Business will continue to happen, and things will continue to run, because the laws of the land require agencies to continue working, even without the required funds to do so.
Congress, therefore, has no incentive to do any work. Each party in Congress can go ahead and just blame the other while the country goes over the cliff. The members of Congress, the media and the political parties win if the country goes over the cliffs, and the American people lose.
They lose faith in the government and the work that it does.
Members of Congress should not have to have an $85 billion anvil over their heads to get work done.
They should work to serve the people of the U.S. and not their political parties.
They should work to fund those programs that are necessary to the people of the U.S., and not the corporations that have the power to lobby.
With the total of $1.2 trillion in spending cuts split over the next decade, people should think twice about how their representative feels about these spending cuts.
If the cuts are made, $17.7 million will be lost from Arizona schools and nearly 500 fewer women could be helped by domestic violence services.
Without necessary services, the Congressional approval rating might plunge to rates never seen before.
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