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Gas prices and general pocketbook angst fueled some voters to cast their ballots on Election Day. What do you think? How did economic issues (such as gas prices or the minimum wage) affect your vote this November?
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Latest comments:
The estate tax is one of the most distorted issues I have ever seen. I grew up in South Dakota, a state that desperately needs that tax repealed. Every time a farmer dies, he can't leave his farm to his kids, because a big chunk of the land goes to the tax and there's not enough left to make a living. The same is true of many small businesses - the lifeblood of America. Just because something is worth over a million doesn't make its owner mega-rich. These farmers only make a median income. They've paid their income tax. They've paid their property tax. They've paid their sales tax. They've paid enough. The estate tax kills our economy. "Tax cuts for millionaires?" Not even close.
James Free - Westminster,, CO
Although the economy has been getting better, the one thing that STILL makes my blood absolutely boil is when I think of the price of gasoline. Why did the price go up so much? And why did the oil companies show such huge profits in the last year? And why did the price of oil suddenly start to go down around election time? I have this vision in my mind of the oil executives sitting around their boardroom and laughing and pointing at the American public, saying, "Ha-ha!! You got fooled!!!" Well fool me once shame on you, but fool me twice and shame on me. This election, I have done some research and everyone who has voted in favor of something for the oil companies will NEVER get my vote again.
Sunita Buddhu - Wethersfield, CT
I voted myself a pay raise today. An increase in the Ohio minimum wage was on the ballot. Bear in mind, I work two jobs - the first of which pays fairly well with good benefits. Unfortunately, even regular raises have not kept pace with the increased cost of living. At the minimum wage second job, I see a lot of folks who depend on the job as their single source of income. Many are young and I encourage them to get an education and a better job - but many are well into their middle/twilight years. The prospect of getting an education and a "good job" while competing against a much younger workforce is very dim. I hope my vote will help them a little bit too.
Dave - Heath, OH
The Bush Administration continues to state how great our Economy is doing. That's news to me, my family, and my friends. Perhaps it's true for George W. and his buddies, since all his tax breaks are benefiting them. In the real world, families are desperately struggling from day to day. Gas prices, heating fuel, tuition, and healthcare costs are leaving us virtually penniless. ... Today, I voted for a change in our government, and I hope everyone else did too.
Mary Shank - Monterey, IN
Although the economy is very healthy and all indicators point in a pretty positive direction, the budget deficit is still enormous because domestic spending is out of control. The Congress and the President have not made the hard choices that need to be made in a time of war to stop unnecessary spending. To keep the tax cuts and the economy growing, spending on domestic programs MUST be cut. The military should not be the only segment of society having to make sacrifics to win this war - EVERY state and community should. I would vote for a Democrat if I thought they could pull it off ... just don't think there are any.
Joel Allmandinger - Macungie, PA
The economic effect of the mid term election results is a key issue for me. What I don't understand is that we all want so much from our government and yet some of us are not willing to pay for it. We criticize those who say that we should raise taxes. Well guess what -- the universal health care that we all want costs money. Now, granted the are alot of areas where spending can be cut, but how is that going to come about if we don't become involved and let our governmental reps. know how we feel about there additions to bills for their pet programs then we deserve what we are getting.
Ronnie Rivas - Riceville, TN
All the complainers out there need to take a basic economics class or live in a 3rd world country. I've done both and you can't beat the Red, White, and Blue! So get a 401(K), save some money, smile and enjoy life!
Calvin Cumming - Sapulpa, OK
I have never seen a million dollars. I graduated high-school and survived Katrina. I think anyone who is complaining about being taxed for having over a million dollars has no idea of what lower-class living really entails. Middle class in Connecticut [previous post] sounds pretty hoity-toity to me.
Frankie Blankenship - Aurora, CO
The Republican Party is the Pig from George Orwell's Animal Farm. (Dennis Hastert even looks the part.) They believe everyone is equal, they are just MORE equal.
Chris Conley - Grand River, OH
Look! All I know is that since George W. Bush and the Republicans have gained control of the Congress I have been struggling ... There maybe more jobs, but from everyone I know these jobs are not paying the bills... people are working 2 jobs to make one ... It's a mess.
Ronn Shedrick - Kinston, NC
I started my career at mininum wage and through hard work and education was able to leave the mininum wage work to the next entry level worker. The government does not create jobs it allows an atmosphere to exist called capitalism. If a company is allowed to keep it's profits and we can keep our money capitalism thrives. Tax them both and recession creeps in.
Gene Haddock - Pittsburgh, PA
I believe that our federal debt is embarassing and is a major reason with Iraq and Bush that I'm going to not vote for Republicans come the 7th. These men in our government should ashamed and embarresed for raising a surplus into a near 9 trillion dollar debt. These men are putting the future generations behind there personal welfare and are ruining the economy and numerous lifes in the future!
Matt Hamil - Fairfield, CT
If there's one thing I've learned about the economy, it is cyclical. Doesn't matter who is president. This pattern seems to always prevail. Gas at $3 a gallon bites our wallet; nothing else bites harder ... In 8 years, I've seen nothing Christian and compassionate in how this president and Congress have treated the middle class, nor can I remember a time when we've become so visceral about these topics, and worse, no middle, no compromise, no government.
Bill Berry - Opelika, AL
Tax estates over 1 million? Are you insane? Maybe over 5 to 10 million. Where I live, a normal 4 bedroom house costs a million. These numbers need to be adjusted to the reality of the location (as hard as that would be). How about finding and closing all the RIDCULOUS tax loopholes and strategies, some of which are now being PATENTED. I am all for paying my fair share. Note, the keyword is FAIR. By the statistics, I am considered one of the "rich" that you lefties want to tax, but trust me, I'm am solid middle class in Connecticut.
Paul Jones - Wilton, CT
J. Gannuscio [previous post] -- What a great point about the price of oil! So many people think it is out of the government's control, but it is the government that is giving them billion dollar tax breaks when companies like Exxon are breaking their own records for quarterly profits. Conservatives stand to lose greatly when people vote their pocketbook, which affects us all, unlike the Republican wedge issues, which affect few in comparison.
Matt Denman - Denver, CO
I'm voting D the whole way down the ballot. I'd like to vote on stuff like fair trade, green tech, and common good issues. High gas prices should wake us up to the planet to being better stewards - and it should not be about old oil and gas men taking or not taking profits. I'm so tired of the balance of power in our country. It's the misuse of capitalism. It's greed and it's ugly.
Polly Delange - Parma, OH
I hear almost nothing about rebuilding New Orleans in this election. Could there be any greater proof that business as usual goes on? Why do none of the candidates outside of Louisiana talk about reforming FEMA and the Army Corps of Engineers, the two government agencies most responsible for the destruction of 80% of what may be America's most important city, historically and culturally? I am sickened by the superficiality of this election cycle, and blame the media, the candidates, and the voters for being more interested in seeing politics as a team sport than in addressing the problems that are destroying this country.
Clay S. Conrad - Houston, TX
Did I just read a complaint against outsourcing jobs? I guess you don't believe in capitalism either, although you live in America, which has the highest standard of living of any other other words, reaping the benefits of capitalism. Oh, did you realize with all the outsourcing you mention, the unemployment rate is sitting nicely at 4.6%?
Aaron Hughling - Temple, TX
I am a 45-year-old registered Democrat. I have voted Republican the past several elections because the Democratic Party has gotten so bad. However, I feel the real problem now is that BOTH parties have gotten so far left and right, that there is no middle ground anymore. BOTH parties spend too much time (and campaign money) bashing the other. NO ONE seems to be discussing the issues. I am so sick of watching TV and being bombarded with political commercials bashing each other (what are the issues?). I am so sick of getting the nightly phone calls and poll calls, etc. Politics in this country has become such a ridicules joke that it's hardly worth voting anymore. Neither party is "for the people, by the people" anymore. Thomas Jefferson said many times that the government needs a revolution every so many years to keep it in check. Boy, are we overdue. Frankly, the one party that is really gaining my attention and is making more and more sense the more I research them is the Independent Party. ... I, for one, can't wait until this election is over.
Scott Hart - Blairstown, NJ
The economy may be going great guns for the businesses of our country but it is NOT being felt in the pocketbooks of ordinary, everyday people in my life. Our family has not been hurt like the past 4-5 years ever. We desperately need an economy that benefits the country & not just help the wealthy gain more.
Ron Hay - Inola, OK
Why shouldn't we raise the minimum wage? Even if it does or doesn't help 16-year-old high school kids, there are still people who have dependents or trying to make a decent living taking up two minimum wage paying jobs. I know they can do better, but if they think that its the best way to meet ends, then we should raise their pay. I'm sure everyone else has been in that situation before.
Sylvia Fu - Little Rock, AR
Republican's taking credit for the lower gas prices, is like a slap in the face for every hard working American in this country. They said they had no control over gas prices when were high, but now they want to take credit for the lower prices, it means they knew they were gauging us all along, intentionally.
Monica - Denver, CO
I think that the political parties are telling the voters what to think. It's time that the voters stand up and learn about what they are voting for or against, find out how it affects us all and vote for the benefit of all instead of their own agendas that no one but themselves really care about. This is what civics and political science classes in schools have tried to teach for decades. Doesn't America care about their future anymore? Is America so afraid that it is unable to act as a democracy anymore? Where is Americas courage and strength to do what is right? These are questions that only voters can answer. I know what my answers are, DO YOU?
Bill Jennings - Whitmore Lake, MI
What is so difficult to understand about the fact that wages are a function of supply and demand as well as what the employee contributes in productivity. The minimum wage is paid to those that contribute the least and are the most easily replaced. Creating an artifical minimum simply reduces the number hired.
Dale Hernden - Saginaw, MI
I believe that the outsourcing of jobs overseas is a bigger issue than minimum wages. With companies sending middle-income jobs overseas where they can get labor for 1/3 to 1/2 the price of the corresponding wage rate in the U.S., that pulls wages as a whole down. Unfortunately, the larger companies who are doing most of the outsourcing only understand one language-their bottom line. The only solution I see to this is to levy a tax against them for each outsourced job which would offset any savings they would realize from outsourcing those jobs.
Joseph - Morrow, GA
Why is the Bush Admin taking credit for the lower price of fuel, when they said they have no control of fuel prices when it was over $3 ???
J. Gannuscio - Peoria, AZ
What good would raising the minimum wage do? Are we trying to increase the income of 16 year old girls? No person raising a family or over the age or 18 is making minimum wage. If they are, they need to quit because there are many available jobs that pay better. Maybe you'll have to work harder, but that's how you make money in this country. You earn it.
Corey Gallagher - Blacksburg, VA
Bush has destroyed all the progress that was made in the Clinton years. I thought Clinton was supposed to be the liberal and Bush the conservative. It seems like the other way around.
Ken Batt - South Windsor, CT
I will definitely vote a straight Democratic ticket in this election. I will vote this way because I believe it is the only way that the minimum wage will be increased.
Larry Desaire - Grand Island, NE
I keep hearing the President brag about the economy, but I sure don't see what he keeps bragging about. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer. The minimum wage hasn't changed in ages and the middle class is being ignored. According to "statistics" I would personally be classified as upper income, but I still can't afford a decent vacation and medical bills are killing me. I can't be the only American in this bind!
Clarence Hansen - Austin, TX
I will be surprised if gas prices don't start to rise on November 8, and keep climbing, until a few more executives get billion dollar retirement packages.
Anne Cowan - Glenside, PA
Lower taxes and tax cuts for all are what will drive this economy to new heights like it has in the past 6 years. The Democrat's policy of income redistribution and tax hikes will only hurt a bustling economy. The Republicans must reaffirm their support of fiscal responsibility that has faltered in recent years, but defense spending is something that is a necessary and acceptable use of tax funds.
Garrett Scott - Wichita, KS
The only thing that raising the minimum wage would do is inflate the economy. If companies are required to pay their employees more, they will simply raise prices. In the end, people who work for minimum wage will have the same buying power then as they do now. All it does is make our economy weaker.
Colin Reed - Alpharetta, GA
DOW over 12.000, unemployment 4.7%, growth rate close to 3%, interest rates 6.5%, I have a small piece of advice for the Republicans. It's the economy stupid!!!
Larry Nelson - Kannapolis, NC
My vote goes to those in favor of raising the minimum wage. With record corporate profits and CEO's making some 400 times that of their average employee, I think the need is evident.
Jon O. - San Diego, CA
I'll vote for any politician who fights to establish a flat tax rate for all incomes. When I become rich, I won't think it's fair to have to give away more just because I have more. Why should the industrious, the innovative, the job PROVIDERS be punished with a higher tax rate?
Randy Tayler - Orem, UT
Why should the rich get a tax break? Because the upper 1% of the population pay over 45% of the tax revenue collected (see Statistical Abstract of CA) ... it their money, not yours. Candidates and propositions that empower individuals and uphold personal responsibility will get my vote.
John Hopkins - Monterey, CA
I have to comment from my own experience on the economy. After working for the same company for almost twenty years, I had to train and send my job to China. ... I am employed which helps bring down the unemployment rate but at a third of my former salary. If you are fortunate enough to have defense industry stock or even energy stock then the economy is great. If you have the presidents ear and own stock in Haliburton then the economy is fantastic. However as an average family man with a wife and son I have to say that my two part time jobs (none of which provides insurance) won't get me into the country club any time soon.
Johnny Burchett - Sutherlin, VA
My business is booming, the Dow is up, gas prices are down, and I've hired more employees than I ever had in the Clinton years. My lowest paid employee makes $9.50/hr with the average pay being $11.00/hr. and that does not include benefits such as vacation pay, health insurance, etc.
Jeremy Dearringer - Westfield, IN
Gas prices do not affect politics. Politics affect politics. Any one who understands the simple concept of supply and demand will understand why gas prices go up and go down especially during the summer months. ... We only complain about gasoline because it has become a crutch to all Americans. When we should be complaining about education, equal rights, and safety.
George - Anchorage, AK
Gas prices are a matter of supply and demand - unlimited demand facing limited supply equals higher prices - always has, always will. I teach economics, so I feel the most pressing economic issue is the widening gap between the high and lower income classes. The effects of tax cuts are not trickling down to the lower income classes - that's statistically proven and my students can attest to that fact.
Laura - Merrill, WS
I will vote for anyone in favor of raising the minimum wage. Instead of the 'trickle-down Reaganomics' model (that never worked, tax breaks for the rich never made it down the chain), I think we should try the more likely to work 'trickle-up' approach.
Lee McDaniel - Tuscaloosa, AL
Haven't you noticed? The number of jobs listed in the classified ads has dramatically increased. Even at the age of 75 I was able to find employment. When the unemployment rate is at 4.2 it means there are more jobs available. If you don't get the money you think you deserve go to the classifieds and get a job that pays more. It's the intelligent thing to do.
Oris Morgan - Oceanside, CA
Has anyone heard of the 401(K)? A majority of workers have money in the 401(K). Hence, the DOW affects most people. I am sick and tired of hearing Democrats crying about the DOW doesn't help them.
Scott Rumley - Cleveland, OH
First off I think there needs to be a balance of both parties, and even some centrists and libertarians in office, this helps keep a balance. I'm going to vote for the person who has the best plan and is willing to work well with others. Gas is part of a global economy, and I believe the parties are delusional if they think they have control over it. They way prices have been, I don't think they have control over much of anything. Other than the ability to spend my tax dollars inappropriately.
Bebhin Blank - Cincinnati, OH
The economy is better now than it has been in a long time. Our President, George W. Bush has done an excellent job to increase the economy during these uncertain times.
Lawrence Mitchell - Savannah, GA
Being a registered Republican I am ashamed to admit this, but I will be voting almost all Democrat this election and am thinking about switching to Independent because of the sad state of affairs. The Democrats might not be any better but the Republicans need a rude awakening fast.
M. Nichols - Caledonia, NY
I think that the biggest issue that needs to be addressed is the lack of accountability on the part of the average American in watching what they spend. The 'Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget' mentality is killing our economy. Since when did our society become so obsessed material gain that the average citizen feels the need to drive a Lexus to feel good about himself? For the first time since the great depression, the average American has a negative net worth. Am I the only one scared by this?
Raymond Harris - Macungie, PA
I'm as broke as hell, so the fact that the Dow is at a record high means nothing to me. Healthcare and insurance costs have eaten away any chance for savings. This government is all about protecting their corporate patrons.
E. Rourke - Raleigh, NC
Let's face it. The economy is stronger than ever. It is real strength and not just smoke and mirrors like under Clinton. Think about it: After 9-11, the airlines failure, a war on terror (fought on many fronts), and everything else that has happened the past five years, the economy is booming. Are there problems such as deficit? Sure, but there will never be a perfect economy and someone will always lose a job. Americans just need to learn to be more flexible in their career choices and make themselves more marketable should they lose their job. GO TO SCHOOL!!!
Allen Gartmann - San Antonio, TX
This is the issue that is really swaying my vote. I am tired of corruption and really wealthy government types who swear they know about economy but have no heart for people less privileged. The recent briberies, and big business fallouts tell me the government has let money go to their heads, and they are willing to step on anyone they can to propel special interest and big business. ... They can't raise the minimum wage because they're afraid it would hurt the economy but have no problem voting themselves really, really nice pay raises every year. This sort of person needs to get out of public service, they are a cancer to the welfare of our country.
Justin Kefauver - Mt. Airy, NC
We have a strong economy! Gas prices are falling, unemployment is falling, debt loads are falling, salaries are going up! Any economic factor in the election should lean towards those already in power.
Elizabeth Doan - Lynchburg, VA
The most important economic issue is taxes. ... If Pelosi becomes Speaker of the House and her "sack the wealthy" tax increasing agenda becomes law, say goodbye to jobs and economic growth. The more income wealthy individuals are allowed to keep, the more they spend and invest, the more jobs at all levels are created. Regardless of whether one agrees with the President or the behavior of certain House members, voting for a Democratic House candidate is voting for a tax increase and higher unemployment.
Jay E. - Highland, CA
Gas prices and minimum wage issues will not influence my vote. Government should not meddle in pricing issues. Instead, government should us appropriate tax and investment incentives to guide the direction that industry takes. Ultimately, this will affect prices. Quick fix pricing restrictions are an economic tar pit.
Michael Kranitz - Lone Tree, CO
To put it simply, I believe that the Republicans under the leadership of Bush have "screwed up" the national economy. They have squandered the budget surpluses of the Clinton administration by spending on an unnecessary war in Iraq, providing tax breaks that benefited the more affluent portion of our citizenry and doing so at a time when we spending money hand over fist in pursuing the war.
Gerd Kaluski - Walnut Creek, CA
Minimum wage means just that - the minimum wage for the lowest jobs. It should not be enough for 2 parents and 2 kids to raise their family, send the kids to college, and retire. People must understand that by showing up to work, on time, and willing to put in some effort, including using your brain, will propel them farther into higher income than a government program. Each time we raise the minimum wage, you effectively tell productive tax paying people they are worth less.
Walter Stephens - Cleveland, OH
My vote will weigh heavily on the candidates stance on alternative fuel. OPEC announced late last week that they were planning on cutting oil production by 1.2 million barrels per day in hopes to keep costs of crude at about $60 per barrel. This cut is intended to bring the cost of gasoline up a bit but to keep it low enough so as to be more attractive than alternative fuel pricing.
Rick - Cranberry Township, PA
We need a politician who's willing to look us in the eye and tell us that we are our own biggest problem when it comes to gas prices. It's not lost on me that as our vehicles have gotten bigger and heavier, gas prices have increased. Coincidence? I think not. I would find it refreshing to have a politician tell me point blank that my 19 mpg Jeep is part of the problem. A little integrity could be just enough to swing my vote.
Doug - Alexandria, VA
This is one issue that I generally agree with the Democrats on. The Republican party has never grasped the concept of a balance budget and how much it has hurt them at the polls over the years. No talk just action on this issue.
Kelly Calhoun - Rocky Mount, NC
The price of gas will not affect my vote, but politicians' opinions on it will. I'm in favor of raising the tax on gasoline and using the money to start building the mass transit systems that we'll need when gasoline becomes truly scarce and the market has driven the before-tax price of gasoline even higher than the current price at the pump.
Michael Watkins - New York, NY
It's unfortunate that both parties can't do well with money; it's why I might have to vote Republican. Once the Democrats regain control, all of the beneficial tax cuts will go away and the economy will suffer because of it.
Matt Armbruster - Mukilteo, WA
If increasing the minimum wage $2.00 an hour is good for America why stop there? Increase it $15.00 ... no ... increase it $25.00 ... no, no ... make it mandatory that all Americans that have jobs must be paid $100,000. The Democratic Party loves to use this issue to paint Republicans as mean-spirited, but there is absolutely no economic support to having the government set wages. Let the markets work!!
Ian Pilcher - Leetonia, OH
I am a college student who is personally feeling the pinch of rising tuition along with the rising cost of every day expenses. Also, this summer, I worked in a distribution warehouse where I heard the struggles of average American workers. We need a Congress that does not leave behind students, workers, or other vulnerable citizens during these trying times. This is why I am voting for change this fall.
Joshua Gwinn - Gallatin, TN
We are borrowing more than we save. We are rapidly approaching earning less than we can pay back to our lenders. We have speculated this business cycle's value further than ever before. We are in serious trouble. The outcome is going to be a severe depression that will make the "Great" one seem not so bad. There are no candidates out there that could change this situation, even if they had the will. The economy is a non-issue in this election or any other over the next seven years.
Walter Wilson - Los Angeles, CA
Loss of jobs, lowering of real pay and higher energy prices will affect how I vote. Our government should be finding ways to produce cheaper energy. This economy is being held hostage by the price of oil. If we reduce our need for oil, those oil producing countries that support terrorism will find it harder to support them.
Pat Bolognese - Buffalo, NY
The issue of oil prices will have no effect on my vote since it is not controlled by any political party. It's controlled by Saudis and Wall Street and terrorists. If oil is going down then OPEC will cry and cut production, if we complain about that then the terrorist will blow up a pipeline to keep prices high. If that doesn't happen the traders on Wall Street will blame the possibility of a hurricane forming 2000 miles away. It's all baloney and nothing is done about it.
Richard Wright - Hopatcong, NJ
I keep hearing how the economy is supposed to be doing so well. I don't see it. Maybe it has something to do with my lack of a mansion, Hummers, and a stock portfolio that could choke a donkey. George Bush's America is not my America.
Ron - Pittsburgh, PA
The Democrats have completely misdiagnosed the problems facing America in a globalized economy. When compared with the rest of the world, America does not have a low salary problem- it has a high cost of living problem. The solutions to this are free trade and accessibility of education, not a higher minimum wage. I will vote Libertarian!
David Liberles - Larmie, WY
Wealthy people have no idea how to manage money; they don't have to pay attention to a bottom line. We have to elect a few good poor people to fix the economy, they are used to budgeting and paying attention to where money goes. Also, we spent 1.8 billion on New Orleans and 83 billion on Baghdad? What's wrong with this picture?
Mark Resch - Westminster, MD
Our economy is booming for the rich. For the rest of us the booming economy means having 2 low paying jobs unless you are married, in which case, 4 low paying jobs are possible.
Mark Musselman - Brown Summit, NC
Gas prices have nothing to do with any political party. For decades, gas prices have risen every Memorial Day Weekend and have gone down every Labor Day Weekend. It's the oil companies' time to make a killing. Blame it on them. Make a note on your calendar and watch next year!
Rosemary Cafarelli - Norwalk, CT
I would agree on a minimal tax on estates of over 1 million dollars, but I would exclude estate taxes on small busniesses, particularly family operated farms.
Robert - Greentown, IN
If you really think the Republicans are influencing gas prices, you need help. The price of crude is controlled by traders in the open market who flinch every time something occurs around the world that they perceive as a threat to oil supply. It is sad that people who have no clue about economics and the law of supply and demand are allowed to vote.
Jim Akers - Athens, TN
What everything boils down to is economic. Are you better off now than 4, 6, 10 or 12 years ago? No. When inflation has once again reduced the minimum wage beyond a joke; the budget surplus and reduction of the national debt have been squandered by the party in power, and been replaced by mounting debt and reduced social services- while at the same time they cut taxes for millionaires and billionaires (but not for those earning less than that); the majority of people's empty wallets and bank accounts will do to the Republican majority what our predecessors did to Herbert Hoover. Ditch the Red; and go Blue.
Jared Eisenmann - Fairfax, VA
Tax cuts have created more jobs and more revenue for the government to reduce the deficit. We all benefit, not just the wealthy, who incidently pay a huge share of taxes. Companies have more money to hire additional workers and equipment, putting more money in the economy. Democrats will destroy the balance, in the guise of helping.
Carolyn Fittere - Metairie, LA
I honestly believe gas prices are going down because the Republicans are trying to fool the voters into thinking that they are in control of the economy. I do believe they have influence with oil companies, and they only chose to convince big oil to settle down temporarily until after the election... If America is dumb enough to vote for the Republicans thinking they brought and will keep gas prices down, we deserve what we get.
Lori Taylor - W. St. Paul, MN
Face the facts: no politician will help those too poor to help them. If you want the Government to work again for the American people, then vote everyone out and put in new folks. Of course that will not happen because [most] vote for the name they are familiar with.
Rudolph Soto - Eagar, AZ
While Congress has been voting themselves a raise of almost $30,000 over the past 10 years, minimum hasn't been raised. Minimum wage today cannot purchase what it did back in 1996. The cost of living has continued to increase but not minimum wage. The cost of gasoline, grociers, utilities, clothes, etc has continued to climb. ... Most people receive a wage increase at least once a year or two. So why deny an increase in minimum wage?
Sheila Platt - Fayetteville, NC
Tax cuts for the wealthy have hurt the middle class who are getting squeezed harder every day. The deficit that has build up under this administration is going to plague our children and continue to hurt the economy. Tax cuts is the only platform that the GOP cares about.
Kerry Kelly - Norwood, MA
What part of soaring national debt, shrinking middle class, growing poverty, no health coverage for millions, increased cost of education do you not understand? The GOP can't get it right, time to throw them out.
David Rosselott - Hillsboro, OH
As an individual, I have less disposable income than what I had 6-7 years ago. More importantly, I have greater costs than say 7 years ago. ... I wonder whether or not some will be able to afford to heat their homes come December, after the election, when gas and oil will once again be increased proportionately to demand. I also wonder why the hell the government rolled back the taxes in the first place, it did not help me, or most of us in middle class America. Things are bad, very bad, out here.
Colleen Mcdonnell - Westmont, NJ
The DOW!!!??? The Dow only relates to those who can afford to buy stocks! It has NO relationship to those who have to decide to buy fresh bread for once, or decide 'Day Old' is the best for their budget. Don't you have even a slight clue? Haliburton is making a fortune on the 'war effort'. ... Most people affected by this 'pie in the sky' economy are trying to figure out how to buy socks, not stocks. That way the wonderful 'oil barronocracy' can relax as we use wool to keep our feet warm!!
Donna Noonan - Buffalo, NY
I find it interesting that interest rates continually increase until there's an election. As the midterm election looms, the economy becomes strong and interest rates begin to stabilize. Is this really a strong economy? Or is this a ploy, along with cheaper gas prices, to keep GOP leaders in control. The facts are clear, record defecit, stretched military, and an NIE that says we are in more danger now. I don't buy it, and the time for change is now.
Jeffrey Enquist - West Jordan, UT
Gas may be hitting 2.00 a gallon but we all know that wont last long. Gas at $ 2 is still a 70 cent increase in 6 years compared to 23 cents under Clinton. Minimum wage isnt going up, the price of groceries have been rising along with all consumer products. 6 millions jobs created in the past 3 years after we exported 3 million jobs and our American workers have to go out and work 2 jobs now. the stock markets high but how many regular working class people have any interest in the stock market.
Buddy Kind - Orlando, FL
Other than the high gas prices, which are currently damping consumer confidence, the economy appears to be in exceptionally good health. My intention is to vote for the Republicans, because they are less apt to tinker with the economy by increasing the minimum wage. Increasing the minimum wage would result, as always, in businesses passing the cost of social experimentation on to the consumers. Increased prices would make consumers less likely to spend, which would hurt company revenues so badly that stock prices could fall and result in a panic by investors.
Jerry W. Milligan, Jr. - Crestview, FL
What part of $56 a barrel for oil, 4.6% unemployment and the Dow at record levels don't you understand? If the Democrats put as much effort into doing their jobs as they do complaining about problems that don't exist, unemployment would be at 3% and the Dow would be at 12,000.
Chris Cox - Calabasas, CA
I live on a fixed income and the cost of living is a big concern. ... I am very worried about the heating bill this winter along with the high price of food, insurance, medicine, etc. I will definitely vote for the Democrats as the Republications have never done anything to the working class people except make promises.
Doris Nickelson - Woodstock, GA
As Democrats seek to gain control of Congress and Republicans strive to hang onto power, a number of issues will guide their campaigns.
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Exchange: Election Edition

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