News / USA

    Americans Sound Off on Budget Woes

    Americans Sound Off on Fiscal Drama, Crisis Governancei
    X
    September 24, 2013 6:09 PM
    In the past three years, Americans have endured three threatened government shutdowns, two legislative brawls over raising the debt limit, and another fight over automatic tax hikes and spending cuts. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, fiscal drama has become the norm in Washington, but Americans are of many different minds on the lurch to crisis governance.
    Americans Sound Off on Fiscal Drama, Crisis Governance
    Michael Bowman
    In the past three years, Americans have endured three threatened government shutdowns, two legislative brawls over raising the debt limit, and another fight over automatic tax hikes and spending cuts. Fiscal drama has become the norm in Washington, but Americans are of many different minds on the lurch to crisis governance.

    Far removed from the formality of Washington, Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles is distant geographically and culturally from the nation’s capital. Tony, a tattoo artist, said he refuses to lose sleep over yet another episode of dysfunction in Washington.

    "I can't do anything about it, so I'm not going to stress over something I can't change. So I just take care of myself and my family, and that's all I can do," he said.

    Others hope for yet another last-minute deal to avert a government shutdown.

    “They're not going to let it go. This is America. They have to do something,” said Gregg Donovan, a Hollywood greeter.

    “I mean, the Republicans are nuts,” said Perry Mann, a street actor.

    Some blame Republicans for near-constant fiscal drama.

    “They're wasting their time and they're threatening to shut down the government. I mean, they don't care about anybody but themselves,” said Mann.

    Others blame President Barack Obama and his signature health care law.

    “I support defunding Obamacare. I think Obamacare is a disaster. When they say government shutdown, it doesn't mean that everything is going to stop,” said Larry Green, a tour industry worker.

    And some prefer not to follow the news in Washington.

    "Not as much as I should, I admit, and I probably represent quite a few people. But about the budget impasse, I think it happened so many times before,” said Julie Mammano, a children's author.

    With fiscal showdowns common, some Americans may shrug at Washington’s current impasse. But that will change if the federal government closes on October 1, according to analyst Stan Collender.

    “This will start to have an impact on people’s thinking when it has an impact on their lives - not when they are hearing about the possibility on the news, but when they call the Department of Education and no one is there to answer the phone. Or when they need a visa or a passport and no one is there to process it," said Collender.

    Collender thinks this time a shutdown is more likely than not, and that Americans are suffering from what he calls “crisis fatigue.”

    No one should underestimate consequences of a shutdown, according to Democratic Senator Charles Schumer. “I think the American people get very aware when the stock market goes down 2,000 points.”

    In New York, some urge consequences for members of Congress. "I think they should all be fired,” said Linda, a visitor to New York.

    From New York to Los Angeles, Americans could do just that in next year’s congressional elections.

    You May Like

    Escalation of Media Crackdown in Turkey Heightens Concerns

    Critics see 'a new dark age' as arrests of journalists, closures of media outlets by Erdogan government mount

    Russia Boasts of Troop Buildup on Flank, Draws Flak

    Russian military moves counter to efforts to de-escalate tensions, State Department says

    Video Iraqis Primed to March on Mosul, Foreign Minister Says

    Iraqi FM Ibrahim al-Jaafari tells VOA the campaign will meet optimistic expectations, even though US officials remain cautious

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Processi
    X
    Katherine Gypson
    July 27, 2016 6:21 PM
    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video A Life of Fighting Back: Hillary Clinton Shatters Glass Ceiling

    Hillary Clinton made history Thursday, overcoming personal and political setbacks to become the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major U.S. political party. If she wins in November, she will go from “first lady” to U.S. Senator from New York, to Secretary of State, to “Madam President.” Polls show Clinton is both beloved and despised. White House Correspondent Cindy Saine takes a look at the life of the woman both supporters and detractors agree is a fighter for the ages.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video First Time Delegate’s First Day Frustrations

    With thousands of people filling the streets of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, VOA’s Kane Farabaugh narrowed in on one delegate as she made her first trip to a national party convention. It was a day that was anything but routine for this United States military veteran.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora