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(Mother Jones)   If you have a problem as to why your Congresscritter is still being paid for not doing their job during this shutdown, the simple solution is to just fire them   (motherjones.com) divider line 64
    More: Obvious, congressman  
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2748 clicks; posted to Politics » on 06 Oct 2013 at 2:56 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-10-06 01:09:55 PM  
I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?
 
wee
2013-10-06 01:57:30 PM  
Can we PLEASE stop using "congresscritter"?  It wasn't amusing 30 years ago, and hasn't gotten any more amusing since.
 
2013-10-06 02:22:21 PM  

Aar1012: I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?


Depends on the state, and only Illinois I believe allows for a recall without any reason.  Normally you have to have a damn good reason because special elections are expensive and take a long time to set up.

But it wouldn't matter - each Congressman is acting according to how his constituents want him to.  There's no cause for a recall.
 
2013-10-06 02:29:20 PM  
Shouldn't they be paid because they still have to work to resolve this?
 
2013-10-06 02:59:59 PM  
I would rather spend the insugnifigant amount of money on them then spend it on the unconstitutional progressive agenda.
 
2013-10-06 03:00:40 PM  
The problem is that everyone hates congress, but thinks their congressman is the exception. Hence the popularity being 10% and the recidivism-er I mean incumbancy being 90%
 
2013-10-06 03:01:42 PM  

ilikeracecars: The problem is that everyone hates congress, but thinks their congressman is the exception. Hence the popularity being 10% and the recidivism-er I mean incumbancy being 90%


And we're done here.
 
2013-10-06 03:02:59 PM  
How many of one side of the house or the other would have to die before the other side would have not only a filibuster proof majority but also the ability to override a presidential veto?  Basically making their speaker the de-facto dictator of the country?  What numbers are we looking at?  Because boener ramming through every Tea Party wet dream without anyone to stop him would put this country on the fast track for where it needs to be in short order.  Namely an implosion.  Would we have to lose %20 of the house and senate to make a civil war happen?  %15?
 
2013-10-06 03:03:26 PM  

Lsherm: Aar1012: I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?

Depends on the state, and only Illinois I believe allows for a recall without any reason.  Normally you have to have a damn good reason because special elections are expensive and take a long time to set up.

But it wouldn't matter - each Congressman is acting according to how his constituents want him to.  There's no cause for a recall.


i hear about these 20 odd Repubs ready to sign a cr.  are you saying there are constituants that are pissed off at the hold up?
 
2013-10-06 03:04:24 PM  
The solution can be found in The Liberity Admenments.
 
2013-10-06 03:07:12 PM  

ilikeracecars: The problem is that everyone hates congress, but thinks their congressman is the exception. Hence the popularity being 10% and the recidivism-er I mean incumbancy being 90%


I think gerrymandering has a bit of a hand in things as well. Plenty of people don't like the congressman in their district but they're mathematically unable to get rid of them because of the gerrymander.
 
2013-10-06 03:08:38 PM  
My congressional representatives are peachy-keen, jelly-bean.  It's your folks that are causing the issue.
 
2013-10-06 03:12:22 PM  
Weird how for years Congress has had extremely low approval ratings, but when election time rolls around the same old same old get re-elected.
 
2013-10-06 03:18:14 PM  

MrBigglesworth: Weird how for years Congress has had extremely low approval ratings, but when election time rolls around the same old same old get re-elected.


That's the problem.  Incumbents end up being re-elected 90% of the time, which is why I am all for term limits.
 
2013-10-06 03:20:16 PM  
Why do they get paid at all?

How many poor people get elected to congress?  All these guys tend to be millionaires before they're elected and not paying them would help prevent this career politician bullshiat that's sucking the life out of our country.
 
2013-10-06 03:20:37 PM  

MrBigglesworth: Weird how for years Congress has had extremely low approval ratings, but when election time rolls around the same old same old get re-elected.


It's almost as if our elections have massive barriers to entry that ensure only established politicians with massive bankrolls and connections to the wealthy and powerful can win.

Our elections are controlled by an infinitesimally small group of the rich and powerful, who tell the rest of us who we get the privilege to vote for...and those rich and powerful have already have substantial investments in the incumbents.
 
2013-10-06 03:22:50 PM  

Lsherm: Aar1012: I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?

Depends on the state, and only Illinois I believe allows for a recall without any reason.  Normally you have to have a damn good reason because special elections are expensive and take a long time to set up.

But it wouldn't matter - each Congressman is acting according to how his constituents want him to.  There's no cause for a recall.


Exactly this!
Most of the congressmen pushing for the shutdown strategy are in very "safe" districts where some of them won their last election by as much as 30%.  And they are almost all instates where the state government (legislature, governor, Lt. Governor, etc..)  is the same party.

So you would never get anyone on the state level to agree to a recall on their own.  In many of these districts, you would have a hard time getting enough signatures to force a ballot.  And even if you got past one of these hurdles, you would most likely fail to get someone else elected.

The only real long term solutions will deal with addressing Gerrymandering, Term Limits, and the way elections are funded.
 
2013-10-06 03:23:55 PM  

Doktor_Zhivago: Why do they get paid at all?

How many poor people get elected to congress?  All these guys tend to be millionaires before they're elected and not paying them would help prevent this career politician bullshiat that's sucking the life out of our country.


Their wages mean virtually nothing to the career politicians.  They don't need them, and they represent only a tiny fraction of the money they're actually getting from special interests and profits from insider trading and the like (not to mention the fortunes they already have).  So taking it away would do less than nothing, and would ensure that anyone who WASN'T rich and connected already would never be able to afford to hold the position.

Not the greatest plan, IMO.
 
2013-10-06 03:25:24 PM  

blastoh: Lsherm: Aar1012: I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?

Depends on the state, and only Illinois I believe allows for a recall without any reason.  Normally you have to have a damn good reason because special elections are expensive and take a long time to set up.

But it wouldn't matter - each Congressman is acting according to how his constituents want him to.  There's no cause for a recall.

Exactly this!
Most of the congressmen pushing for the shutdown strategy are in very "safe" districts where some of them won their last election by as much as 30%.  And they are almost all instates where the state government (legislature, governor, Lt. Governor, etc..)  is the same party.

So you would never get anyone on the state level to agree to a recall on their own.  In many of these districts, you would have a hard time getting enough signatures to force a ballot.  And even if you got past one of these hurdles, you would most likely fail to get someone else elected.

The only real long term solutions will deal with addressing Gerrymandering, Term Limits, and the way elections are funded.


and voter participation

in fact, that's probably where election reform needs to start. the rest won't change as long as lazy & apathetic Americans remain lazy & apathetic about voting.
 
2013-10-06 03:25:42 PM  

MrBigglesworth: Weird how for years Congress has had extremely low approval ratings, but when election time rolls around the same old same old get re-elected.


Because once elected, the Corporations and the Millionaires start throwing shovelfulls of money at them in exchange for access. It really doesn't matter who the incumbent actually is. The movers and the shakers control the message and the money behind it. They never go after anyone who rubs elbows with them, they go after people who might buck their influence. The Big Money can make or break an entire State-level election, and it doesn't even cost that much compared to what they can make if they get what they want. I've read somewhere that in Arkansas, basically four or five families have pretty much shared control of the State Legislature and the Federal Candidates for decades. When one's annual income averages 9 or 10 figures, spending five doesn't even scratch the overhead.
 
2013-10-06 03:30:21 PM  
Can we fire them out of a cannon and into the sun ?
 
2013-10-06 03:31:13 PM  

orclover: How many of one side of the house or the other would have to die before the other side would have not only a filibuster proof majority but also the ability to override a presidential veto?  Basically making their speaker the de-facto dictator of the country?  What numbers are we looking at?  Because boener ramming through every Tea Party wet dream without anyone to stop him would put this country on the fast track for where it needs to be in short order.  Namely an implosion.  Would we have to lose %20 of the house and senate to make a civil war happen?  %15?


You know how I know you're not American?
 
2013-10-06 03:42:14 PM  

dumbobruni: blastoh: Lsherm: Aar1012: I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?

Depends on the state, and only Illinois I believe allows for a recall without any reason.  Normally you have to have a damn good reason because special elections are expensive and take a long time to set up.

But it wouldn't matter - each Congressman is acting according to how his constituents want him to.  There's no cause for a recall.

Exactly this!
Most of the congressmen pushing for the shutdown strategy are in very "safe" districts where some of them won their last election by as much as 30%.  And they are almost all instates where the state government (legislature, governor, Lt. Governor, etc..)  is the same party.

So you would never get anyone on the state level to agree to a recall on their own.  In many of these districts, you would have a hard time getting enough signatures to force a ballot.  And even if you got past one of these hurdles, you would most likely fail to get someone else elected.

The only real long term solutions will deal with addressing Gerrymandering, Term Limits, and the way elections are funded.

and voter participation

in fact, that's probably where election reform needs to start. the rest won't change as long as lazy & apathetic Americans remain lazy & apathetic about voting.


Its not something I think about much.  But I think you are very right.
 
2013-10-06 03:58:53 PM  

bborchar: I am all for term limits


No.
 
2013-10-06 04:19:57 PM  

dumbobruni: .

and voter participation



How about a tax credit if you vote?  (A softer version of compulsory voting.)
 
2013-10-06 04:22:05 PM  
Ted Cruz is in office for more than 5 more years. Considering the ill will he has generated within his own party, I believe he should be replaced.

Maybe Rick Perry can call him home?

Please?
 
2013-10-06 04:22:13 PM  
blastoh:
The only real long term solutions will deal with addressing Gerrymandering, Term Limits, and the way elections are funded.

Gerrymandering:
Define a few permissible boundary types that can be used to establish a border (e.g., municipal, county, mountain range, prominent water feature, US-, or Interstate-numbered highways, meridians and parallels) limit the number of boundary changes that can be used to draw the complete border (7 should be sufficient for most states to achieve it), relax the population accuracy required by a few percent (tight accuracy is used as an excuse quite a bit to draw absurd squiggles).
--OR--
Just let a computer randomly draw 8 or 10 equal-population maps every few years.  Each party in the state legislature can vote to reject 2 of them.  The final answer is chosen by the state supreme court throwing darts.

Term Limits:
Lifetime limit of how long you can serve as an elected official at Federal Government level in any capacity, (e.g., 20 years) plus a limit on how long you can serve in any office.  The limit will apply even if it means you only serve part of a term (except President).  Includes Supreme Court, even though they aren't elected.  After the cutoff number of years, you're gone.  As wise as the framers of the constitution were, I doubt they foresaw how common our monstrously long life-spans could be when you get rich-person medical care.

Election funding:
Only a political party can fund any election activities for a candidate for federal elected office who currently holds ANY public office at the state or federal level, or who is running for President.  If you want to support someone for any office you have to first send it to the party.  Political messages may not be deducted as a business expense for business income tax purposes--this rule will ensure that media will get a person's name on it.  In order to deduct as a business income expense, the political speech must have associated with it a person's identity which must be made public upon request, along with the contract for publishing the speech.  (So we know how much was paid.)
Exception: If a person personally funds his own election campaign, or accepts any non-party funds, the amount of money that person (including spouse) is allowed to in income from ANY SOURCE for the year he or she is running for office is limited to the amount of money paid to a US Representative during that year.
 
2013-10-06 04:29:50 PM  
I think it's time to start a FIRE CONGRESS movement!  Don't vote for ANY incumbent until congress gets its collective head out of its arse!  After all the best way to get a politicians attention is to threaten their power, as that is the only thing they truly care about.
 
2013-10-06 04:31:46 PM  

ilikeracecars: The problem is that everyone hates congress, but thinks their congressman is the exception. Hence the popularity being 10% and the recidivism-er I mean incumbancy being 90%


Not everyone. My congressman is part of the problem.

/Tom McClintock
 
2013-10-06 04:33:22 PM  

Aar1012: I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?


Yes.  You have that opportunity every two years.

And you never do.
 
2013-10-06 04:36:00 PM  

Sail The Wide Accountancy: ilikeracecars: The problem is that everyone hates congress, but thinks their congressman is the exception. Hence the popularity being 10% and the recidivism-er I mean incumbency being 90%

I think gerrymandering has a bit of a hand in things as well. Plenty of people don't like the congressman in their district but they're mathematically unable to get rid of them because of the gerrymander.


The BSAB false equivalency theater that is today's corporate media alongside rabid RW ideologues on AM radio, various sucky blog sites and, of course, on FOX deserve their fair share of the blame here as well as the post CU decision political environment where money talks louder than ever.
 
2013-10-06 04:36:27 PM  

Azbjorn: I think it's time to start a FIRE CONGRESS movement!  Don't vote for ANY incumbent until congress gets its collective head out of its arse!  After all the best way to get a politicians attention is to threaten their power, as that is the only thing they truly care about.


Or, alternatively, voters could take the time to make informed political choices rather than lashing out randomly in ways that can only make things worse.
 
2013-10-06 04:38:22 PM  

Phil McKraken: Ted Cruz is in office for more than 5 more years. Considering the ill will he has generated within his own party, I believe he should be replaced.

Maybe Rick Perry can call him home?

Please?


Wont happen. But feel free to encourage any of your Texas friends and relatives to get behind Wendy Davis. Couldn't hurt and might help.

/BTW her R opponent is just as teatarded as Rick Perry.
//and backed by big money
 
2013-10-06 04:39:49 PM  

ilikeracecars: The problem is that everyone hates congress, but thinks their congressman is the exception. Hence the popularity being 10% and the recidivism-er I mean incumbancy being 90%


I don't like mine, but he's got a district which has been gerrymandered to include all the poors, blacks and democrats from Center City Philly to Chester, so there's no chance of unseating him as no one runs against him.  He's also a former union guy, so no one credible is willing to primary him as he's got too much money (and too many retired union folk in South Philly) on his side.

I will say this: he's using his salary to pay his entire staff during the shutdown, so he's not all bad.
 
2013-10-06 04:45:41 PM  
Damn right. Harry Reid is up for re-election in 2016.
 
2013-10-06 04:56:33 PM  

Biological Ali: bborchar: I am all for term limits

No.


Very lucid argument there :p
 
2013-10-06 05:00:07 PM  
Time to time I wonder if America is just a representation of just what happens when your economy gets to a critical mass, and becomes inherently corrupt.

/Then I remember the electoral college and go back to thinking, no, America's variety of democracy is just spectacularly shiatty
//it's not one of these things
///it's almost ALL of these things
 
2013-10-06 05:02:44 PM  

bborchar: Biological Ali: bborchar: I am all for term limits

No.

Very lucid argument there :p


Look at California: term limits mean that there are no elder members who know how things run, and those who get elected only want to serve their time so they can get out with their pull pension.  In Cali, that means get elected, do nothing to piss anyone off so you can get re-elected, then do nothing in your second term while you get things set up for when you leave office.

I wish it would work, but reality proves they don't.
 
2013-10-06 05:14:33 PM  

bigsteve3OOO: I would rather spend the insugnifigant amount of money on them then spend it on the unconstitutional progressive agenda.


0.5/10

The mangling of "insignificant" was overdone. Either "insignifigent" or "insignifigant" would have been a better choice, IMO. It shows you're trying too hard. Also, NO white knight for the GOP would EVER use the word "progressive" in place of some bastardized version of "liberal." Spend more time looking at comments at Yahoo, The Blaze, Free Republic and Fox News to get a clearer idea of what derp truly looks like.

I awarded the 0.5 based on the use of "then" in place of "than."

I think you need another season in either the Rookie League or low Single A before you'll be ready to move up.
 
2013-10-06 05:14:41 PM  

Dwight_Yeast: bborchar: Biological Ali: bborchar: I am all for term limits

No.

Very lucid argument there :p

Look at California: term limits mean that there are no elder members who know how things run, and those who get elected only want to serve their time so they can get out with their pull pension.  In Cali, that means get elected, do nothing to piss anyone off so you can get re-elected, then do nothing in your second term while you get things set up for when you leave office.

I wish it would work, but reality proves they don't.


Well, the system we have in Congress and the Senate works even less.
 
2013-10-06 05:20:55 PM  

Dwight_Yeast: bborchar: Biological Ali: bborchar: I am all for term limits

No.

Very lucid argument there :p

Look at California: term limits mean that there are no elder members who know how things run, and those who get elected only want to serve their time so they can get out with their pull pension.  In Cali, that means get elected, do nothing to piss anyone off so you can get re-elected, then do nothing in your second term while you get things set up for when you leave office.

I wish it would work, but reality proves they don't.


Plus it emphasizes, even more, party over individual.
 
2013-10-06 05:25:04 PM  

bborchar: Well, the system we have in Congress and the Senate works even less.


You want to fix that?  get the money out of politics.  Either campaign finance reform or (better) campaign funding from the Federal government with a limited window for campaigning for Congress and a longer window for the presidency.

That would help a lot.  Coming up with a way to break the two-party stranglehold would help, too.  We're closer to that then we've been in a century, but I'm not going to hold my breath,
 
2013-10-06 05:30:17 PM  
I see that subby has been listening to me.
 
2013-10-06 05:31:55 PM  

MustangFive: bigsteve3OOO: I would rather spend the insugnifigant amount of money on them then spend it on the unconstitutional progressive agenda.

0.5/10

The mangling of "insignificant" was overdone. Either "insignifigent" or "insignifigant" would have been a better choice, IMO. It shows you're trying too hard. Also, NO white knight for the GOP would EVER use the word "progressive" in place of some bastardized version of "liberal." Spend more time looking at comments at Yahoo, The Blaze, Free Republic and Fox News to get a clearer idea of what derp truly looks like.

I awarded the 0.5 based on the use of "then" in place of "than."

I think you need another season in either the Rookie League or low Single A before you'll be ready to move up.


I agree, but would give another 0.5 for "unconstitutional progressive ". Has a nice ring to it....
 
2013-10-06 05:33:31 PM  

Lsherm: Aar1012: I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?

Depends on the state, and only Illinois I believe allows for a recall without any reason.  Normally you have to have a damn good reason because special elections are expensive and take a long time to set up.

But it wouldn't matter - each Congressman is acting according to how his constituents want him to.  There's no cause for a recall.


Like when they shot down the increased gun background checks that everyone hated? Oh wait...
 
2013-10-06 05:33:40 PM  

Aar1012: I'm sorry if this is a dumb question, but (if your state allows these type of elections) is it possible to recall a member of Congress?


No.  State recall laws cannot remove federal officials.
 
2013-10-06 05:36:02 PM  
Here along the Tennessee-Georgia border, I guarandammtee I don't like my Rep - and our children went to school together, I know he isn't going to change - nor do I like any of those from nearby districts.
The solid South is not much fun to vote in - but - A recall petition would be fun! thanks for the suggestion!
 And I thought the 'Newt' era promised to self-limit terms served. What happened?
 
2013-10-06 05:48:21 PM  
Let's just declare them all to be nonessential - the folks in the WH included - and send them all home.
 
2013-10-06 05:50:21 PM  

Jaicu: And I thought the 'Newt' era promised to self-limit terms served. What happened?


The got into office, discovered they liked it and started campaigning for re-election.  There were tons of stories about the hypocrisy of the Class of 1994 in 1995 and 1996.
 
2013-10-06 05:51:39 PM  
img834.imageshack.us

Yeah, about that. It doesn't matter how poorly they do, we always re-elect our representatives.
 
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