Now that the caucuses are over, what are your three most important issues?

The Republican presidential race focused briefly on Minnesota in the days leading up to Tuesday’s caucuses. Now that the caucuses are over, what are your three most important issues?

  • Clark

    Defeating obama, defeating obama, defeating obama and all the other lying liar clueless democrats. Its a spending problem, not a revenue problem.

  • Hiram

    Education, schools, and our kids.

  • Doug

    To maintain a harmonious society that reality argues for government health care, high quality public transport and education, and a safety net that smooths and supplements income as the poor and middle class move from job to job. We should be judgmental enough to tell the poor to live more like the elite, but we shouldn’t kid ourselves that such a policy alone will solve society’s ills.

  • Bob

    Reelecting Obama, Reelecting Klobuchar and getting Clark a better job so he doesn’t have to spread his venum at 5:08 in the morning

  • Clerk

    Surely the real issue for the USA and for all the developed economies is this: when manual labor is increasingly automated out of existence and services can be replaced by self-service (think online commerce, ATMs, etc.) what happens to people who aren’t intellectually gifted and have the benefit of a good education? Even Germany’s twin-track system of degrees or apprenticeships can’t really address this problem in the longer term. The hard fact is that intelligence and education really matter in today’s world and the viewers of Oprah may not be well adapted to participate. We have a dilemma: a low-skilled workforce that believes it deserves a high-skilled level of income. Until we address this issue directly, instead of pretending it’s all about “values” or some equivalent nonsense, it’s highly unlikely that we’ll do anything other than make the situation even worse than it already is.

  • Kat

    Love Bob’s comment at 6:45. I’m your fan Bob!!

  • Scott

    Partisanship politics is our biggest threat.

    Jobs

    Housing

  • Scott

    “it’s a spending problem, not a revenue problem” – good example of someone parroting a catch-phrase while not having the faintest idea of what they are talking about.

    Back in ’08 the major banks, investment firms, GM & Chrysler were insolvent – the spending by Obama (Clark – you may have forgotten it was BUSH who obtained the first stimulus $$) was the only thing that prevented the US / World from a DEPRESSION. I’m willing to bet that the republicans would be slamming Mr. Obama if he hadn’t spent the stimulus money, but allowed our entire banking system to collapse!

    Plus – we could have had a $4.3 trillion reduction plan in place but the republicans didn’t think it was all that important.

    Sometimes I think our biggest threat is that so few Americans seem to be able to think for themselves. While I agree that the deficit needs to be brought back to where the Democrats had it when Clinton was in office, it hasn’t yet begun to hurt the economy. In fact, right now, we stand to MAKE money from the money we borrow.

  • Mark G in Freeborn

    Health care. I have a bunch of late 40′s-early 50-’s Consumer Reports magazines and several articles expound on the “fact” that nationalized health care is just around the corner. Evidently, it’s a very long street.

    Education reform. Stop blaming teachers for “poor performing schools” and put the blame where it really belongs: bureaucrats who claim to know what’s best for public education policy. How do teachers prepare students to take these high-stakes MCA tests when the tests themselves change every few years? Just as we find a way to make ends meet……these bureaucrats move the ends!

    Ending corporate welfare programs, which includes allowing corporations to contribute millions to political campaigns without having to identify themselves. Mitt has it wrong: corporations are not people…..they are nameless, faceless, shameless purveyors of questionable information contributing toward the effort to frighten voters into helping corporate shills get elected.

  • Larry M.

    Standing for “Liberty and justice for all”, “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”, and “Equal protection under the law” by defeating Minnesota’s anti-marriage amendment aimed at putting discrimination and bigotry against the GLBT community into Minnesota’s constitution.

  • Steve the Cynic

    1. Justice.

    2. Compassion.

    3. Peace.

    I plan to vote against any candidate who seems to think that defeating the other side is more important than doing what’s good and right, or that social darwinism is good public policy, or that GDP is the most important measure of our collective well-being.

  • linda

    jobs

    housing

    education

    I want to know more about Santorum. Is he what he says he is or is he all the things listed by a reporter from the Philadelphia news paper? If he is what the reporter has written, Mr. Santorum needs to explain.

  • NathanWH

    Protecting civil liberties from government encroachment;

    Adopting a non-interventionist foreign policy;

    Promoting free-markets as opposed to government/corporate favoritism

  • Jim G

    First, a growing economy built with good paying American jobs for American workers.

    Second, a well regulated financial industry, so Wall Street doesn’t lead us into another catastrophe.

    Third, that Americans come to realize that the amount of wealth held by the bottom 40% of the population is shocking : the lowest two quintiles hold just 0.3% of the wealth in the United States.

    These three are enough to motivate me.

  • Kathy

    1. Make sure all Americans are covered by healthcare insurance.

    2. Education reform – pay teachers for performance, quit blaming them (the blame clearly falls on parents), increase length of school day & school year.

    3. Promote manufacturing in America, give employers incentives to locate plants in the U.S. and not overseas. Last of all, promote “Buy American” campaign.

  • http://www.foundingfathersforum.com Jefferson

    1) The Economy.

    2) Jobs.

    3) The role the US will play in the world in the future.

  • Peter

    Innocent men, women and children dead at the hands of the U.S. military.

    A crushing national debt near 100% of GDP, the interest on which costs the taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars every year.

    A Federal Reserve that creates money then lends it to other banks at 0%, who then lend it to you at 8%. By inflating bubbles the Fed transfers wealth from the poor, who hold only paper dollars, to the wealthy, who own the assets being inflated. Then, when the bubbles burst, as they inevitably do, the government buys the bad debt from the banks and dumps it on the people, rather than liquidating it and bankrupting the companies who failed to compete in the market. The government did not fix any problems by preventing a market correction. It only made the problem worse, and when we end up like Greece shortly, when the value of the reserve currency of the world plunges, the game is up. Then you will see a real depression. The ONLY solution is to reduce the reduce the debt and let the market pick winners and losers.

  • P. Nielsen

    First, that the democrats on all levels act like democrats and stand up for and promote working people, as well as the unions that some are members of…….end all the right-to-work (for lower wages and fewer benefits) laws/amendments, etc.;

    Second, make sure that the country has a workable healthcare program for all;

    Third, protect Social Security and Medicare, and that means not cutting them.

    All I’ve seen are wishy-washy elected officials trying to gain consensus among those where there never will be consensus or the ability to work with others who believe differently. Stand up for what the old democrative party stood for and act like democrats.

  • Duane

    This question was posed at our Republican caucus last night, we were asked to select three topics from a list of several provided, many of which I note are mentioned by several posters. I felt the topic that was omitted was, “How can we restore the feeling of optimism that existed during the JFK and the Reagan administration’s?” I feel this has been missing during several administrations. It is not just left or right, but the administration’s view toward how to gain a consensus acceptable by more than 51% of the population and the willingness to allow that.

  • Steve the Cynic

    I also plan to vote against politicians who rant excessively about “the only way” or “the only solution” to address any particular issue. If you think there’s only one workable solution to the complex problems we face, you need to exercise your imagination some more.

  • Steve the Cynic

    “How can we restore the feeling of optimism that existed during the JFK and the Reagan administration’s?”

    Quit sabotaging the president and acting like it’s more important for your side to win the next election than for America to prosper. Duh!

  • Ann

    Jobs, especially for those of us who are older and too young to retire.How many older people are going to be in poverty in a few more years? What do we do about health care costs? The three issues are unemployment, health care, and fuel/heating prices.

  • lawrence

    1) Although most Americans believe they are not racists, there are still far too many Americans that believe minorities (especially Black and Latinos) are being cared for by government social programs. Moreover, these people firmly believe that these minorities should not have access to these programs, supposedly because social programs create dependence–but honestly, cutting these programs does what Jim Crow used to do, and that’s provide a generational underclass, and these folks know that even if they won’t admit it.

    2) Get serious about educational reform. Although we know, from studying American K-12 education and observing other educational systems across the world, small class room sizes, longer hours in school, wholly engaged parents, and strong free tutoring helps students achieve, far too many Americans keep making school performance about teacher performance. The underlying motivation for this ignorance is clear; we don’t want to provide high quality education to all Americans. If we did, we’d implement what works instead of bashing teachers and closing schools.

    3) Downsize corporations. Main Street used to be a competitive environment. Today, global corporations control most of the market. Because they control most of the market, Americans can not fight price inflation, and they can’t stop millionaire tax dodgers either. More over, unions have lost power and wages have shrunk. If we break up these monopolies, like the Republicans did at the beginning of the 20th century, there will be more jobs, cheaper prices, and more tax dollars to support greater society.

  • Peter

    If you think there is any solution to our economic woes that involves increasing our debt by a trillion dollars a year, you need to exercise your reason some more.

  • Philip

    My three most important issues are currently:

    1) pay off my existing consumer debt (car)

    2) save more money and not use credit cards

    3) get our new puppy to sleep through the night

  • Bear

    Stop focusing on only “our” backyard” and take a global perspective, like it or not we are living in a global economy. What we do in our backyard impacts the entire population of this planet.

    1. Exponential population growth

    2. Exponential growth in consumption

    3. Scarce and rapidly depleting resources

    Three is exacerbated by one and two

  • david

    1. Keep digging out of this $130,000+ hole the wall street shenanigans has cost me. And do something about it to get justice and keep it from ever happening again if I can.

    2. Survive cancer, and pay for the treatments along with #1

    3. Keep avoiding putting my foot into the ass of simpletons who parrot ridiculous partisan rhetoric like the root of all the country’s ills is the size of government, Obamacare, who marries who, welfare, unions, voter IDs, and the other asinine things I read on here and other places on a daily basis. The root of ALL my troubles are #1&2. With the possible exception of Obamacare which will actually probably help me out in the coming years I couldn’t care less about any of that other stuff. Anyone else who feels otherwise is a moron.

    4. If I may add a fourth, my puppy sleeps through the night, I just really wish she’ll stop peeing on the rug soon.

  • James

    Such a strange question.

    The bizarre political process called caucuses did not alter my priorities and their conclusion is not a material set point.

    My priorites were and still are:

    - keep my job

    - help my kids to get ready for fulltime employment

    - have a few grins along the way

  • Clark

    Scott:

    First off ,your a moron or a mooch, not sure which.

    The top 1% of taxpayers now pay 42% of all federal income taxes.

    The top 10% of taxpayers now pay 68% of all federal income taxes.

    The bottom 50% of income earners pay 0% of all federal income taxes.

    In 2007, the govenor of Maryland passed a millionaires tax, but recoverd 37% of what had been estimated. Like most lunatic lefties, he spent the money and now has another $2 billion spending problem so have determined the new millionaires ar people making $100k a year.

    If you confiscated every dollar of income from those who earned a million dollars a year or more, it would not cover one year of obama’s deficit.

    Europe is in economic crisis due to spending not lack of taxes. Next time study harder for your GED you make the lefties look even dumber than I estimated.

  • GregX

    The top 1% of taxpayers now pay 42% of all federal income taxes…..(Because they EARN 47% of all INCOME)

    The top 10% of taxpayers now pay 68% of all federal income taxes. ….(BECAUSE they EARN 72.7% of all income)

    The bottom 50% of income earners pay 0% of all federal income taxes.

    …..( Because their income falls below the table for collection.)

    DUH

  • Ricky Rocket

    But GregX, clark is a “highly educated MBA/CPA”. I think he cleans the bathrooms for some highly educated MBA/CPAs at best….

  • Steve the Cynic

    Correction, GregX: the top 1% RECEIVE that much of the income. Whether they EARN it depends on your definition of earn. If by earn you mean their work adds that much value to the well-being of society, so that they deserve that much of a reward for their labors, then I would say no, they didn’t earn it.

  • Becky

    1. Environment

    2. Overpopulation

    3. Food Security

  • Elaine

    1. Food security–which means growing/raising nutritious foods on a local level, and as a side-effect, creating better health

    2. Sustainability–eliminating waste, using fewer resources, developing safe clean technologies

    3. Educating for the future and replacing jobsjobsjobs at all costs with jobsjobsjobs to help us get to a sustainable future.

  • Rob

    Greg X: thanks for pointing out the facts here; your figures are correct. Thanks to Steve the Cynic as well; his comments epitomize the purpose of the Occupy movement. It’s easy to get the poor to hate the rich, but the real key is to get the middle-class to hate the rich. In order to accomplish this, you need to get the middle-class to believe that the way by which the 1% earned their wealth is somehow unjust. Then, you push for massive tax increases (again, on those who already pay 42% of all federal income taxes collected) as a deficit reduction technique (and somehow serves as an economic stimulus as well??). This keeps the welfare state funded, and keeps those who benefit most from the welfare state in power. The dirty little secret though, is that while the gap between the rich and the poor will shrink, we will all be worse off. I am not sure about you, but that doesn’t sound like freedom to me. As a side note, I welcome a reasoned response to this as I believe we can have an adult conversation if we try. Thanks.

  • Steve the Cynic

    No, Rob, it’s not about hating anybody. It’s about the demonstrable fact that a wide wealth gap is neither just nor beneficial for the human community. Allowing a few people to hoard vast piles of wealth does not improve the lot of everyone else. And if you’re so attached to your possessions that you perceive others’ indignation at the injustice of your hoarding as hatred of you personally, that says something significant about the state of your soul.

  • Rob

    Steve the Cynic – I guess that is your attempt at an open dialogue about the issues. Nice of you to reference the state of my soul, that was an especially nice touch. Here’s the deal, I believe that responsibility and self-sufficiency are virtues. The primary benefit of my hard work is that I get to take care of my own family, which should be everyone’s first priority. Here’s the other thing, Steve-o, I am not part of the 1%, but yet I can still defend them. Why, you ask? Because, in a free society, I don’t believe it is right to use the force of government to take from others just because they are more successful than me. That success is derived from the fact that certain people are smarter, and have more talent and drive than others. It is not due to what they inherited, other than possibly a strong work ethic. In fact, only a very small fraction of the wealthy today inherited all or part of their wealth. Thomas J. Stanley studied the wealthy for over 20+ years and wrote a series of books on the topic. You may want to take a look.

  • Steve the Cynic

    And I suppose accusing those you disagree with of fomenting hatred is your idea of “open dialog,” Rob-o. Be that as it may, let’s examine a couple of your assumptions.

    First, what do you mean by “success”? Success at what? Merely extracting profit from the economy, or achieving something that actually benefits people? For the sake of argument, I’ll grant that, for instance, Steve Jobs added as much value to human well-being as the profits he earned by his innovations. I won’t say the same for Bill Gates, who amassed his fortune not so much by innovation as by anti-competative business practices and shrewd management of intellectual property. And you’ll have a hard time convincing most folks that Wall Street money-shufflers, who create precisely nothing and arguably have done harm, have done anything to deserve their billion-dollar bonuses.

    Second, you assert that “only a very small fraction of the wealthy today inherited all or part of their wealth.” That’s strictly true, unless you count the privileges of good schools, enriched learning environments at home, and growing up in safe communities. When you consider all the advantages rich kids have over poor kids, it is simply not true that financial success comes to people primarily because they “are smarter, and have more talent and drive than others.”