American Morning

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June 6th, 2011
05:52 AM ET

Question of the Day: What is the single most important issue facing America today?

The 2012 political season is underway and politicians are vying for your votes by proposing their answers to the important issues facing America today. All week long we’re going in depth, taking the pulse of the people.

American Morning wants to know: What is the single most important issue facing America today?

Post your response here. We could read your answer on American Morning.

Filed under: AM Asks
soundoff (67 Responses)
  1. Ezra Ali

    The problem is we give other nations billions of dallars, helping thier people now we are falling behind.The better they do the more they compete against us,why dont we spend that money on training Americans to take over new and future industrys.'Time to think within'

    June 7, 2011 at 9:19 am |
  2. Amir

    Corruption......everything else is attached to it.

    June 7, 2011 at 9:11 am |
  3. Linda

    Starting campaigns 18 months before election. Won't be long before we start getting junk addressed to occupant or resident in our snail mail boxes. If it doesn't have my name on it then it goes in trash. I think 6 months before elections is plenty if time to get tired of these candidates.

    The other is nit picking everything a candidate says. The best example us Palin on the history thing. I had all that history stuff back in the 60's. What I hear from kids today is what is the point of studying old dead guys. I somewhat agree with them, it never came up when I was on the job.. The old world compares to the new world like apples and oranges. Does having this general knowledge of history help create a new game, web page, design a car / space vehicle and thousands of other things. Despite planned obsolesce in today's machines we still need to train young people how to maintain them and general knowledge of history just clutters up their minds. Let the old dead guys lie a-mouldering in the grave.

    June 7, 2011 at 7:46 am |
  4. RichardT

    The most serious issue in America today is precisely our so -called leadership. The U.S. and the world as a whole are facing multiple crises – energy shortages, climate change, economic chaos... when we need real leaders the most what do we get? The usual Republicrat wrangling, Sarah Palin demonstrating her usual level of illiteracy and incompetence, and "Weinergate." What we need more than anything else is intelligent, competent, non partisan and principled leadership .. about as likely as winning the lottery.

    June 7, 2011 at 7:46 am |
  5. Greg

    The biggest issue... A lack of personal knowledge and awareness by the average American as to the shaping of public policy and an understanding of its impact on them personally. There is a book titled "The Frog in the Kettle" which is a fable about how a frog sitting in a kettle of water does not detect the temperature changing around him until it is too late. The kettle comes to a boil and the frog is killed. A large percentage of Americans, who have an emotional tie to the Republican party or the Tea Party, believe blindly that those parties speak for them even though they do not themselves benefit from the policies those parties are striving to implement. Even the average American who retains a job through to retirement will have insufficient cash flow to maintain adequate healthcare and living expenses in retirement. Only as individuals lose their jobs to corporate cut backs, or as teachers, firemen, and police lose their jobs to state tax cuts do individuals begin to realize that the policies of those they elected have boiled themselves in the end.

    June 6, 2011 at 9:54 pm |
  6. slider

    Our Presidents number one priority is bankrupting our nation and turning into a socolist country.

    June 6, 2011 at 9:25 pm |
  7. Shawna

    The spread of socialistic views threatens everything America stands for. We have been expecting the government to solve all our problems. History will repeat itself if we don't recognize what is happening and return to more realistic and responsible means to manage our lives.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:54 pm |
  8. Susan

    Unemployment. There are plenty of people that are still unemployed that have collected 2 years of unemployment and have still not gained employment. We are off the radar, and no one counts us. What is the real unemployment figure? We cost countless dollars in medicare and food stamps, yet cannot find employment. Is there any incentive left to hire any of us?

    June 6, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
  9. Matthias Esoimeme

    Political Jingo; Political Jingo. Those who have not keep their house in other want others to keep their house in orders; show this by example. where politician think about themselves only and making money for their unborn babies or grandchildren, where they want to support company that take jobs from Americans and take it to other nation, and race, color and greed has eating our life and we think blind people and runner away politician wan to rules us.

    June 6, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
  10. Scott

    Now now people, we have our freedoms and rights, And to the comment below? VVV You can't blame a select group of people for your own problems. We aren't Nazi's, we're Americans, Gay, Lesbian, Transexual, Bisexual, Black, white, Islam, Whatever. I think the biggest problem in this country is people who think it's right to throw their belief's out their, and picking on a minority. We all have our differences, so stop the hate, and maybe the problem would be solved. The world was made on one main rule, BIODIVERSITY, And this is the 21st Century, come to terms with that word, or stay in your shell.

    June 6, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
  11. Jeff Spencer

    The fact that only an elite few are able to campaign for high office at a national level. We are meant to be governed by a citizen legislature. There should be no such thing as a "career politician". It should be a relatively brief period of service followed by returning to one's real, productive life. It shouldn't require millions of dollars to have your voice heard without being manipulated by the interests of contributors. A return to the founders' common sense approach would serve us all well in solving the other problems we face.

    June 6, 2011 at 10:11 am |
  12. Dan

    Accountability...there is no personal accountability and no professional accountability. So many people think others should take care of their issues. Our government feels it needs to spend tax dollars to solve all the world's problems without the people and companies having to do anything to fix their own problems. Our failing schools are all the teachers' fault, with parents and children not having any responsibility. I applaud the Florida governor for requiring drug tests for people before they get handouts. Good for him for taking one small step to hold people accountable.

    June 6, 2011 at 9:48 am |
  13. Jennifer Dooley

    The divisions that have torn the country's fabric apart. Be it politics( Leadership should set an Example of Cooperation and Honesty) . Cultural, United does not mean sameness, rather acceptance of Our differences... ( that Freedom for All thing). Economically the imbalance from Corruption... ( Corporations and Government entwined)... Where is Thomas Paine? Guess The Biggest Problem is Lack Of Common Sense!

    June 6, 2011 at 9:14 am |
  14. Carvin Stevens

    Greed is killing the "MIDDLE CLASS." Greed was the downfall of many great nations in the past.

    June 6, 2011 at 9:06 am |
  15. Ralph

    Too many Republicans.

    June 6, 2011 at 9:06 am |
  16. J Wright

    I believe the most important issue facing America today is how the middle class is always in the sights of our politicians. We are told we need to buy more efficient vehicles yet all of our rich and mighty politicians have limos and jets at their disposal. How much money is spent in Washington that could and should be cut!!

    June 6, 2011 at 8:44 am |
  17. MoneyedPoliticians

    Political corruption. It is no better here than in the middle east. It has trashed our economy and jobs as our politicians give away the store to the Fat Cats that fund their elections. Only public funding of campaigns will fix it.

    Jack Lohman
    Colgate, WI

    June 6, 2011 at 8:42 am |
  18. Donna Atkinson

    The nations debt is the single biggest issue facing the country. Every single American will be affected by it as we move forward. All of us will be called upon, in some fashion, to adjust our expectations. The purse strings need to tighten and we all must join hands and hearts to solve this mammoth problem.

    June 6, 2011 at 8:39 am |
  19. Teresa

    The lack of patriotism and care for middle class American people from Repiblucans. They are seeking power for themselves, forgetting about values, leaving our most important citizens; our children go without the education they deserve, hurting our future leaders. Outsorsing jobs, sending the job opportunities overseas to benefit big corporations, not the people, that is what is taking xreal jobs, not illegal aliens. Media allowing this clowns to infect the people's minds. This problems are serious, there not just another story being forecasted. What is going to become of us?

    June 6, 2011 at 8:36 am |
  20. Ivan

    It is really sad to hear in the news that kids today go to school just to cause trouble with their teachers and fellow students.
    Even worst is to witness the parents of those kids blaming everybody else but themselves for their problems.
    School is supposed to be about hard work, discipline and civility. Where and when did America get all this wrong?

    June 6, 2011 at 8:36 am |
  21. trade deficit with china

    Our trade deficit with china is the single most important issue. Everyone is ignoring it as if it will go away by itself. Its only gonna get worse...

    June 6, 2011 at 8:33 am |
  22. Dee

    Partisan politics is the single most important issue facing America today. When one side refuses to cooperate just to get even with the other side shows America how disconnected the privileged are from reality. There is no such thing as trickle down economics. SHAME. SHAME. Can't we work together?

    June 6, 2011 at 8:32 am |
  23. MoneyedPoliticians

    Political corruption. It is no better here than in the middle east. It has trashed our economy and jobs as our politicians give away the store to the Fat Cats that fund their elections. Only public funding of campaigns will fix it.

    Jack Lohman
    Colgate, WI

    June 6, 2011 at 8:28 am |
  24. Michael Armstrong Sr. Sherman Tx.

    The most important thing is the confidence of the American people most Americans finds our president and government incompetent to make sound decisions on how to bring our country out of this growing depression .

    June 6, 2011 at 8:25 am |
  25. Scott Keels

    Prosecuting those that caused the financial meltdown and continue to benefit from lack of proper banking regulation.

    June 6, 2011 at 8:25 am |
  26. AIDY


    June 6, 2011 at 8:24 am |
  27. Logan Mulford

    The total takeover of America-media, Congress courts and every other facet of life by multinational corporations and their owners. This mornings interview by Christine Romans is a good example. In this "balanced" interview Ms Romans speaks with two "experts", one Republican and one Democrat, about the budget. Unfortunately, Ms Romans spends a good bite (intentional pun) of air time prefacing her questions with the assertion that "austerity " is necessary to balance the budget. She leaves no room for discussion of any other alternative. Their are other alternatives out there, like the Progressive caucus' proposal which would not involve the draconian cuts to social programs in both the Republicans want and the mainstream Democrats have already conceded. This budget relies instead on tax increases on those most able to pay- the top 1% of individuals and, most important, corporations. Why is this alternative not even mentioned? Why does a "balanced" news outlet like CNN eliminate it from discussion or even mention?? Could it be that the corporation controlling CNN doesn't want the people of this country knowing about it? Could the owners of Viacom, Comcast, Sony and Murdock all have a common interest in hiding an alternative that might cost them and their fellow corporate owners money? Could the hugely wealthy owners of our media have an interest in continuing the redistribution of wealth from the remnants of the middle class to their own pockets?

    June 6, 2011 at 8:20 am |
  28. Uncle Theo

    The single most important problem facing this country is... we are a divided country. We will NEVER improve anything until we are united by a single political entity with the REAL power needed to make change (not just give good sounding lip service). As your two guests demonstrated today, both political parties are too busy playing the blame game and getting their party elected to make things better for the general populace.

    A clear cut example of being divided is: both political parties are so concerned with debating the problem/solution, that they aren't able to take the simple actions necessary to stop those engaged in economic terrorism at our gas pumps.

    June 6, 2011 at 8:13 am |
  29. Carlie Davis

    The public education system where we live in Auburn Hills, Michigan is appalling. As citizens of the one of the richest countries in the world, and as a hard working tax payer I expect so much more for my children, then what is being offered.

    June 6, 2011 at 8:02 am |
  30. Joanna Aljunaidi

    The Republican you just had on arguing about the economy said we have infrastructure so why should we promote this as a viable expenditure...HAVE YOU SEEN OUR ROADS??? HAVE YOU SEEN THE BRIDGES COLLAPSING???
    I believe budget cuts are being taken out of the wrong coffers. How do you expect a country to support a recovery if the education system which trains the next generation of workers is failing? The working class does not even have the basic jobs, i.e. rebuilding our country and infrastructure, in order to afford anything else in this rising economy?
    How about we eliminate his job and use his salary to help rebuild the economy? How would he like that?

    June 6, 2011 at 7:59 am |
  31. Priscilla McDonald

    I wish you would require people to be polite and not interrupt others while they are talking. It seems that the rudest people talk loud, insist on controlling the conversation and make it hard for the listeners to hear what they are saying. Makes me want to change the station and I do!

    June 6, 2011 at 7:57 am |
  32. Brenda Morgan

    Our inability to look at things in a reasonable, truthful way. I believe the 2 party system is the best form of government in the world but all our time is spent trying to kill the other party instead of seeing the value in having our form of government.

    I watched nothing but Fox for several years, I then started watching MSNBC for a while and turned to CNN for an independent view which I thought I was getting. Now, when I watch CNN/AM , I am amazed how how much "sweet venom" in spewing from the mouths of the 3 hosts (dare I call it a true news program) as all of you have now taken the approach that it is your responsibility to tell all of us how stupid we are if we happen to believe that someone in an opposite party than you support has a good idea. You have now taken up the banner of "Let's get Obama reelected, no matter what" Maybe I should now turn to BBC news to get news instead of your slamming your guests because they are not all Pro-Obama. I am independent and can vote any way I want, Thank God! I believe all news people on TV need to switch to the independent party and then maybe they can begin to report independently.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:55 am |
  33. Rafael Camacho Jr

    The most single (problem) issue facing America today is:
    "GREED". The business tactics used by most establishments, from your neighborhood plumber to G.E. suggests a trend that will not go away anytime soon. The above gives the economy an uphill battle.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:52 am |
  34. Harold

    The Economy, I think is not as difficult as everyone makes it out to be. When you elect an oil man to president and gas prices go to above $3.00; goes without saying that everything delivered on wheels has to go up in price as well. People cannot afford to spend money on anything but gas and heating their homes. In other words our wages did not keep pace with the cost increases of everthing we buy. Give us more money, or lower prices on everthing and we will spend the money on goods and services which will heal the economy. So put money in common peoples hands and they will spend it instead of putting it in the stock market like the rich do.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:49 am |
  35. Tom McMahon

    A country can only be as great as its population is educated and its infrastructure in built and maintained to support commerce. We the U.S. are failing at both.

    Thomas McMahon
    Millis Ma

    June 6, 2011 at 7:49 am |
  36. Dennis Lindsey

    Our Soaring National Debt is our greatest crisis. Since the dollar is not based upon any standard of value, it is only worth what other industrialized countries perceive it is worth. If our debt continues to rise unchecked, a point will be reached where our creditors and customers no longer assign value to the dollar and the collapse of our economy will follow.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:29 am |
  37. Diane Ward

    The most important issue facing America today is the environmental threat posed by unconventional shale gas drilling. Irreversible impact to drinking water supplies is occurring in many states. Our legislators must take decisive action by closing the "Halliburton Loophole" which provides unnecessary exemptions to this industry. Chiefly unregulated shale gas drilling is not the answer to the nation's energy problems, it is a looming environmental disaster. Come to PA and see for yourself – is NY next?

    June 6, 2011 at 7:19 am |
  38. Daisy

    I think the division in the parties is the single most issue face our country. When the Dems do something good the Reps don't want it to happen because it will hurt them in the next election and visa versa. Until they can start working together for the country and not for the our parties things will not improve.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:19 am |
  39. Marie

    Also.....SARAH PALIN is a major problem!!!! Whats up with that??? LOL
    She is ignorant & the media has nerve to cover & promote her, that says a lot about current problems in America! How about equal education for the poor & the rich.....ponder that!!!

    June 6, 2011 at 7:07 am |
  40. Mike

    Our economy is still in bad shape. Healthcare costs are outrageous. Why, because we still have a congress and white house influenced by big business. We need to clean up this problem. It has been the same issue for decades. We need a true dedication to campaign finance reform.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:06 am |
  41. Debra Lacey

    The biggest problem is the growing wealth inequality and, therefore, the divergent interests between America's richest entities and the rest of America. We are becoming increasingly dichotomized socioeconomically, and this is reinforced by the power of wealthy interests over pollicies, and, increasingly, the media. (Case in point, several weeks ago, Ms. Chetry referred to proposed Medicaid cuts as "unfortunate choices" while explaining why continuing subsidies for oil companies may be good for America ... whatever happened to the media's mantra that its role is to "afflict the comfortable, and comfort the afflicted?)

    June 6, 2011 at 7:06 am |
  42. Darren

    The government not being able to agree on anything our country cant even begin to fix its problems until the government gets their stuff together.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:05 am |
  43. William

    The biggest issue is that we have aloud our government to put their self interest first instead of what is good for the country. One of the major things that they are letting interfere with their work is religion I see that they have a hard time setting that aside when it comes to their decisions

    June 6, 2011 at 7:04 am |
  44. Phil Cashier

    Long term, the biggest threat America faces is the growing disparity in wealth and income. People are beginning to feel disenfranchised by having so few people control so much wealth and political power. No democracy can survive having a country controlled by an economic and political elite. Socialism is not the answer to this problem, but unless this disparity is addressed that may well be the answer that many seek.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:03 am |
  45. David Tofflemire

    Without a doubt, there is a lack of support structure for the masses of disenfranchised, "second-class" citizens in this country: the convict. I am a 25-year old Computer Support Tech student, and had to lie about being convicted on a non-violent burglary almost seven years ago to get a job making tacos, and I can barely meet my rent. Some out there have the support of family, or close friends, but who can a person like myself turn to, when I have neither?
    I understand that being convicted of a theft-related offense can pose a risk, in certain job situations, but where does one draw the line between acceptable and non-acceptable hiring practices?

    June 6, 2011 at 7:02 am |
  46. Dan

    Richard, I agree with you, you are 100% correct when you say people have forgotten the history of this nation. Case in point, this nation, whether one wants to beleive it or not, was founded, and the consitution was based on, Christian principles. This was once a Christian nation, and people have forgotten our roots. This nation was founded by Godly men, and now, it is almost a crime to be a Christian. I am a Christian, and Jesus said there would be persecution. So, I have no problem with people ridiculing me for my faith.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:00 am |
  47. Parks Family

    The number one problem we are facing is our government due to they can not come together to fix all the other problems we have.

    June 6, 2011 at 7:00 am |
  48. David Beurrier

    Jobs, I am 57 with an environmental degree. Our country is in need of repair, roads, bridges. I have been in heavy construction all my life and have not ever seen it this bad. 6 more months and I will run out of unemployment.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:59 am |
  49. Victor

    The fact we generalize extensive issues like the role of the government in different sectors to a discussion of government size, and not a measure of government efficiency. Efficiency in an area, such as education would most likely require an expansion of of the size of government, whereas another department such as the DOD, could use a reduction in procurement scope. However, people don't want to realize that efficiency determines size or scope and not the other way around, because making something more efficient would require a larger beauracracy.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:59 am |
  50. Rohan Ganguli

    the most important issue for America is to bring back manufacturing jobs. There is dignity in the work and it brings back to community work involved in making the things we need and use in our everyday life. We may pay a little more for washing machines, toasters, and car, but we will reclaim the spirit of work for all Americans.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:58 am |
  51. Barbara Ash

    The influence of money in our political system. It taints everything.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:57 am |
  52. Kevin Cooke

    Pork Barrel Spending still left unchecked...

    June 6, 2011 at 6:57 am |
  53. Sue

    The single most important issue facing America today is economy related. Americans need jobs, we need health care reform, renewable energy, the government needs to reduce debt and get out of 3 wars: the drug war, Afghanistan and Iraq. Address those issues and this country will get back on it's feet.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:56 am |
  54. Dr. James R. Pannozzi D.O.M., LAc

    The single most important issue facing America today is the failure of BOTH major political parties to correctly identify the realistic and actual causes of the failure of job growth. Both sides blame each other instead of blaming themselves for the outsourcings, exportations of major industries, H1B Visas and other programs whose sole purpose was to give tax breaks and otherwise enrich corporations and other special interests.

    The job crisis is correctly recognized but then attention is distracted away by arm waving about the national debt or on pie in the sky delusions of more jobs from government programs instead of correctly identifying the dangerous growth of corporate subversion of our government to serve their interests instead of those of the people.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:56 am |
  55. Marcus Kemp

    It is the root of all the worlds problems, over population. Of course no one wants to address this.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:55 am |
  56. Barb Fogle

    DEBT! We need to control our spending. We aren't going going to have a country to worry about if we don't get our debt under control.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:55 am |
  57. Joe Hudson


    June 6, 2011 at 6:54 am |
  58. peter b

    the disparity of wealth. No society ever progressed without having a growing middle class. Ours is getting smaller

    June 6, 2011 at 6:52 am |
  59. Astersik

    I feel America is lacking spirit when it comes to looking for jobs. But people should not give up either looking or getting the education you may need, or create a job for you. But I don't feel its the President's job to get you that job. I think its up to the America people to get the economy going, by keeping jobs here. We should not give up, I did I went out and received my Master's degree and I created a job for me, and I know of many people who lost a job and went into their own business and went back to school. When President Bush was in office people blamed Bush now they blame President Obama. We need to take action for ourselves. And make it work. If we fail we try again.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:32 am |
  60. vs101

    While the media enjoys the lure of ratings by promoting the inane ramblings of celebrities like Palin, Trump, et. al., they need to develop some sense of responsibility for what they are enabling. The single most important issue facing this country is to stop the virulent bigotry and intolerance perpetrated by the right wing T party zealots from destroying the fundamental fabric of our society. If the country doesn't wake up from its stupor, this great nation will devolve into a cesspool of religious fundamentalists and xenophibic zealots.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:30 am |
  61. Bruce Smith

    The single most important issue? The one that outweighs all others? that's easy!
    We need to have honest, qualified candidates to elect to our government and not the opportunistic airheads we have now!

    June 6, 2011 at 6:28 am |
  62. Richard

    The single most important problem, is that people in this country do not know our history. Wether it be, Paul Revere's ride, or today being the anniversary of D-Day. Until people know where we came from, we cannot change the problems we face today, political, financial or world issues. I hope I am correct to quote, "those who forget the past are condemed to repeat it"

    June 6, 2011 at 6:25 am |
  63. Sarah

    Definitely our economy, we're nowhere near being out of the woods, and completely agree that the true numbers of the unemployed are being hidden in the numbers who are saying they're working part-time. Then its our nations debt!

    June 6, 2011 at 6:25 am |
  64. Kipp Nave

    "It's the economy, stupid"

    June 6, 2011 at 6:25 am |
  65. David Thelen

    I believe all regressive fees, including the high costs of fuels (diesel and gas), reduces economic activities directly. Not to mention everything else you buy, like groceries, has these extra high diesel fuel costs add in. Since everything you buy are trucked in using this fuel.. Our bump in the unemployment rate is due to the increased costs of fuel, both gas and diesel.
    People are not eating out as much due to these added costs. This results in lower amount of tips that will create less economic activities. And on and on it goes. Resulting in lower economic activities many times over.
    A full US economic recovery will depend on having an expanding housing market and lower costs of fuel.
    Should some costs of fuel be included as a federal income tax deductible for some people? This may help strengthen the economy, in more ways than one.
    Another problem are the record amount student loans. We have among the highest tuition costs of the world. This debt takes away fuel for added economic activities.
    The best way to increase jobs is for the middle class to have extra money in their pockets. Reducing payroll, sales, property, and gas taxes will give people extra money to spend. Thus stimulate the economy.
    Another area to stimulate the housing market is for mortgage rates to decline. Plus if refinancing costs become lower, this will result in extra money in the middle class hands. If we also lower property taxes, including places for renting (as long this savings is passed to renters), will also result in more money in people’s pockets, as well.
    We need to revisit all taxes, including the regressive ones, to place more money in people’s pockets. Then after this will we stimulate the economy.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:23 am |
  66. Bjorn Norstrom

    Taking politics out of politics. The constant political bickering and Washington stalemate and blame games are ruining our country. Go even further, take politicians out of politics!

    June 6, 2011 at 6:23 am |
  67. Dan

    Homosexuality. This nation is becoming immoral, saying homosexuality is "ok". It's wrong, and you can say what you want, deny if you would like, but all the recent severe weather, that is the almighty "patiently" trying to get our attention.

    June 6, 2011 at 6:22 am |