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Wolf Blitzer delivers the most important breaking news and political, international, and national security stories of the day. Tune to The Situation Room weekdays 5-6:30pm ET on CNN.

BLITZER'S BLOG: Greetings from Iowa
August 15th, 2011
02:30 PM ET

BLITZER'S BLOG: Greetings from Iowa

By CNN's Wolf Blitzer

Decorah, Iowa (CNN) - This is really rural northeast Iowa. And I love it.

What a pleasure to get out of Washington for a few days. I can identify with President Obama and the Republican presidential candidates who are all working the crowds here in the Midwest. The people are very friendly and seem so happy to see us; the weather is fabulous; and the corn fields are majestic.

Like so many political reporters, I come to Iowa every four years. I remember interviewing then-Governor George W. Bush in 1999 when he was running for the Republican nomination. I remember interviewing then Senator-Barack Obama in October 2008 just before he was elected president.

Iowa may not be the largest state, but right now it's one of the most influential. The folks here love the fact that they are the first in the nation in the race for the White House.

The Republican field is lively - with all of the candidates really lashing out against President Obama. And now, he's beginning - slowly - to lash back. It will get much more intense in the coming weeks and months.

I'll be interviewing President Obama tomorrow here in Iowa. He's on his bus trip that began this morning in Minnesota and continues through Iowa and ends in his home state Illinois. He needs these three states in his bid for re-election. He carried all three in 2008.

I would love to hear from you. If you have a good question for the president please let me know @WolfBlitzerCNN on Twitter.

If you're a political news junkie - as I've been my whole life - it doesn't get any better than this.

Post by:
Filed under: Iowa • President Obama • Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (95 Responses)
  1. R. Day

    Dear Mr. Wolf. Why is congress giving up on America and throwing in the towel. What do they know that the rest of us Americans don't know? Where are all the investigative reporters like Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstien. There's a cover up in D.C. and its to big and obvious to blame this on Obama. The World knows and is watching. This country put itself in a hole and on the verge of World War 3. Obama's working to get us out of this hole like he said when he ran for the presidency and at the inauguration, but Congress wants to stop him and just throw in the towel....WHY?

    August 17, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
  2. Kathryn Bogala

    Wolf Blitzer is an objective interviewer. Really enjoyed your recent interview with President Obama. As a Canadian I am always tuned in to American politics and enjoy your interview style.

    Kathryn Bogala

    August 16, 2011 at 8:20 pm |
  3. Abby

    Good evening Wolf,
    I LOVE your show and am getting ready to watch your interview with the Pres. (I DVR'd it!). I am, however, disappointed in the lack of coverage and credit given to Ron Paul. For the guy that came in second, why in the world would someone that was a write in with 700+ votes get more attention than the candidate that had only 200 votes/1% less than Bachman??? Another possible president that can't spell or pronounce words and one that is so out of it that she can't tell the difference between a birthday and date of expiration (what is this teaching our children?).
    This is confusing to me and from what I am reading, I am not alone. I expected more from CNN and was set back by your network's lack of coverage. It makes me wonder what else CNN is NOT covering. I also thought that CNN prided itself on being fair and equal; with such programs as "keeping them honest" etc. I am going to use a wait and see approach, but can only hope that CNN will afford more air time to the number two candidate and stop spending the majority of its time on those at the end of the pack. There should be more attention given to in-depth interviews with the top Iowa straw poll winners to provide more info to the voters so that they can gain more knowledge about what each candidate represents and their responses to some brutally serious and legitimate questions. Again, I will continue to watch and see what transpires. I would absolutely hate to leave your network, as I really enjoy your show and the Cafferty file. Jack says it the way it is!!!! You guys are the BEST.
    Abby,
    NH

    August 16, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
  4. Michael Rosen

    I'm tired of watching all these rich polaticians (both democrat and republican) scratching there head on what to do about our economic situation. Here's an idea for you. If you are already a milionaire and have a high paid government job trying to figure out how to make some cut backs, why not insist on lowering your own salary. This is just another example on how the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Lead by example and then the public will take you seriously. Too many good americans are loosing there jobs while rich people on tv are acting like they care. I am part off a family owned buissiness for over 40 years. When our profit margain lowers one of the first things we consider is cost of operation and start lowering our own salaries. If our own little Auto shop has enough sense on doing this I don't see why these goverment fat cats cant figure it out to.

    August 16, 2011 at 6:45 pm |
  5. respect

    I was watching CNN at work, I am currently serving in the 1st Special Forces Group, you quoted Rick Perry saying service members wanted a president that wore the uniform, I totally disagree we do not care if you wear the uniform or not we just don't want to be a bargaining chip for congress meaning don't mess with our pay, we have families to take care of

    August 16, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  6. Easter

    Just can't wait to see Obama and those GOP nuts in a Presidential debate! Obama has more brains than all of them put together!!

    August 16, 2011 at 5:59 pm |
  7. Dan Hansford

    Your 'love in' with Donna today can only be described as pipiful. You let Donna talk on and on on two occasions while immediately cutting off any possible republican comment. How about a little balance? Or would that jeapordise your position at CNN??

    August 16, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
  8. mary

    get the blonde bimbette #$@! idot news reader NOT REPORTER off the air who was just on with U! Obama's home state – what a bunch of crap!

    August 16, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
  9. davey

    WOLFY,

    YOUR REALLY A JOKE...AND ARE YOU IN LUV WITH THE FRAUD OBSMAMA...HE IS CORRUPT AND HAS FAKE DOCS..A HE WILL NOT BE RE-ELECTED BECAUSE HE IS A TOTAL FAILURE..AND YOUR A TOTAL IDIOT FOR THIS ONE SIDED INTERVIEW...THIS FRAUD NEEDS TO BE IMPEACHED BEFORE HE RUINS THE US TOTALLY.

    August 16, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
    • Sandra Johnson

      You need help...check your heart..you have a problem and I know what it is...YOU!

      August 17, 2011 at 6:50 pm |
  10. BILL V

    Dear Wolf. I will be watching tonight to see if you have an hourly countdown on President Obama's lowest Gallup Poll numbers ever (39%). Since you had a countdown for President George W. Bush, I think that it's only fair we hear how low President Obama"s approval has sunk....hour by hour.

    August 16, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
  11. Sharon

    Wolf, I am a regular viewer of the Situation Room and admire your program very much. It is so refreshing to see you and so many of the regular CNN staff contributors take the high ground in this most ugly debt crisis issue. The continuous harsh bashing of the President of the United States is deplorable. How much worse can this get? It seems to be the worst and most unkind political strategy to unseat a sitting president than I have ever witnessed before. Thank you for your excellent and unbiased presentation of the news. And thanks to your staff as well.

    August 16, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
  12. Tstern

    Wolf – why don't you quote the right poll number for the President today- it's 39% not 40 or 41 – you couldn't wait to blab President Bush's numbers and got them all correct......HMMMMMMMM no wonder why I can't listen to your show on a regular basis......

    August 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  13. Joan

    President Obama is an extremely classy guy. He is an example of what an honest, caring, loving christian person should be. All these GOP candidate or running adds and going on camera telling everyone that he is going on a campaign run using tax payers money. Anyone who has been listening to him for the 2 days see that just is not so. He is true to his word. All he wants to do is talk to people and get ideas regarding how to move the country forward. Yet he is not out there bashing them, calling them names.

    Question for him the President:

    Why is he not making it clear to America that it is a GOP CONGRESS, and that they have not move a finger to help
    him bring the country back from the brink because they want to win in 2012. They do not care if people starve, live on
    the street, cant feed their children, die because they can't afford medical as long as they win back the POWER.

    August 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
  14. andrew

    I have a question Mr. President,"When are you going to stand up to these obstructionalist Republican fools?" I am going to vote for you but please push hard on these guys and get it done!!

    August 16, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
  15. Tony Simmons

    I agree with the people in the video. Social Security is not a program that should be tampered with. People are on social securitty because they or their family earned it. As a working person I have worked for 41 years and paid SS with no choice from me. It needs to be there when I retire.

    August 16, 2011 at 12:42 pm |
  16. Vigla

    Please ask the President to respond to his opponents what his plan is to restore our economy and does he feel that welfare for the rich in the form of tax cuts is hurting our economy. The low capital gains tax, for example is pushing capital into the stock market rather than investments in job creation. Would he support raising the capital gains tax back to 29% to get commodities and stocks stabilized?

    August 16, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
  17. jarhead

    It's reassuring that the quintessence of success in the American business world, Mr. Warren Buffet, comes out in support of a solution advanced by the Democrats and President Obama in particular. Mr. Buffet advocates more tax on the rich (he claims the 17% tax rate he pays is too low (watch the Bloomberg interview on Charlie Rose) and continued government spending at a time the private sector is unable or unwilling to fill the gap. He knows that the best time to borrow is when interests are at their lowest, as they are now.
    It makes absolute azzes out of all those low wage red neck racists, Tea Party supporters, and the Republicans in general, who wish to extend the tax break to the rich and cut all government spending (infrastructure projects such as roads, transportation and alternative energy where the US is falling far behind its main competitors, especially China), thereby increasing unemployment rather than lowering it.

    August 16, 2011 at 12:18 pm |
  18. Jeff in Iowa

    Chuckling out loud ... still "awaiting moderation" for the previous comment. Nothing obscene or out of place, just honest recall of the way you treated the former president. Let's see if CNN has the guts to actually put this up as the first comment or if it is deleted or buried at line 457. So predictable. ; )

    August 16, 2011 at 11:59 am |
  19. isaac

    MR BLITZER YOU AR DEMOCRAT YOU KEN BE MORE THAF ON THE PRESIDENT CNN OR NADA

    August 16, 2011 at 11:57 am |
  20. isaac

    obama losing control

    August 16, 2011 at 11:50 am |
  21. Margaret Kufuor Boakye

    President Obama – you started out so strong, so resilient, do not let anyone get you down. You are sitting in a chair in a slumped position. You need to Stand Up. Live Strong. Stand Up. You need to Stand Up.

    August 16, 2011 at 11:33 am |
  22. Sandy Samuel

    The debt ceiling debate and the consequential downgrade of American debt not only reflect the dysfunction and polarization in the political arena, but more importantly American society. The societal values of cooperation and innovation have been whittled away, triggered by the psychological impact of the events of 9/11. Politicians represent segments of society, as we elect people aligned to our personal views. As society becomes polarized there is a disturbing trend away from the middle. Great civilizations like Greece and Rome achieved greatness and subsequently collapsed as their societies became corrupt and dysfunctional. We need to solve our societal problems, and come together to ensure that our government does not mimic Nero playing the fiddle while Rome burned!

    August 16, 2011 at 11:28 am |
  23. Brian Ford

    Caveat: There's almost no way I'll not vote for Obama - especially given the social-conservative field he's facing - but that's not the case with most people, so:

    Obama keeps saying that the blame for the bleak outlook is political gridlock. His first campaign for president was based, in large part, on his ability to bridge the divide and put an end to political gridlock. What's his plan for either 1) living up to that promise or 2) abandoning it to get something done with the cards he's been dealt?

    August 16, 2011 at 11:23 am |
  24. dw

    Please ask the President why elected officials in Washington are still getting lifetime salaries, pensions, insurance, etc. They need to be CUT just like everything else is – Starting on January 1, 2012. It all needs to go away and put towards the deficit- put their proportionate share of what they earned, put the appropriate % into Social Security and then rollover a % of what they made FROM THE GOVT into their own pension plan or IRA. Yes, that means all those elected officials over the age of 70 1/2 will be forced to draw out a certain percentage and this will be taxed as ordinary income – just like the rest of the country. Lastly, they can no longer VOTE themselves raises or any perk – ever. The vote will go to the People – at the general election time. A system of checks and balances is long overdue for our elected officials and it is coming.

    August 16, 2011 at 11:06 am |
  25. Darrell Wright

    To whom it concerns,

    Why are you refusing to cover presidential hopeful Ron Paul more? I am an admitted Liberal, but had I known about Ron Paul during the last Election before John McCain was nominated, he would have gotten my vote.

    During the recent Iowa Straw poll, Paul was breaking records on internet polling as the guy who would win the straw Poll, but he was barely beat out by Michelle Bachman according to your news station. According to the web, Ron Paul was in first place, Romney was in second and Michelle Bachman tied for third with Herman Cain.

    However, your news programs gave it to Michelle Bachman and refused to talk about Ron Paul in any length. Is it any wonder why people are starting to distrust your news programs? I do not care if you are Fox News, CNN, or MSNBC, more and more people are starting to get turned off by your reporting. It is almost like nothing is important unless you are putting down current president Obama, or talking about Sarah Palin. So what gives??? Sarah Palin is not running for president and even if she was, she could not beat Obama and you know this. I am sure all of your reporters are aware that John McCain was slated to become the next president until Sarah Palin was introduced to the public. It is almost like all of you (FOX NEWS included) want to see President Obama win a second term. Fox may put up a god front by backing Republican hopefuls, but the hopefuls they back do not stand a chance at beating President Obama and everyone knows that. The only current Republican nominee who might be able to beat President Obama is Ron Paul. And I think the statistic are showing this more and more everyday.

    Please consider airing more reports on Ron Paul or I will continue to send everything I have to other organizations to criticize your broadcasts – including The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. In case you are not aware of it, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert are the two main shows that younger voters turn to (besides the internet) for their political information. It might be different if Keith Olbermann started being funny again, and Bill O’Reilly became outrageous again, but it is hard to say. And the Clones that Fox News and MSNBC have of these two important commentators is not drawing our attention. Even CNN’s Anderson Cooper is not important enough to draw in the younger Voters, Rick Sanchez was, but CNN fired him over a slip of the tongue (Makes me wonder why it took two years to get rid of Lou Dobbs.)

    In ending, it is not just one of your Cable News channels in trouble for this, it is all of them. And the youth are starting to take notice. Remember Grandma, and Grandpa voters will not be around forever. And the Majority of voters today, went to school after segregation had ended. We see no black and white, only what we believe to be the truth, including as MTV watchers put it so many times during Clinton’s 1st run for president the ending of the prohibition of Marijuana.

    Maybe go back and watch some of the older MTV footage before refusing to showing clips of RON PAUL again. He stands for what the youth stands for. And the only way he will not be elected, is if either the elections are rigged, or he chooses some nut job like Sarah Palin as his running mate.

    August 16, 2011 at 11:03 am |
    • Sandra Johnson

      Ron Paul has 1 or 2 good points, he is too old,and has had ample time to make some ot the changes he says need to be made in America....some of his views are over the top...

      August 17, 2011 at 6:55 pm |
  26. James

    We can only hope the Bus Breaks Down–Still using my dime to do his campaign no matter what he calls it. Pretty blatant and beyond coincidence that he is there during the Republican Caucus.–Bad manners personified–

    August 16, 2011 at 11:01 am |
  27. Dean

    A question for Obama...."Why don't you bring our jobs back home and why don't you stop outsourcing of jobs that continues even as we speak?" Question 2 "Why does the government have stupid regulations on corporations like the regulation of the size of holes in Swiss cheesw? These regulations cost hundreds of billions every year to comply with."
    Question 3........."You want to increase tax revenue, why not tax profits on things like oil speculation at a rate of 95%?"

    August 16, 2011 at 10:39 am |
    • Sandra Johnson

      Yes, let's stop outsourcing or jobs, a trend that started back in the 70's and went awry over the last ten years..What did you think would happen, when businesses can make trillions by outsourcing. Cheap labor, no taxes, no benefit packages and they can pocket billions. Send the jobs ot other countries and now you are bankrupting your own country because of GREED! Now you must decide, are you rich enough yet, or do you still need more.

      August 17, 2011 at 7:02 pm |
  28. buddha12

    I would love to see any MSM pundit ask the president some really valid questions. "What exactly are you planning to put forth as a Jobs growth plan?" "How exactly do you plan on paying down the deficit, and what cuts are you planning to make?" I have never heard the president give anything but vague answers, unless he is blaming someone else for the current problems. C'mon Wolf, be a true reporter and ask the questions.

    August 16, 2011 at 9:18 am |
  29. IBAMALIAR

    Please Blitzer can you keep your nose where it belongs and quit following the man of CHANGE? America can stand no more of "YES WE CAN". Yes we can, what? Is the question, a question that does not need to be answered with Americans starving to death because of this man's failed policies, if he had any?

    August 16, 2011 at 9:06 am |
  30. jarhead

    It's reassuring that the quintessence of success in the American business world, Mr. buffet, comes out in support of a solution advanced by the Democrats and President Obama in particular. More tax on the rich and continued government spending (at historically low borrowing rate) at a time the private sector is unable or unwilling to fill the gap. He knows that the best time to borrow is when interests are at their lowest, as they are now.
    It makes absolute azzes out of all these red necks racists, Tea Party supporters, and the Republicans in general who wish to extend the tax break to the rich and cut all the government spending that they can, leaving more people on the dole than ever before. But every educated person (and there are extremely few on blogs like this) knows that hatred makes people blind and irrational. Most can't differentiate a million from a trillion, let alone understand ratios, and out of sheer frustration, simply proffer insults at your person. Keep going Mr. President. You have my support. And I am white, wealthy and reside in Texas.

    August 16, 2011 at 8:59 am |
  31. Jeff in Iowa

    Dear Wolf:

    We all remember your breathless "Lowest Poll Numbers Of His Presidency" treatment of then President George Bush when his numbers tanked ... you did an entire show about it and couldn't stop repeating it over and over and over and over. Before the show, in teasers. During the show, ad nauseum. After the show. Guest after guest after guest all being asked the same questions, "What does this mean? Is it the end of his presidency? Can he recover? Why does the public hate him?" ... etc., etc., etc. You were absolutely giddy in your reporting of the tanked numbers according to CNN's own (questionable) poll at the time.

    I will be breathlessly waiting to see how Obama answers those same questions from you and watch you spend an entire hour reporting on the numbers, and then see guest after guest after guest be asked those same kinds of questions. It makes me giddy just thinking about it. After all, CNN pretends to be "center" down the middle and we'll all be watching to see the fair and equal treatment you offer THIS latest president. ; )

    August 16, 2011 at 8:51 am |
  32. Jerry

    Mr. President, too little, too late. Clueless, clueless!

    America, remember 2012!!!

    August 16, 2011 at 7:13 am |
  33. Bill Musser

    I heard President Obama speak at Seed Savers Exchange (my employer!) today. It is good to have a statesman in the White House, the first in a long time. Barack Obama is an intelligent, articulate person who does not insult the intelligence of his constituents. He understands the complexities of issues and shares those complexities with his audiences. Many of us Iowans appreciate that kind of forthright, sensible, rational, clear thinking. We are tired of the sloganeering, partisanship, pandering, and extremism of the Right. We respect the level-headedness of Barack Obama. Maybe that's why he came to Decorah, Iowa, to speak...

    August 16, 2011 at 1:02 am |
  34. IBAMALIAR

    No one would be glad to see you Blitzer are your buddy Obama. Has he done a complete days work in the White House yet. Man and to think we paid this scumbag $400,000 YEARLY FOR PLAYING BASKETBALL, GOLF AND TAKING VACATIONS.

    August 15, 2011 at 9:42 pm |
  35. e. alaga

    I am writing to ask a question Why does the main stream media not report on Ron Paul This is not the way of a Nation who prides intself on Free Speech The absence of Ron Paul indicates that there is fear of hearing some truths Our military is shedding its blood for the freedome of speech and information and not selective of only a select few. This saddens many of citizens to realize we are only be fed what the establishment wants us to know I wonder what happen to the fine art of journalism Prejudice of information Allow the citizens to process all of the news not just what you are told to allow us to see and hear

    August 15, 2011 at 9:35 pm |
  36. Christine

    Dear Mr. Blitzer,

    I have heard that you will be interviewing the president tomorrow. I wonder if you would share with him some suggestions that I have for his friend Warren Buffett. I would like to have commented on Buffett's NYT article directly, but was unable to do so. The following are the comments I would like to have made.

    Thank you,

    Christine

    Dear Mr. Buffett,

    I greatly appreciate you speaking out on this issue. Sadly, though, anyone who is paying attention knows that a minority of ignorant or corrupt right-wing politicians are sworn to do anything in their power to destroy the Obama presidency, and the most effective way to do that is to destroy the economy.

    We can hope, that our fellow Americans understand who is to blame for the destruction of the economy, and vote them out in 2012. If that is the case, then by mid 2013 we can start to turn things around. There are plenty of us out here who cannot wait that long, however. I, for one, have less than $100 in my checking account and have been unemployed for more than a year. Even if Obama is successful in incentivising hiring the unemployed with tax cuts for businesses that do so, we know that businesses hire when they need to fill a position – not out of the goodness of their hearts, or because it will now cost them 10% less to fill a position which does not need filling.

    I am, therefore, challenging you and your billionaire buddies to begin investing in us, the un- and under-employed.

    I would love to see you create businesses that buy up foreclosed properties, retrofit them to make them energy efficient and otherwise green, and rent them at below-market cost to the previously-unemployed that now work for your retrofitting business. There are already government-sponsored green-building schools in many cities that you could work with. This would be a particularly good opportunity for unemployed veterans, for whom, after having given so much for their country, are often returning to find their homes are being foreclosed on and they are unable to find employment.

    I believe that this would help reduce suicides among returning service members as well as reduce unemployment. There are few things more damaging to an adult's psychological well-being than feeling like a burden on his or her family. I imagine that this is especially true of young men with young families. Conversely, nothing is more beneficial to a young man's psychological well-being than having his efforts produce something he can be proud to show his kids and say "Daddy did this". Imagine if what daddy did was rebuild a house, and rebuild a community.

    I would ask that you not invest in these businesses as part of Berkshire Hathaways, but rather as an individual, or group of individuals, so that your primary responsibility could be to your employees and not to your shareholders, and I would hope that you would institute profit sharing, so that the companies' profits feed the local communities rather than Wall Street investors.

    I would also love, love, love to see some of you morally-decent billionaires create a chain of non-profit check cashing services, and run the predatory lenders out of business.

    I have many, many other similar ideas that I would love to share with you and your buds if you really are interested in helping us, the unemployed, turn the economy around.

    Thank you for your time,

    Christine

    August 15, 2011 at 9:05 pm |
  37. Tom from New Jersey

    I hope a "no-nosense, no-bull" Republican, a la our Gov. Chris Christie, comes to the rescue and tosses his hat into the 2012 ring. I voted for Obama in '08, but not likely to next time.

    Although I hate the idea, I would rather sit-out the next election than vote for any of the current candidates (including Obama). Sat-out '92 and '96 for basically the same reason.

    August 15, 2011 at 9:04 pm |
  38. Only Man

    Wolf...you hide your disgust for the GOP so well. How do you do it? How do you go on day after day pretending that these neo-puritans don't bother you? You are a stronger man than I...

    August 15, 2011 at 8:25 pm |
  39. Oscar

    Hey Wolfe if the Republicans would get out of the way Obama could do his job, they need to realize we americans are not stupid we can read between the lines, we know who they are for and it isnt the middle-class or the poor they are for the ones that line their pockets & bank account with lots of cash, and i want to know why are the rublicans knocking down on Obama for going out on the road to defend hisself, just like Mitt Romney says Obama should be back in Washington trying to create jobs but what he isnt telling the American voters is that Obama cant do anything as long as the House (under boehner's watch) and the Senate are on vacation so why not use this time to go out and remind the american voters why there isnt no new jobs. One is because Bush & the republican party gave all the richest of the rich & the top 500 companies special tax breaks they say so they can create jobs, well i want to know one thing-where is the jobs, apparently the special tax breaks they've been giving them isnt working cause their holding onto their money so i say let them know either create the jobs yall promised or we are gonna take away your tax breaks and make you start paying the taxes you should have been paying all along, and lets as americans tell the republican party either do your job or we as americans who are your bosses will cut your pay in half. I love Obama cause he really cares about the americans & the United states of america, One thing that i do agree with everyone on is that Obama needs to bring our troops home and let those countries defend for themselves.

    August 15, 2011 at 8:01 pm |
  40. Eioljg

    How can you visit Decorah, Ia and not notice and report on how beautiful that area is? Or do they keep you locked up?

    August 15, 2011 at 7:55 pm |
  41. obama retoric

    maybe obama will learn to slop the pigs since he is one or maybe the people of Iowa will throw him under the bus like he has thrown this country under a bus

    August 15, 2011 at 7:40 pm |
  42. Joseph Pal

    Why does Pres Obama and other liberals believe that what I earn should be shared with others? Isn't it enough that I pay a blended federal tax rate of approx 30%, state income tax of 7%, property taxes of 9500 per year on a 70 x 100 lot. Sales tax of 7% on just about everything I buy not including the hidden taxes in gasoline and alcohol? Then of course I pay medical, auto, house insurance. Why can't the State and Federal governments thrive on that? If I gave my child a 10 dollar a week allowance and he/she gave it away or lost it or couldn't explain to me what it was spent on, should I give my child 20 dollars? This is ridiculous.

    August 15, 2011 at 7:40 pm |
    • Sandra Johnson

      I don't want anything of yours, I just don't want to pay your taxes..Just my own fair share. Key word is fair, I'm tired of paying for your and others tax loops, hoops and shelters. Pay your fair share so this liberal want have to pick up your slack.

      August 17, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
  43. Sue

    "Wolf Blitzer delivers the most important news and political stories of the day."---As long as it benefits Obama and the Democrats. If it does not benefit Obama and the Democrats.......Then, just like all other "journalists" at CNN--I will provide spin, lies, and coverups until it does!!

    August 15, 2011 at 7:36 pm |
  44. Jason

    ugh...Everything's rosy wherever Obama is according to CNN. Everything's fine. Just fine.

    Non-Defense Spending is up 25%
    The Deficit is up 40% in 2.5 years
    Unemployment is up 2% from when BO took office
    We're involved in 3 wars now
    He was unable to avoid the debt crisis penalties
    The stock market has had 1 good day in the past 10

    But everything's fine, because Iowans are nice people and the weather is nice.

    August 15, 2011 at 7:34 pm |
    • Sandra Johnson

      Where are you getting your stats, and where have you been hiding..The economy will not bounce back until we stop shilpping our jobs to other countries.

      August 17, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
  45. Chuck Hendrix, Jasper Ga

    Wolf, I attended a "town hall" meeting today. Tom graves (R) House of Representatives, 9th District. When asked about the history of a balanced budget by past Republicans Presidents and the lack of employment being created by reducing taxes and asked to elaborate on what his idea's were to help create jobs and reduce unemployment...his response was "Make sure Obama is not re-elected"... quite the plan isn't it? He brags about being an orchestrator of the CCB proposal, but the only plan he can vocalize to lessen unemployment is this response? What was really disturbing to me was the applause from the other attendees as if this was a real response that would accomplish anything. I found it to be so typical of Tea Party slugs, it infuriated me almost to the point of yelling out "You Lie".

    August 15, 2011 at 7:32 pm |
  46. Joseph Pal

    I don't understand why Mr Blizter and many other journalists do not make a statement to correct what politicians say. For example, in Pres Obama speech today, he stated that seniors shouldn't have to pay 6000 (500 per month) a year for medicare. They don't it ranges approx between 115 and 415 per month dependent on one's income. He also stated that Warren Buffet paid 17% tax on 36 million in income. If that's true and I don't think so, Mr Buffet could have voluntarily paid more. Most of mr Buffet's income is in trusts.

    August 15, 2011 at 7:31 pm |
  47. jan palombit

    I was looking forward to hearing our President speak in Iowa today, especially after having listened to the Straw Poll presidential hopefuls. Much to my dismay, I was able to hear part of his speech and then only got to watch him in the background, while others made their comments, leaving me wonder what was expressed in the rest of his message. I really did not need to hear other reporters' opinions while the President was speaking. I find this to be very disrespectful to any speaker let alone the President of the United States. I think it really says something about our country when we are not permitted to hear our own President speak. Save your comments for after speeches, especially the President, please.

    August 15, 2011 at 7:16 pm |
  48. Alan

    Sir, you have brought this country back, with the exception of caving in on the Bush tax cuts and the recent debt deal however you have broken several 2008 campaign promises i.e. supporting NASA, creating jobs. As intelligent as you are you can't seem to effectively negotiate any solution. Although the debt crisis is not your doing, it's still your responsibility and the fact that you even considered changing Social Security or cutting medicare is a major problem of trust going forward in 2012.

    Additionally I can no longer trust your judgement or ability to run this country. CNN and 178 days in a national office wasnt much but you were elected.

    Now I believe the only way I can vote for you is either you put thru a MAJOR JOBS PLAN and Bill in the senate so the America public can read it..or dump Biden and pick up Hillary as your VP. While you talk a nice talk since you lost the house to the republicans and the wild bunch Tea Partiers you've done squat and we're now backsliding into a Jimmy Carter type economy.

    Either way all the bus rides over the next months up until the 2012 elections won't help you, neither will it help the republicans who would sooner keep the top 5% of the rich getting richer and generate millions of minimum wage jobs like Perry did in Texas which have all but eliminated the middle class in this country.

    My vote counts, the 2000 elections proved a important civics lesson, but Sir, you have just about lost my vote because you cannot seem to work with enough of the majority in Congress to develop anything positive in terms of jobs or not cutting the budget until the banks, wall street and main street start hiring again.

    Goodbye Sir

    August 15, 2011 at 7:10 pm |
  49. Alonzo Rice

    Hello Wolf,
    I would like for you to ask the president, "When will he stop trying to reason with people who are not reasonable? I am so afraid that if he continues to do this, we will lose this country to the same people who are trying to destroy it. I have been unemployed since January and I know that if the Republicans retake the White House I may lose everything that I have fought so hard to achieve. I think that President Obama needs to be more aggressive when stating the position of the Republican Party and he must be more clear when stating his position.

    Thanks,

    Alonzo

    August 15, 2011 at 7:10 pm |
  50. L Byler

    Hey Blitz, This just in... Obama hits ALL TIME LOW approval in your new poll!!! Oh you didn't see that! Well we noticed your coverage when it happened to Bush. And you wonder why people don't watch or listen to you- because your biased!!

    August 15, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
  51. Anthony Palombit

    Why am I listening to Brianna Keilar, John Avlon and Wolf and not the President of the United States of America. I see President Obama speaking in the background but can not hear him while your so called journalist blab away. Shame on you for such shabby news reporting. We the people of the United States want to hear what the President has to say. Can you all shut up for a second so we can hear our President. What the hell country is this? Show some Patriotism. God Bless America.

    August 15, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
  52. Mattie Pelichet

    Would somebody please ask the President to say "I did it for you, the American people"; when asked why he signed the Debt Ceiling deal even though he didn't like it. He did it as a compromise, so we wouldn't defect. Or on anything else he did to help us that is questioned!!

    August 15, 2011 at 7:00 pm |
  53. Daenna Newkirk

    Wolf: "You actually interrupted President Obama's speech for a damn advertisement!" What was it that you didn't want us to see and hear????? CNN is turning out to be faux news all over again. Pat yourself on the back! You lost me!

    August 15, 2011 at 6:55 pm |
  54. JAKE

    Good job Wolf. Doing what you do best, licking Obama's boots.

    August 15, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
  55. Michael McKown

    Point the camera at Obama, turn on the sound, and everyone else be quiet. I want to hear what HE has to say, not what YOU want to present as analysis. Thank you.

    August 15, 2011 at 6:50 pm |
  56. scieng1

    Obama needs to get to work on allowing more job creation by private business, not charging around the country telling people his failures were really successes. Just like he added $trillions in new job-cutting regulations by speeding up ozone regulations without congressional approval, he can change and fix some of the damage he has done.

    August 15, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
  57. Jim Wilson

    Why have none of the candidates brought up taking away the military pension? These people put their lives on the line every day and now they are threatening to take away their pensions? How can anyone justify that?

    August 15, 2011 at 6:42 pm |
  58. Merav, NYC

    The President kick-off speech in Iowa, I have to say, is a 3rd grade level one. He should fire the writer right away! In 2008 he blamed Bush, in 2009 and 2010 he still blamed Bush, even though the economy was all his, and the deterioration to the enormous debt we have is thanks to him, Obama, and no one else. Now he blames Republicans or "those in congress who do not work with this WH". Really? That's your best argument?
    I am glad for one thing: After 2 yrs in office he finally learned that the people voted for the congress to care for their own (the citizens) jobs, not the congressman & woman jobs. Mazal Tov!

    August 15, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
  59. 4moreobama

    Mr President as one of your many supporters who helped get you elected is confident you will be re elected I want to know what youre going to do to stop the madness in DC? You have over 65% of the American people on your side but if you dont change your message and stop giving in and up to the 25% teabagging morons who are imploding this nation we all lose. 4 more years is more than we can bare. We the voter have the power to recall all republicants and dems that wont but if you wont lead and you wont step up to fight with us the battle is lost. STOP trying to reach across the isle nobodys home over there. Look behind you. We have your back and we can vote for only real Dems and Independents who will stand up as a majority to stomp out their filabustering once and for all and move forward!

    August 15, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
  60. chris

    Obama campaigning on the tax payer dime. Just another example of liberal waste

    August 15, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  61. Mike G

    Why isn't CNN mentioning on its web site that Obama's approval rating is now below 40 percent? Just curious.

    August 15, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  62. busby

    whoops! I am listening to Obama in Iowa. Same song same dance.

    August 15, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  63. joe davey

    Yes, the bachman victory hurts Palins chances. But it also adds to the embarassment of living in a nation where it is possible that either has come this far in the plitical system

    August 15, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  64. Terry L. Marion----- Marion Trucking and Const. ND

    My President, I understand that it is most likely in your nature to not be confrontational or maybe appear out control at any time. I think that this is a very good thing, being poised or reserved (to a certain extent). I will further state that the Republican talking heads didnt have a chance when you did confront them in during the Health Care converstions, it was apparent that they were out gunned in the area of health care knowledge so when it gets to a debate there is no question that you will make all of there candidates appear less than average. My question is, how long will you wait to before you start to counter some of the negative attacks that these Republicans have been having a heyday with for the last 2 yrs. I fear that it will be too late for you to regroup or overcome all of the negative untrue trash that they throw at your presidency if we wait much longer. I for one think its time to throw the Basket ball in there court and make them play ball, its time to make them answer some of the hard questions. Thanks, Terry

    August 15, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
  65. busby

    Thjank goodness for the 2012 election. Finally something Obama knows how to do. CAMPAIGN!!!

    August 15, 2011 at 6:09 pm |
  66. Dillon

    Ron Paul is extremely viable and electable, the whole notion that he is not is what gives way to that thought process. Every time an analyst or political voice is on CNN they are asked to compare Obama and GOP candidates, but none of those mentioned are ever Ron Paul. Bachmann, Romney, really? Ron Paul should be given more coverage and respect, especially given this is his 3rd time running for president, and has been in Congress for decades. Wake up America!

    August 15, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  67. Ryan

    Wolf, just wanted to say Thanks for the good words you said about our state today on the show. Iowa usually gets a bad rap for being nothing but flat endless fields of corn...We're so much more than that! And you're getting to see a particularly beautiful part of the state in Decorah. Northeast Iowa is a treasure, and us Iowans truly appreciate the good press you're giving us!!! Enjoy your stay!

    August 15, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  68. Patrick

    As an Iowan, I think too many people put too much effort into presidential campaigning in Iowa when it really doesn't mean a darn thing to anyone except for a few zealot politicla party leaders and their cronies.

    August 15, 2011 at 5:57 pm |
  69. Ken in NC

    Ask President Obama why is it so hard for him to conclude that Republicans are not going to work with him? He is killing his Presidency by holding out in hopes of Republicans working with him. He has admitted that Republicans have sponsored and supported their own legislation only to vote against it when the President comes onboard with the bil.

    August 15, 2011 at 5:37 pm |
  70. John

    Greeting from Wolf the republican blitzer in sheeps clothing......

    August 15, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  71. NickB5 in Portland, OR

    Vote Ron Paul in 2012!

    August 15, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
  72. Chris

    I grew up 30 minutes south of Decorah! I may be biased but I think it's one of the most beautiful town in Iowa.

    August 15, 2011 at 4:47 pm |
  73. zhawk88

    An intelligent reporter interviewing the President? Been a while...

    August 15, 2011 at 4:41 pm |
  74. AL in West Palm

    Wolf propose this to the Prez for me when it comes to taxes:

    1. no loopholes.
    2. if you make money you pay taxes (doesn't matter from where)
    3. the tax percentage should be as follow: a) $1 – $1.5M = 15% b) $1.501M – $10M = 22 c) $10M – Up = 35% d) all corps. pay 36%.

    That won't make the rich or corporations happy..but it sure would go a long way for the middle class

    August 15, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  75. Richard Fisch

    Simple Solution to Deficit Issue.WE NEED TERM LIMITS TO ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS

    August 15, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
  76. kaye cobb

    How can we improve our teenagers chances of getting jobs!!!

    August 15, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
  77. Luther Grad

    Wolf – Decorah is a great place. If you need a sweet treat I recommend Whippy Dip and there are plenty of places to wet your whistle on Water Street. Enjoy your time, I certainly did.

    August 15, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
  78. Sheila Brown

    The question: Why is our government so different than our families when it comes to managing money and financial commitments? My grandmother made fried apple pies and sold them to help build the church we attended; she knew how many pies she had to sell to meet her pledged obligation. When our daughter created more debt than she could pay for, we did not tell her to increase her debt limit and keep on spending. There were no easy answers and the stress on our emotional, mental and physical lives has been long lasting. National debt is not so different. It is affecting all it's citizens and the affects will touch and has touched most of us in a negative way. We have to start somewhere and with something. Has anyone identified who will not be getting any of our government money or less money? Who are these organizations or people? Publish this list now. This is a problem that cannot be a secret or hush hush. Too late, the dirty laundry is airing for all our critics. Why not tell our critics what we are doing about the problem?

    August 15, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
  79. James Fryday

    Wolf,
    It seems to me that lashing out at Obama is a sign of disrespect for the office of the President who, was duly elected by the people of USA.What Obama has tried to do is effect change in realistic terms to benefit the citizens of America.I live in Canada and one could only dream to have a leader like him as the Prime Minister in our country.Why is it that the minority(Tea Party) gets all the attention via negative condemnations of the President. I would be more concerned that America runs out of proven reserves of oil in 7 years. Go green as Obama says or fight wars to control oil as usual. Why does USA need such a large military that uses more oil than all of Canada?

    August 15, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  80. dinak

    Where's your hour-by-hour repetition of how low Obama is in the polls the way you did with Bush 43? You are a poor excuse for a journalist. Admit you are a lib mouthpiece then we'd respect you.

    August 15, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  81. nintex

    I thought Hawaii was his home state. And corn fields – majestic?

    August 15, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
  82. Bill from GA

    I would like for someone to ask the President why, considering the awesome turnaround in the economy during the first year of the Obama administration, they don't focus more on the numbers, using charts/graphs to make the point clear. Jobs went from LOOSING over 750,000 per month to large private sector gains. GDP went from MINUS more than 6% the last quarter of 2008 to PLUS over 4% after one year of the Stimulus. Yet lying repugs say the Stimulus was a waste of money.

    Then, the President should point out how repugs put the brakes on the eonomy after Senator Kennedy's seat went to the repugs. Let the Lying Propaganda Machine dispute THAT. On a graph, anyone can see the end of the turnaround when the repugs got the ability to filibuster in the Senate.

    August 15, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  83. Sheila Brown

    Please. Please. Please. Stop sending money that we do not have to support foreign countries. The Rule of Thumb: If you cannot take care of yourself, you cannot take care of anyone else. Right now, our Nation is having a financial crisis. We cannot pay our bills. We have to stop supporting the world until we can support ourselves. We have to stop today, not next year. I urge everyone to write their political officials at the state and national levels. What part of "quit spending money that we do not have" does our elected officials not understand?

    August 15, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
  84. Cal

    Hi Wolf,

    You are quickly loosin credibility as a news reporter; you don't even know what part of Iowa that you are traveling through. How can we have conidence in accuracy of your reporting?

    I suggest that your first qustion to Obama should be "where are we?" because you obviously don't know.Better yet, he might not know wither, so i suggest that you look it up on a map. Decorah (if htat's where you are) is not in Northwest Iowa. Better luck next itme.

    August 15, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  85. Beck

    I feel the President talks a good game of compromise but consistently demonizes half the country. I know he is playing to his base but at some point is the President going to be more of a centrist instead of being so divisive to get us out of the terrible economic position he and both politcal parties have created.

    August 15, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
  86. Scott Condon

    Glad you are enjoying Iowa, Wolf, but check your map. You're really in rural northeast Iowa.

    August 15, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  87. Eric

    1. Mr President, what will you do in order to reassert leadership over the economy, and inspire confidence in the future?

    2. How will you balance America's level of global engagement (famines, wars etc) with the fiscal realities we face on the home front. How can America continue to lead even though the economy has so many challenges?

    August 15, 2011 at 3:02 pm |
  88. Ron

    President Obama continually saying that if we do a modest change in social security, social security will be solvent for next 75 years as long as we do not take out money from social security fund. Can you ask him, what is the modest change he is referring to?

    August 15, 2011 at 2:55 pm |
  89. Jennifer

    So how much is this "not a campaign tour but LIKE a campaign tour" costing taxpayers?

    August 15, 2011 at 2:54 pm |
  90. Lacquel

    Decorah is in "northeast" Iowa not northwest................duh!!!

    August 15, 2011 at 2:45 pm |

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