With only a handful of remaining legislative days on their calendar, this current Congress is on track to go down as one of the most unproductive in modern history.Pathetic?! Ha ha no way! It's just evidence that everything in the country is PERFECT! Everyone's doing great, right? No need for Congress, the people we pay to represent our interests, to get off their asses and do anything when everything is A-OK for everyone! If anything, everything is TOO PERFECT in the good ol' U S of A right now.
The paltry number of bills Congress has passed into law this year paints a vivid picture of just how bad the gridlock has been for lawmakers, whose single-digit approval rating illustrates that the public is hardly satisfied with their trickle of legislative activity.
According to THOMAS, the legislative tracking service, this Congress has passed just 52 public laws since it gaveled into session in January.
If that sounds like a small number, it is.
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At this point in George W. Bush's second term as president, for example, 113 bills had been enacted into law, according to numbers crunched by Pew Research Center's Drew DeSilver.
...Of course, some of the legislation that has reached the president's desk this year has involved some hard-fought and highly publicized issues like reverse mortgage rules, high interest rates for students and reopening the government after the lengthy shutdown. ...But the list of Washington's accomplishments gets plenty of padding every year from bridge namings, post office honors and various awards.
So far this year, the president has signed legislation to specify the size of commemorative coins for the Baseball Hall of Fame, to name a subsection of IRS code after former Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison and to honor baseball great Stan Musial with a namesake Midwestern bridge.
With the ceremonial measures excluded, according to DeSilver's calculations, Congress has enacted just 44 "substantive" laws so far this year.
That's well below the average of about 70 substantive bills passed in the equivalent time period between 1999 and 2012.
"The major urgent areas of concern in the country just have not been addressed," says Norm Ornstein, a congressional expert at the American Enterprise Institute. "It's pretty pathetic."
Take it easy, Congress. We're all doing great.