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Don't Call It Do Nothing Congress! Passed 1,900 Symbolic Bills

Don't Call It Do Nothing Congress! Passed 1,900 Symbolic Bills

Congress is on track to pass the least amount of public laws than any other Congress in the two decades of record keeping. So far, the 110th Congress has 294 laws to its name. On the other hand, the House and Senate have passed 1,900 symbolic resolutions.

It may not have ended the war in Iraq, but this year Congress has:

  • Recognized the Idaho Potato Commission's 70th Anniversary
  • Recognized soil as an essential natural resource
  • Designated May 5-9 as National Substitute Teacher Recognition Week
  • Set July 28 as the Day of the American Cowboy

Shoot! I missed the Day of the American Cowboy. The Wall Street Journal reports that Congress spends one-quarter of its workweek debating and passing such symbolic measures. Congressional Democrats, emphasizing the quality over the quantity of actual legislation, point out that since 2007 they have enacted the largest expansion in college aid in 60 years, increased the minimum wage for the first time in 10 years, increased unemployment benefits, and implemented the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission.

Do you think the Democratic Congress should have a chance to further prove itself with a President on its side, or is it time to symbolically kick these lawmakers to the curb in November?

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organicsugr organicsugr 7 years
Jillness, I'm not very good at math either.
UnDave35 UnDave35 7 years
I thought you were talking in terms of percentages. :)
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 7 years
Oops I mean 425/10 Republicans, I had Senate on the brain.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 7 years
As for Pelosi I thought she would get a lot more credit than she has received from GOP for not jumping on the impeachment band wagon. Thank God they didn't take it that far or next year the roll call in the House of Rep. would be 90/10 Republicans.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 7 years
Hey I'm for tax credits too, give me some.
True-Song True-Song 7 years
It seems to be an easy way for members of congress to play both sides, to say they support parts of legislation and not other parts.
ilanac13 ilanac13 7 years
i'm so over the system as a whole. i think that politicians pass symbolic bills because they hope that they can get voters on their side - or they hope that in the future, these junior reps will be on their side - yet i don't know if there's anything that's going to change in the near future. with all the red tape in place to keep things from going through - it's a wonder that our country is running at all - and to be honest, with the way that things are going - i wouldn't be surprised if it stopped running.
ilanac13 ilanac13 7 years
i'm so over the system as a whole. i think that politicians pass symbolic bills because they hope that they can get voters on their side - or they hope that in the future, these junior reps will be on their side - yet i don't know if there's anything that's going to change in the near future. with all the red tape in place to keep things from going through - it's a wonder that our country is running at all - and to be honest, with the way that things are going - i wouldn't be surprised if it stopped running.
Jillness Jillness 7 years
Oh, and just to clarify, Obama is also for tax credits. :)
Jillness Jillness 7 years
Oh, and just to clarify, Obama is also for tax credits. :)
Jillness Jillness 7 years
"I also hate the way that the majority (who ever it happens to be) gets the blame for a bill not passing. It takes two to do the partisan tango. Both the GOP and the DNC need to drop the partisanship hysterics."I agree!Lilkimbo, I think you are a very credible source, but according to FactCheck, McCain's energy plan "doesn't specify any new federal spending for renewable energy, and says only that he would "rationalize" existing tax credits to provide incentives. In the past, however, he's opposed extending such tax credits when paid by tax increases elsewhere." (it should be noted that they do not appear to include "clean coal" and nuclear energy as "renewable energy" source). I can't go to McCain's site right now, but if anyone has a counter to that I am open to hearing it! :) Facts are always welcome.
Jillness Jillness 7 years
"I also hate the way that the majority (who ever it happens to be) gets the blame for a bill not passing. It takes two to do the partisan tango. Both the GOP and the DNC need to drop the partisanship hysterics." I agree! Lilkimbo, I think you are a very credible source, but according to FactCheck, McCain's energy plan "doesn't specify any new federal spending for renewable energy, and says only that he would "rationalize" existing tax credits to provide incentives. In the past, however, he's opposed extending such tax credits when paid by tax increases elsewhere." (it should be noted that they do not appear to include "clean coal" and nuclear energy as "renewable energy" source). I can't go to McCain's site right now, but if anyone has a counter to that I am open to hearing it! :) Facts are always welcome.
Shadowcat14 Shadowcat14 7 years
Thanks Jillness for the comment! Why can we all not run the country? We see the obvious faults and failings. I think it has a lot to do with having to play to each party. Both McCain and Obama have been accused by their parties' of abandoning their principles because they have moved to the center, which happens to be where majority of America is at. But the only way they could win their parties' nomination was to play to the base, talk the religious rhetoric and anti-war thumping. We seem to create these inept politicions and then get angry with them.Sorry I was rambling a bit.
Shadowcat14 Shadowcat14 7 years
Thanks Jillness for the comment! Why can we all not run the country? We see the obvious faults and failings. I think it has a lot to do with having to play to each party. Both McCain and Obama have been accused by their parties' of abandoning their principles because they have moved to the center, which happens to be where majority of America is at. But the only way they could win their parties' nomination was to play to the base, talk the religious rhetoric and anti-war thumping. We seem to create these inept politicions and then get angry with them. Sorry I was rambling a bit.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 7 years
They've done some important things but I'll agree because of the partisan ship on both sides important matters have not been resolved. I also hat the way that the majority (who ever it happens to be) gets the blame for a bill not passing. It takes two to do the partisan tango. Both the GOP and the DNC need to drop the partisanship hysterics.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
Anyway, I've got a ton to finish in the next hour and a half. Have a great day, all! :drinks:
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
And, just to be clear, McCain's plan actually includes funding and tax cuts.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
When did I say that? :puzzled:
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
When did I say that? :puzzled:
Jillness Jillness 7 years
You don't think already existing companies would benefit from funding for green initiatives?
Jillness Jillness 7 years
I miss it too, Shadowcat. (I like your avtar, btw!)
Shadowcat14 Shadowcat14 7 years
I think you guys are right when it comes to the fact that only symbolic measures are passed because it is the only thing the politicians agree on. Something struck me that President Bush said in 2004 after her won the election, that he had been giving a mandate by the American People for his policies. That mentality, the same one in the Democrat run House and Senate, of because you won with 51% everyone has to do things your way. Well, 49% still disagree with you. Their is no longer any compromise. Politicians are so scared of losing their bases (Religous Conservatives and Fundamentalists for Republicans and Ant-War for the Democrats) that they pass peremptory legislation. Leaving moderates behind. I miss the political compromise that brought about the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
Shadowcat14 Shadowcat14 7 years
I think you guys are right when it comes to the fact that only symbolic measures are passed because it is the only thing the politicians agree on. Something struck me that President Bush said in 2004 after her won the election, that he had been giving a mandate by the American People for his policies. That mentality, the same one in the Democrat run House and Senate, of because you won with 51% everyone has to do things your way. Well, 49% still disagree with you. Their is no longer any compromise.Politicians are so scared of losing their bases (Religous Conservatives and Fundamentalists for Republicans and Ant-War for the Democrats) that they pass peremptory legislation. Leaving moderates behind.I miss the political compromise that brought about the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
Jill, start up companies might benefit more from funding, but already existing companies, which already have a lot of the complicated infrastructure in place that is needed to start new projects, would benefit more from tax credits.
Jillness Jillness 7 years
I just think that the Group of 10 legislation really is a compromise of both party's goals, and if we want to make progress this is a good place to start. Neither party gets exactly what they want, but Green energy gets the jump start the American people need.
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