US Congress On Pace To Be The Least Productive Legislature In 164 Years

Tyler Durden's picture

Authored by Everett Numbers via,

Without even enough Senate Republican support for a “clean repeal” of Obamacare, this Congress is on its way to historical levels of getting nothing done. So is the ‘Resistance’ winning? And will the divided GOP endanger President Donald Trump’s 2020 chances?

Another U.S. civil war may not be just around the corner, but then again, just imagine the status quo for another 10 years. Congress is on pace to pass the least number of bills in 164 years, David Faris, associate professor of political science at Roosevelt University, wrote Tuesday in The Week. As Washington, D.C. revels in permanent division and another “lesser of two evils” 2020 election cycle creeps into view, something’s got to give.

Immediately following the late Monday evening announcement that the Obamacare “repeal and replace” strategy would be split into two separate bills, many Republican voters expressed optimism that Congress may actually get something done. Or, rather, undone. But…

Nope! Despite Trump, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) all being on the same page for a “clean repeal” and ready to hear bipartisan “replacement” proposals, there were at least three other GOP voices already shutting down the entire plot.

Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Susan Collins of Maine, and Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia all came out Tuesday against that proposal, with fellow Republican Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas telling NPR that there were “five or six” total Republicans who opposed separating repeal and replace.

An inactive Congress certainly has its benefits, but a pendulum swings hardest from either extreme. As opposed to former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush signing a “jobs” bill and a tax decrease by this time in 2009 and 2001, respectively, Trump has signed mostly symbolic bills. The current GOP-led Congress has successfully snipped away some administrative regulations in 14 signed bills, but there are 238 House-passed bills the Senate has yet to take up, with just a fraction having any shot at advancing, according to Faris at The Week.

If it’s too much to draw parallels with the Civil War and today’s polarized politics, perhaps it could be more accurately stated that the U.S. is already in a slow-motion civil war. The Republicans’ control of Congress and the White House, which they haven’t had since 2006, could be lost in 2018 and 2020, notwithstanding a seemingly unfocused Democratic Party.

Former Republican Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich warned in a Fox News interview Monday that if, by Thanksgiving, the GOP doesn’t pass “a very large tax cut, retroactively designed back to January 1,” there will be “real danger of having Speaker Nancy Pelosi in 2019.”

Trump also stands to lose from an inactive Congress, as he campaigned to be a D.C. dealmaker. But it remains to be seen how much blame Republican voters will assign to Trump, who won support as an outsider during the 2016 primary.

Whether or not Trump maintains his base may not matter, anyway. A poll released Tuesday by the Washington Post and ABC News finds independents highly disapprove of the job the president is doing. Those non-affiliated voters decide elections, so when 59 percent strongly or somewhat disapprove of Trump — while just 32 percent approve — the base of Trump’s support may become less relevant come campaign season.

That doesn’t mean anyone regrets not voting for Hillary Clinton, by the way. A poll by Bloomberg released Tuesday shows Clinton’s favorability is two points lower than Trump’s, at 39 percent. What is quite revealing is that more than 20 percent of Clinton voters told Bloomberg they had an unfavorable view of her while just 6 percent of Trump voters viewed him negatively.

Trump is still weak against other Democrats, according to a Public Policy Polling report published Tuesday. It shows devastating losses for Trump in hypothetical 2020 matchups against Sen. Bernie Sanders (52 percent to 39 percent) and former Vice President Joe Biden (54 to 39 percent), and then smaller defeats against prospective candidates Senators Elizabeth Warren and Corey Booker. For what it’s worth, Trump tied with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Will “productivity” increase with any of these anticipated new leaders? Whether Congress is active or not, it doesn’t seem to change the course of American politics, with factions growing ever further apart. A civil war isn’t what’s needed, but it could be unavoidable if the only seat of power in the U.S. remains in Washington, D.C. as opposed to being divided up among states, cities, neighborhoods.

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Creepy_Azz_Crackaah's picture

Agreed. This is as it should be.

The only thing better would be to ELIMINATE laws. DO NOT pass new ones.

NugginFuts's picture

If Trump's plan was to get nothing passed, he's doing a heckuva job, Brownie!

Creepy_Azz_Crackaah's picture

Yes, Trump has been personally voting on these bills in the House and Senate.

Trump's Fault!!! lol

froze25's picture

More evidence that the RINO's (McCain, Ryan and Company) are purposely sabotaging Trumps agenda through delay tactics. Also I find it particularly troubling that the Republican Congress / Senate members aren't calling out the States that are "resisting" turning over voter roll information. We know dead people are voting, we know illegals are voting in mass, we know people are voting more than once. FrozenGoods must have the day off.

FrozenGoodz's picture

In a meeting ... voter fraud is a myth ... it's a vehicle for depressing democratic voters .. re GOP sabotage, maybe they're just terrible ideas? Remember this guy won your vote by saying as few details as possible. No plans. But they're gunna be great. The best plans. Do great deals ... and now the tide's gone out and his pants were down [don't look] ... greatest con ever

J S Bach's picture

If only we could distribute some cyanide-laced kool-aid to our vaunted representatives (ala Jim Jones)... THAT would be "getting something done".

JSBach1's picture

so...just like the welfare-moochers at large; consume all and produce nothing but waste as a by-product.


Politicians and government - revenue in, bull shit out. 

Same as it ever was. Introduce them to an airport snowblower running at peak speed.

The world will be a better place when they are all fertilizer.  

Stuck on Zero's picture

All that Congress produces is filth, corrpution, manure, and hogwash.  Now it is less productive than ever. That's a good thing, right?

Kayman's picture

 "greatest con ever"

"Hope and Change? " Hope for change, cause Goldman's money says I ain't giving you no change.

"Yes, we can"  fuck you and get away with it.

Froz, my man,  what is it like wearing a sphincter necklace?


Jim in MN's picture

We've been over the voting crisis here in detail.  Illegal aliens are on the registration rolls in large numbers. 

The dead people, moving from one place to another, and outright impersonation cases are by and large just distractions.

Illegals are 'where the money is'. 

FrozenGoodz's picture

0.0012% of the votes cast ... and even that number is potentially exaggeratted ... Trump/Fox were counting on you to run with it ... mission accomplished

There have been some instances of noncitizens voting, but actual evidence has shown small numbers among millions of votes cast nationwide. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who co-chairs Trump’s voter fraud commission, has obtained a total of one conviction for noncitizen voting since 2015.

NewHugh's picture

Take a look at FrozenGoodz posting hours:

Def has the look of a paid troll working 7-8 hours a day to post pointless drivel, or else a major cuck loser who has nothing useful to do with his life...

truthseeker47's picture

Congress isn't doing anything? No wonder the stock market has been going up!  Hooray

Creative_Destruct's picture

"No man's life, liberty or property are safe while the legislature's in session" -  Gideon John Tucker (February 10, 1826 – July 1899) 

tmosley's picture

If you can't make Congress do what you want, the next best thing is to make it do nothing.

As the cuckservatives continue to die off from the Trump curse, nationalists will take over and legislation that is actually good for the people will follow.

Chupacabra-322's picture

The most

Tyrannical Lawless


GUS100CORRINA's picture

US Congress On Pace To Be The Least Productive Legislature In 164 Years

My response: From my perspective, one term sums up the above statement: PROGRESSIVE LIBERAL and RINO OBSTRUCTIONISTS appear to have the upperhand for the moment.

This my ZH friends and fellow Ameriicans is going to end when GOD intervenes which I expect any day now.

America is now at enmity with GOD. For example, yesterday America murdered, yes murdered, another several thousand more preborn. In addition, America is burning 300,000,000 per day more than it is taking in via tax revenue. I could go on and on. But what is the point.

Because we have disfunctional God-hating members of our legislative bodies, this party is nearing the end not in a good way.

Sorry for the sobering perspective, but it is the truth. If you are a Christian, you may want to pray to GOD that this situation be rectified and soon. Amen.

2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV)

14 if my people (BORN AGAIN CHILDREN OF GOD!!), who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

goober's picture

So when will McCain be replaced ? The sooner the better as his work is done. Maybe we will get lucky and more to follow ! Fuck all the criminals and cronies, they have stolen enough and fucked far too many people !

doctor10's picture

Nobody yet comprehends how thoroughly ObamaCare has trashed the legislative process in DC. There will never be another piece of constructive legislation out of the extant, present Federal Government of these United States. It is fini.

NugginFuts's picture

You understand the concept of leadership, right? Other presidents lead, build concensus, actually make deals (wait, isn't that Trump's forte?). Trump tweets, pouts, hopes ObamaCare fails on its own one day and then begs the Senate to pass ObamaCare 2.0 the next day. 

Leadership this ain't.

Creepy_Azz_Crackaah's picture

I, too, swoon over Dear Leader Obama's "leadership." If only we had Hillary(!)...

We have a fucked up bunch of leftists/statists - republican and democrat - in the House and Senate. The president can only do so much with that.

You do understand these concepts, don't you?

knukles's picture

All hail gridlock
Always hope for it and now we got it we're pissed.

(At least there's no Big Deep State Progress)

Hillary 2020

SafelyGraze's picture

ineffective? hardly.

two words: 

civil. asset. forfeiture.

NidStyles's picture

The traitors are the ones running the drugs....


That - is three words. 

Common core math much ? 

Dancing Disraeli's picture

Reminds me of one of Mr Pink's lines in Reservoir Dogs-- 'And this non-college bullshit?  I got 2 words to say to that-- learn to fuckin' type.'

nmewn's picture

I love how progs look at government. 

"Nothing is being done!  Gridlock!!! Somebody do something!!!"

This is imminently moar preferable than promising that we'll all save $2,500 per year on health insurance and it actually goes up $2,500 a year after they..."Do something!!!"

NugginFuts's picture

I wanted ObamaCare repealed. Somehow we can't even manage that. 

Not exactly inspiring confidence. 

goober's picture

agree leadership and cronyism are not the same thing ! and I would like to see far more leadership and far less cronyism in every form !

GreatCaesar'sGhost's picture

You understand that sometimes no deal is better than a bad deal, right? You understand that if your counterpart won't negotiate, you can't negotiate, right?

NugginFuts's picture

A) I totally get that no deal is better than a bad deal. Which is why ObamaCare 2.0 had to die - it's a horrible deal. So why is Trump still pushing for it?

B) I don't expect Democrats to negotiate, but if you own the House, Senate, and White House and can't work with your own team.... 

Mid-terms are coming. Just saying. His opportunity to work with a complete cast of R's is running out, especially if they accomplish nothing. No tax reform, no repeal, no wall, no US jobs returned, nada. Voters won't forget that. First the mid-terms, then re-election. He has to show something for his time in there other than Russia scandal nothing-burgers.

GreatCaesar'sGhost's picture

His opponents in the Republican party, with the full support of the Repub establishment, will do everything they can to stop him. The best we can hope for is that at least they aren't passing anymore crazy neo-Marxist laws or regulations.

NugginFuts's picture

So we elected Republicans to fix the problem and now Republicans are the problem? How do you think that ends?

goober's picture

Trump seems to be the only one saying let BHO care die its own natural death and then do something different and use that failure as an example of what stupid is. The RINOs are the ones trying to keep it all alive.

Kayman's picture

A leader surveys the ground ahead of him and makes pragmatic decisions. Trump has painted the Rinos as just closet Dems. Trump has made it clear the sacred cows are just another man's hamburger.

And, oh yeah, the Russkies did it.

The Wizard's picture

Dead on. Their inability to create more laws is productive. However, civil asset forfeiture is high on their list


supersajin's picture

Only in America can u get paid $130K to sit on your ass, do nothing & complain...and then ask to do it all again in 2 years!! Like it or not Obama got shit done during his 1st 9 months...what's the GOP excuse? They can't govern!!

Chupacabra-322's picture

Paid $130,000

Worth Millions.

See the bubble & disconnect?

beeeeeep's picture

Obama got shit done?  Like the ACA which they had to pass before they could read?  If the shit they get done is horrible it's still horrible and we'd be better off if they didn't.

goober's picture

Sorry, the only things BHO got done were more control mechanisms and more corruption within and that shit surely does not count in my book, maybe yours ? Buck Offama and everything he ever touched ! I agree all are worthless or criminals, but BHO and crew were by far the worse criminals we have ever endured in spades !

DosZap's picture

Trump is DUMB running after this health care issue.

Infrastructure and Jobs,or changing the Tax system are the only two they can do anything with,if they do not get one or both of these accomplished the Dems will take over MAYBE the entire Congress.

Killtruck's picture

Fire everyone. If you were apart of this crap, even if you just served one term, you're fired. Clean slate. 


shovelhead's picture

Throwing out the good with the bad in hopes of getting lucky seems like a very rational and logical position to take in every endeavor.

Play a lot of poker?

Killtruck's picture

Please, point out all of this "good" you speak of.  

Manage any productive teams? Or do you just white knight your way around the internet all day?

shovelhead's picture

Nope. These days I leave everyone to their own devices.

Nope again, white knight, black hand, purple prose, yellow journalism...I have a veritable rainbow of colors on my palatte to draw on for whatever the situation requires.