Farewell to the 112th Congress. Leaving Washington with their heads hung low, they are considered to be the worst Congress in US history since record keeping began; passing only 219 bills, 40 of which pertain to the renaming of post offices and other public buildings, 6 dealt with commemorative coins and more than 30 bills for the repealing of the Affordable Care Act. Compared to the 110th and 111th Congress, who passed 383 and 460 bills respectfully; the 112th Congress is the least productive and the most polarized Congress in US history, who spent the least amount of time passing meaningful bills and more time disappointing the American people.
In the nation’s current economic turmoil, Congress’ job is to pass as many meaningful bills as possible to aid in fixing the problem. However, the 112th Congress role was ‘do-nothing’, while turning a deaf ear to the cries of the American people, the 112th Congress worked to block bills such as the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act and cut programs that are beneficial. Instead, the 112th Congress worked hard on preventing tax increases for the very wealthy and filibustered or blocked any bills introduced by the Obama Administration.
It is evident that the 112th Congress is active player in the sluggish recovery of the US economy because of its inability to comprise or work together with the Obama Administration. In spring 2011, the 112th Congress came closer to a near government shutdown, which for the first time in US history resulted in the Standard and Poor’s downgrade of the US credit rating and almost breeching the debt ceiling, which could have led to a possible global catastrophe and resulted in setbacks to the nation’s recovery. Due to the reckless governance of the 112th Congress, the American people gave them an approval rating of 10%, according to the latest Gallup poll.
Closing out 2012 with high levels of unproductiveness, the 112th Congress welcomed 2013 with a looming fiscal cliff over their heads. Within the final minutes before almost going over the fiscal cliff, which could have lead to another global economic and financial crisis, the hopelessly divided Congress was able to come together to pass a partial fiscal-cliff fix; yet again speaking to Congress’ inability to work together, rise above partisanship and personal gain.
The 112th Congress is an embarrassment and has brought great dishonor to our nation’s Capitol. They were broken and unproductive causing the American people to lose confidence in the nation’s leaders. However, with the 113th Congress about to be sworn into office, there is yet again hope for the American people. The upcoming Congress should note that being polarized is not the solution, but putting aside party affiliations and personal gain in order to work together for the recovery and prosperity of the nation, which should be the ultimate goal. This is what the American people are hoping and praying for and not another embarrassment.