The “Do Nothing Republican Congress”: Failure to Act on Critical Pending Legislation

For Immediate Release:

September 12, 2012

Throughout the 112th Congress, House Republicans have chosen confrontation over compromise, ignoring job creation, extending middle class tax cuts, and other critical legislation while wasting time on partisan messaging bills. Despite the challenges facing our country, Republicans have refused to govern effectively, instead focusing on their political agenda that won’t create jobs, grow our economy, or address our deficit in a serious way.  By refusing to work with Democrats towards responsible solutions, Republicans have walked away from the American people again and again.  This has resulted in record low legislative activity, and misguided priorities that favor extreme, partisan talking points over compromise and solutions. 

Here’s a look at how their lackluster record compares to the Democratic-led Congress, based on an analysis by Reuters [9/9/12]:

  • Just 61 bills have been signed into law this year, the fewest in more than 60 years.
  • In all of 2011, only 90 bills were signed into law.
  • When Democrats controlled both chambers in 2010, 258 bills were signed into law.

We aren’t the only ones who have noticed their lack of productivity.  Norman Ornstein and Thomas Mann wrote in this Washington Post column [4/27/12]:

 “We have been studying Washington politics and Congress for more than 40 years, and never have we seen them this dysfunctional. In our past writings, we have criticized both parties when we believed it was warranted. Today, however, we have no choice but to acknowledge that the core of the problem lies with the Republican Party.”

Today, thanks to the GOP, compromise has gone out the window in Washington. In the first two years of the Obama administration, nearly every presidential initiative met with vehement, rancorous and unanimous Republican opposition in the House and the Senate, followed by efforts to delegitimize the results and repeal the policies.”

Republicans continue to choose politics over policy, ignoring critical legislation and walking away from the American people:

After returning from a five-week recess, House Republican leaders have scheduled only six more days of session in September, despite the growing list of legislation that needs to be addressed. Several critical pieces of legislation passed with bipartisan support in the Senate and are awaiting action in the House. It’s time for House Republicans to pass these bills that would provide much needed certainty for American families, businesses, and our economy. 

While Republicans made time to vote 33 times to repeal the Affordable Care Act, and passed a budget that ends the Medicare guarantee and would have to raise taxes on the middle class to make the math work, they haven’t addressed our nation’s top priorities. Republicans are ignoring a long list of unfinished business, and over the next six days, you won’t see these critical items on their agenda:

INCOMPLETE

   Tax cuts for the middle class

  

INCOMPLETE

   Comprehensive jobs legislation, like the Make It In 

    America plan
  

INCOMPLETE

   A Farm Bill that includes drought relief for farmers

  

INCOMPLETE

   Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act

  

INCOMPLETE

   Postal reform

  

INCOMPLETE

   Big, bold, balanced plan to reduce the deficit

Click here to read in pdf.

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