The 113th Congress barely avoided being dubbed the “least productive” Congress in recent history, according to a new study.
A Pew Research Center study released Monday showed that the 113th Congress only narrowly beat out the 112th Congress’ productivity by passing a high volume of legislation during the lame duck session. This Congress passed 296 laws in total, 13 more than the previous Congress.
Of the laws passed by the 113th Congress, 111 were passed during the lame duck session, making up more than a third — or 37.5 percent — of its total output. Prior to the midterm elections, the 113th Congress had only passed 185 laws and was set to be one of the least productive congressional terms in recent history.
Pew categorized the legislative measures passed by Congress into two categories: substantive and ceremonial. In total, 212 of the laws passed through Congress were categorized as substantive while 84 were categorized as ceremonial, slightly above the 208 substantive and 75 ceremonial laws passed by the 112th Congress from 2011 to 2012.
Pew also found that the most productive congressional lame duck session took place during the 107th Congress from 2001 to 2002, which passed 84 laws — 83 of which were considered to be substantial.
I repeat that a piece of freedom is lost every time a law is passed. These are some people who support that thought.
Useless laws weaken the necessary laws. Charles de Montesquieu
It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood. James Madison
Laws are the sovereigns of sovereigns. Louis XIV
If I studied all my life, I couldn't think up half the number of funny things passed in one session of congress. Will Rogers
What we must realize is that which common wisdom today would deem to be non-productive in reality preserves freedom. The truly unproductive congresses, in fact destructive congresses, would be those activist congresses in the 1930’s, 1960’s, and the congress that lied to the American people and passed a bill they did not read. It is that law that will, unless repealed, be the final straw that financially and socially breaks the back of the constitution whose sole intent and purpose was to protect the liberty and freedom of the United States. The real measurement of positive production would be which congress gives freedom back to the people.