Honeymoon Over

Mary Katharine Ham
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Posted: Mar 21, 2007 10:12 AM
The new age of Congressional productivity and American prosperity ushered in by the new Democratic leadership has turned out, if anything, to be less productive and prosperous than the last Congress:

None of the elements of the newly minted Democrats' congressional agenda have made it to President Bush's desk, and the prospects of signature bills such as federal funding for stem-cell research or homeland-security improvements becoming law any time soon are doubtful.

Much of the Democratic agenda -- dubbed "Six for '06" -- sailed out of the House with bipartisan support, but all of it has stalled in the Senate as leaders scramble to deal with the Iraq war.

"I don't think they've gotten anything done," House Minority Leader John A. Boehner of Ohio said of the Democrats. "How many bills have they sent to the president? None? Somewhere around there."

A minimum-wage increase, which seems the most likely of the Democratic plans to get Mr. Bush's signature, has not yet been sent to the president because House and Senate leaders are still bickering over its specifics.

That's partly due to Mitch McConnell's parliamentary schooling of Harry Reid in the Senate, which Republicans are affectionately calling the "Mitch-slap."

And, the American people are back to thinking pretty much all Congresses are full of losers, no matter the party.

According to Gallup's monthly update on job approval of Congress -- in a March 11-14, 2007, national poll -- 28% of Americans approve of the job being done by Congress and 64% disapprove. This marks a substantial change from January and February, with approval down nine points and disapproval up nine points.
I wonder how the Gonzales show trial mess is gonna play with a public that's already frustrated with a Congress that's not getting anything done.