The finger pointing goes both ways when it comes to the current Congress not passing many bills. As of July 31, Congress has enacted 142 laws since being sworn in last year. That’s the fewest of any Congress over the same time span in the past two decades.
U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Wheaton) believes the blame should fall on the Democratic majority in the U.S. Senate. “The problem with the United States Senate is one person, and it’s (Senate Majority Leader) Harry Reid,” Roskam said, “who has made a decision to block the discussion in Washington, D.C.”
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Roskam says 347 bills that have passed in the House have yet to be called for a vote in the Senate.
But U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), the second-highest ranking Democrat under Reid, believes Roskam’s chamber is the problem. “The reason they’re talking about all these other bills is they’ve left some of the biggest challenges on the table,” Durbin said. “They just won’t call them for a vote because they’re afraid they’re going to pass.”
Durbin points to one example in particular: the comprehensive immigration reform bill passed by the U.S. Senate last year.