Democratic freshman lawmaker: Congress not working enough

Rep. Rick Nolan (D-Minn.) said Friday that Congress is not working enough.

Speaking on MSNBC’s “The Ed Show,” Nolan, who served before in the House for three terms starting in the 1970s, told host Ed Schultz that lawmakers are working less now than they did the last time he was in Washington.

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“Back when I served before, we worked 48 out of 52 weeks. This Congress is going to work, you know, 31, 32 weeks out of 52 weeks,” Nolan said. “We used to work four and five days a week. And we would be in committee in the morning. We would be in session during the afternoon and into the evening. And we got things done.”

Nolan said that time spent together would lead to lawmakers getting to know each other and learning how to better collaborate on legislation. The lawmaker, who beat Republican Chip Cravaack last election to return to Congress, has blamed fundraising in the past for the low legislative workload.

“Money has really corrupted the entire political process. The sad story, Ed, here is that the one with the most money generally gets the most votes,” Nolan said on Friday. “So people have come to the conclusion — and, quite frankly, understandably so, that there`s no sense running unless you're going to have at least enough money, and hopefully more than the other person that you're running against.”

Nolan also said Congress is not governing.

“Congress isn`t governing, in your opinion?” asked Schultz.

“No. You can`t run a business that way. You can’t run a country that way,” Nolan said.