Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said lawmakers should be judged based on how many laws they repeal, not how many laws they pass.
In an interview with CBS aired on Sunday, Boehner shrugged at the suggestion that the current Congress is on track to be the least productive in history.
He charged that the United States has "more laws than the administration could ever enforce."
"We should not be judged on how many new laws we create. We should be judged on how many laws we repeal," Boehner said.
Boehner has come under fire for dysfunction in the House, where a bloc of conservative members often moves to obstruct leadership's priorities.
The speaker, though, defended his leadership style, characterizing it as "allowing the House to work its will" and said his efforts would strengthen the institution.