Flurry leaves this Congress as second least productive

The Congress that shut down the government for the first time in 17 years turned out not to be the least productive in history — by a hair.

Public records show that the 113th Congress, which officially ended this week, sent 296 bills to President Obama’s desk. That’s 13 more than the total for the previous 112th Congress, which sent 283.

{mosads}Ten final bills, including the defense and intelligence authorizations, were signed into law by President Obama Friday afternoon.

Still, the last two sessions of Congress with divided government are the two most unproductive in history in terms of bills cleared by both chambers. 

The number of measures passed into law has declined sharply since the 1970s, when sessions of Congress tended to clear an average of 700 bills.

By comparison, even the “do-nothing” Congress chastised by President Truman from 1947 to 1949 cleared 906 pieces of legislation.

This post was updated at 5:01 p.m.


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