111th Congress Review

This last election a large number of Democrats were voted out of office by the tea-baggers, conservatives, and ignorant of this country, blaming them for the unemployment and general dissatisfaction in America right now.

But as many in the conservative-media have started reporting with the end of the year review news, this years government has actually done quite a bit. One article on MSNBC even states, "This Congress, ... accomplished more, legislatively, than any other Congress since the 1960s (the Great Society) or the 1930s (the New Deal)."

What will this mean for the next congress coming into office? Probably not as much action and a slower pace of recovery. Why am I predicting that? Because when the "party of no" spends more time blocking legislation than passing it, not much happens.

Some highlights of the 111th congress:

Health Care Reform - love it or hate it, at least they did it. It's unfortunate it didn't include the public option that would have made it worthwhile, and forcing people to get healthcare isn't all that nice. But it will supposedly reduce cost. It does prevent insurance providers from disqualifying people for pre-existing conditions. And make sure that children are covered.

Financial Reform - with the economic collapse we needed to see some reform to the financial sector. Once again a weakened down bill, but something is better than nothing.

Credit Card Reform - preventing many credit card companies from raising fees and other penalties just because they could.

The bailout and TARP - love them or hate them, the government stepping in and saving multiple large companies like GM and the banking industry saved millions of tax paying jobs, and saved the country from a complete economic collapse. Not to mention most of the money has already been paid back with interest, The end cost will be negligible when compared to the trillions spent invading Iraq and Afghanistan.

Extended Bush Tax Cuts - The unfunded tax cuts stay in place. The rich get to keep there money, and so do the poor.

Repealed Don't Ask Don't Tell (DADT) - another one the old white guys in the Republican Party didn't want to pass. But, the Pentagon is okay with it, the soldiers are okay with it, and if a person wants to serve this country we shouldn't be stopping them just because of sexual preference.

They did of course fail to pass a clean energy - cap and trade bill to improve the environment. And they also failed any significant immigration reform. We can be sure that environment and energy policy won't be on the Republicans to do list. But who knows, maybe there will be immigration reform. We will have to wait and see how the year goes in the bickering playground that is the U.S. Congress.

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