112th Congress

112th Congress : The List
Leaders of the so-called "do-nothing 112th Congress": House Speaker John Boehner, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell

10 insulting labels for the outgoing 112th Congress

If the early reviews are any indication, history will not be kind to the class of lawmakers who occupied Capitol Hill over the past two years

112th Congress : Politics
House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid: Not exactly BFF.

Fiscal-cliff drama: John Boehner reportedly told Harry Reid to go f--- himself

Passions, it seems, were running awfully high behind the scenes

112th Congress : Opinion Brief
President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner make nice on St. Patrick's Day in 2011: The foes will have to join forces to avoid driving the country off the so-called fiscal cliff.

After the election: Could civility possibly return to D.C.?

Republicans and Democrats are vowing to make compromises to tackle huge problems. Skeptics cannot help but scoff

112th Congress : By the numbers
Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) speaks in May about the Paycheck Fairness Act, which was ultimately filibustered by 46 Republican senators on June 5.

Congress' enormous gender pay-gap: By the numbers

Women staffers on Capitol Hill make far less than their male counterparts, bringing the issue of gender inequality to Congress' doorstep

112th Congress : The List
Members of Congress leave the Capital after the House went on recess for Thanksgiving.

3 reasons Congress sounds less intelligent than ever

Politicians in the House and Senate are speaking at a 10th grade level, down an entire grade level since 2005. But the test used to assess their language may be flawed

112th Congress : Burning Question
House Budget Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis): Proposed new cuts are being criticized for prioritizing defense spending over programs that aid the poor.

Are the GOP's budget cuts anti-poor?

Republicans in the House try to take an ax to programs for the poor, saying the cuts are necessary to shrink the deficit and protect national security

112th Congress : Opinion Brief
President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner can't agree on how to pay the $6 billion it would cost to prevent federal student loan interest rates from doubling.

Boehner vs. Obama: Who's really responsible for the mess in D.C.?

President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner trade shots as their parties head into an election-year showdown over student loan rates

112th Congress : The Bullpen
Dana Liebelson

Dana Liebelson: How indefinite detention snuck into Obama's defense bill

It's now legal to seize suspected terrorists and throw them in jail without charge or trial. Why was this controversial law debated in a secret committee?

112th Congress : Instant Guide
"It's a welcome sign that we can put our differences aside and work together to help boost the economy," House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) said of the bipartisan JOBS act.

Is Congress finally working together to save the economy?

Lawmakers are in the midst of passing two job-creation bills — and both of them, to everyone's surprise, have the support of Democrats and Republicans

112th Congress : The Bullpen
Tish Durkin

Tish Durkin: Why Washington needs backroom deals

Pundits blame our rancorous politics for the retirements of moderates like Olympia Snowe. We'd be wiser to point the finger at good-government reforms

112th Congress : Opinion Brief
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) sparked a controversy Thursday by convening a congressional hearing on contraception, and calling only male witnesses.

Congress' contraceptives hearing: 'Where are the women?'

The GOP-led House holds a hearing on Obama's controversial contraception compromise — and the five witnesses are all men

112th Congress : Fact Sheet
Members of Congress leave the U.S. Capitol: The median net worth of House members is $704,500 greater than that of their constituents.

The growing wealth gap between Congress and constituents: By the numbers

According to new data, the median net worth of a House member is 35 times that of an average American

112th Congress : Opinion Brief
Democrats have long charged that Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-Wis.) Medicare voucher plan would "end" the entitlement program, and PolitiFact says that claim is the political world's biggest lie of the year.

Is PolitiFact's 'Lie of the Year' a lie itself?

The Pulitzer-winning fact-checker angers liberals by giving top untruth honors to the Democratic claim that Paul Ryan and Co. voted to "end" Medicare

112th Congress : Wit
After a tough year, the Senate could use a pick-me-up: Maybe that's why Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) helped organize the Senate's first-ever Secret Santa gift exchange.

Secret Santa in the Senate: The wisecracks

A bipartisan gift exchange might not bring Republicans and Democrats any closer together, but it's good for a few laughs

112th Congress : Opinion Brief
After 35 minutes of debate, the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly on Wednesday to reaffirm the nation's motto, which is displayed on U.S. currency.

'In God We Trust': Did Congress waste time reaffirming the U.S. motto?

Obama mocks the House for passing a symbolic resolution instead of a jobs bill — even though the motto debate lasted just 35 minutes

112th Congress : Analysis
While President Obama is suffering his lowest poll ratings, Americans are even more sour on Congress, according to the latest numbers.

Will Congress' abysmal approval rating save Obama?

The president's falling poll numbers signal possible trouble in the 2012 election. But will voters be distracted by their fury at Republicans?  

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