5 hopeful signs the 113th Congress will be better than the last

Dispirited Americans don't appear all that optimistic that the new Congress will get much done. Well, buck up, America!

The swearing in of the 113th Congress, which, at the very least, couldn't possibly be as bad as its predecessor.
(Image credit: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

With some pomp, a bunch of cute kids, and plenty of entertainment from Vice President Joe Biden, the new Congress was gaveled into session on Thursday. "Welcome 113th Congress!" says Chris Cillizza at The Washington Post, summing up the conventional wisdom: "Here's the first thing you need to know: People hate you." Or rather, people really hated the 112th Congress — The Week rounded up 10 of the best insults heaped upon the historically unproductive 112th, and Gallup records it as the most unpopular in modern history — and "there's every reason to believe things in Congress will get worse in the next few months." Public Policy Polling has this bracing reminder, from its new (ongoing) survey:

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