Nothing Doing In Congress

Weekly commentary by CBS Evening News chief Washington correspondent and Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer.


Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell made a speech the other day in which he bragged that even though Republicans are the minority, they had kept many bad things from happening.

Well, that's just the half of it.

With the help of the Democratic majority, they have managed to keep much of anything from happening, good or bad.

Who says there's nothing that two sides can't accomplish together? Of course there is - doing nothing.

Congress ran to the airport Friday for yet another break - they're taking two weeks this year for Thanksgiving. I wouldn't ask how many days you're taking because that would be a digression.

But my question is this: What do the following have in common?

Legislation to provide health insurance for children, education legislation, energy legislation, the farm bill, funding the Iraq war, and legislation funding all federal agencies except the Pentagon next year.

The answer is: All of them are stalled in Congress, awaiting final action, tangled in the gridlock that the Republicans blame on the Democrats and the Democrats blame on the Republicans.

Breaking the gridlock won't be easy. After all, once Congress gets back from the Thanksgiving break, Christmas vacation will be just weeks away.

I've heard all the excuses so many times, I've stopped listening. All I know is Congress continues to bring new meaning to that old phrase: nothing doing.


E-mail Face the Nation.

By Bob Schieffer
  • Bob Schieffer On Twitter»

    Bob Schieffer is CBS News' chief Washington correspondent and anchor of Face the Nation.

Comments

Watch CBSN Live

Watch CBS News anytime, anywhere with the new 24/7 digital news network. Stream CBSN live or on demand for FREE on your TV, computer, tablet, or smartphone.

Watch Now

New Android App

For your Android phone and tablet, download the FREE redesigned app, featuring CBSN, live 24/7 news.

Download
The all new
CBS News App for Android® for iPad® for iPhone®
Fully redesigned. Featuring CBSN, 24/7 live news. Get the App