Take the 107th Congress, which passed the PATRIOT Act, approved the Iraq War, and created the Department of Homeland Security.
After calculating the odds of divided government come 2013, Gregory Koger seems it more likely than not, and laments. "The 112th Congress has been abysmal. The Worst. Congress. Ever." he writes. "During a time when the U.S. has faced immense challenges, the Congress has been essentially paralyzed on major policy problems. Someone ought to pay a retrospective price for the failure."
He isn't alone. Norman Ornstein called its predecessor the worst ever.
"Yes, the 111th Congress, during the first two years of the Obama presidency, produced an impressive spate of major legislative accomplishments, from a stimulus package to a sweeping health-care reform bill to major financial regulatory reform," he wrote. "But all were passed after contentious, drawn-out, partisan battles that left most Americans less than happy with the outcomes."
Isn't that an unusual? He agrees with all the major legislation and still thinks they're the worst!
These "worst ever" arguments that gloss over decades of pre-modern history are always silly. But one needn't even crack open the history books to find a Congress worse than the one we've got now. And guess what? That recent Congress was a relative model of fast action and unity.