Congressional loathing

By Tom Quiner


Why do voters loathe Congress?

Polling consistently shows public disdain for Congress regardless of the party in power.

It seems to me Congress deserves much, but not all, of the scorn so many Americans heap on this hapless institution.

One problem with Congress is that, too often, they come across as shameless hypocrites. Republicans, for example, claim to be the party of small government. And yet, when they controlled both houses of Congress AND the White House, they expanded government to its biggest size ever.


Voters deservedly threw them out on their hind ends in 2006. On the other hand, Democrats are the party of big government. They have lived up to their belief system by expanding the size of government far beyond even the Bush II years, to the chagrin of conservatives.

Where Democrats create loathing is with comments like, “we have to pass the bill to find out what’s in it.” And once they find out what IS REALLY in it, they realize it’s not going to work, so they simply delay its implementation until after the next election cycle.


Voters really get riled up when Congress passes complex legislation that affects us little guys, while exempting Congress from complying with the same law.

More cynicism.

Finally, voters claim to get frustrated with “gridlock.” This is a much misunderstood, and inappropriately, used term.

The Mainstream Media uses it as a slur against Republicans for obstructing new legislation which will expand the power and scope of the federal government. To me, gridlock isn’t all bad. Our republic was designed to make change slowly. Gridlock tempers our passions from making knee jerk reactions when, perhaps, a little prudence is called for.

Whatever the reason, Congress has succeed in elevating the stature of rodents and used car salesman.


  1. bobic7 on August 13, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    I think Congress is just a crummy collection of folks who like the benefits and power.

    We are in grave need of men and women of good character and leadership ability. Such people exist – we’ve seen them in, of all places, Congress. But they are rare in this day and age.

    Saturday I visited the Hoover Library in West Branch, IA. On display was George Washington’s personal copy of the book “Acts of Congress”. His handwritten notes were in the margin. I gazed at it for a long time with deep gratitude and respect for this magnificent man.

    Every member of Congress should see this book. But, since it recently sold for over 8 million dollars at auction, it wouldn’t be safe to let many members get too close – they might steal it.

  2. juwannadoright on August 13, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    We don’t have gridlock – we have usurpation by the executive branch of the authority entrusted to Congress by the Constitution. And the response from Congress – well, it’s okay with us – we don’t want to make waves.

    Congress is a willing partner to the emasculation of the Constitution and members of both parties are equally culpable.

    • quinersdiner on August 13, 2013 at 5:11 pm

      You are right. I think Republicans are boxed in. Should they threaten impeachment in order to hold the president accountable, they would be destroyed politically UNLESS the Democrats support them, which they won’t.

      • juwannadoright on August 13, 2013 at 5:41 pm

        Impeachment, as we know, will go nowhere.

        What they should insist is that the ACA be implemented as passed by the Congress without executive exemption or presidential delays for any portion of it. That would cause it to collapse under the weight of its own stupidity.

        It would be hard for Democrats to argue obstruction if the Republicans insisted on implementing a law that the other side of the aisle passed with 100% participation by their members.

        • quinersdiner on August 13, 2013 at 6:26 pm

          Good suggestion.