Lackluster Congress? Wait 'til next year

The U.S. Capitol where Congress meets.
The U.S. Capitol where Congress meets.
Tish Wells / McClatchy

McClatchy Washington Bureau

Congress may be heading to a lackluster finish this year, but people are more optimistic about 2014.

A new United Technologies/National Journal Congressional Connection Poll, released Wednesday, found many Americans see prospects for passage of gun control and immigration measures next year.

"Those attitudes stand in stark contrast to an astounding level of gridlock in Washington this year, which saw the fewest public laws enacted since at least 1947, recorded the first government shutdown in 17 years, and drove congressional approval ratings to record lows," writes the National Journal Hotline Senior Analyst Scott Bland in a poll analysis.

Fifty-six percent said they found it very or somewhat likely Congress and President Barack Obama could agree on job-creation measures stemming from increased infrastructure spending.

Fifty-three percent saw it as somewhat likely Congress could pass gun control measures mandating universal background checks for all gun sales. Such legislation was halted in the Senate this year.

Bland found that "Americans also see immigration reform that increases border security and provides a pathway to citizenship for people in the U.S. illegally as more likely to pass than not in 2014, this time by a narrow plurality: 49 percent of respondents said such legislation was very or somewhat likely to be passed and signed in 2014 while 46 percent said it was more unlikely."

But, Bland warned, "Those opinions are matched by a distinct lack of faith in action on other fronts.

Asked about the prospects for passing meaningful deficit-reduction legislation in 2014, "even if that means raising taxes and cutting spending," 42 percent said that was very or somewhat likely, while 53 percent said it was "not too likely" or "not at all likely."


Read more Politics Wires stories from the Miami Herald

The White House in Washington D.C.

    Federal deficit is falling this year, White House says

    The federal deficit is projected to come in this fiscal year $66 billion below earlier forecasts and $100 billion below the last fiscal year, the White House said Friday.

Vice President Joe Biden speaks at the National Governors Association convention Friday, July 11, 2014, in Nashville, Tenn.

    Biden calls on governors to lead nation

    Vice President Joe Biden on Friday condemned the political gridlock crippling Washington, calling on Republican and Democratic governors alike to lead the nation "out of this mess" while insisting that Congress approve billions of dollars to repair the country's aging infrastructure.

  • Hagel: US aware of Russian, Iranian roles in Iraq

    Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says the United States is aware of Russian and Iranian assistance to the Iraqi military in its fight against Islamic extremists, but the U.S. is not coordinating with either Russia or Iran.

Miami Herald

Join the

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category