Logjam in Washington

Republican filibusters and presidential vetoes have created a backlog of important legislation stalled in Congress. The president continues to veto, and threaten to veto, critical legislation that would make a real difference in the lives of Americans. Senator Sanders said, "I find it very objectionable that President Bush, who signed every piece of legislation passed by the Republican controlled Congress, now wants to veto bills because we're trying to expand children's health insurance or ma

Republican filibusters and presidential vetoes have created a backlog of important legislation stalled in Congress. The president continues to veto, and threaten to veto, critical legislation that would make a real difference in the lives of Americans. Senator Sanders said, "I find it very objectionable that President Bush, who signed every piece of legislation passed by the Republican controlled Congress, now wants to veto bills because we're trying to expand children's health insurance or make sure that Americans don't go cold in the winter. That's an absurd set of priorities, and I hope the president begins working with Congress, rather than playing partisan games."

Friday, Senate Republicans again made sure that senators were not allowed to even vote on important legislation. After the House passed an energy bill last week which would have increased fuel efficiency standards in cars and trucks for the first time since 1975 and created tax incentives to increase production of renewable fuels, the Senate Republicans filibustered. Again. They have filibustered 58 times in less than one year in the minority, already closing in on the 61-filibuster record for a full two-year session.

For this very reason, the Senate has not even been able to vote yet on legislation to bring our soldiers home from Iraq.

Last week we saw a long-term solution to the pending Alternative Minimum Tax crisis stopped; the much-needed Farm Bill has been stalled for about a month; and it is unclear what the next step in the process of completing energy legislation is. The only thing the Senate did get done was a disastrous free trade agreement with Peru.

Let's hope these and other key responsibilities can be addressed before Congress adjourns. Stay tuned.

To track Senators' votes on key legislation, click here.