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As a Congressman, Ron Paul’s record is lackluster at best

By SAM HALL
Capitol Hill Blue Congressional Correspondent
December 27, 2011

Ron Paul sponsored 620 bills as a Congressman from Texas.

One became law — H.R. 2121, which authorized sale of the old U.S. Customs House in Galveston, Tex.

Most of his bills never go anywhere. Many never even get a co-sponsor. Only four ever made it to the House floor for a vote. Only one passed — the courthouse sale.

As a Congressman, he failed to move legislation.

According to The Washington Post, 47 bills Paul introduced in the current Congress went nowhere.  One would have forced the U.S. to withdraw from the United Nations.  Another sought to repeal the federal law banning guns in school zones. Still another wanted to allow private groups to coin their own money.

On average, just four percent of the thousands of bills filed by House members become law.

But that small percentage dwarfs Paul’s dismal record on legislation — just two-tenths of one percent.

“Ron Paul is a non-entity on Capitol Hill,” Jean Wilson, a former Capitol Hill staff member who knew some of Paul’s staff when she worked in the House, tells Capitol Hill Blue.  “He was, well, just there. Nobody paid much attention.”

Some might say people are paying attention to the long-time Texas Congressman now in his third run for President but others say the possibility that he might win the Iowa caucuses next week is a fluke.

“It’s just the kind of thing that happens in a quirky campaign year,” says longtime Iowa watcher Andy Leeson.  “Ron Paul will get his minute in the spotlight and then he will return to the his usual corner of obscurity.”

When Paul arrived in Congress in 1976, he introduced a bill to outlaw the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.  It went nowhere.  Paul has sought to eliminate several federal agencies, including the Internal Revenue Service.  Those bills also went nowhere.

A bill to force the U.S. to withdraw from the World Trade Organization actually made it to the floor for a vote.  It lost 4-1.

He did get a resolution congratulating NASA on a successful shuttle flight passed by both Houses but the sale of the Galveston Customs House stands alone as the only Paul-introduced legislation to become actual law.

Even when Republicans control the House, Paul’s legislation goes nowhere.

“We used to have a good laugh when a something came down from Paul’s office,” says Bill Hedley, a former staff member of the House Legislative Counsel’s office, which fashions a Congressman’s wishes into proposed legislation.  “Most of his stuff was way out there.”

But the man who can’t get his ideas into law as a Congressman may be one week away from winning the GOP caucuses in Iowa,

It’s that kind of political season.

(This article includes statistics compiled by The Washington Post)

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11 Responses to As a Congressman, Ron Paul’s record is lackluster at best

  1. Josh Morrison

    December 27, 2011 at 10:32 am

    Isn’t that brilliant…this is what they say about a man who takes his oath of office seriously:

    “Ron Paul is a non-entity on Capitol Hill,” Jean Wilson, a former Capitol Hill staff member who knew some of Paul’s staff when she worked in the House, tells Capitol Hill Blue. “He was, well, just there. Nobody paid much attention.”

    I have a question for the ‘genius’ who wrote this hack piece: If Congress has an approval rating of between 9-18%, and Ron Paul has spent 30 years being the only one saying no, doesn’t that mean Ron Paul acutally has an 80-90% approval rating….you know…correlation?

  2. Sandune

    December 27, 2011 at 10:56 am

    Bravo Josh! The correlation is obvious! Stick around, it will get worse!

  3. Chris

    December 27, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    Well said Josh Morrison. I never even thought to look at it like that. And I never thought the medias would the actual nerve to try to attack Ron Paul’s record. That takes some serious guts.

    Hmm…I don’t like Ron Paul so I will try to smear his legislative efforts (which always goes by the constitution, which means his proposals and votes truly represents “The People”)

    The author might want to ask himself if there is another possible reason why Ron Paul had trouble moving legislation in congress. He says the reason is because Ron Paul is ineffective and tries to paint him as a joke. But maybe the real reason could be that the high majority of our congress is BOUGHT?

  4. Bill Cravener

    December 27, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    “Ron Paul is a non-entity on Capitol Hill,”

    Paul who??

    All this hate towards Doug’s site coming from RP partisans and yet they come in droves. Just can’t stay away. Ron Paul partisans, I hear the heels clicking.

    What will they all do when nothing comes of this little old man? LOL!!

  5. Rick

    December 27, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    Seems like the Ron Paul stories are more numerous than the Tea Party ones of a few months ago. Overkill?

    Oh….I could care less about Paul since he is apparently the flavor of the month for January. He’ll be a trivia question next year like what’s his name? Cain, I think?

    • Almandine

      December 27, 2011 at 10:55 pm

      Internet Sweeps Week…

  6. eve

    December 27, 2011 at 4:52 pm

    Look at where this country sits now at this very moment.

    Do you like where we are as a nation?

    Ron Paul’s bills were never supported.
    Has they been, would the country be in a different place right now?

    He wants a sound, stable currency.
    He wants pre-911 freedoms restored.
    He wants economic and personal freedom for US citizens via scaling down of unnecessary, bloated, revenue-wasting BIG government programs.

    There is NO other candidate who wants these things.
    THEY will maintain the status quo and the country will continue on the path it is headed.

    Your choice America (IF the elections aren’t fixed that is).

  7. Charity Stone

    December 29, 2011 at 1:07 am

    This article says FAR more about the other legislators on capitol hill, this author, those who post responses (and those who don’t post responses) than it does about Ron Paul.

    Out of the reported 620 bills sponsored and 47 bills introduced to this congress by Ron Paul “MANY never even get a co-sponsor”? Is it really possible that “MOST” of the ideas of this eleven-term-elected congressman were bad? Or is it far more likely that this fact is a shameful reflection of a congress that only deals in the kind of politics we all proclaim to hate — with votes that are bought, sold, and traded by politicians and lobbyists instead of votes being offered after thorough research and deep consideration for the good of all? Also, Mr. Sam Hall’s thesis here is “as a Congressman, Ron Paul’s record is lackluster at best” yet he only criticizes three pieces of said 620 bills, which tells me one of two things: 1. Only 3/620 of Ron Paul’s bills were ‘bad’ enough for Paul’s most vocal critics to criticize, or 2.) This article was under or inadequately researched.

    We teach our kids to be unconcerned with what the popular kids think and do in favor of their own research, deep thinking and consideration — yet we consistently elect politicians who consistently fail to have such courage and dedication. We teach our kids to think critically — yet we read pieces with vague statements like “most of his stuff was way out there” without any details to back them up without definitive rejection. We teach our kids to respect themselves and others, especially their elders — yet we fail to thoughtfully respond to the inappropriateness of statements by guys like Bill Cravener when he disrespects himself and us all by calling a man like Ron Paul a “little old man”. We’re better than this. Bill Cravener, I even believe that you are better than this.

    This is a well-written and poorly considered and documented piece of fluff. I suggest far more deep thought, critical thinking, and respect in future pieces. I’m not a Republican, or a Libertarian, and I’m up for having a thoughtful debate on whether or not Ron Paul would be a good president. I hope somebody will let me know when they have a damn good argument for why President Obama or any of the other republican candidates would be a better option for the white house than Ron Paul in 2012.

    • Almandine

      December 30, 2011 at 7:39 pm

      Don’t hold your breath.

  8. thomas

    December 29, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    Only neonazis and ostriches support Ron Paul now. Who would pay to publish and mail a news letter, in his own name, for 22 years, without ever even READING one of them? If that’s the way he runs a newsletter, gods help us if he ever gets in the White House!

    It’s seldom that people are wrong about EVERYTHING. Ron Paul says a lot of things that make a lot of sense, and need to be heard.

    But, I would never, EVER vote for for such a BIGOT!

  9. Almandine

    December 30, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    Perhaps this is exactly the record that someone who preaches limited govt is after.

    Too bad the rest of that Congressional cabal was far more “effective” moving legislation.