Legislative Backlog

Congressional leaders predict a lot of unfinished business.

With Congress on a five-week summer break, leaders are already predicting little will be accomplished when they get back. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist says they have "a real challenge" to get business wrapped up in the 20 days after lawmakers return following Labor Day. There are major bills still awaiting votes, including a government spending package, two tax cut proposals and a multi-billion dollar transportation bill that would help create new jobs. Lawmakers also hope to study the recommendations of the Nine-Eleven commission and hold hearings on some of the proposals. Observers note that, despite the legislative backlog, Republican leaders did find time for a lengthy debate on a failed proposal to ban gay marriage.