Rep. Rick Nolan, D-Minn., left Congress in 1981 because he hated his job. After deciding this cycle he wanted it back, it's taken him less than a week in the current Congress to yearn for the good old days.
"The time that people are spending now raising money and campaigning is time Congress used to spend governing," Nolan told Minnesota reporters. "We're not working four or five days a week, like everybody else does in America. The fact is, Congress is not governing."
Nolan's criticisms of the way Congress uses its time sound a lot like his complaints when he left office the first time. “As a congressman, you go back to the district Thursday night and then come back to Washington Tuesday and you are exhausted from all the fundraisers. You only spend a couple of days legislating," Nolan said in an interview dug up by former Rep. Chip Cravaack's, R-Minn., campaign.
Nolan said he has no intention of meeting modern fundraising expectations, which include 30 hours a week of calling potential donors for money. But he reluctantly acknowledged the necessity of taking part in the process.
"This is no game," Nolan said. "It's serious business, and you've got to abide by the rules of the business. You have to have enough money to get your message out. ... I have no doubt that if I did absolutely nothing, I'd be on the outside looking in.”