The Dark Days of the 112th Congress — PICTURES

Dec. 2, 2011, 8:02 a.m.

As Ma­jor Gar­rett ex­plains in this week’s Na­tion­al Journ­al, the first year of the 112th Con­gress has been far from stel­lar. In crisis after crisis, he writes, “a tiny band of law­makers — some­times lead­ers, some­times ad hoc ne­go­ti­at­ors, some­times mem­bers of a spe­cial com­mit­tee — huddled in secret and stumbled their way to either a res­ol­u­tion or a stan­doff. Mean­while, every­one else in Con­gress stood by, wait­ing for the crisis to pass.”

In the gal­lery be­low, we take a look at the biggest fail­ures in the Cap­it­ol — and the up­com­ing battles that could eas­ily lead to more.