(This is an updated version of this post from May.)

If you like the status quo in America you are in luck because Congress isn’t changing it. Now 3/4ths into the 113th Congress, the trend of gridlock continues — but not all of the numbers are gloomy.

It takes a law to repeal a law, so no matter whether you think Congress should be creating more rules or less you probably want some bills to be enacted. The number of bills enacted by this Congress as of June 30 — 125 — is the lowest among the first 544 days of any Congress since 1973 (the earliest we have data). In the five Congresses before this one where the chambers weren’t controlled by the same party, the average number of bills enacted in the same time period was 254.

Yet the number of pages of new law is not the lowest. With 2,597 pages of new law in the first 3/4ths of this Congress, which is low, that actually tops the preceding Congress at 2,324 pages (2011-2012) and the 2,465 pages of law created in the 106th Congress (1999-2000) (both the first 544 days).

And while The Washington Post reported that the Senate has been on a trend of holding fewer votes per day in session since 1990, the 507 Senate roll call votes so far this Congress isn’t nearly the lowest. Last Congress, at 407 votes, and three previous Congresses had fewer Senate roll call votes (including just 412 votes in the 102nd, 1991-1992). The House’s 1,008 roll call votes this Congress is about on par for the House. Many of those votes were for show though — votes on bills that House leadership knew very well wouldn’t be passed by the Senate.

We previously reported on gridlock: With 72 new laws enacted in 2013, the first year of the 113th Congress, it was the lowest count in any first year of a Congress at least since 1973. We looked at the trend earlier, in the middle of 2013, and at 21 new laws at the time it was also the lowest for that point during a Congressional term.

Congressional “productivity” is not something that really can be measured, and the fact that not all of the numbers here agree on whether this Congress is the least productive shows that it’s a complex thing to consider.

Here’s the data in a table:

Congressional Activity in the First 506 Days of Each Congress

Congress New Laws Pages of New Law Words in New Law House Votes Senate Votes Congress
Same Party?
Congress & President
Same Party?
93 (1973-1973) 406 (no data) (no data) 785 864 Yes No
94 (1975-1975) 401 (no data) (no data) 986 982 Yes No
95 (1977-1977) 355 (no data) (no data) 1,154 832 Yes Yes
96 (1979-1979) 366 (no data) (no data) 1,033 810 Yes Yes
97 (1981-1981) 237 (no data) (no data) 519 701 No No
98 (1983-1983) 344 (no data) (no data) 774 557 No No
99 (1985-1985) 351 (no data) (no data) 628 535 No No
100 (1987-1987) 376 (no data) (no data) 698 640 Yes No
101 (1989-1989) 320 (no data) (no data) 578 455 Yes No
102 (1991-1991) 312 (no data) (no data) 686 412 Yes No
103 (1993-1993) 272 3,310 2,161,531 929 582 Yes Yes
104 (1995-1995) 151 3,997 1,951,713 1,177 795 Yes No
105 (1997-1997) 191 3,476 2,605,725 914 481 Yes No
106 (1999-1999) 234 2,465 1,629,667 983 545 Yes No
107 (2001-2001) 200 3,208 2,159,888 794 546 No No
108 (2003-2003) 269 3,829 2,394,393 1,002 611 Yes Yes
109 (2005-2005) 239 4,117 3,221,043 1,028 556 Yes Yes
110 (2007-2008) 260 4,748 3,079,351 1,656 604 Yes No
111 (2009-2009) 198 4,850 3,664,721 1,424 601 Yes Yes
112 (2011-2012) 140 2,324 1,744,986 1,398 407 No No
113 (2013-2014) 125 2,597 1,918,694 1,008 507 No No