The 76th Congress finally died last week.

Minutes later, the 77th Congress rose from its predecessor's ashes. The phoenix nest where this political rebirth occurred looked not unlike a bird cage, thanks to a network of steel girders, erected temporarily to hold up the aged and rickety Congressional roof.

The Senate made the transition from old to new with little more ceremony than the thump-thump of Vice President John Garner's ivory gavel. It had met in the morning to establish a record of 367 days in session, recessed for 15 minutes, then flowed augustly on. As Garner, stammering occasionally and looking lonely...

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