The first session of the 81st Congress, which had begun its work in high hope ten months ago and passed through despairing depths, ended last week in wan and shaky congratulations among the Democratic majority. There was a great deal of tired, last-minute fun: barbershop ballads, a few well-placed smooches on the cheek by departing Congresswomen and gay festivities by congressional employees (see cut) whose salaries had just been raised.

The session was the longest in peacetime since 1922, and it had been a stormy voyage. Harry Truman's Fair Deal often seemed about to founder...

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