Lame Duck Sessions Since 1933 

Congress (Year)

Senate Dates

House Dates

Major Topics

113th (2014)

Nov 12-20

Dec 1-16

Nov 12-20

Dec 1-12

Defense authorization, appropriations,

nominations, and extension of tax cuts

112th (2012)

Nov 6, 9

Nov 13-16

Nov 26-Jan 2

Nov 6, 9

Nov 13-16

Nov 27-Jan 3

Pro forma session

Defense authorization, FISA extension,

disaster appropriations, extension of

tax cuts, and delay of budget sequestration

111th (2010)

Nov 4, 8, 10, 12

Nov 15-19

Nov 29-Dec 22

--

Nov 15-18

Nov 29-Dec 22

Pro forma session

Judge Porteous impeachment, New START

treaty, appropriations, 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,'

and extension of tax cuts

110th (2008)

Nov 17-20

Dec 8-11

Nov 19-20

Dec 9-10

Economic issues

109th (2006)

Nov 13-16

Dec 4-8

Nov 13-15

Dec 5-8

Appropriations

108th (2004)

Nov 16-24

Dec 7, 8

Nov 16-24

Dec 6, 7

Appropriations

Intelligence Reform

107th (2002)

Nov 7, 8

Nov 12-20

Nov 7, 8

Nov 12-22

Pro forma session

Department of Homeland Security and

appropriations

106th (2000)

Nov 14

Dec 5-15

Nov 13, 14

Dec 4-15

Appropriations and other legislation

105th (1998)

did not meet

Dec 17-19

Clinton impeachment

103rd (1994)

Nov 30, Dec 1

Nov 29

General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade

97th (1982)

Nov 29-Dec 23

Nov 29-Dec 21

Appropriations and budget issues

96th (1980)

Nov 12-25

Dec 1-16

Nov 12-24

Dec 1-16

Budget, appropriations, and domestic legislation

93rd (1974)

Nov 18-26

Dec 2-20

Nov 18-26

Dec 2-20

Legislation delayed by Watergate investigation

91st (1970-71)

Nov 16-Jan 2

Nov 16-Jan 2

Domestic legislation and foreign aid

83rd (1954)

Nov 8-17

Nov 29-Dec 2

did not meet

Censure of Senator Joseph McCarthy

81st (1950-51)

Nov 27-Dec 22

Dec 26, 29

Jan 2

Nov 27-Dec 22

--

Dec 26-Jan 2

Korean War

Pro forma session

Korean War

80th (1948)

Dec 31

Dec 31

Formalities to conclude business

78th (1944)

Nov 14-Dec 19

Nov 14-Dec 19

World War II and domestic legislation

77th (1942)

Nov 5-Dec 16

Nov 5-Dec 16

World War II

76th (1940-41)

Nov 7-Jan 3

Nov 7-Jan 2

Threat of war in Europe