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The last seven months of Democratic rule have been anything but superproductive. Nor have they been united over the war on terrorism — even on whether it should be called a war.

They certainly haven’t improved the tone and temper of congressional deliberations. Civility is at its lowest ebb ever in both chambers. A partisan maneuver last week that smacked of dirty tricks cut short a House roll call on a Republican amendment that ended the voting before all votes were cast. Republican lawmakers stormed out of the chamber crying “shame, shame.”

The Democrats’ strong-arm tactics and political meanness raises further doubts about their performance thus far, posing this question for the voters in 2008: Can they govern?

Donald Lambro, chief political correspondent of The Washington Times, is a nationally syndicated columnist.