State of Partisanship

Regular order: Republicans’ risky venture into open debate

Josh Huder | December 1, 2015

Members in the House are calling for regular order. If you have no idea what “regular order” means, don’t worry. You’re not alone. In fact, you’re probably in the company of many members of Congress. Calls for regular order are almost as old as the institution itself. In theory, regular order is open, deliberative processes

Political parties are often too convenient an explanation

Josh Huder | April 28, 2015

Teagan Goddard asked the question, can politics be “unbundled” from political parties? In other words, if there is a market where we can unbundle phone and internet service, why isn’t there a market to unbundle politics from parties? Hans Noel wrote an excellent piecedescribing how the electoral and governing process

Senatorial Courtesy, Blue Slips Caught in the Fallout

Ian Millhiser has a very good piece on judicial nominations and blue slips over at Think Progress. It covers a lot of ground and is a wonderful read. However, I do have some bones to pick with his take. At the core of Millhiser’s argument are blue slips and their place in Senate history. He contends

Gunning for a Fight?

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg recently announced plans to spend $50 million this year to fight gun violence. Bloomberg will bring together the gun control groups that he already funds – Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America – to form a new organization called Everytown

Moderates to the Rescue on Debt Ceiling

The House voted 221-201 last night to pass a clean, yearlong debt ceiling increase. The measure, which raises the government’s borrowing limit through March 2015, passed with 193 Democratic votes and 28 Republican votes. Earlier in the day, Speaker John Boehner informed House Republicans that he intended to bring a no-strings-attached debt ceiling bill to

The Challenges of House Leadership

This is one of a series of posts from the Congressional Update The biggest challenge in the House belongs to John Boehner. The speaker and his leadership team have been dealt a divided caucus, consisting of many members who are conservatives first, and Republicans second. In 2010, many of the most conservative members who rode the

Supreme Court to Decide What Constitutes a Senate “Recess”

On January 13, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear a much-watched case interpreting the president’s appointment power.  Written at a time when it could take weeks for members of Congress to get to the capital, Article II, section 2 of the Constitution allows presidents to fill vacancies temporarily during recesses for positions that would otherwise

Charles Cushman Speaks With Voice of Russia On Filibuster

On Thursday, the Senate agreed to lower the amount of votes needed to break a filibuster from 60 to 51. Reid says the drastic decision was borne out of frustration from repeated Republican attempts to block President Obama’s judicial and executive nominees. Republicans have countered saying the Democrats will regret this move as soon as

It’s Congress’s Fault: How Congress Polarizes America

Currently, the debate over American polarization is dominated by electoral considerations: gerrymandering, sorting, PACs, campaign finance, etc. Most of these arguments are based on underlying assumption that the American people, or a political process that sorts voters into districts, are driving polarization. For the most part this is true. However, the effect is also hugely

Op-Ed: No Good Options For Speaker

By Marian Currinder and Joshua Huder The federal government has shut down for the first time since 1996 and all eyes are focused on House Speaker John Boehner. Will he continue to insist upon tying a repeal or delay of Obamacare to a funding bill? Or will

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