November 12, 2007 By Don Wolfensberger,Roll Call Contributing Writer
President Barack Obama made a controversial move in early January by making four recess appointments to fill vacancies in top government positions, even though Congress was intentionally avoiding long recesses to block such a move. While the recess ploy may score political points by highlighting Senate delays in approving nominations, it is straining constitutional bounds and inter-branch relations.
July 2, 2007 By Don Wolfensberger,Roll Call Contributing Writer
Privacy issues are at the forefront of public debate, as the U.S. government strives to balance privacy with security. A recent Congress Project seminar delved into this issue.
Post-election sessions of Congress are usually unproductive and unpredictable. And yet lame-duck sessions have been held in nine of the last ten Congresses, counting this one. It’s a sign of Congress’s growing propensity to procrastinate on even its most routine business. This time the so-called “fiscal cliff” of expiring tax cuts and across-the-board spending cuts threatens another recession if Congress doesn’t act.
October 10, 2006 By Don WolfensbergerRoll Call Contributing Writer