Racial and ethnic minority group Representatives in Congress play an increasingly important role in the policy process as their numbers grow. This Congress Project seminar explored the dynamics of minority group leadership and how it is changing the face of Congress and national policy debates.
Over the last three decades majority parties in Congress have come to dominate the policy agenda, often at the expense of committees and deliberative lawmaking. In this article from Roll Call's Procedural Politics column, Wolfensberger finds evidence of this power shift in the growing prominence of leadership staff over committee staff and in the number of unreported bills given major status by the party leaders.
October 15, 2007 By Don Wolfensberger,Roll Call Contributing Writer
At a Congress Project seminar, a panel of former White House aides, a journalist, and a congressional scholar agreed that Barack Obama's actions during the White House transition will help ensure him legislative success with Congress.
A recent study credits Congresses of the last decade as being more civil than their predecessors in the 1990s. However, the study is based on the narrow metric of how often House Members are called to order for uttering unparliamentary language questioning the character of a colleague. Wolfensberger maintains that such acts of incivility may be down but the “uncivility” of depersonalizing and ignoring Members of the other party is on the upswing.
January 29, 2007 By Don Wolfensberger,Roll Call Contributing Writer
May 15, 2006 By Don Wolfensberger,Roll Call Contributing Writer