Senate Republicans get ready to play musical chairs

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November 5, 2018
Regardless of what happens in the 2018 midterm elections, Republicans are set to play a game of musical chairs on some of the most important committees in the Senate. The… Read More

Reforming the Senate’s hotline system

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October 31, 2018
(Editor’s note: This piece originally appeared in Legislative Procedure on October 29, 2018.) Senators often blame their leaders whenever they are frustrated with how the Senate works. Yet they… Read More

‘Tis the season for changing how the Senate works

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October 29, 2018
(Editor’s note: This post originally appeared in Legislative Procedure on October 22, 2018.) In the Senate today, the legislative process is centralized under the control of the party leaders… Read More

Congress and NAFTA 2.0

October 11, 2018
(Editor’s note: This piece originally appeared in Legislative Procedure on October 10, 2018.) The United States, Mexico, and Canada recently agreed to modify the North American Free Trade… Read More

Lame ducks and congressional accountability

October 4, 2018
(Editor’s note: This piece originally appeared in Law and Liberty on October 3, 2018.) The ranks of those writing about the state of American governance have swelled recently… Read More

Unring the bell

September 6, 2018
(Editor’s note: This post is a follow up to yesterday’s post and originally appeared in Legislative Procedure on September 5, 2018.) By James Wallner Yesterday’s post detailing… Read More

How to make the Senate a nuclear-free zone

September 5, 2018
(Editor’s note: This post originally appeared in Legislative Procedure on September 4, 2018.) Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., regrets going nuclear. Democrats used the controversial maneuver in 2013 to lower unilaterally the… Read More

How to spot policy riders in appropriations bills

August 22, 2018
(Editor’s note: This piece originally appeared in  Legislative Procedure on August 15, 2018.) By James Wallner Senate Rule XVI (paragraphs 1 and 2) prohibits the inclusion of… Read More

Losing isn’t required to play the game

August 6, 2018
By James Wallner The way in which the Senate considered the minibus appropriations bill (HR 6147) last week was a classic example of how its leaders (and bill managers)… Read More

What makes Senate leaders so powerful?

August 1, 2018
By James Wallner The floor leaders of the Democratic and Republican parties dominate today’s Senate. They play a central role both in crafting major bills and in shepherding them… Read More