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The “Constitutional Option”: Beating an Already Dead Horse

September 21, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
There is an increasing amount of confusion about what exactly the constitutional option is, and further, how often it’s invoked to enact rules changes. It’s gained recent momentum as a result… Read More

Grading Presidential Rhetoric using Readability Software

September 15, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
If you were a junior high or high school teacher interested in assigning presidential speeches for your American Government class, which presidential speeches would you assign and to whom?  My… Read More

Legislative Polarization and the Effect of Primaries

September 10, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
One of the most interesting papers presented at APSA (of the panels that I attended) addressed the role that political primary types have on inducing legislative polarization.  Eric McGhee, Seth… Read More

Inside a Senate Fillibuster

September 9, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
After a long job market-fueled APSA hiatus, things are back to normal (whatever that means).  Our content should pick up soon. In the meantime, here is George Mitchell recalling… Read More

Calendar Wednesday: An Old Rule but Great Tradition

September 1, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
Three new ethics cases were submitted to OCE (Office of Congressional Ethics). Of course, Tom Price (R-Ga.), John Campbell (R-Calif.) and Joseph Crowley (D-N.Y.) never did anything wrong. Read More

The Likelihood of “Repealing Health Care”

August 20, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
The subject of “repealing” the health care reform package is of considerable importance for political scientists, pundits and lawmakers, both as a political issue and for the next congressional session. … Read More

Quick Hit: Just how bad is the scandal?

August 12, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
Ever wonder what’s going to happen to Maxine Waters or Charlie Rangel?  And why did Elliot Spitzer’s fondness for prostitutes trigger his resignation while David Vitter kept his post?… Read More

Analyzing the Primary Elections Results

August 11, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
So, after the dust settled yesterday in our mid August primaries, where do we stand?  In Colorado, the Democratic establishment candidate, Michael Bennet, rode Obama’s endorsement to victory as he… Read More

Institutions v. Agency: Why the Senate is Weird

August 9, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
The “problem of the Senate” is a hot topic today. David Broder, Jonathan Chait, Jon Bernstein, and John Sides all commented on… Read More

Do the Republicans Lack a Legislative Agenda?

August 1, 2010  ·  LegBranch Team
Though I planned this entry a few weeks back, it dovetails nicely with Josh’s previous post.  Essentially, Josh reminded us of Richard Fenno, arguing that a legislator’s electoral… Read More