Why the GOP Dominates the House—But Not the Senate
July 26, 2011
Since the Second World War, there have been three instances of a divided partisan Congress. The first was the six-year stretch from 1981 to 1987, when Republicans held the Senate but not the House. Then, following the April 2001 party defection of Republican Senator Jim Jeffords, for most of the 107th Congress Republicans ran the House but shared power with Senate Democrats. And now there is the 112th Congress, featuring a Republican House majority and a Democratic Senate majority.
Change The Voters, Or Change The Rules?
February 16, 2010
As I've been saying, the procedural critique of the Senate that some of us have been making for years is starting, but only starting to make headway into the conventional wisdom.
August 12, 2009
In May 2001, one day after the news broke that Senator Jim Jeffords was leaving the Republican Party, rumors began to spread that Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson was contemplating a move in the opposite direction. The rumors made a certain amount of sense. Nelson was a conservative Democrat and personal friend of President Bush. And Republicans were desperate to reclaim the majority they had just lost. For Nelson, the circumstances were perfect ...
July 02, 2001
Twenty-five years before he became the most unlikely star in the U.S. Senate, Lincoln Chafee was a shaggy-haired nomad, fresh from a drug-enhanced stint at Brown University, shoeing horses at harness racetracks in the United States and Canada. His father, Senator John Chafee, may have been a titan of Rhode Island politics, but Linc, as he is known, had little interest in the family business. It wasn't until he grew bored with the private sector--he was working as a manager in a steel mill at the time--that he decided to enter public life.