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Published in partnership with the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress, this book offers insightful examinations of congressional success and failure from the New Deal to today by leading political scholars and journalists. This analysis identifies lessons learned throughout history relevant to present and future politics.
In many ways, Congress has shaped decades of prosperity at home and what is known as the "American Century" abroad. Great individuals have shaped the institution while also overcoming partisanship and rivalry for the sake of the nation. Still, others have succumbed to hubris and the pressure for partisan discord. Throughout this narrative, power has shifted regularly between Congress and the president, creating a very different era of conflict and collaboration.
This book examines what has worked and what has failed, the extraordinary individuals who have led America's citizen legislators, and the landmark battles and victories that have shaped our nation's history. It offers the stories behind the headlines, the thinking behind key decisions, and the difficult compromises that have marked the most important episodes in Congressional history.
An invaluable resource for political science majors and researchers in the field, professionals in Washington working in congressional offices, and readers interested in how Congress works and the reasons for recurring gridlock in government, Triumphs and Tragedies of the Modern Congress: Case Studies in Legislative Leadership describes how Congress has fought internally and externally to define itself and protect its prerogatives, identifying means and methods, politics and pitfalls, collaboration and conflict, challenges and breakthroughs, and unintended consequences throughout history. Case studies of notable congressional leaders that highlight their significant actions—both good and bad—are also provided.
- Offers compelling analysis of congressional policy and decision-making that enables readers to understand the potential impact on future politics
- Analyzes congressional relations with the executive branch, including power balance, successes, and points of conflict with the White House
- Addresses major domestic programs from the New Deal through No Child Left Behind
- Includes National Security and foreign policy case studies from World War II through the post-9/11 world as well as short biographies of Congress' most influential leaders
- Examines Congress' greatest spheres of influence and how these have changed over the years and considers how major congressional battles arose, were reconciled, and had lasting effects
- Author Info
"This anthology offers a wonderful insight into the many interesting policies and people found within the world's greatest deliberative body. I salute Norm, James, Chris, and Max for creating a useful tool for students, policymakers, and citizens; and David Abshire's wisdom in inspiring this project."
"The lessons of history are an essential guide to those in Congress- particularly in times of crisis. Triumphs and Tragedies of the Modern Congress is a valuable resource to those policymakers who are struggling with the difficult issues of the day. These case studies can teach and inspire policymakers as they try to meet the ever-changing challenges of our time."
"Triumphs & Tragedies of the Modern Congress is a magnificent collection of objective, fair critiques of Congress. These historical case studies remind us, as Ben Franklin said, 'We have a Republic, if you can keep it!'"
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