• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Providing a comprehensive examination of the origins, development, and status of committees and committee systems in both the House and Senate, this edition carries on the book's tradition of comprehensive coverage, empirical richness, and theoretical relevance in its discussion of these essential and distinguishing features of our national legislature. While the second edition focused on the “post-reform” committee systems, addressed the shifts in the internal distribution of power, and hinted at the forces that had already begun to undermine the power of committees, this edition updates that analysis and looks at the reforms that evolvied under the Republicans. It offers complete coverage of the rules and structural changes to the House and Senate committee systems. It extends its discussion of committee power and influence in the context of the “Contract with America,” Republican reforms, and the inter-party warfare on Capitol Hill.

Inside Committees: Leaders, Subcommittees, and Staff
Inside committees: Leaders, subcommittees, and staff

Shortly after the start of the 102d Congress, in the winter of 1991, freshman representative Maxine Waters, D.-Calif., arrived late to her first meeting of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee. The committee was in the midst of a discussion to which Waters expressed a dissenting opinion. Rep. G. V. “Sonny” Montgomery, the longtime Democratic chair of the committee and a stickler for punctuality, responded to Waters with a rebuke: “By the way, Maxine, this committee starts on time.” In the fall of 1994, Mark W. Neumann arrived in Washington from Janesville, Wisconsin, and found out what it was like to join the National Security subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee: “I'm brand new at this ...

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