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Category Archives: Congress

Highly ideological members of Congress have more FB followers than moderates do

Pew: “The most liberal and conservative members of the 115th Congress have attracted more Facebook followers than moderates, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis [See full methodology here (PDF).]. In both legislative chambers, members’ ideology is a strong predictor of the number of people who follow them on Facebook. The most liberal and most conservative House members had a median of 14,361 followers as of July 25, compared with 9,017 followers for those in the middle of the ideological spectrum. The median number of followers for the Senate’s most liberal and conservative lawmakers was 78,360, while moderates had 32,626. (These figures reflect each member’s total number of followers since the creation of their official Facebook page, not the number gained since the 115th Congress began.) The Center’s analysis determines each lawmaker’s ideology based on a score calculated through their congressional roll call votes…”

CBO’s Projections of Federal Receipts and Expenditures in the National Income and Product Accounts

“The fiscal transactions of the federal government are recorded in two major sets of accounts that are conceptually quite different. One set is The Budget of the United States Government, prepared by the Office of Management and Budget. The budget is the framework generally used by executive branch agencies and the Congress and is the… Continue Reading

CRS – Domestic Terrorism: An Overview

Domestic Terrorism: An Overview, Jerome P. Bjelopera, Specialist in Organized Crime and Terrorism. August 21, 2017. “The emphasis of counterterrorism policy in the United States since Al Qaeda’s attacks of September 11, 2001 (9/11) has been on jihadist terrorism. However, in the last decade, domestic terrorists—people who commit crimes within the homeland and draw inspiration… Continue Reading

Congressional Consideration of Resolutions to “Censure” Executive Branch Officials

CRS INSIGHT Congressional Consideration of Resolutions to “Censure” Executive Branch Officials, September 14, 2017 (IN10774): “Over the history of the federal Congress, Members have proposed resolutions to formally express the House or Senate’s censure, disapproval, loss of confidence, or condemnation of the President or other executive branch official or their actions. This Insight summarizes the… Continue Reading

HBS Report – Why Competition in the Politics Industry is Failing America

Why Competition in the Politics Industry is Failing America – A strategy for reinvigorating our democracy, Katherine M. Gehl and Michael E. Porter, Harvard Business School. September 2017. “Many Americans are disgusted and concerned about the dysfunction and abysmal results from Washington, D.C., and so are we. However, this paper is not about adding to… Continue Reading

FAS – Senate Intelligence Authorization Report Filed

Steven Aftergood – Secrecy News/FAS: “Do the security clearance procedures that are used for granting access to classified information actually serve their intended purpose? To help answer that question, the Senate Intelligence Committee mandated a review of security clearance requirements, including “their collective utility in anticipating future insider threats.” See the Committee’s new report on… Continue Reading

New Report on Improving Effectiveness of Government Programs

“September 7, 2017 the House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) released the following statement in response to the release of the report of the Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking: “Taxpayers deserve to know that the programs they fund are working—especially when those programs are meant to help lift people out of poverty. But too often, Washington measures… Continue Reading

Disaster Debris Management: Requirements, Challenges, and Federal Agency Roles

CRS report via FAS – Disaster Debris Management: Requirements, Challenges, and Federal Agency Roles, September 6, 2017. “Every year, communities in the United States are affected by disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, volcanoes, floods, wildfires, and winter storms. After a disaster, when a region turns its attention to rebuilding, one of the greatest challenges… Continue Reading

Social Explorer’s Andrew Beveridge in Supreme Court Amicus Brief on Gerrymandering

“A challenge to a partisan redistricting plan in Wisconsin goes before the Supreme Court this fall in the case of Gill v. Whitford. In the New York Times article “The New Front in the Gerrymandering Wars: Democracy vs. Math,” Emily Bazelon writes of the significance of the case, “The outcome of the Supreme Court’s decision… Continue Reading

Paper – Congressional Control of Presidential Pardons

Reynolds, Glenn Harlan, Congressional Control of Presidential Pardons (August 25, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3026884 “Though the president’s pardon power is plenary, many questions remain. To what extent may Congress, via legislation, regulate the president’s pardon power? Though it is well established that the power is plenary, does that insulate the pardon power from any… Continue Reading

Bulk Downloads of Congressional Data Now Available

“Using the ProPublica Congress API, developers can access details on each of the thousands of bills introduced in every two-year session. But they used to have to download those details one bill at a time, and be able to write API calls in software code. Now you can download information on all of the bills… Continue Reading

Congressional Research Service Reports on Disaster Response

Via FAS [many thanks as always to Steven Aftergood] – a complement of new and recent applicable critical CRS resources on subject matter pertinent to Hurricane Harvey, including flood response and recovery, oils and chemical spills, flood insurance, disaster assistance and housing, and dam safety. These documents are especially important in light of this report… Continue Reading