the american congress the building of democracy

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The American Congress

Author : Julian E. Zelizer
ISBN : 054734550X
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 27. 78 MB
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Congress is the heart and soul of our democracy, the place where interests are brokered, laws are established, and innovation is turned into concrete action. It is also where some of democracy's greatest virtues clash with its worst vices: idealism and compromise meet corruption and bitter partisanship. The American Congress unveils the rich and varied history of this singular institution. Julian E. Zelizer has gathered together forty essays by renowned historians to capture the full drama, landmark legislation, and most memorable personalities of Congress. Organized around four major periods of congressional history, from the signing of the Constitution to the creation of the Department of Homeland Security, this volume brings a fresh perspective to familiar watershed events: the Civil War, Watergate, the Vietnam War. It also gives a behind-the-scenes look at lesser-known legislation debated on the House and Senate floors, such as westward expansion and war powers control. Here are the stories behind the 1868 vote to impeach President Andrew Johnson; the rise of Jeannette Rankin, the first woman elected to Congress and a leading advocate for pacifism; and the controversy surrounding James Eastland of Mississippi, who carried civil rights bills in his pockets so they could not come up for a vote. Sidebars further spotlight notables including Huey Long, Sam Rayburn, and Tip O'Neill, bringing the sweeping history of our lawmaking bodies into sharp focus. If you've ever wondered how Congress worked in the past or what our elected officials do today, this book gives the engaging, often surprising, answers.

Restoration

Author : George F. Will
ISBN : 143911904X
Genre : History
File Size : 61. 18 MB
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Biblical Christianity was originally a sect of Judaism that believed in Jesus and revered the Torah as the core of her scriptures. Restoration is a riveting argument for a return to that original biblical expression of faith in Jesus. Discover for yourself the profound beauty of Torah life, the celebration of the biblical Sabbath, and the application of God's holy feast days. Your eyes will be opened to another dimension of the faith that is beginning to reemerge among Christians worldwide. Lancaster answers common theological objections to the Torah, while demonstrating that Christians are already keeping more of God's Law than they realize. This thought provoking, theological boat-rocker is a fun-to-read inspiring journey into the world of the Bible.

Democracy Denied

Author : Phil Kerpen
ISBN : 9781936661398
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 26. 66 MB
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Democracy Denied by Americans for Prosperity vice president Phil Kerpen is a guide to understanding and defeating the radical agenda that President Barack Obama is implementing by unilateral regulatory action through his agencies and czars. Democracy Denied exposes the Obama administration's agenda that disregards the American people, Congress, and the U.S. Constitution—and offers a plan of action to stop it.

A Mere Machine

Author : Anna Harvey
ISBN : 9780300199192
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 85. 7 MB
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Introductory textbooks on American government tell us that the Supreme Court is independent from the elected branches and that independent courts better protect rights than their more deferential counterparts. But are these facts or myths? In this groundbreaking new work, Anna Harvey reports evidence showing that the Supreme Court is in fact extraordinarily deferential to congressional preferences in its constitutional rulings. Analyzing cross-national evidence, Harvey also finds that the rights protections we enjoy in the United States appear to be largely due to the fact that we do not have an independent Supreme Court. In fact, we would likely have even greater protections for political and economic rights were we to prohibit our federal courts from exercising judicial review altogether. Harvey’s findings suggest that constitutional designers would be wise to heed Thomas Jefferson’s advice to “let mercy be the character of the law-giver, but let the judge be a mere machine.&rdquo

Partisan Gerrymandering And The Construction Of American Democracy

Author : Erik Engstrom
ISBN : 9780472119011
Genre : PHILOSOPHY
File Size : 84. 3 MB
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Since the nation’s founding, the strategic manipulation of congressional districts has influenced American politics and public policy

Candidates Congress And The American Democracy

Author : Linda L. Fowler
ISBN : UOM:39076001486310
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 72. 19 MB
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Discusses the effect of the process of candidate selection on democracy in the United States

On Capitol Hill

Author : Julian E. Zelizer
ISBN : 0521681278
Genre : History
File Size : 22. 8 MB
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A historian analyzes the political challenge of how America can improve the institutions that compose representative democracy, pointing out that reform is slow and multidimensional, and how it has failed to make Congress more efficient or powerful during the latter half of the twentieth century.

The Class Of 74

Author : John A. Lawrence
ISBN : 9781421424705
Genre : History
File Size : 88. 10 MB
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In November 1974, following the historic Watergate scandal, Americans went to the polls determined to cleanse American politics. Instead of producing the Republican majority foreshadowed by Richard Nixon’s 1972 landslide, dozens of GOP legislators were swept out of the House, replaced by 76 reforming Democratic freshmen. In The Class of '74, John A. Lawrence examines how these newly elected representatives bucked the status quo in Washington, helping to effectuate unprecedented reforms. Lawrence’s long-standing work in Congress afforded him unique access to former members, staff, House officers, journalists, and others, enabling him to challenge the time-honored reputation of the Class as idealistic, narcissistic, and naïve "Watergate Babies." Their observations help reshape our understanding of the Class and of a changing Congress through frank, humorous, and insightful opinions. These reformers provided the votes to disseminate power, elevate suppressed issues, and expand participation by junior legislators in congressional deliberations. But even as such innovations empowered progressive Democrats, the greater openness they created, combined with changing undercurrents in American politics in the mid-1970s, facilitated increasingly bitter battles between liberals and conservatives. These disputes foreshadowed contemporary legislative gridlock and a divided Congress. Today, many observers point to gerrymandering, special-interest money, and a host of other developments to explain the current dysfunction of American politics. In The Class of '74, Lawrence argues that these explanations fail to recognize deep roots of partisanship. To fully understand the highly polarized political environment that now pervades the House and American politics, we must examine the complex politics, including a more open and contentious House, that emerged in the wake of Watergate.

Building Democratic Institutions Party Systems In Latin America

Author :
ISBN : 0804765375
Genre : Democracy
File Size : 86. 5 MB
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"Third, the authors investigate the relationship between major parties and the state, revealing the extent to which parties are dependent on state resources to maintain power and win votes. Fourth, the contributions assess the importance of different electoral regimes for shaping broader patterns of party competition. Finally, and most important, the authors characterize the nature of the party system in each country - how institutionalized it is and how it can be classified."--BOOK JACKET.

The Fierce Urgency Of Now

Author : Julian E. Zelizer
ISBN : 9781101605493
Genre : History
File Size : 70. 89 MB
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A majestic big-picture account of the Great Society and the forces that shaped it, from Lyndon Johnson and members of Congress to the civil rights movement and the media Between November 1963, when he became president, and November 1966, when his party was routed in the midterm elections, Lyndon Johnson spearheaded the most transformative agenda in American political history since the New Deal, one whose ambition and achievement have had no parallel since. In just three years, Johnson drove the passage of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts; the War on Poverty program; Medicare and Medicaid; the National Endowments for the Arts and the Humanities; Public Broadcasting; immigration liberalization; a raft of consumer and environmental protection acts; and major federal investments in public transportation. Collectively, this group of achievements was labeled by Johnson and his team the “Great Society.” In The Fierce Urgency of Now, Julian E. Zelizer takes the full measure of the entire story in all its epic sweep. Before Johnson, Kennedy tried and failed to achieve many of these advances. Our practiced understanding is that this was an unprecedented “liberal hour” in America, a moment, after Kennedy’s death, when the seas parted and Johnson could simply stroll through to victory. As Zelizer shows, this view is off-base: In many respects America was even more conservative than it seems now, and Johnson’s legislative program faced bitter resistance. The Fierce Urgency of Now animates the full spectrum of forces at play during these turbulent years, including religious groups, the media, conservative and liberal political action groups, unions, and civil rights activists. Above all, the great character in the book whose role rivals Johnson’s is Congress—indeed, Zelizer argues that our understanding of the Great Society program is too Johnson-centric. He discusses why Congress was so receptive to passing these ideas in a remarkably short span of time and how the election of 1964 and burgeoning civil rights movement transformed conditions on Capitol Hill. Zelizer brings a deep, intimate knowledge of the institution to bear on his story: The book is a master class in American political grand strategy. Finally, Zelizer reckons with the legacy of the Great Society. Though our politics have changed, the heart of the Great Society legislation remains intact fifty years later. In fact, he argues, the Great Society shifted the American political center of gravity—and our social landscape—decisively to the left in many crucial respects. In a very real sense, we are living today in the country that Johnson and his Congress made.

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