In its August 2003 budget and economic update, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projected a $401 billion deficit this year, and $480 billion next year, with no sign of a surplus reemerging until 2012. How will Congress deal with this new sea of red ink? Will mounting deficits be an issue in the 2004 presidential and congressional campaigns? These were some of the issues that were explored at this recent Congress Project seminar.
If you got the impression during the debt limit imbroglio that our leaders were creatively trying to extricate themselves from a box of their own making, you’ve been cribbing from Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s manual: Crises (fabricated or not) can advance worthy goals—even restoring fiscal sanity. It’s getting there that sometimes seems insane.
It's not a new strain of flu, but there is an infectious form of transparentitis that's sweeping the nation. And members are catching it from their constituents, writes Congress Project Director Don Wolfensberger in a Roll Call op-ed.
May 21, 2007 By Don WolfensbergerRoll Call Staff
The adoption of House rules on the opening day of a new Congress is a perfunctory and partisan exercise that gets little attention. It hasn't always been that way, writes Don Wolfensberger.
August 14, 2006By Don Wolfensberger,Roll Call Contributing Writer
When the House of Representatives removed Speaker Joe Cannon as chairman of the Rules Committee in 1910, it did so by overturning his ruling that changing House rules from the floor is not a constitutional right. Before Cannon left office in 1911, the House reversed itself, perhaps in part because Democrats would be in the majority two months later. The tale is a cautionary one for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid who recently changed Senate filibuster rules.