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Congress



  • The 14th Amendment Should Put a Stop to Debt Ceiling Hostage Taking

    by Eric Foner

    The provisions of the Reconstruction Amendments dealing with the national debt were tied to the nation's short-lived commitment to interracial democracy in the South; today they offer the Biden administration a possible tool to use if Congress pushes to the brink of default. 



  • The Constitutional Case for Demolishing the Debt Ceiling

    by Thomas Geoghegan

    The Founders would find the debt ceiling a ludicrous concept; it's time to take this instrument of blackmail out of the legislative process. The Biden administration should provoke a court fight over the law as an unconstitutional limit on the government's ability to pay its debts. 


  • Republicans (Finally) Rally Around McCarthy as Speaker

    Kevin McCarthy has secured the speakership through apparent deals allowing a group of right-wing hardliners to have greater influence over legislation and more investigative power. Historians followed the voting and discuss what comes next. 



  • Will a Cherokee Nation Delegate be Seated in Congress?

    Even without a vote in Congress, Delegates can use the privileges of their position to make a difference. Kimberly Teehee's potential seating as the Cherokee Nation's delegate would create a dedicated voice for Native issues. 



  • Marjorie Taylor Greene Knows Exactly What She's Doing

    by Jamelle Bouie

    Historians Lisa McGirr, Sara Diamond, and Daniel Schlozman and Sam Rosenfeld argue that the Republican Party has always had to keep a porous border between itself and the hard right groups who led its activist base since the Goldwater years. The borders today seem to be dissolving.


  • How Do You Solve a Problem Like Marjorie?

    The House of Representatives has voted, mostly on party lines, to remove Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene from her committee assignments in response to her statements endorsing the Capitol riots and conspiracy theories that school shootings were hoaxes and California wildfires were started by the Rothschild banking family using space lasers.



  • When the Threat of Political Violence Is Real

    by Joanne B. Freeman

    Republican calls for unity refuse to claim responsibility and in some cases level the threat of further violence to bully colleagues out of holding Trump and his allies accountable for the Capitol riots of January 6. This is reminiscent of the climate of threat and violence in Congress in the 19th century ahead of the Civil War.



  • Want to See Black Women Making History? Look to Congress

    by Ashley D. Farmer

    The success of "The Squad" in changing the image of Congressional leadership reflects the legacy of women like Barbara Jordan, the first Black woman elected to the Texas state senate on the way to a seat in Congress. 



  • The Harvard Mimeograph

    by Dan Bouk

    The story of the 1920 census shows how difficult it can be to disentangle the methodology of the Census from the political impact of the results. 



  • The Last Days of the Tech Emperors?

    by Margaret O'Mara

    The mood of Congressional questioning of tech executives recalled the traffic safety debates of the mid-1960s that helped catalyze significantly more regulation for the auto industry.