Congressional history

  • What Can We Learn from the 1923 Speaker Fight?

    by Christopher McKnight Nichols and Maxine Wagenhoffer

    Intraparty factionalism was prevalent then as now, but the most recent speaker battle shows that the forces of party discipline that could moderate factional strife have fallen away, making bomb-throwing and grandstanding politically rewarding. 

  • Congresswomen Of Color Have Always Fought Back Against Sexism

    by Dana Frank

    When he called Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez “crazy” and “out of her mind” because he didn’t like her politics, Ted Yoho was harking back to Edgar Berman’s narrative that a political woman who dares to speak up is constitutionally insane.

  • How Congress Passed an Assault Weapons Ban in 1994

    With Congress prepared to again clash over gun safety, in the aftermath of a murderous August, the circuitous route to passage taken by the assault weapons ban 25 years ago illustrates just how perfectly the legislative stars must align for contentious gun measures to become law.