Center for Effective Lawmaking

Tom Wickham: A Guide to the Major Issues on Congress’s Opening Day

Tom Wickham: A Guide to the Major Issues on Congress’s Opening Day As the 118th Congress gets underway, the Center for Effective Lawmaking is taking the opportunity to present insights from Tom Wickham, Senior Vice President of state and local policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; he is also a Member of our Advisory Board. Previously, he was the Parliamentarian of the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served in the Parliamentarian’s Office for 25 years, and helped referee 14 different elections for Speaker and advised on all aspects…

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2022: A Year in Review

2022: A Year in Review As 2022 draws to a close, we at the Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) wanted to take the time to reflect on our accomplishments and what lies ahead in the new year, as well as to thank you for your contributions to the CEL. We are proud to present the Center for Effective Lawmaking Annual Report for 2021-2022. Here you will see highlights from the last academic year, including: Hosting our 3rd and 4th Annual Research Conferences, as well as the respective recipients of the…

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Success in the States: How Outstanding State Lawmakers Lead and Govern

Success in the States: How Outstanding State Lawmakers Lead and Govern On Monday, December 12, the Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL), along with the Levin Center for Oversight and Democracy, Lyceum Labs, and the Millennial Action Project (MAP), cohosted the event "Success in the States: How Outstanding State Lawmakers Lead and Govern" in Washington, DC. The forum brought together a bipartisan group of state lawmakers and nonprofit leaders dedicated to supporting better political leadership in the U.S. to reflect on the issues at stake for our democracy. The participants spoke about their experiences and research, and provided valuable insights into how…

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Inside the Stennis Center Retreat

Inside the Stennis Center Retreat Last week, the Center for Effective Lawmaking co-hosted a retreat with the Stennis Center for Public Service, a federal, bipartisan legislative branch agency established by the U.S. Congress to provide a variety of public service programs and development opportunities.  The purpose of the retreat was to commemorate the Stennis Congressional Staff Fellows Program, a bipartisan, bicameral leadership development program for senior-level staff members of Congress, which was concluding the two-year program for the cohort who served during the 117th Congress. Taking place in Charlottesville with…

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Discussing Legislative Effectiveness with Representative Will Hurd 

Discussing Legislative Effectiveness with Representative Will Hurd Former Representative Will Hurd served as the U.S. representative for Texas’s 23rd congressional district from 2015 to 2021. Representative Hurd was identified by the Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) as being one of the top 10 most effective Republican lawmakers in the U.S. House during his first term in Congress, as well as being the third most effective freshman lawmaker within his class. CEL Co-Directors Craig Volden and Alan Wiseman recently sat down with Representative Hurd to discuss his time in Congress. Among…

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Call for 2022-2023 Small Grant Awards

Call for 2022-2023 Small Grant Awards Proposal deadline: September 20, 2022 Awards announced by: October 17, 2022 The Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) welcomes applications for grants to fund research consistent with the mission of the Center. The Center advances the generation, communication, and use of new knowledge about the effectiveness of individual lawmakers and U.S. legislative institutions. See our website (www.thelawmakers.org) for more on the CEL. The research receiving support must focus on effective lawmaking and must be designed to make an original scholarly contribution, generating and communicating new…

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Congressional Town Halls and Legislative Effectiveness

Town hall meetings have long been a way for constituents to hear from their Representatives and Senators face-to-face, and to likewise raise their most pressing policy concerns.  Is there a tradeoff between legislators spending their time and effort on town halls instead of focusing their energies on other important policymaking activities? New analysis from the Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) Faculty Affiliate Andrew J. Clarke and his co-author Daniel Markovits addresses this question by drawing on more than 23,000 town hall meetings over the past eight years.The authors find that the…

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Measuring the Effectiveness of Public Leaders

How do we know if public leaders are effective in their jobs? CEL Co-Director Craig Volden, Faculty Affiliate Laurel Harbridge-Yong, and Grant Recipient Beatriz Rey all contributed their insights as part of a panel discussion and Q&A hosted by the Tommy G. Thompson Center on Public Leadership at the University of Wisconsin-Madison on Friday, July 22. They discussed the measurement of effectiveness of lawmakers, as well as how voters and others use effectiveness information to hold elected officials accountable.Watch the panel in its entirety below:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQrwJ9vOKV8

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The CEL’s 2022 Award for Best Publication on Effective Lawmaking

The CEL's 2022 Award for Best Publication on Effective Lawmaking This year, in coordination with our Fourth Annual Research Conference, the Center for Effective Lawmaking was pleased to announce the 2022 Award for Best Publication on Effective Lawmaking. The award was presented to Jesse M. Crosson, Alexander C. Furnas, Timothy Lapira, and Casey Burgat for their 2021 article in Legislative Studies Quarterly, titled "Partisan Competition and the Decline in Legislative Capacity among Congressional Offices.” In this paper, the authors take a deep dive into a new (and original) data set drawn from 236,000 quarterly payroll disbursements by…

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Inside the 4th Annual Research Conference at the Center for Effective Lawmaking

The Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) hosted its Fourth Annual Research Conference on June 13, 2022 at the University of Virginia (UVA) in Charlottesville, Virginia. Dean Ian Solomon, of the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy at the University of Virginia, delivered opening comments to over 40 attendees, who were drawn from a wide range of research institutions and organizations across the United States, to discuss and evaluate new ideas put forward regarding the broad topic of effective lawmaking. Consistent with past conferences, the presented works all engaged with different aspects…

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