Center for Effective Lawmaking

Pivots or Partisans?: Proposal-Making Strategy and Status Quo Selection in Congress

Pivots or Partisans? Proposal-Making Strategy and Status Quo Selection in Congress Lawmakers vary considerably in how effectively they advance their priorities through Congress. However, the actual proposal-writing strategies undergirding these differences have remained largely unexplored, due to measurement and methodological difficulties. These obstacles have included prohibitively small sample sizes, costly data requirements, and strong theoretical assumptions. In this Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) working paper, political scientists Jesse Crosson (CEL Faculty Affiliate), Alexander Furnas, and Geoffrey Lorenz (CEL Faculty Affiliate) address these obstacles and analyze the proposal strategies of effective…

Comments Off on Pivots or Partisans?: Proposal-Making Strategy and Status Quo Selection in Congress

CEL Briefing with the Congress’s “Problem Solvers”

CEL Briefing with the Congress’s “Problem Solvers” The co-directors of the Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL), Professors Craig Volden and Alan Wiseman (of the University of Virginia Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy, and Vanderbilt University Department of Political Science, respectively), visited the U.S. Capitol Building this week to conduct a briefing with the legislative staff of members of the congressional Problem Solvers Caucus.  The caucus defines itself as “a bipartisan group of Members of Congress organized to get to ‘yes’ to help solve some of our country’s…

Comments Off on CEL Briefing with the Congress’s “Problem Solvers”

Discussing Legislative Effectiveness with Representative Gerry Connolly

Discussing Legislative Effectiveness with Representative Gerry Connolly Representative Gerry Connolly has served as the U.S. representative for Virginia's 11th congressional district since 2009. Representative Connolly has been identified by the Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) as being the most effective Democratic lawmaker in the U.S. House during the 117th Congress, as well as the most effective Democratic House Member in the area of government operations. He was also cited as having one of the longest streaks of “Exceeding Expectations” among all House members.CEL Co-Directors Craig Volden and Alan Wiseman recently…

Comments Off on Discussing Legislative Effectiveness with Representative Gerry Connolly

Call for 2023-2024 Small Grant Awards

Call for 2023-2024 Small Grant Awards Proposal deadline: September 30, 2023Awards announced by: October 31, 2023The 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 knowledge. Grants typically…

Comments Off on Call for 2023-2024 Small Grant Awards

A Visit from Tsinghua University

A Visit from Tsinghua University On August 7, the Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) hosted a group of students from China's Tsinghua University who had come to the University of Virginia (UVA) as part of a two-week visit to the United States. The students were members of Youth Voices, a delegation from Tsinghua's Center for Global Competence Development (CGCD) which is dedicated to providing guidance, support and resources on global competence development, and to promoting its integration into the university-wide student cultivation process. Invited to the United States on behalf…

Comments Off on A Visit from Tsinghua University

How Modern Lawmakers Advertise Their Legislative Effectiveness to Constituents

How Modern Lawmakers Advertise Their Legislative Effectiveness to Constituents In a complex information environment, members of Congress must communicate to their constituents their value as a representative. Specifically, they aim to convince voters that they are effective representatives and therefore ought to be reelected. Modern scholarship has focused largely on legislators’ effectiveness as lawmakers in areas like bill introduction, sponsorship, and shepherding of legislation through congressional procedures. But legislators do more than traditional lawmaking activities; they also engage in representational acts of advocacy and district-focused activity. This expanded notion of…

Comments Off on How Modern Lawmakers Advertise Their Legislative Effectiveness to Constituents

Expertise Acquisition in Congress

Expertise Acquisition in Congress Staff members are an essential part of a well-functioning Congress, as is the expertise they acquire and use to do their jobs. It is therefore important to understand what factors contribute to or detract from staff investing in acquiring expertise and learning new skills. To examine these ideas, Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) Faculty Affiliate Christian Fong and his co-authors Kenneth Lowande and Adam Rauh – all of the University of Michigan – advance a theory of skill acquisition, rooted in the field of labor economics, and apply it to the problem of congressional oversight of the executive branch.…

Comments Off on Expertise Acquisition in Congress

REWIND: Discussing Legislative Effectiveness with Representative Will Hurd

REWIND: Discussing Legislative Effectiveness with Representative Will Hurd Former Representative Will Hurd announced today that he was running for the Republican nomination for president. He served as the U.S. representative for Texas’s 23rd congressional district from 2015 to 2021, and 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.Back in September, CEL Co-Directors Craig Volden and…

Comments Off on REWIND: Discussing Legislative Effectiveness with Representative Will Hurd

Just How Unorthodox? Assessing Lawmaking on Omnibus Spending Bills

Just How Unorthodox? Assessing Lawmaking on Omnibus Spending Bills Scholars commonly observe that lawmaking in Congress has transitioned from the textbook system of “regular order” in which power was decentralized in committees and lawmaking followed a formal process to one of “unorthodox lawmaking” characterized by the centralization of power in party leaders and a lack of formal process. It is debated whether this change marks a decline in Congress’s lawmaking capacity, or is a procedural adaptation that has allowed Congress to remain productive despite high levels of partisanship. In this…

Comments Off on Just How Unorthodox? Assessing Lawmaking on Omnibus Spending Bills

The Legislative Success of “Giant Killers”

The Legislative Success of “Giant Killers” Incumbent members of Congress are difficult to defeat in elections: since the early 1970s, fewer than 10 percent of all those who have run against them have been successful. In this paper, Sean Theriault, Professor at The University of Texas at Austin and Center for Effective Lawmaking (CEL) Faculty Affiliate, along with Jared Hrebenar and Isabel Reyna, examine the legislative effectiveness of those rare challengers who knock off incumbents they nickname “Giant Killers” and find that they have greater than expected legislative success after…

Comments Off on The Legislative Success of “Giant Killers”

End of content

No more pages to load

Close Menu
Verified by MonsterInsights