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    Former Speaker Newt Gingrich to Speak at Heritage on Deficit Reduction

    Newt Gingrich knows a thing or two about how Congress operates. The former lawmaker represented a Georgia district for 20 years and spent four of them leading the U.S. House as speaker. So when Congress approved the Budget Control Act, creating the 12-member Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction, Gingrich … More

    Hands Off My Purse! Why Money Bills Originate in the House

    The House of Representatives is not merely a larger Senate. The Constitution divided the legislative branch into two Houses, with different constituencies, term lengths, sizes, and functions for each house. For example, only the Senate offers advice and consent on treaties and appointments of judges and executive officials. And as … More

    Top Five New Rules of 112th Congress

    Fulfilling their constitutional power to “determine the Rules of its Proceedings,” this Wednesday, January 5, 2010, the newly assembled House of Representatives will adopt the Rules of the House for the 112th Congress. Speaker-designate John Boehner has proposed a series of changes to the House rules designed to make the … More

    Morning Bell: Returning the People's House to the People

    “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in March. No single statement better epitomizes everything that is wrong with how Congress works. While Speaker Pelosi was referring to Obamacare at the time, she could have been … More

    Immediate Changes to Reform How Congress Works

    Changing the membership of the Congress does not fix its out-of-touch culture. Congress’ immense unpopularity reflects the need for fundamental change in how it operates.  The Heritage Foundation is proposing four immediate changes—starting at the top.  The proposals would restore more power to rank-and-file members of the House of Representatives, … More

    Reconciliation 101: A "Nuclear" Abuse of Power

    Why Reconciliation Exists What Is Reconciliation? Reconciliation is an optional step of the annual budget process that allows legislation to be approved by 51 votes in the U.S. Senate rather than the traditional 60 votes necessary to withstand a filibuster. This could also be achieved with 50 votes plus Vice … More