In their new book, The Broken Branch: How Congress Is Failing America and How to Get It Back on Track, nationally renowned congressional experts Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein offer a diagnosis of the cause of Congressional decline and suggest a blueprint for positive change.
Professor Lawrence Jacobs, director of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance, intrduced the discussion.Star Tribune columnist and editorial writer Lori Sturdevant moderated.
Thomas E. Mann is the W. Averell Harriman Chair and Senior Fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution. Between 1987 and 1999, he was director of governmental studies at Brookings, and before that he served as executive director of the American Political Science Association.
Mann has taught at Princeton, Johns Hopkins and Georgetown universities; conducted polls for congressional candidates; worked as a consultant to IBM and the Public Broadcasting Service; chaired the Board of Overseers of the National Election Studies; and served as an expert witness in the constitutional defense of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law. He lectures frequently in the United States and abroad on American politics and public policy and is a regular contributor to newspaper stories and television and radio programs on politics and governance.
He is currently working on projects dealing with redistricting, election reform, and party polarization.
Norman J. Ornstein is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. He also serves as an election analyst for CBS News and writes a weekly column called "Congress Inside Out" for Roll Call newspaper. He has written for the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, and other major publications, and regularly appears on television programs like The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, Nightline, and Charlie Rose.
Ornstein serves as senior counselor to the Continuity of Government Commission, working to ensure that our institutions of government can be maintained in the event of a terrorist attack on Washington. His campaign finance working group of scholars and practitioners helped shape the major law, known as McCain-Feingold, that reformed the campaign financing system. He is also co-directing a multi-year effort, called the Transition to Governing Project, to create a better climate for governing in the era of the permanent campaign.
Jacobs, Lawrence R..
The Broken Branch: A Look at the Contemporary Congress.
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