While learning procedures like the markup or cloture, the legislative process can seem mechanical and dry. What students hunger for, and greatly benefit from, is seeing lawmaking from the inside the backroom politics that makes the process so fascinating, so real, so compelling. "All Roads Lead to Congress" drives students through one piece of legislation the surface transportation bill showing them the maneuvering and negotiating that go on among members of Congress and their staffers as they haggle over a huge pot of money. This bill provides an example of both sides of the domestic legislative coin, as members of Congress formulating the bill fight over both policy issues (mostly along party lines) and money (mostly along regional lines). While working on the Hill, Costas Panagopoulos and Joshua Schank were able to follow the path of this legislation from inception to law, observing firsthand the twists and turns of its journey.
While filled with details and dialogue reminiscent of a good novel, "All Roads" is sure to explain the various rules that structure legislation, the leadership styles and strategies at play, the tensions among levels of government, and the impact of the executive. Students are not only likely to read this intriguing case study of Hill life cover to cover, but they also might seriously consider an internship or future career on the Hill. More important, they will have absorbed conceptual ideas about Congress effortlessly.
Costas Panagopoulos is a visiting professor of Political Science and a fellow at the Center for the Study of American Politics at Yale University for the 2015-2016 academic year. He is also Professor of Political Science and Director of the Center for Electoral Politics and Democracy and the graduate program in Elections and Campaign Management at Fordham University. A leading expert on campaigns and elections, voting behavior, media and public opinion, campaign strategy and campaign finance, Dr. Panagopoulos has published numerous book and dozens of articles, including A Citizens' Guide to U.S. Elections: Empowering Democracy in America (coauthored with Aaron Weinschenk, Routledge, 2016). He has also been part of the Decision Desk team at NBC News since the 2006 election cycle. In 1992, while a student at Harvard University, Dr. Panagopoulos was a candidate for the Massachusetts State Legislature. Joshua Schank is director of transportation research at the Bipartisan Policy Center, where he is directing a national transportation policy study. He was a consultant with PB Consult, the management consulting arm of Parsons Brinckerhoff, one of the world's leading transportation planning and engineering firms, and a senior associate with ICF Consulting, an environmental consulting firm; he was a consultant to federal and local government agencies on transportation issues for both firms. Schank advised Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton on federal highway and transit legislation from 2002 to 2005.He has also been an analyst for the U.S. Department of Transportation Inspector General, and he worked as a transportation planner for the Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority in New York City. Schank is president of the Washington, D.C., chapter of the Transportation Research Forum, one of the oldest professional transportation organizations. In addition to a PhD in urban planning from Columbia University, Schank has a master's degree in city planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
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1st Revised edition
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