Get the inside scoop on the most powerful city on Earth Washington, D.C.: Capital of the Free World; the most powerful city on Earth. No other country, company, or international organization can compare with the reach and wealth of the federal government. Policymaking the art of deciding what programs to support, what laws to pass, or what regulations to write is at the core of what Washington does and is what everyone, from the President on down, wants to influence. How Washington Actually Works For Dummies isn't a dry explanation of the American system of government but a playbook for how Washington really works: who has a seat at the table, how the policymaking process works, and how one survives. It takes you inside the political process in Washington, discusses changes in recent decades, and explains how the parts fit together.
You find out: * Who really runs Washington * Why the President s power is limited * How Congress (and its committee structure) works * What the bureaucrats the men and women behind the curtain do to earn your tax dollars * How lobbyists, activists, and other players influence policy In a presidential election year when economic issues are center stage and the candidates will go head to head in policy debates, there s no better time to discover the ins and outs of how policy is actually made.
Greg Rushford has been observing Washington's political scene since 1967 first as a student, then as a congressional aide during the 1970s, and, in recent decades, as a journalist who specializes in the politics of international trade and diplomacy.
Introduction 1 Chapter 1: A Brief History of Washington 5 Chapter 2: The People behind the Curtain: Federal Bureaucrats 23 Chapter 3: Professional Persuaders: Lobbyists 35 Chapter 4: Other Voices in the Debate: Outsiders, Gatecrashers, and Wallflowers 51 Chapter 5: Congress 67 Chapter 6: The Presidency 81 Chapter 7: Policymaking 95 Chapter 8: Ten Ways to Participate in Washington Policymaking 113