xx Introduction donations and perks provided by lobbyists, high-net-worth donors, political action committees and other dark money sources. To our surprise, we find that taxpayers are no longer the major source of funding for Congress. This is important, and increasingly so. We look at the teams, rosters, and head coaches in Chapters Three and Four, focusing on the playing fields in the House and Senate. The Constitution has charged the House and Senate with different, complementary responsibili- ties, yet there is a common denominator: the use of committees to carry out those charges. Everything is done by committee! Or at least it was. Almost 50 years ago, members staged a revolt against the entrenched leadership in order to shift power to the committees and committee chairs. Those reforms have come full circle, with leadership now dominating the agenda and foster- ing groupthink in both chambers. Beginning, for the most part, in the mid- 1990s, power and money have coalesced around leadership. Rank and file members in each house mimic party leadership, especially if they want sup- port in their next reelection race. In Chapter Three, we investigate the cost of the House of Representatives, and in Chapter Four we look at The Senate. We examine the salaries, benefits, member allowances, and staff the officers’ (par- liamentarians, clerks, historians, etc.) the committees (including lobbyists’ contributions) and their investigations, hearings, and caucuses when possible. We also look at historical performance data to see how the number of laws passed, and their related costs, have changed. Think of Chapter Five as the seventh-inning stretch. After the intense dis- section of the House and Senate, we shift our focus to the legislative partners that enable Congress to do its job—the assistant coaches, trainers, water and bat boys of our Congressional team.—all of which are funded by the Legisla- tive Branch appropriations. Those who provide these essential services are the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the Congressional Research Service (CRS, which compiles annual analytical assessments of the Legislative Branch Appropriation), the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the Government Printing Office (GPO), and the former Office of Science and Technology (an agency perhaps on the fringe of resurrection), not to mention the Library of Congress, the Botanical Garden, the Architect of the Capitol, and the Capitol Police. Of note is the vast effort made to maintain the history and grandeur of our nation’s capital. Congress’s primary raison d'être—probably the most important job they are entrusted with—is to fund government. Chapter Six explores the power of the purse. We look at what, exactly, that means: the funding process as it is supposed to be, what it is now and how it got to be the way it is. We think of this as Congress’s playoff, since it’s truly a match between chambers and political parties. The Appropriations Committee and its dozen or so subcommittees are required to pass annual funding bills before the start of each fiscal year. For
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