Catalogue

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Networks of champions : leadership, access, and advocacy in the U.S. House of Representatives /
Christine A. DeGregorio.
imprint
Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Press, c1997.
description
xii, 185 p. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0472107623 (acid-free paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Press, c1997.
isbn
0472107623 (acid-free paper)
catalogue key
1414547
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. 165-174) and indexes.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1997-09:
DeGregorio's book is squarely in the tradition of Congressional scholarship pioneered by the late Lewis A. Dexter, who studied in detail one issue (reciprocal trade) and discovered much complexity in the activities and identities of advocates, neutrals, and opponents. By interrogating lobbyists and Congressional staff in a systematic way, the present study, based on six large bills, gives a complicated picture of leadership in the House of Representatives in which the usual markers of high party office and committee leadership are not the whole story. The personal initiative of members, experience in the body, and the willingness to learn the issues also matter. What emerges is a detailed, credible picture of the workings of a highly transformative legislative body. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty. N. W. Polsby; University of California, Berkeley
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, September 1997
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Summaries
Main Description
Media accounts of Congress emphasize conflict and the failure of Congress to enact legislation. Rarely do we see accounts of the successful efforts of members of Congress and outside advocacy groups to pass legislation dealing with important and controversial issues. In Networks of Champions Christine A. DeGregorio identifies who in the U.S. House of Representatives took the lead in shepherding six major bills, dealing with welfare reform, drug control, international trade, farm policy, nuclear weapons testing, and assistance to the Contras, through Congress and how these champions of legislation worked with outside advocacy groups. DeGregorio finds that the champions of this legislation were drawn from a diverse group that included individuals both within and outside the formal hierarchy of leadership. The champions, who were not necessarily the prominent holders of important positions, are characterized by having knowledge of the subject matter, experience in the House, a facility for bargaining and compromise, the right committee assignments, and a commitment to hard work. DeGregorio traces how these groups become influential and how the groups affect the policy-making process. She finds a reciprocal process in which advocacy groups use champions to express their views while champions use the resources of advocacy groups to gain influence in the House. Based on extensive interviews with key congressional staff members and the leaders of advocacy groups, DeGregorio provides critical new insights into the legislative process. This book will be of interest to those who study the legislative process and the role of interest groups in making American policy. ". . . a substantial contribution to our understanding of advocacy in Congress." --Barbara Sinclair, University of California, Los Angeles Christine A. DeGregorio is Associate Professor, Department of Government, School of Public Affairs, American University.
Main Description
Media accounts of Congress emphasize conflict and the failure of Congress to enact legislation. Rarely do we see accounts of the successful efforts of members of Congress and outside advocacy groups to pass legislation dealing with important and controversial issues. InNetworks of ChampionsChristine A. DeGregorio identifies who in the U.S. House of Representatives took the lead in shepherding six major bills, dealing with welfare reform, drug control, international trade, farm policy, nuclear weapons testing, and assistance to the Contras, through Congress and how these champions of legislation worked with outside advocacy groups. DeGregorio finds that the champions of this legislation were drawn from a diverse group that included individuals both within and outside the formal hierarchy of leadership. The champions, who were not necessarily the prominent holders of important positions, are characterized by having knowledge of the subject matter, experience in the House, a facility for bargaining and compromise, the right committee assignments, and a commitment to hard work. DeGregorio traces how these groups become influential and how the groups affect the policy-making process. She finds a reciprocal process in which advocacy groups use champions to express their views while champions use the resources of advocacy groups to gain influence in the House. Based on extensive interviews with key congressional staff members and the leaders of advocacy groups, DeGregorio provides critical new insights into the legislative process. This book will be of interest to those who study the legislative process and the role of interest groups in making American policy. ". . . a substantial contribution to our understanding of advocacy in Congress." --Barbara Sinclair, University of California, Los Angeles Christine A. DeGregorio is Associate Professor, Department of Government, School of Public Affairs, American University.
Table of Contents
Preface
Introductionp. 1
The Champions: Mapping the Leadership Terrainp. 23
The Advocatesp. 53
The Importance of Accessp. 87
Practical Tips and Theoretical Guidepostsp. 121
Sample Selectionp. 147
Leadership/Advocacy Study Instrumentp. 151
Notesp. 155
Referencesp. 165
Author Indexp. 175
Subject Indexp. 179
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

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