ERIC Number: ED247178
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983
Reference Count: 0
The United States Congress. What Is Its Process of Legislative Decision-Making? How Can You Assist in the Process? Grass Roots Guides on Democracy and Practical Politics. Booklet No. 66.
Serota, Gary D.
Intended to help secondary and college students and adults develop a clearer understanding of how our democracy works, this booklet examines how Congress makes legislative decisions and how it collects the information necessary to legislate. With 100 Senators, 435 Representatives, and 20,000 staff people receiving and processing information, decision-making in Congress is a very complicated process. As they make legislative decisions, members of Congress use many information sources, including personal staff recommendations, constituent letters, other members of Congress, the media, lobbyists, and committee staff research. Members rely a great deal on their staffs to brief them on the details of proposals. Legislative staff must also answer constituent mail. Staffers use a variety of services, publications, and information sources, e.g., committee hearings, House Information Systems, the Congressional Research Service, the Congressional Record, and caucuses. A survey of 123 congressional staff members has shown that spontaneous individually composed letters are the most effective way of communicating with congressional decision-makers. (RM)
Descriptors: Adult Education, Citizen Participation, Citizenship Education, Civics, Decision Making, Democracy, Higher Education, Information Sources, Instructional Materials, Legislators, Resource Materials, Secondary Education, United States Government (Course)
Center for Information on America, Washington, CT 06793 ($3.00, 1-9 copies; $2.75, 10-99 copies; $2.50, 100-499 copies).
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Learner
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Center for Information on America, Washington, CT.
Note: For booklet on lobbying, see SO 015 799.