Building Trust & Effectiveness in Congress
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Summary of Chapter 8: Understanding the Culture of Congress: An Insider's Guide

*Excerpt from Setting Course: A Congressional Management Guide, copyright Congressional Management Foundation. 


  • be entrepreneurial. Getting what you want from Congress requires individual effort and savvy. Courting leadership is not enough.

  • expect partisanship and a lack of civility. When control of the House and Senate are tenuously held by a political party, and Members are not interested in establishing careers in the institution, partisanship reigns.

  • expect quick action on issues. Policymaking can be slow, partisan and frustrating.

  • think that a congressional schedule is written in stone. There are often last minute changes that can result in late nights and hectic Member schedules.