The Committee

A Study of Policy, Power, Politics and Obama’s Historic Legislative Agenda on Capitol Hill
2nd Edition, With a New Preface
Bryan W. Marshall and Bruce C. Wolpe

A deftly crafted insider account of how congressional committees really work, updated for 2021


For three years while serving as a senior adviser to Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-CA), chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce—one of the most powerful committees in Congress—Bruce C. Wolpe kept a diary, a senior staffer’s look at how committees develop and promote legislation. With its insider’s view of the rough-and-tumble politics of cap-and-trade, healthcare reform, tobacco, oversight, and the debt ceiling agreement, The Committee uniquely melds the art of politics and policymaking with the theory and literature of political science. The authors engage with the important questions that political science asks about committee power, partisanship, and the strategies used to build winning policy coalitions both in the Committee and on the floor of the House. In this new edition, the authors revisit the relationship between the executive and Congress in the wake of the sweeping changes wrought by the Trump administration, as well as thoughts about how that relationship will change again as President Biden faces a 117th Congress that is strikingly similar to Obama’s 111th. The insider politics and strategies about moving legislation in Congress, from internal and external coalition building to a chairman’s role in framing policy narratives, will captivate both novice and die-hard readers of politics.

Bryan W. Marshall is Professor and Chair of the Department of Political Science at Miami University.

Bruce C. Wolpe has served as Chief of Staff to Julia Gillard, Australia’s 27th Prime Minister and Senior Adviser to Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-CA), chair of the US House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

News, Reviews, Interviews

Watch: Bruce Wolpe and Bryan Marshall interviewed on C-SPAN2 BookTV Link | 12/7/2018
Read: The Committee covered in Congressional Quarterly Link | 11/26/2018
Campus event: Milken Institute School of Public Health Link | 7/12/2018

Author Events:
Campus event: The Aspen Institute Link | 7/18/2018
Author event: Politics and Prose Link | 7/21/2018
Author event: Busboys and Poets Link | 11/1/2018

Product Details

  • 324 pages.
  • 1 table, 4 figures.
Available for sale worldwide

  • Ebook
  • 2021
  • Forthcoming
  • 978-0-472-12967-6

Related Products

  • $29.95 U.S.



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