Mike Dariano

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How the sausage is made - Congressional edition

Regardless of your political leanings this episode of EconTalk was very informative. The guest was Keith Hennessey who worked for Trent Lott and shared a lot of details about how Congress works, My favorite snippet:

and then you have the Whip, Kevin McCarthy, and the whip's job is to round up the votes and to count the votes. He is both the intelligence agent, to know what's going on among that 240-something House Republicans--and it's also his job to try to get them to vote as a group when a big vote is coming up. And Kevin McCarthy has a team called his Whip Team--a bunch of other members, other House Republicans, and they divide the Republicans up. So, if you are a Republican Congressman and you are a member of Kevin McCarthy's whip team, you might have 10-20 members who you are assigned to. So, what might happen is the Speaker might say: We need to get the feel of House Republicans on the following question. He calls up Kevin McCarthy and says: Here's the question I want you to whip. And then Kevin McCarthy and his lieutenants and actually have to find the people on their list and say: This is the question we want to know the answer to.

This reminded me of the Sopranos and I'm not sure who should be more offended by that.

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