Ruth Bloch Rubin

Assistant Professor, Political Science

Award Information

Negotiating Agreement in Congress Research Grants 2017

How Factional Discord Shapes Patterns of Party Leadership and Policymaking in Congress

Congressional leaders often prioritize policies and adopt rules that limit factional disagreement within their parties. Yet they sometimes structure the legislative agenda in ways that expose members’ divergent preferences. Why? Examining the papers of House and Senate leaders from both parties, this book project explores (1) how leaders evaluate the risks posed, as well as the opportunities created, by intraparty discord; (2) when and why leaders broker intraparty compromise, or, alternatively, back one faction over another; (3) what constrains leaders’ capacity to resolve intraparty conflict; and (4) how leaders’ approach to management affects their ability to work across party lines.