Congressional Deskbook

The Practical and Comprehensive Guide to Congress

Sixth Edition

By Judy Schneider (Author), Michael Koempel (Author), Robert Keith (Author)

Book Summary

This comprehensive guide to Congress is ideal for anyone who wants to know how Congress really works, including federal executives, attorneys, lobbyists, media and public affairs staff, government affairs, policy and budget analysts, congressional office staff and students.

  • Clear explanation of the legislative process, budget process, and House and Senate business
  • Flowcharts for legislative and budget processes
  • Explanation of the electoral college and votes by states
  • Glossary of legislative terms
  • Relationship between budget resolutions and appropriation and authorization bills
  • Amendment tree and amendment procedures
  • How members are assigned to committees
  • Agenda for early organization meetings (after election, before adjournment)
  • Sample legislative documents with explanatory annotations
  • Bibliographic references throughout

About the Author

Judy Schneider was a specialist on Congress at the Congressional Research Service, a department of the Library of Congress, and an adjunct scholar at The Brookings Institution. She worked previously for Senate and House committees, including the Senate Select Committee to Study the Senate Committee System. Ms. Schneider was selected as a Stennis Fellow for the 108th Congress, and received the Women in Government Relations Distinguished Member Award in 2004. Ms. Schneider was a frequent speaker and lecturer on Congress and legislative procedures. She held bachelor's and master's degrees from The American University. Michael L. Koempel is a senior specialist in American national government at the Congressional Research Service, a department of the Library of Congress. He worked previously for Congressional Quarterly Inc., and on the staffs of a U.S. representative and a state governor. Mr. Koempel holds a bachelor's degree from Georgetown University and a law degree from The Catholic University of America, and is admitted to practice law in the District of Columbia.

Customer Testimonials

"The Congressional Deskbook puts between two covers what would take most people hundreds of hours to track down separately (let alone decipher). It pulls it all together by using concrete examples and documents to make things easily understandable--no mean feat given the labyrinthine ways of Congress." -- Don Wolfensberger, Former staff director, House Rules Committee