by Karl Kurtz
Today's newspapers bring three good legislative institutional stories:
- A Sacramento Bee article, "All in the (Capitol) Family," about how legislative seats are being passed around among family members in California, in part because of term limits. It features the odd twist of Sen. Dean Florez' mother running for her son's old Assembly seat.
- A New York Times article, "For Retiring Republicans, Several Explanations," about three Ohio Republican members of Congress--David Hobson (photo), Ralph Regula (both Hobson and Regula were "cardinals" on the appropriations committee and previously served in leadership positions in the Ohio Senate) and Deborah Pryce--who are choosing not to seek reelection in 2008. The story talks about the unnamed reason that it's not as much fun to be in the minority than the majority. But it doesn't mention that Democrats experienced the same problem of a large number of retirements after losing the majority in Congress in 1994.
- A New York Times "editorial observer" column by Adam Cohen, "Honey, They Shrunk the Congress," about how presidential aggressiveness and congressional timidity have diminished the power of Congress as the preeminent, first branch of government.