From Deseret News:

The idea of the majority leader having complete control stems from a culture of “voluntary deference (or sufferance) of rank-and-file senators,” writes James Wallner, a senior fellow at the R Street Institute and expert on the Senate whose blog Legislative Procedure explains the mysterious workings of Congress. “(Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.) gets to decide what the Senate votes on, but only so long as his colleagues let him make that decision.”

And Wallner says that gives Romney a “potent inside-outside dynamic” of procedural rights given to every senator coupled with instant name recognition and the ability to command media attention.

“If he wields it well, and even not so well, it’s going to result in putting issues on the agenda and he can do a lot,” Wallner said.

But setting an agenda without any support for it is a hollow victory, Wallner adds, and learning how to win the support of your colleagues takes time and experience.

Featured Publications