Legislative Learning breaks new theoretical and descriptive ground in examining the political perceptions, policy principles and power plays of the influential 104th Republican freshmen in the U.S. House. This even-handed book builds on the work of leading congressional scholars, and provides a detailed evaluation of coalition politics, freshmen style. Barnett shows how political environments can produce legislators who place a premium on their policy-making goals through a nuanced exploration of factors undergirding member perceptions, policy ambitions, class cohesion, and legislative learning.
"Overall, Barnett's Legislative Learning is a well done theoretical volume that attempts to understand the Republican Freshman Class of 1994 through competing interpretations of principle-agent analysis and member goal and ambition theories. -Gregory R. Thorson. American Political Science Review. Vol.96, No.1."
"I found it fascinating to read Dr. Barnett's careful and scholarly analysis of the 104th Congress, which I experienced first hand in all its struggle and passion. The depth of his research is astounding, and his conclusions ring true." -- Tony Blankley, Press Secretary to the Speaker of the House, 104th Congress
"An excellent, engaging and prodigiously researched study of the efforts - sometimes successful, often not - of the 1994 House Republican freshmen, to cope with such ingredients of legislative learning as political principle, career ambition, class cohesion, party organization, and institutional policy making." -- Richard F. Fenno Jr.- Distinguished University Professor, University of Rochester
Series Editor Foreword, Steven A. Shull; Foreword, Burdett Loomis; 1. The Watershed Congress and Theory Development; 2. 1997: Three Scenes from Act II of the GOP Revolution; 3. The Reelection Goal and Ambition Theory: Mayhew and Fenno Revisited; 4. The Development of the 104th GOP Freshman Class Cohesion; 5. Perspectives of the 104th GOP Freshmen: An Overview; 6. Freshmen and Principles: The Contract as Mission; 7. Freshmen and Principals: The Perception of a Mandate; 8. The Freshmen as a Political Unit: Limitations and Dimensions; 9. Leadership and Freshman Class Power Relations in the House; 10. Learning by Doing: The Progress of the 104th Class; 11. Putting the 104th Freshman Class into Perspective; Epilogue; Appendix A: Interview List; Appendix B: Research Design and Data Acquisition