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Testimony by Don R. Wolfensberger to the House Select Committee On the Modernization of Congress

Chairman Kilmer, Vice Chairman Graves and members of the Select Committee:

First I want to commend you all on your appointment to this very important select committee and for accepting the challenge it presents to you.  Second, I thank you inviting me to testify before you today on “Congressional Reforms of the Past and their Effect on Today’s Congress.”

Let me make clear from the start that the views I express today are solely my own and do not represent the views of either of the two institutions with which I am affiliated.

I would like to request that in lieu of a more detailed written statement I be permitted to insert in the hearing record a paper I prepared for use by the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Commission on Political Reform in February 2013 titled, “A Brief History of Congressional Reform Efforts.”  I presented this in advance of today’s hearing for inclusion in members’ hearing folders.

What I would like to do today in my brief oral statement is to paraphrase some of the conclusions drawn from that paper as well as from my testimony before the Joint Select Committee on Budget and Appropriations Process Reform last May.  I think you will find that both pieces fit nicely with today’s topic of lessons learned from past reform efforts in Congress.

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