Democratic legislative institutions: a comparative view by David M. Olson

By David M. Olson

This article summarizes the study on, and studies of, democratic legislatures worldwide. It makes a speciality of what legislatures are and what they do - as either final result of and contributor to democratic self-government.

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This practice began about the turn of the twentieth century, as a means for the labor movement to place working-class members in Parliament. Most Conservative members of Parliament had full-time occupations, and served in Parliament on a part-time and uncompensated basis.

The chapters of this book may be read in any order convenient to the reader. The three appendices contain reference sources that may be consulted throughout the reading of the book. Page xiv Self-government is an adventure, and legislatures are one expression of that adventure. Research, likewise, is an adventure, an exploration of the unknown. This book is an invitation not only to learn what is currently known but also to expand the frontiers of knowledge by undertaking new research. DAVID M.

S. House of Representatives Congressmen describe their activities as concentrating on constituency service and on legislation. They try to blend the best interests of both their district and the nation in their activities. S. congressmen as a whole varied, however, with their seniority and experience. First-termers (usually referred to as "freshmen") emphasize the district in their activity and attention, while those with high seniority (six to twelve terms) emphasize legislation as an activity and tend to pay less attention to the district in their thinking about policy questions.

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