Fascinating facts about Senate filibusters

The filibuster may be one of the biggest issues facing the current Congress, but filibusters aren’t as dull as they seem. In fact, Mae West, Jimmy Stewart, and Aaron Burr are all part of filibuster folklore. In some ways, the filibuster is as significant an issue as gun violence and immigration. That’s because a filibuster […]

Happy birthday, 20th and 24th Amendments

Today we celebrate the ratification of not one, but two constitutional amendments: the 20th Amendment (ratified January 23, 1933) and the 24th Amendment (ratified January 23, 1964). Here’s what you need to know. The 20th Amendment What it did It reduced by several months the time between the election and inauguration of the president and […]

Washington state ponders next moves in marijuana standoff

Washington state officials are dealing with new issues as they discuss a resolution to their state’s conflict with the federal government over legalized marijuana. But the state remains committed to legalization. Newly sworn-in Governor Jay Inslee was in the nation’s capital on Tuesday to meet with Attorney General Eric Holder and Justice Department officials about […]

Constitution Check: Can one word make constitutional history?

Lyle Denniston looks at President Barack Obama’s historic discussion of gay rights in his inaugural address, and its constitutional significance. The statement at issue: “We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths – that all of us are created equal – is the star that guides us still, just as it guided […]

27th Amendment gets publicity in budget battle

One of the least known constitutional amendments is getting a lot of publicity as a wild card in the ongoing budget battle in Washington. The 27th Amendment is the most recent amendment, and there are many people who probably don’t remember what it stands for: congressional pay raises. “No law, varying the compensation for the […]

Full transcript: President Barack Obama’s second inaugural address

Here is the full text of President Obama’s second inaugural address, given on January 21, 2013, as prepared for delivery, as released by the White House. Vice President Biden, Mr. Chief Justice, Members of the United States Congress, distinguished guests, and fellow citizens: Each time we gather to inaugurate a president, we bear witness to […]

Inauguration speech talks about civic engagement, Founding Fathers

President Barack Obama spoke about the importance of the ideals of the Founding Fathers and the need for civic engagement during his inauguration speech on Monday. Presidential advisers had said before the speech that President Obama would address specific policy issues in his State of the Union address, which is scheduled for February 12. However, […]