« PreviousContinue »
Senator FERGUSON. The load of work may demonstrate that you would never get your work done under such a system. I mean it may demonstrate that the only way to get this work load done is to do it perhaps with very few members sitting. With the number of bills that are introduced in the Congress, it may be that we would find, if we had absolute control like that, and would not schedule more than one hearing per day for the 2 or 3 hours in the morning that we have—under the rules now you can't sit unless you have consent—you may discover that
you could't carry your work load. Dr. GALLOWAY. Well, I have another suggestion to make in that connection, Senator Ferguson.
Senator FERGUSON. Thank you.
Dr. Galloway. My suggestion is that the meeting days of the committees be staggered with the sessions of the Chamber so that the committees of the Senate would meet, say, on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays all day and that the sessions of the Senate would be held, say, on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, or alternatively. That arrangement was followed at the beginning of the last session.
Senator BRICKER. We tried that.
Dr. Galloway. That was tried, as you know, during the early months of the last session and I understand it worked quite well. If the Senate were to meet all day, beginning in the morning, instead of meeting at noon, on those alternative days, then the argument that led to the abandonment of this staggered scheme might be met, because I think they just met as usual in the afternoon. Did they not, Senator Hickenlooper?
Senator HICKENLOOPER. That would be all right if you didn't have some work to do in your office.
Dr. Galloway. Perhaps you need more help in your office.
Senator HICKENLOOPER. Well, you can have all the help in the world in your office, but there is a certain substantial volume of work to which you have to give attention yourself. You just can't delegate discretionary matters at all times.
Senator FERGUSON. I suppose you could do your work in your office at night, but a great many of the Senators are doing that now, some four nights a week.
Dr. GALLOWAY. Yes. I know Senator Ball, for example, works almost every night.
I hope that these various suggestions for reducing and handling the volume of business in the Senate would, taken together, have some appreciable effect upon the work load. I have just one further suggestion to make in this connection. Yesterday, Senator Ferguson asked me to give some thought to the possibility of reducing the number of committee assignments to one assignment per Senator.
Senator FERGUSON. Yes. I am interested in your opinion on that, Doctor.
Dr. GALLOWAY. It would be possible under the present party division of the Senate to reduce the number of committee assignments to one for each Senator provided: (a) that the number of committees was reduced from 15 to 12; (b) that the size of committees was reduced from 13 to 8 members each; and (c) that the party ratio on 9 committees was 4 to 4 and on 3 committees was 5 to 3.
Senator FERGUSON. That just wouldn't work, would it?
Dr. Galloway. That would be for you to determine. That is a question of policy. But this is the only
Sonator FERGUSON. When you take party responsibility-for how many committees?
Dr. Galloway. Nine, including those that now are said to be taking a bipartisan approach to public problems.
Sonator FERGUSON. I notice you said “are said to be taking. I think you would change the whole scheme of government if you had nine committees here with a party ratio of 4 and 4.
Dr. Galloway, I am not recommending the scheme.
Sonator FERGUSON. Oh, no. I am glad you gave me these figures bocause when it came to my mind I asked if you wouldn't try to figure it out.
Dr. GALLOWAY. I have figured out under what conditions it would be possible with the present party division of the Senate to reduce the number of committee assignments per Senator to one each, and I have stated that it would be necessary to reduce the number of committees from 15 to 12. This could be done by combining the Finance Committee with Banking and Currency, by combining the Expenditures Committee with the Civil Service Committee, and by dropping the Committee on the District of Columbia, which is slated to become a joint committee under Senate bill 1968 if approved.
Under the present party division in the Senate, 84 Senators could be limited to one standing committee assignment each provided (a) there were 12 committees instead of 15, and (b) 12 Republican Senators sat on two committees each. Under these conditions the party ratio on 3 committees would be 6 to 3, and on 9 committees it would bo 5 to 4.
Mr. Chairman, I submit for insertion in the record at this point a table describing the suggested committee structure and party ratios with one committee seat per Senator.
Senator FERGUSON. Thank you. I appreciate your doing that work. The table will be inserted in the record.
(The table referred to follows:) Suggested committee structure and party ratios with one committee seat per Senator
Note.—Under the present party division of the Senate, it would be possible to reduce the number of committee assignments to 1 for each Senator provided (a) the number of committees was reduced from 15 to 12; (b) the size of committees was reduced from 13 to 8 members each; and (c) the party ratio on 9 committees Was 4 to 4, and on 3 committees was 5 to 3.
If the Senate were divided 60 to 36, and the number of standing committees was reduced to 12, with 8 Senators each, the party ratio on each committee would be 5 to 3 and the majority party would control each committee.
To reduce the number of standing committees from 15 to 12, it would be necessary to combine Finance with Banking and Currency, to combine Expenditures and Civil Service, and to drop the Committee on the District of Columbia which is slated to become a joint committee under S. 1968.
Dr. GALLOWAY. In conclusion, Mr. Chairman, as I review the impressive accomplishments of the first session of the Eightieth Congress, it seems to me that 1947 was a year of notable progress toward the modernization of our National Legislature. While some provisions of the act have not yet been carried out and others are working only partly, the leaders in both Houses and both political parties have been sincerely trying to carry out the act in good faith. The delay in the application of the new fiscal controls has been due,
in large part, to the technical and procedural difficulties involved. Rome was not built in a day and it takes time to adjust old habits to new ways of doing things.
Viewed in the larger perspective of our times, the Legislative Reorganization Act is seen as part of a general effort to strengthen and adapt the machinery of American Government to the needs of the times in a dangerous age. At the local level 800 American cities had adopted the efficient manager form of government by the end of 1947—125 of them in the last 2 years. Four States have recently revised their constitutions and one-third of the States are now actively engaged in the effort to modernize their fundamental charters. Meanwhile, the Hoover commission, operating under authority of an act favorably reported by your committee, is tackling the task of reorganizing the executive branch of the National Government, greatly distorted and distended by the Second World War. In the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 Congress has gone far to strengthen its own machinery and methods, though the task is not yet finished.
In conclusion, Mr. Chairman, permit me to quote from the seventh intermediate report of the Select House Committee to Investigate Executive Agencies. [Reading:]
In nation after nation it has been proven that the freedom of the people and the continuance of democratic institutions depend directly on the vigor, the effectiveness, and the strong position of the National Legislature. Much of the criticism which has in recent years been heaped upon the Congress of the United States has been irresponsible and undeserved. But there has been also well-considered and constructive criticism which merits attention. No effort should be spared to make congressional organization, procedure, and functioning as nearly perfect as possible.
Thank you very much.
Senator FERGUSON. Dr. Galloway, I want to thank you for this able memorandum and, if you don't mind, could it be inserted in the record? I know there are some places you have left parts out. Did you want it inserted as an exhibit as a whole?
Dr. GALLOWAY. Consent was earlier given to that, and I should like very much to have the statement appear in full in the record.
Senator FERGUSON. Yes. It is so worth while that I want it all in. Dr. GALLOWAY. Thank you so much.
Senator HICKENLOOPER. Dr. Galloway, don't you think that we have an extraordinary factor in government at this time; that is, an unanticipated pressure of problems largely complicated by the still
confused international situation that plague Congress at the moment that we didn't necessarily expect a year or two ago?
Dr. GALLOWAY. Yes: I think that is true.
Senator HICKENLOOPER. I have a feeling that perhaps the Reorganization Act and its arrangements, committee staffing and various other things, have not yet been given a reasonable opportunity to function as a peacetime organization of Congress. In other words, we have become fouled up by a lot of things; we thought we would hare peace at this time and we could get to work on peacetime problems but we find things in the past are still continuing and problems are pilej up that we hadn't considered would be so enormous,
for instance in this rear, 1948.
Dr. GALOWAT I agree with that observation.
Senator HICKENLOOPER. I think you have made a very fine statement. I like it very much. But I did want to suggest that I think it may be unwise at this time to start trying to adapt or readapt, if in piese, the congressional organization system that has just gone ano ptert in what we hope, at least, are temporary situations with MENN 10 so many of these problems. Now, if the international situa2012 wuld be more satisfactorily adjusted in the next 2 or 3 years, it Wala tathes tremendous load, perhaps, off the immediate work and
mar boble to see whether this Reorganization Act can operate Dr. Guon. I agree with your thought, as I understand it, that no further fundamental reforms in the organization and operation of the company should be undertaken until the Congress has had an Want to digest and assimilate the rather sweeping changes that
Sentor INLOOPER. I feel this Reorganization Act was passed with the inte Clint after the return to normal peacetime, Congress hoomale to function much more efficiently under this Reorgan
I l. "Well, I think it has been very helpful in many ways. 11 minta in ima that we are not able to do the volume of work that
we would do, but the volume has greatly increased in wenty wd in amount since the war. Things that we thought
... hoped would be settled and out of the way so m. more to peacetime things have just continued to
mg proces of great size. While I do not say that we aloilo.... this Reorganization Act, I do have a feeling that
obly will love to go along with it a little bit longer to see want some of these things are.
WAY. I am not recommending, Senator Hickenlooper, ... he to revamp this act. INLOOPER. I understand that.
WAX, But if there are any suggestions which I would lly recommend to the committee as worthy of its consideration 1 cwn time, it would be that group of suggestions designed to mon... more elliciently the onerous volume of congressional
*** I. Is your uys. I shall not repeat them. They appear Wine H &NLOOPER. I presume one of the most practical ways I would be to increase staffs of experts to some extent to
Dr. GALLOWAY. Yes. The expansion of legislative staff aides I would put pretty close to the top of any suggestions for enabling Congress to keep abreast of the rising burden of its business.
Senator HICKENLOOPER. Yes.
Senator FERGUSON. The fact, Dr. Galloway, that we have this act and we have had this hearing today is at least some evidence that the Congress has in mind that it should be continuously striving to create a better legislative body—that is, to do the work better and more efficiently-because in the past day it was very difficult, was it not, to get such a hearing along this line due to the feeling that we couldn't change, we just had to be permanently in the same groove. Isn't that correct?
Dr. GALLOWAY. That is correct. And I think all the friends of a more effective and a stronger Congress are greatly encouraged by the hearings that your committee is currently conducting on this subject.
Senator FERGUSON. Not that we might be able to change greatly anything that we are speaking about. yet we are studying and having it in mind and bringing it to the public's attention that they may become interested in this great human machine, let us call it, which is legislating for the people—that it must be a growth rather than just a new machine.
Dr. GALLOWAY. It is a gradual evolutionary process.
(Dr. Galloway submitted the following paper:) STATEMENT BY GEORGE B. GALLOWAY, SENIOR SPECIALIST IN LEGISLATIVE
ORGANIZATION, LEGISLATIVE REFERENCE SERVICE, LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, BEFORE THE COMMITTEE ON EXPENDITURES IN THE EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS, UNITED STATES SENATE ON THE OPERATION OF THE LEGISLATIVE REORGANIZATION ACT, FEBRUARY 18, 1948
I appear here today at the request of the committee. Formerly I was staff director of the Joint Committee on the Organization of Congress. Presently I am senior specialist in legislative organization at the Legislative Reference Service, from which I am on administrative furlough serving as staff director of the Subcommittee on Home Rule and Reorganization of the House Committee on the District of Columbia. Any recommendati ns. Mr. Chairman, I may submit here are made in my personal capacity and do not reflect the views of the Legislative Reference Service, which makes no recommendations on matters of public policy. I shall divide my testimony into four parts, as follows:
1. Gains achieved under the Legislative Reorganization Act.
GAINS ACHIEVED UNDER LEGISLATIVE REORGANIZATION ACT
In committee structure and operation
1. The standing-committee structure of both houses has been streamlined and simplified. By integrating related areas of policy making, Senate standing committees have been reduced from 33 to 15; and House standing committees from 48 to 19. All minor, inactive committees have been abolished.
2. The number of select committees was reduced from 18 in 1946 to 11 in 1947. Of this number, 3 were Senate committees, 5 were House committees, and 3 were joint committees. These 11 select committees had a combined membership of 112 members. (See table 1.)
3. There was a net reduction of 31 in the number of congressional committees of all types (standing, special, joint, and subcommittees) in 1947 compared with