A House Divided

January 6, 2023

A chaotic week in Congress, and the year ahead.

The Roosevelt Rundown features our top stories of the week.

The Future of the House

A new year and new congressional term brought big change this week—a chaotic House speaker contest for Republicans, and the passing of a generational torch for Democrats.

On a new episode of How to Save a Country, hosts Felicia Wong and Michael Tomasky break it all down. They discuss the Republican struggle to elect a leader and the long-term implications of the party’s inability to get the basics of governing done.

And in a previously unaired clip from their conversation with Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, the new House minority leader gives his take on divisions within the Democratic Party and its wide spectrum of beliefs.

“We’re noisy,” Leader Jeffries says, but we “get something over the finish line.”

Listen now, and follow for more How to Save a Country.


Why 2023 Is So Important

Though Congress is unlikely to pass much significant legislation this term, 2023 could be instrumental in cementing the wins of the last year.

“Even with no legislative prospects in sight for the next two years, 2023 will be a critical year in our fight for the economy the American people deserve,” Wong writes for The New Republic.

Policymakers’ “decisions will make the difference between a one-off set of government grants and tax credits and the ushering in of a new political order—a true split from market-only answers, and an embrace of sustained public investment in public goods that Americans will see, understand, and maybe even reward.”

Read more for Wong’s four political economy questions for 2023.


How the Filibuster Killed Pro-Worker Legislation

Recent years saw the beginnings of a new era for worker power. But the filibuster, as always, prevented what could’ve been.

As Roosevelt’s Emily DiVito explains, the pro-worker advances we saw in the last Congress were the product of filibuster-proof avenues like budget reconciliation.

“Despite the filibuster’s chokehold, pro-labor President Biden and a unified Congress were able to secure many worker initiatives,” DiVito writes. “Without it, they could have accomplished even more for workers and their families.”

Learn more about what the filibuster blocked.


What We’re Reading

How Crypto Leaves Black Investors in the Red [feat. Roosevelt senior fellow Darrick Hamilton]The Nation

The Economy Is Improving in Three Major WaysThe Atlantic

US Moves to Bar Noncompete Agreements in Labor ContractsNew York Times

The Real Reason the Chaos in the House Should Scare Us – Vox