Completely up-to-date and with new learning features, the 8th edition of this respected textbook provides a fresh perspective and a crisp introduction to congressional politics. Informed by the authors' Capitol Hill experience and scholarship it features insights from the two Congresses of Obama's presidency, the 2012 elections, health care reform, and an early take on the 113th Congress. The text engages students by emphasizing the importance of a strong legislature in American democracy and has new end-of-chapter discussion questions and further reading. Alongside clear explanations of congressional rules and the law-making process there is a greater wealth of examples from contemporary events and debates, to highlight Congress as a group of politicians as well as a law-making body. These recent developments are presented within the context of congressional political history. This edition is also more visual - timelines and flow-charts have been added and the number of photos has doubled.