Last year's protracted health care debate in the United States exposed the world to a Congress gridlocked by outdated rules, incivility, and partisanship that have national security implications. In a post-9/11 world of nuclear standoffs, terrorist threats, and economic rivalries, congressional oversight and action is needed more than ever. Yet deadlock and dysfunction have caused Congress to fall short in fulfilling its constitutional role as partner to the executive branch in the formulation and implementation ofnational security policy.
Congress and National Security reviews the factors that have led to today's dysfunctionalCongress and the impact the breakdown has had on its role in shaping national security policy. Kay King explains the demise of effective congressional action on pressing international issues since the conclusion of the cold war. She offers a series of recommendations to reset congressional rules, practices, and procedures to address the deadlock and restore Congress as a full partner to the executive branch in advancing U.S. national security interests.