The Conservative Inequality Paradox
In The News Piece in National Review
Nov. 7, 2017
Lee Drutman's work was referenced in a National Review article about contradictory conservative economic policy.
In one important respect, conservatives would need to execute a complete change of direction. For decades now, conservatives have favored slashing congressional staff and eliminating congressional support agencies such as the Office of Technology Assessment. These are false economies, as all they do is make Congress’s shrunken army of under-resourced patronage staff ever more deeply dependent on industry lobbyists for the information legislators need to govern. To insulate our politics more effectively against insider takeover, legislators need to be able to draw on deep internal expertise. As Lee Drutman and one of us (Teles) argued in a 2015 Washington Monthly piece, “A New Agenda for Political Reform,” a major upgrade of legislative staff with a larger, better-paid, and more professional cadre of civil servants would arm Congress with the knowledge needed to counter the rent-seeking lobbies that seek to twist rules to their own advantage.