With coverage beginning in 1945, Congressional Quarterly Almanac provides narrative accounts of every major piece of legislation that lawmakers considered during a legislative session. Congressional Quarterly is arranged by topic and also has full-text searching.
Please note that Congressional Quarterly consists of narrative articles and editorial analyses. It does not contain the primary sources of legislative history (e.g., text of bills, committee reports), but it is a very useful finding aid for identifying these materials.
Congressional Quarterly makes it possible to easily and quickly trace and follow policies through decades of Congresses in a much more streamlined manner than trying to find the same information by using Westlaw, Lexis, or Proquest Congressional. For example, if you were interested in the history of health insurance policy, you could select “Managed care and health insurance” from the “Policy Tracker”, and you will be presented with the entire history of Congressional initiatives on this subject, whether or not they passed.
You can also browse by Congress or topic. Selecting a Congress will provide you with different subjects of legislation that were considered during that term.
Congressional Quarterly also provides various other tools. For example, you can view annual “Presidential Support” tables to see which senators and representatives tended to vote with or against the President, annual examinations of party unity, and voting records.
Congressional Quarterly Almanac’s coverage is from 1945-2009. For more recent material, please utilize CQ Weekly, which is available electronically through GULLiver.
The library has numerous resources available for legislative history and Congressional research. For more information, see one of our legislative history research guides or contact a reference librarian.