CRS Report: 98-3096
Updated December 8, 2006
Analyst in American National Government
Government and Finance Division
The precedents established by the House and its presiding officers since the mid-1930s are in the process of being published. To date, 16 volumes have been released. The first nine are entitled Deschler's Precedents of the United States House of Representatives; the seven latest volumes are called Deschler-Brown Precedents, in recognition of the contributions made to the House by Mr. Brown and his predecessor, Lewis Deschler. Additional volumes in this series will be published as they are completed. This collection includes an exhaustive compilation of procedural rulings and interpretations, accompanied by summaries of the events producing them. They often also include relevant excerpts from the Congressional Record and its predecessors. Precedents from earlier periods are found in the 11-volume set of Hinds' and Cannon's Precedents of the House of Representatives, published in part in 1907 and in part in 1936. Both collections of precedents are organized topically, beginning with the first meeting of the House at the beginning of a new Congress and continuing through the various stages of the legislative process.
For most purposes, the most effective research strategy likely is to begin with an examination of House Practice, followed by the House Rules and Manual, and then Deschler's and Deschler-Brown Precedents. Several other published sources of information also can prove useful:
• The rules adopted by the House's committees are compiled and published for each Congress in Rules Adopted by the Committees of the House of Representatives, a committee print of the House Rules Committee.