Committee turnover and the congressional oversight of intelligence
Milward, Marie Veronique
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The accountability or oversight of intelligence has always been a critical activity in a democracy. Congress and more particularly, committees are in charge of this very sensitive task of controlling the activities of America's intelligence agencies. Prior research indicates that the quality and efficiency of congressional oversight have varied considerably with respect to intelligence matters. This analysis will look at the possible explanations for these variations. Specifically, this thesis seeks to answer the following question: what are the consequences of membership turnover in legislative committees on their ability to perform oversight effectively? The analysis examines the case of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (1977-2003).