Broken City

A series examining politics in an age of paralysis, from the Globe's Washington bureau

Broken City

// Nonpartisan primaries become a game changer

California has become one of the nation’s leading laboratories for finding new ways to elect members of Congress.

December 1

// Bipartisan group finds bridges hard to build

No Labels brings together lawmakers of diverse ideological stripes to find solutions, but its effectiveness is questioned.

Nov. 5

// Researcher helps sow climate-change doubt

Willie Soon, a Harvard-Smithsonian Center astrophysicist, has established himself as a front-line combatant in the partisan crossfire over the climate.

Oct. 14

// Obama’s vision of unity led only to a wider gap

Five years into the Obama presidency, the capital and country are far more divided.

Oct. 6

// The role of partisan media

Analysts said that ideological media outlets have both contributed to the divide and hardened the battle lines.

Oct. 3

// Boehner pulled from two directions

House Speaker John Boehner’s inability to harness arch-conservatives is a central thread in the first shutdown in years.

August 25

// Democratic strategy promotes Tea Party rivals

A by-any-means approach to preserving the fragile Democratic majority in the Senate is helping increase the political polarization that afflicts the US.

August 11

// Many D.C. think tanks now players in partisan wars

Hundreds of nonprofit institutions are pursuing fiercely partisan agendas and are funded by undisclosed corporations, wealthy individuals, or both.

July 7

// Deadlock by design hobbles election agency

The Federal Election Commission was born of idealism after Nixon era excesses, but its GOP members have all but shut it down.

June 23

// Turning the political map into a partisan weapon

The Republican Party’s national effort to control redistricting has cemented its grip on the House but also intensified gridlock.

June 21

// Farm bill fails as trade-offs of yore vanish

The bill’s defeat in the House, leaving the fate of nearly $1 trillion in farm subsidies and food-stamp programs in limbo, reflects the gridlock in Washington.

May 28

// Lawmaker finds new realities in return to Congress

Minnesota Representative Rick Nolan, back in the House after 32 years, decries the disunity and focus on money he now sees.

May 19

// Washington’s robust market for attacks, half-truths

A look inside an industry of distortion, where unnamed corporations pay richly to bend the debate their way.

May 16

// GOP presses EPA pick with 1,000 questions

Republican legislators are aggressively questioning Gina McCarthy, a career regulator who served four Republican governors in Massachusetts.

May 12

// For freshman in Congress, focus is on raising money

New members get the message quickly or they’re gone. It’s a fact of life in a gridlocked capital.

April 4

// Kansas district shuns compromise

Tim Huelskamp is a passionate conservative, and the voters in western Kansas strongly support him and his views.

March 24

// A lesson for Bob Dole: old rules no longer apply

A disability treaty with broad support seemed like a sure thing to the former Senate stalwart. But his own party had other ideas.

March 17

// Tax lobbyists help businesses reap windfalls

While Congress fights over ways to cut spending and the deficit, generous breaks for corporations pass with little notice.

March 10

// As Obama, Senate collide, courts caught short

The partisan deadlock in Washington hits much more than budgets. More than ever, judicial picks are ideological cannon fodder.

E-book: Broken City

// Politics in an age of paralysis

At a time when partisan politics has led to government gridlock, the ambitious series explains how we got here and what needs to be done to repair the damage.