CNN) -- Congress is reaching a point where it will no longer be able to function at all. Over the past two years, some members of the Republican Party have ramped up the partisan wars on Capitol Hill. They are threatening to bring the legislative process to a standstill.
For many years, journalists and scholars have lamented the rise of partisan polarization on Capitol Hill. The number of moderates has vastly declined and the number of bills that receive bipartisan support has greatly diminished. The usual culprits range from the advent of the 24-hour news cycle to changing demographics.
But now observers are starting to note that both parties are not equally to blame, especially in recent years.
In their new book, "It's Even Worse Than It Looks," Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein -- two of the most prominent talking heads in Washington, known for their balanced view and proclivity toward moderation -- say that the Republican Party is to blame.
"The GOP," they wrote in a Washington Post op-ed based on the book, "has become an insurgent outlier in American politics." Mann and Ornstein trace the partisan style back to the emergence of Newt Gingrich and Grover Norquist in the 1970s, when the two men promoted a style of slash-and-burn, take-no-prisoners politics that has remained integral to the strategy of congressional Republicans