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Section 1: The Senate and the House of Representatives Section 2: How Congress Is Organized Section 3: The Powers of Congress Section 4: How a Bill Becomes a Law. Chapter 5 The Legislative Branch. Section 1: The Senate and the House of Representatives. The Main Idea

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Chapter 5 the legislative branch

Section 1:The Senate and the House of Representatives

Section 2: How Congress Is Organized

Section 3: The Powers of Congress

Section 4: How a Bill Becomes a Law

Chapter 5The Legislative Branch


Section 1: The Senate and the House of Representatives

The Main Idea

Congress is divided into two houses, the Senate and the House of Representatives, and its members have certain qualifications.

Reading Focus

  • What are the two houses of Congress?

  • What are the qualifications, salaries, and rules of conduct for members of Congress?


Background information

Section 1: The Senate and the House of Representatives

Background Information

  • Congress is bicameral

  • Article I of US Constitution

  • Historical—Parliament

  • 2 chamber house settled conflict between NJ Plan and Virginia Plan (Connecticut Compromise)


The house of representatives
The House of Representatives:

  • Has 435 members

  • Based on population (each state guaranteed 1)

    • US Map of Congressional Districts / MO Map

  • # set by Congress, not Constitution

    • Reapportionment Act of 1929

  • US territories have 1 non-voting representative

  • Census determines how seats are apportioned

    • Gerrymandering (Illinois) (NC)


  • The house of representatives cont
    The House of Representatives Cont…

    • Each state has # of reps as it does districts

    • Elected to 2 year term (no term limits)

    • Vacancies filled by Governor of that state


    Us senate
    US Senate

    • 100 members

      • 2 Senators from each state (50 x 2 = 100)

      • 6 year term

        • Staggered (33-34 senators elected every 2 years)

          • Continuous body

        • No term limits


    Qualifications
    Qualifications

    • House of Representatives

      • 25 years old

      • Be a US citizen for 7 years

      • Be a legal resident of the state represented


    Qualifications1
    Qualifications

    • Senate

      • 30 years old

      • Be a US citizen for 9 years

      • Be a legal resident of the state represented


    Salary and benefits
    Salary and Benefits

    • $174,000 salary

      • Leaders get paid more

    • Offices in DC

    • Allowance for staff, local offices

    • Free trips home

    • Stationary allowance

    • Franking privilege (free mail)


    Salary and benefits continued
    Salary and Benefits Continued

    • Immunity while Congress is in session

    • Parking spots at airports

    • 2 gymnasiums, restaurant

    • Health insurance

    • Pension

    • See the following sites for more information:

      • http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/uscongress/a/congresspay.htm

      • http://heller.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=166596


    Rules of conduct

    Section 1: The Senate and the House of Representatives

    Rules of Conduct:

    • Qualifications for a seat determined by vote of Congress

    • Misconduct:

      • May lead to expulsion with a 2/3 vote

      • May lead to censure

        http://www.opencongress.org/wiki/Expulsion_and_censure


    SECTION1

    Legislative Misconduct

    Question: In what ways does Congress deal with misconduct by its members?

    HOW

    DESCRIPTION

    written reprimand

    Censure

    removing a member from Congress

    Expulsion


    Section 2: How Congress Is Organized

    The Main Idea

    Congress is organized in a way that allows its members to consider and pass legislation without each member having to do everything.

    Reading Focus

    • What are the terms and sessions of Congress?

    • How is Congress organized?


    Congressional terms and sessions

    Section 2: How Congress Is Organized

    Congressional Terms and Sessions

    • Two sessions per term

    • Sessions begin on January 3 each year

      • Usually adjourn in August or September

    • The president may call a special session when necessary.

    • Joint Session


    Organization

    Section 2: How Congress Is Organized

    Organization

    • House of Representatives

      • Presiding officer is the Speaker of the House

      • Majority/Minority Leaders

      • Party whips—persuade members to vote for legislation

      • Caucuses

      • 24 Committees


    Organization1

    Section 2: How Congress Is Organized

    Organization

    • Senate

      • Vice president is President of the Senate

      • President pro tempore

        • “For the time being”

      • Majority/Minority floor leaders

      • Majority/ Minority floor whips

      • Senate has 20 committees

        • Chairperson


    Congressional committees

    Section 2: How Congress Is Organized

    Congressional Committees

    • Study all bills before they are presented to Congress

    • Members are nominated to committee assignments.

    • Senators serve on at least two standing committees.

    • Representatives serve on only two standing committees.

    • Standing committee membership is proportionate to party majority in each house.

    • Heads of Committee are now chosen by secret vote.


    Websites
    Websites

    • Congressional Leadership

      • http://www.congress.org/congressorg/directory/leadership_list.tt

      • http://www.senate.gov/pagelayout/senators/a_three_sections_with_teasers/leadership.htm

      • http://www.house.gov/house/orgs_pub_hse_ldr_www.shtml

    • Congressional Committees

      • House

        • http://www.house.gov/house/CommitteeWWW.shtml

      • Senate

        • http://www.senate.gov/pagelayout/committees/d_three_sections_with_teasers/committees_home.htm


    When Sessions Begin

    How Long They Last

    SECTION 2

    Question: When does a session of Congress begin, and how long does it last?

    The first session begins January 3 in odd-numbered years following the congressional election in November. The second session begins January 3 of the following year.

    Sessions last as long as Congress wishes.

    Adjournment dates are selected by Congress.


    Section 3: The Powers of Congress

    The Main Idea

    The Constitution both defines and limits the powers of Congress.

    Reading Focus

    • What types of powers are granted to Congress?

    • What are some of the limits on the powers of Congress?


    Delegated powers

    Section 3: The Powers of Congress

    Delegated Powers

    • Powers specifically listed in Constitution

    • Raise and collect taxes

    • Borrow Money

    • Print and coin money

    • Regulate trade w/foreign countries and among the states


    Delegated powers cont
    Delegated Powers Cont…

    • Declare war and maintain armed forces

    • Set up a national court system

    • Regulate immigration / naturalization

    • Govern territories

    • Provide for the admission of new states

    • http://pmc.princeton.edu/powersofcongress.php


    Implied powers
    Implied powers

    • Necessary and proper clause (Art. 1 Sec. 8)

      • “Power to make all laws necessary and proper…”

      • AKA “Elastic Clause”

        • Allows Congress to “stretch” its delegated powers

    • McCulloch v. Maryland (1819)

    • Ex: Military academies, Federal Reserve Act

    • http://www.shmoop.com/legislative-branch/implied-powers-of-congress.html


    Impeachment powers
    Impeachment Powers

    • Impeach

      • House votes to impeach federal official

      • Senate tries official

    • Treason


    The special powers of congress

    Section 3: The Powers of Congress

    The special powers of Congress:

    • House

      • initiates bills to raise money

      • elects president when no candidate receives sufficient electoral votes

      • Starts impeachment process


    The special powers of congress1
    The special powers of Congress:

    • Senate

      • Holds impeachment trials

      • Selects vice president when no candidate has sufficient electoral votes

      • Approves treaties

      • Approves high officials

    • House is more active while Senate is more cautious


    Congress is forbidden to p 146

    Section 3: The Powers of Congress

    Congress is forbidden to: (p. 146)

    • Pass ex post facto laws

    • Pass bills of attainder

    • Suspend writ of habeas corpus

    • Tax exports

    • Pass laws violating the Bill of Rights

    • Favor one state over another state

    • Grant titles of nobility

    • Withdraw money without a law


    financing government

    defending the country

    Congressional Powers

    providing for growth

    enforcing laws

    regulating and encouraging U.S. trade and industry

    SECTION 3

    Question: What are the five major areas in which Congress has the power to make laws?


    Section 4: How a Bill Becomes a Law

    The Main Idea

    To become a law, a bill goes through a multistage process involving both houses of Congress.

    Reading Focus

    • How does a bill begin?

    • How do the House and the Senate consider a bill?

    • In what ways can the president act on the bill?


    How a bill begins
    How a bill begins

    • A bill is a…

    • Can be introduced in either house

      • Except appropriation bills

    • A law was first a bill


    Sources of legislation

    Section 4: How a Bill Becomes a Law

    Sources of legislation:

    • U.S. citizens—constituents making requests of their congress members

    • Organized groups—businesspeople and labor groups seeking to protect their interests

    • Committees of Congress—investigating committees determine needs for new laws

    • Members of Congress—experts in certain fields propose new laws

    • The president—often introduces ideas for laws in the State of the Union Address


    Bills introduced in house p 151

    Section 4: How a Bill Becomes a Law

    Bills introduced in House (p. 151)

    • Are read and placed in the Congressional Record.

      • Given a title and number

    • Are sent to a standing committee to be studied.

    • Committee recommends changes, approves

    • Placed on the calendar for debate

      • Speaker of the House decision

    • House rules committee sets guidelines for debate

      • Time, amendments

    • Quorum needed for vote

    • Vote taken


    Bills introduced in senate p 151

    Section 4: How a Bill Becomes a Law

    Bills introduced in Senate (p. 151)

    • Same as H of R action

    • Debate

      • Filibuster

      • Cloture

    • Bill sent to President

      • House and Senate bills MUST be identical

        • If not, sent to “Conference Committee” where members of both houses iron out differences and send it back to each house for final vote


    President acts on bill

    Section 4: How a Bill Becomes a Law

    President Acts on Bill

    • Can do 3 things:

      • sign the bill and declare it a law

      • veto the bill and send it back to Congress

      • hold the bill for 10 days

        • Becomes a law if Congress in session

        • “Pocket Veto”


    Overriding a veto

    Section 4: How a Bill Becomes a Law

    Overriding a Veto

    • Requires 2/3 vote in each house

    • Veto threat influences Congress

    • http://clerk.house.gov/art_history/house_history/vetoes.html

    • http://www.senate.gov/reference/reference_index_subjects/Vetoes_vrd.htm


    SECTION 4

    Question: What actions can the president take regarding a passed bill?

    If Congress is in session, the BILL BECOMES LAW,

    even without a signature.

    SIGNS THE BILL and it becomes law

    The president KEEPS the BILL for 10 DAYS without signing or vetoing it:

    The president ACTS on a Bill

    If Congress is not in session, the bill is killed by POCKET VETO.

    REFUSES TO SIGN and sends back to Congress with rejection reasons – called a VETO.


    Chapter 5 Wrap-Up

    • 1. Why did the framers of the Constitution create a bicameral national legislature?

    • 2. What two methods does Congress have to deal with misconduct by its members?

    • 3. Who leads the houses of Congress, and how are these leaders chosen?

    • 4. Why is most of the work of Congress done through committees?

    • 5. What special powers does each house of Congress have?

    • 6. How do bills become laws?

    • 7. What can the president do with a bill passed by Congress?


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