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Chapter 5 The Organization of Congress. Section 1 Congressional Membership. Congressional Sessions. Each term of Congress has two sessions. Each session lasts until Congress votes to adjourn. Membership of the House.

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chapter 5 the organization of congress

Chapter 5The Organization of Congress

Section 1

Congressional Membership

congressional sessions
Congressional Sessions
  • Each term of Congress has two sessions.
  • Each session lasts until Congress votes to adjourn.
membership of the house
Membership of the House
  • Members must be at least 25 years old, citizens for at least 7 years and residents of their states.
membership of the house4
Membership of the House
  • Members serve for 2-year terms.
  • The number of representatives from each state is determined by the census population count every 10 years.
membership of the house5
Membership of the House
  • State legislatures set up congressional districts after the census count – one representative for each district.
membership of the senate
Membership of the Senate
  • Senators must be at least 30 years old, citizens for at least 9 years, and residents of their state.
membership of the senate7
Membership of the Senate
  • Senators serve for 6-year terms.
  • 1/3 are elected every two years.
  • Each state elects two senators.
membership of the senate8
Membership of the Senate
  • The Senate and the House set members’ salaries, and receive numerous benefits such as business trips, tax breaks, and healthy pensions.
membership of the senate9
Membership of the Senate
  • Both House and Senate members enjoy immunity from arrest, in cases not involving felony or treason.
membership of the senate10
Membership of the Senate
  • House and Senate members cannot be sued for liability while Congress is in session.
membership of the senate11
Membership of the Senate
  • Both the Senate and the House may refuse a position to any member or they may expel members.
journal
Journal
  • When your row is called, grab your book and open to page 123.
  • If you were a politician, would you rather be a member of the House of the Senate? EXPLAIN!
the members of congress
The Members of Congress
  • Nearly half the members of Congress are lawyers.
the members of congress14
The Members of Congress
  • White, middle-aged male members are being joined by members reflecting the ethnic, racial, and gender makeup of the general population.
the members of congress15
The Members of Congress
  • Most incumbent, or returning, members of Congress win reelection to office because they are well known and can raise money easier.
the members of congress16
The Members of Congress
  • Many incumbent members also represent districts gerrymandered in favor of their parties.
journal17
Journal
  • When your row is called, grab your book and open to page 128.
  • Members of Congress spend part of their time working for reelection. Which house has a greater percentage of its time remaining for legislative work? WHY?
chapter 5 the organization of congress18

Chapter 5The Organization of Congress

Section 2

The House of Representatives

rules for lawmaking
Rules for Lawmaking
  • Each house of Congress has complex rules to help members conduct business.
rules for lawmaking20
Rules for Lawmaking
  • Congress carries out most of its work by committees. Because of its large size, committee work is more important in the House.
rules for lawmaking21
Rules for Lawmaking
  • Party membership guides Congress its work, since the majority party in each house controls the committees.
house leadership
House Leadership
  • The Speaker of the House is leader of the majority party and has great power and influence over its members.
house leadership23
House Leadership
  • Floor leaders of both the majority and minority party schedule the work of the House and push bills through committees.
journal24
Journal
  • The Speaker of the House follows the vice president in the line of presidential succession. Do you support or object to this plan? EXPLAIN!
  • When your row is called, grab your textbook from the shelf and open to page 132.
lawmaking in the house
Lawmaking in the House
  • Members attend House floor sessions to vote on legislation.
lawmaking in the house26
Lawmaking in the House
  • All laws begin as bills introduced in the House, then go to committee.
lawmaking in the house27
Lawmaking in the House
  • If approved, the bill is then put on the proper calendar, listing the order in which it is to be debated on the House floor.
lawmaking in the house28
Lawmaking in the House
  • The House Rules Committee receives all bills approved by the various committees.
lawmaking in the house29
Lawmaking in the House
  • The Rules Committee determines which bills will be considered by the full House and places them on the House Calendar.
lawmaking in the house30
Lawmaking in the House
  • The Rules Committee sends bills to the floor, for all the House members to vote on.
journal31
Journal
  • When your row is called, grab your textbook from the shelf and open to page 135.
  • Why is so much of the work of Congress done in committees?
the senate at work
The Senate at Work
  • The Senate has fewer rules then the House. Senators have more freedom to express their views and are less subject to party discipline.
the senate at work34
The Senate at Work
  • The atmosphere in the Senate is more informal then in the House.
the senate at work35
The Senate at Work
  • The vice president presides over the Senate but has little power.
the senate at work36
The Senate at Work
  • The President Pro Tempore often presides.
the senate at work37
The Senate at Work
  • The Senate majority floor leader is that party’s leader responsible for guiding bills through the Senate.
the senate at work38
The Senate at Work
  • The minority leader develops criticisms of the majority party.
the senate at work39
The Senate at Work
  • Majority and minority whips assist floor leaders.
lawmaking in the senate
Lawmaking in the Senate
  • Senate leaders control the flow of bills to committees and to the floor for debate.
lawmaking in the senate41
Lawmaking in the Senate
  • The Senate has only two calendars: Calendar of General Order and the Executive Calendar.
lawmaking in the senate42
Lawmaking in the Senate
  • A filibuster – unlimited debate on a bill to defeat it – can be ended only by a 3/5 vote.
lawmaking in the senate43
Lawmaking in the Senate
  • In recent years a two-track procedural system has weakened the filibuster as a legislative weapon.
lawmaking in the senate44
Lawmaking in the Senate
  • The majority party controls the flow of legislative work in the Senate.
journal45
Journal
  • When your row is called, grab your textbook from the shelf and open to page 138.
  • Why are procedures more informal in the Senate than in the House of Representatives?
chapter 5 the organization of congress46

Chapter 5The Organization of Congress

Section 4

Congressional Committees

purpose of committees
Purpose of Committees
  • Committees ease Congressional workload by dividing work among small groups.
purpose of committees48
Purpose of Committees
  • Committees allow members to discuss and select the most important bills Congress will consider.
kinds of committees
Kinds of Committees
  • Standing committees deal with certain issues continuing from one Congress to the next.
    • Judiciary Committee
kinds of committees50
Kinds of Committees
  • Subcommittees handle special subcategories of standing committees’ work, and also continue from one Congress to the next.
    • Social Security
kinds of committees51
Kinds of Committees
  • Select committees are special committees created in both houses of Congress for one term to study a specific topic.
    • 9/11 Commission
kinds of committees52
Kinds of Committees
  • Joint Committees – members from both Houses.
    • Taxation
  • Conference Committees – temporary committees set up to resolve differences in the House and Senate version of a bill.
choosing members
Choosing Members
  • Assigning members to various committees is a key decision in the organization of Congress.
choosing members54
Choosing Members
  • Membership on certain committees…
  • Helps members build reputations and increase their chances for reelection.
  • Gives members a chance to influence important national legislation.
  • Enables members to influence other members since those committees deal with issues that are important to all members.
choosing members55
Choosing Members
  • In both houses, parties assign members to the standing committees
  • Party leaders and chairpersons of the standing committees are the most important members of Congress.
choosing members56
Choosing Members
  • Standing committee chairpersons make key decisions about the work of their committees, though their power has decreased.
journal57
Journal
  • When your row is called, grab your textbook from the shelf and open to page 141.
  • Members of Congress who have served the longest often head key committees and have an important voice in passing legislation. Do you think this seniority system helps Congress to operate more effectively? EXPLAIN!
chapter 5 the organization of congress58

Chapter 5The Organization of Congress

Section 5

Staff & Support Agencies

congressional staff role
Congressional Staff Role
  • Lawmakers rely on their staffs to help with many congressional duties.
  • As congressional workloads have increased, staff duties have become increasingly important as well.
congressional staff growth
Congressional Staff Growth
  • Prior to 1946, Congress had NO staff aids. Recently, increased complexity has resulted in much larger staffs.
congressional staff growth61
Congressional Staff Growth
  • Congressional staffs provide expert help on key issues and help members better serve their constituents’ demands.
personal staff
Personal Staff
  • Members’ staffs are divided between Washington, D.C., and the home office.
personal staff63
Personal Staff
  • Administrative assistants run offices, create schedules and give advice on political matters.
personal staff64
Personal Staff
  • Legislative assistants keep lawmakers informed of bills, committee work and write speeches.
support agencies
Support Agencies
  • The Library of Congress provides informationand requests by Congress.
support agencies66
Support Agencies
  • The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) coordinates budget-making, studies presidential budget proposals, and tracks spending.
support agencies67
Support Agencies
  • The General Accounting Office (GAO) monitors spending by Congress.
  • The Government Printing Office handles all documents printed by and for the federal government.
journal68
Journal
  • When your row is called, grab your book and open to page 123.
  • Congressional staffers are not elected, yet they sometimes exert great power and influence in the lawmaking process. What are some advantages and disadvantages of this system?