Introduction<br />A bill starts with an idea<br />Idea must be sponsored to become a law<br />The bill is introduced to the Clerk and assigned a number.<br />The bill is then referred to Committee and Subcommittee <br />About 10,000 bills are introduced to Congress each year. <br />
Committee<br />Standing Committees – There are 16 standing committees<br /> Consider bills, hold hearings to hear why a bill should be law, propose changes (Amendments), and send bills to subcommittees for further consideration. <br />Standing Committees also have oversight powers. <br />Committee may vote to:<br />Recommend that the bill be passed or passed as amended and sent directly to the floor.<br />Recommend that the bill be passed or passed as amended and placed on the calendar.<br />Send the bill to the floor or another committee w/o recommendation for consideration.<br />Table the Bill - Defeat the bill or keep it in the committee indefinitely. <br />
Committee <br />Tabling a Bill<br />If a bill is tabled it means it will not be sent for a vote. <br />Why would bills be sent to committees instead of having every bill read and reviewed by all members of Congress? <br />Sending bills to committee help to maintain the efficiency of our elected officials.<br />
Subcommittee<br />Standing Committees create subcommittees<br />Subcommittees have legislative jurisdiction to consider and report bills. They may assign their subcommittees such specific tasks as the initial consideration of measures and oversight of laws. <br />Subcommittees take a closer look at bills and report back to the Standing Committee<br />Subcommittees can propose amendments.<br />
Floor<br />By the time the bill reaches the floor it has been read three times. <br />On the floor the bill is debated and either voted on or blocked by a filibuster if in the Senate. <br />A strategy employed in the United States Senate, whereby a minority can delay a vote on proposed legislation by making long speeches or introducing irrelevant issues. A successful filibuster can force withdrawal of a bill.<br />Once the bill is voted through in one house it then begins the process again in the other house. <br />
Floor<br />The House of Representatives from the view of the Speaker of the House<br />
Conference Committee <br />Once the bill has passed both houses it must be checked.<br />The bills are checked to make sure that both the House and Senate versions of the bill are identical. <br />If there are major discrepancies, a conference is called for. <br />
Conference Committee <br />Senate-House Conference Committee meeting on Budget Resolution <br />(April 27, 2009 - Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images North America)<br />
Conference Committee<br />The people in the Conference Committee are known as managers. There are managers from both the House and Senate. <br />Managers are not allowed to make substantial changes to the bill, but changes may need to be made to come to an agreement. <br />Following negotiations, the managers make reports back to their houses, that they were able to agree on the bill, able to agree only on some parts of the bill, or were unable to agree at all on the bill.<br />If the first case is true then the bill is revoted upon in both houses. If the latter two cases are true, the bill may go back to a new conference committee, referred back to the committees in the two houses, or it may just die because the differences are too vast to bridge.<br />
Final Approval <br />Floor of the United States Congress.<br />
The President <br />The bill then goes to the President to be signed.<br />Political process does not occur in a vacuum. The President and his staff would have been tracking the bill along the way.<br />Most likely the President has commented on the bill and indicated his intentions. (Either he will sign or veto the bill) <br />The President has ten days to sign the bill or it becomes law. <br />
Congressional Veto<br />If the President vetoes a bill, Congress can override the veto with a two-thirds vote in both houses. <br />Normally, it is known if enough members will vote to override the bill. <br />If such a majority exists, the revote is almost guaranteed. If no immediate revote is taken, the bill can be tabled for later vote or sent back to the committee to have further work done. If a vote is taken to override, and the vote fails, the bill dies.<br />
Bill becomes law<br />The law is transmitted to the Archivist of the United States. The Archivist assigns the law a number. The Archivist publishes the law on its own, as a pamphlet. <br />This is known as a slip law. The slip law contains a lot more than just the text of the law itself, such as where it is be inserted in the United States Code, its legislative history, the committees through which it passed, and so on. In effect, the slip law is a historical document in itself.<br />
Sources<br />Dictionary.com. Available from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/filibuster. Internet; accessed 20 April 2010.Mount, Steve.<br /> "Constitutional Topic: How a Bill Becomes a Law.” U.S. Constitution Online. Available from http://www.usconstitution.net/consttop_law.html. Internet; accessed 20 April 2010.<br />Thomas, "How a Bill Becomes a Law." Telecom Blog. Available from http:// www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http:// www.cybertelecom.org/images/ howlaw.gif. Internet; accessed 20 April 2010.<br />Where does a snowman keep his money?<br />A snow bank!!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA<br />
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