AP American Government   Chapter 11 Congress
Chapter 11 <ul><li>Article I:  The Legislative Branch </li></ul><ul><li>“ All legislative Powers herein granted shall be v...
Core of the Analysis <ul><li>The power of Congress is a function of its capacity to effectively represent important groups...
Founders’ Intentions <ul><li>Most powerful branch of government </li></ul><ul><li>Representative assembly  </li></ul><ul><...
Centralization vs. Decentralization <ul><li>Argument of Centralization vs. Decentralization </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Allow co...
Centralization vs. Decentralization <ul><li>Decentralization led to an increase in the power of Committee chairs and the  ...
Congress in Its Original Form <ul><li>Dominated government  </li></ul><ul><li>Speakers of the House were  more important t...
Powers of Congress <ul><li>Expressed Powers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Levy taxes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Borrow money </li>...
Powers of Congress <ul><li>Implied Powers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Based upon  elastic clause </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Exam...
Powers of Congress <ul><li>Institutional Powers (those that relate to the system of checks and balances) </li></ul><ul><ul...
Powers of Congress <ul><li>Powers Denied </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Passing ex post facto laws </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Passi...
Overview of Congress <ul><li>Terms and Sessions </li></ul><ul><li>Term of Congress lasts two years </li></ul><ul><li>Term ...
Overview of Congress- House <ul><li>Qualifications </li></ul><ul><li>25 years of age </li></ul><ul><li>Citizenship for 7 y...
Overview of Congress- House <ul><li>Size </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Determined by Congress: 435 since 1911 </li></ul></ul><ul><...
Overview of Congress- House <ul><li>Terms -  </li></ul><ul><li>Two years </li></ul><ul><li>Entire body up for reelection e...
Overview of Congress- House <ul><li>House Structure </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Centralized and organized </li></ul></ul><ul><ul...
Overview of Congress -Senate <ul><li>Requirements </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Thirty years of age </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nin...
Overview of Congress -Senate <ul><li>Size </li></ul><ul><li>100 members, chosen in statewide elections </li></ul><ul><li>S...
Overview of Congress -Senate Structure <ul><li>Regional and national constituencies </li></ul><ul><li>Represent elites (Se...
Overview of Congress <ul><li>Compensation </li></ul><ul><li>Members set their own salary </li></ul><ul><li>27th amendment ...
Overview of Congress <ul><li>Membership </li></ul><ul><li>Overrepresentation of white, male, Protestant, upper-middle clas...
table 5.1
Idea of Representation <ul><li>House member’s responsibilities </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Speaks or acts on behalf of someone <...
Representative's role <ul><li>Instrument for policy </li></ul><ul><li>Perform constituency service  (intervene on behalf o...
process box 5. 1
figure 5.1
Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Reelection rate in House 90% </li></ul><ul><li>Reelection rate in Senate 80% </li></ul><ul><l...
Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Specific Advantages </li></ul><ul><li>Franking privilege </li></ul><ul><li>Staffers </li></ul...
Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Special Advantage:  Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>1. Reapportionment: Redistribution of 43...
Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Special Advantage:  Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>2. Redistricting : When seats change, di...
Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Special Advantage:  Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>Origins of term: </li></ul><ul><li>19th ...
Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Special Advantage:  Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>Effects of Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul>...
Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Redistricting Requirements: </li></ul><ul><li>Districts must be as near equal in population a...
Organization of Congress <ul><li>Party leadership fosters: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>cooperation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>co...
Organization of House  http://www.house. gov / <ul><li>A majority in the House elects Speaker of the House </li></ul><ul><...
figure 5.2
Organization of Senate  http://www.senate. gov / <ul><li>Majority leader controls calendar,  sets agenda, has power to rec...
figure 5.3
Committee System <ul><li>Core of Congress where bills are considered </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Committees allow members to spe...
Committee System <ul><li>Committee functions: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Handle legislation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conduct ...
Committee System <ul><li>Selection of members: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Importance of getting on the right committee (where y...
Committee System <ul><li>Standing committees are the permanent committees of Congress. They have both legislative and over...
Committee System <ul><li>Standing committees are the permanent committees of Congress. They have both legislative and over...
Committee System <ul><li>Conference committees: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Temporary committees comprised of members of both ho...
Committee System <ul><li>Party Committees in Congress: </li></ul><ul><li>Senate: </li></ul><ul><li>Assigning party members...
table 5.2
Examples <ul><li>Farm subsidy bills go to Agriculture Committee </li></ul><ul><li>Highway bills go to Transportation Commi...
House committees  parallel the executive branch <ul><li>Committee on judiciary checks Justice Department </li></ul><ul><li...
Influences: Cooperation in Congress <ul><li>Members act for various reasons </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Politicians are eager to...
Problems Underlying Cooperation <ul><li>Various policy preferences prevent a dominant view on issues </li></ul><ul><li>All...
figure 5.4
Distributive Tendency in Congress <ul><li>Legislators advocate their constituents' interests  to secure appropriations for...
Congress Members  Rely on Staff System <ul><li>Second in importance to committees </li></ul><ul><li>Authorized budget </li...
Tasks of Congressperson’s Staff <ul><li>Handle constituency requests </li></ul><ul><li>Deal with legislative details </li>...
Other influences on Members <ul><li>Constituent convictions </li></ul><ul><li>Members convictions </li></ul><ul><li>Other ...
Caucus System <ul><li>Groups of legislators who share opinions,  interests, or social characteristics;  </li></ul><ul><li>...
Legislation -Public Bills <ul><li>Concern class action </li></ul><ul><li>10,000 introduced per term  </li></ul><ul><li>Fiv...
Legislation -Private Bills <ul><li>Relate to actions on behalf of  and relating to a named individual </li></ul><ul><li>Tw...
Legislation - Resolutions <ul><li>Used to extend existing legislation </li></ul><ul><li>Simple </li></ul><ul><li>Pass in o...
Legislation -Concurrent <ul><li>Expression of opinions by Congress  and requires approval of both Houses </li></ul><ul><li...
Legislation - Executive Documents <ul><li>Treaty ratification (two-thirds of Senate) </li></ul><ul><li>Confirmation of maj...
After bill is introduced, it is sent to the appropriate committee for deliberation <ul><li>Referred to subcommittee </li><...
If legislation leaves committee,  goes to the Rules Committee <ul><li>Closed rule : severe time limits on debate </li></ul...
If the Bill survives,  the Process Continues <ul><li>Senate: non-germane or rider allowed </li></ul><ul><li>House: limited...
process box 5.2
Additional Congressional Powers <ul><li>Oversight </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Oversee or supervise Executive Actions; broad ...
Additional Congressional Powers <ul><li>Advice and Consent </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Treaties require two-thirds majority in t...
Efforts to level the field  when campaigning for office <ul><li>Limit amount of money  that can be spent on campaigns  </l...
The Case against Congress <ul><li>Congress is inefficient </li></ul><ul><li>Congress is unrepresentative </li></ul><ul><li...
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Congress

  1. 1. AP American Government Chapter 11 Congress
  2. 2. Chapter 11 <ul><li>Article I: The Legislative Branch </li></ul><ul><li>“ All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate, and a House of Representatives .” </li></ul>
  3. 3. Core of the Analysis <ul><li>The power of Congress is a function of its capacity to effectively represent important groups and forces in society. </li></ul><ul><li>During the first hundred years of U.S. government, Congress was the dominant institution; with the beginning of the New Deal, the presidency became the more accessible, dominant branch of U.S. government. </li></ul><ul><li>Before a bill can become a law, it must pass through the legislative process, a complex set of organizations and procedures in Congress. </li></ul><ul><li>The legislative process is driven by six sets of political forces: political parties, committees, staffs, caucuses, rules of lawmaking, and the president. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Founders’ Intentions <ul><li>Most powerful branch of government </li></ul><ul><li>Representative assembly </li></ul><ul><li>Accessible to the people </li></ul><ul><li>Bicameral legislature addresses concerns over: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Excessive power in single institution </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mob rule </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Manner of representation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Congress would be the dominant branch of government </li></ul>
  5. 5. Centralization vs. Decentralization <ul><li>Argument of Centralization vs. Decentralization </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Allow congress to act decisively and quickly or protect individual members’ interests </li></ul></ul><ul><li>1889-1910 Strong centralization </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Speaker Thomas Reed exercised power </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Joseph Cannon followed and continued strong centralization </li></ul></ul><ul><li>1910- Era of decentralization </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Members vote without fear of repercussions </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Centralization vs. Decentralization <ul><li>Decentralization led to an increase in the power of Committee chairs and the seniority system to select committee chairs </li></ul><ul><li>Further decentralization in the 70s- increased subcommittees lead to more power of subcommittee chairs </li></ul><ul><li>Senate is naturally a more decentralized and informal body </li></ul>
  7. 7. Congress in Its Original Form <ul><li>Dominated government </li></ul><ul><li>Speakers of the House were more important than the president </li></ul><ul><li>Epitome of government (declare war and collect taxes) </li></ul>
  8. 8. Powers of Congress <ul><li>Expressed Powers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Levy taxes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Borrow money </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Regulate foreign, interstate and Indian commerce (broadly interpreted by Congress) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Naturalization and Bankruptcy laws </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Coin money </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Establish weights and measures </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Post offices </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Create courts inferior to Supreme Court </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Define and Punish piracy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Declare War </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Raise and support an army and navy </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Powers of Congress <ul><li>Implied Powers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Based upon elastic clause </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Examples: national banks, paper money, air force, CIA </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Strict v. loose constructionist approaches </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Powers of Congress <ul><li>Institutional Powers (those that relate to the system of checks and balances) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Senate ratifies treaties with 2/3 votes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Senate approves presidential appointments with majority vote </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>House votes for impeachment (majority vote needed), Senate tries impeachment cases (2/3 vote to convict) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>House elects President if no electoral majority, Senate elects VP </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Propose constitutional amendments w/ 2/3 vote in both houses. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Each can seat, unseat and punish (e.g. censure) own members </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Powers of Congress <ul><li>Powers Denied </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Passing ex post facto laws </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Passing bills of attainder </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Suspending habeas corpus except in cases of rebellion or invasion </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Overview of Congress <ul><li>Terms and Sessions </li></ul><ul><li>Term of Congress lasts two years </li></ul><ul><li>Term begins Jan. 3 of every odd numbered year </li></ul><ul><li>Terms numbered consecutively (105th from 1997-1999; 106th ‘99-01; 107th ‘01-03; 108th ‘03-05) </li></ul><ul><li>Adjournment: end of a term; date must be agreed upon by both houses </li></ul><ul><li>Two regular sessions per term. Periodic recesses (not to be confused w/ adjournment) </li></ul>
  13. 13. Overview of Congress- House <ul><li>Qualifications </li></ul><ul><li>25 years of age </li></ul><ul><li>Citizenship for 7 years </li></ul><ul><li>Residency in state </li></ul>
  14. 14. Overview of Congress- House <ul><li>Size </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Determined by Congress: 435 since 1911 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Members elected by districts, not states </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reps per state determined by population </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Demographics show increase in Sun Belt and decrease in Frost Belt representations </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Overview of Congress- House <ul><li>Terms - </li></ul><ul><li>Two years </li></ul><ul><li>Entire body up for reelection every two years = a more responsive body to be kept in check by the Senate </li></ul><ul><li>Terms limits passed by some states, but ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court (US Term Limits v Thornton, 1995) </li></ul>
  16. 16. Overview of Congress- House <ul><li>House Structure </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Centralized and organized </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Less debate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Restricted access to the floor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Individual members have limited power </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Functions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Originate all revenue bills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Agents of local interests </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. Overview of Congress -Senate <ul><li>Requirements </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Thirty years of age </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nine years of citizenship </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Six-year term </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. Overview of Congress -Senate <ul><li>Size </li></ul><ul><li>100 members, chosen in statewide elections </li></ul><ul><li>Smaller size makes it a more informal body with less need than the House for as many strict procedures. </li></ul><ul><li>Terms </li></ul><ul><li>6 years. 1/3 up for reelection every two years </li></ul><ul><li>Staggered terms allow for a more stable body. </li></ul>
  19. 19. Overview of Congress -Senate Structure <ul><li>Regional and national constituencies </li></ul><ul><li>Represent elites (Senators appointed by state legislatures until Seventeenth Amendment) (1913) </li></ul><ul><li>More deliberative: no time limits on speaking </li></ul><ul><li>Filibuster: speak as long as they want to oppose an action </li></ul>
  20. 20. Overview of Congress <ul><li>Compensation </li></ul><ul><li>Members set their own salary </li></ul><ul><li>27th amendment prevents raises from taking effect until the following term </li></ul><ul><li>Perks: staff, travel allowance, office space, franking privilege , insurance </li></ul><ul><li>Cannot be arrested/ detained while going to or from a session of Congress. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Overview of Congress <ul><li>Membership </li></ul><ul><li>Overrepresentation of white, male, Protestant, upper-middle class lawyers in their 50s </li></ul><ul><li>But… </li></ul><ul><li>Many more women and minorities in recent years </li></ul><ul><li>No reason why above group cannot represent the poor and afflicted </li></ul><ul><li>People in the end elect these representatives </li></ul>
  22. 22. table 5.1
  23. 23. Idea of Representation <ul><li>House member’s responsibilities </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Speaks or acts on behalf of someone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In 1789, represented 30,000 constituents </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Today, 600,000 persons in each constituency </li></ul></ul>
  24. 24. Representative's role <ul><li>Instrument for policy </li></ul><ul><li>Perform constituency service (intervene on behalf of citizens with INS, EPA, or help with other needs—capitol tours, tickets to viewing gallery) </li></ul><ul><li>Patronage activities provide direct service to constituents </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reward contributors </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Re-election motives Congress </li></ul><ul><li>Distributive tendency : pork-barrel legislation funds local work projects to bring federal money to the states </li></ul>
  25. 25. process box 5. 1
  26. 26. figure 5.1
  27. 27. Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Reelection rate in House 90% </li></ul><ul><li>Reelection rate in Senate 80% </li></ul><ul><li>Relatively few seats are seriously contested </li></ul><ul><li>“ Permanent Congress” </li></ul><ul><li>Election of 1994 (104th) more a call against Dems than incumbents </li></ul><ul><li>But… retirements open up a lot of seats each year </li></ul>
  28. 28. Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Specific Advantages </li></ul><ul><li>Franking privilege </li></ul><ul><li>Staffers </li></ul><ul><li>Patronage </li></ul><ul><li>Name recognition </li></ul><ul><li>Casework </li></ul><ul><li>Money, esp. from PACs </li></ul>
  29. 29. Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Special Advantage: Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>1. Reapportionment: Redistribution of 435 seats in the House on the basis of changes in the state populations. </li></ul><ul><li>a. Reps per state determined by pop. </li></ul><ul><li>b. Census conducted every 10 yrs. </li></ul><ul><li>c. Census shows populations changes and seats are allotted based upon new numbers </li></ul>
  30. 30. Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Special Advantage: Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>2. Redistricting : When seats change, district boundaries must change. </li></ul><ul><li>a. Party controlling state legislature redraws district boundaries. </li></ul><ul><li>b. Gerrymandering = redrawing boundaries to favor party in power </li></ul>
  31. 31. Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Special Advantage: Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>Origins of term: </li></ul><ul><li>19th century Governor Elbridge Gerry redrew lines himself with some having such strange shapes, they looked like salamanders. </li></ul><ul><li>Party in Power keeps power by: </li></ul><ul><li>“ Packing”- concentrate opposition population in few districts </li></ul><ul><li>“ Cracking”- Disperse opp. Party throughout state to dilute their impact </li></ul>
  32. 32. Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Special Advantage: Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>Effects of Gerrymandering </li></ul><ul><li>Party in power, STAYS in power </li></ul><ul><li>Safe seats are created </li></ul><ul><li>Odd-shaped districts </li></ul><ul><li>“Majority-Minority” districts created by racial gerrymandering </li></ul>
  33. 33. Incumbency Advantage <ul><li>Redistricting Requirements: </li></ul><ul><li>Districts must be as near equal in population as possible </li></ul><ul><ul><li>a. Baker v. Carr, 1962 “one man, one vote” principle applied to state leg districts to correct overrepresentation of rural areas. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>District lines must be contiguous </li></ul><ul><li>Racial gerrymandering is prohibited (Shaw v. Reno, 1993). Race may not be the primary factor in drawing district lines (Miller v. Johnson, 1995) </li></ul>
  34. 34. Organization of Congress <ul><li>Party leadership fosters: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>cooperation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>coalitions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>compromise </li></ul></ul>
  35. 35. Organization of House http://www.house. gov / <ul><li>A majority in the House elects Speaker of the House </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Majority party determines agendas/roles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Speaker of the House controls the calendar, sets the legislative agenda, and has the power to recognize speakers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Majority whip maintains party unity, polls members on bills and develops party support for legislative goals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Committee chairs (all are majority party) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Representatives seek assignments that allow them to influence decisions important to their districts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minority leader is senior leader of the minority party </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minority whip maintains party unity and promotes minority party's agenda </li></ul></ul>
  36. 36. figure 5.2
  37. 37. Organization of Senate http://www.senate. gov / <ul><li>Majority leader controls calendar, sets agenda, has power to recognize speakers </li></ul><ul><li>Majority whip maintains party unity and promotes majority party's agenda </li></ul><ul><li>Minority leader is senior leader of the minority party </li></ul><ul><li>Minority whip maintains party unity and promotes minority party's agenda </li></ul><ul><li>Vice president presides over important votes, can break a tie </li></ul><ul><li>President Pro Tempore (3rd in line for Prez); presides in absence of VP </li></ul>
  38. 38. figure 5.3
  39. 39. Committee System <ul><li>Core of Congress where bills are considered </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Committees allow members to specialize in policy areas and become experts </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Congressional division of labor achieved through committees </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Committee chairs act as &quot;gatekeepers“ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Standing committees have fixed membership, officers, rules, staff, and offices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Majority party sets rules and chooses officers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Majority party always has most committee members </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jurisdiction is defined by subject matter of legislation </li></ul></ul>
  40. 40. Committee System <ul><li>Committee functions: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Handle legislation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conduct investigation of exec. Branch on an as-needed basis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conduct oversight of exec. Branch agencies on an ongoing basis. </li></ul></ul>
  41. 41. Committee System <ul><li>Selection of members: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Importance of getting on the right committee (where you can best represent your constituents) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Assigned by Steering committee or Committee on Committees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Party with majority in Congress has majority of seats on committee </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Selection of Committee chairs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Secret ballot in party caucus or conference of leaders. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Seniority rule generally followed. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advantages of seniority rules: experience, stability, expertise. </li></ul></ul>
  42. 42. Committee System <ul><li>Standing committees are the permanent committees of Congress. They have both legislative and oversight powers. </li></ul><ul><li>House Standing: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rules (most powerful of all) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ways and means (deals with tax bills) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Appropriations (spending) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Budget </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Armed Services </li></ul></ul>
  43. 43. Committee System <ul><li>Standing committees are the permanent committees of Congress. They have both legislative and oversight powers. </li></ul><ul><li>Senate Standing: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Finance (tax bills) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Appropriations (spending) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Budget </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Foreign Relations (prestigious) Treaty and ambassador work </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Judiciary: screen judicial nominees </li></ul></ul>
  44. 44. Committee System <ul><li>Conference committees: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Temporary committees comprised of members of both houses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop compromise language for a bill when versions differ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>After conference committee sends bill back - no amendments are allowed and bill is generally passed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Third House of Congress” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Other Committees </li></ul><ul><li>Select: temporary purpose in House </li></ul><ul><li>Joint: Both houses for temporary purpose </li></ul>
  45. 45. Committee System <ul><li>Party Committees in Congress: </li></ul><ul><li>Senate: </li></ul><ul><li>Assigning party members to standing committees: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Dems use Steering committee </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reps use Committee on Committees </li></ul></ul><ul><li>House: </li></ul><ul><li>Assigning party members to standing committees: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Dems use Steering and Policy Committee </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reps use Committee on Committees </li></ul></ul>
  46. 46. table 5.2
  47. 47. Examples <ul><li>Farm subsidy bills go to Agriculture Committee </li></ul><ul><li>Highway bills go to Transportation Committee </li></ul><ul><li>GI Bill benefits go to Veteran’s Affairs Committee </li></ul><ul><li>House Rules Committee decides the order in which bills come up for a vote and determine the rules that govern length of debate and opportunity for amendments </li></ul>
  48. 48. House committees parallel the executive branch <ul><li>Committee on judiciary checks Justice Department </li></ul><ul><li>Committee on commerce checks Commerce Department </li></ul><ul><li>Committee on national security checks Defense Department </li></ul><ul><li>95 percent of the 10,000 bills introduced die in committee </li></ul><ul><li>Committee chair is from majority party </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Schedules hearings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Selects subcommittee members </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Appoints committee staff </li></ul></ul>
  49. 49. Influences: Cooperation in Congress <ul><li>Members act for various reasons </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Politicians are eager to please major campaign contributors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Politicians pursue their own agendas </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>When acting as delegates, members do the public's bidding </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>When acting as trustees, members do what they think is right </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Because of a diversity of interests, legislative consensus is required for bills to become laws </li></ul><ul><li>Cooperation forms from political parties, regional, or ideological commonalities </li></ul><ul><li>Cooperation also results from &quot;back-scratching“ </li></ul>
  50. 50. Problems Underlying Cooperation <ul><li>Various policy preferences prevent a dominant view on issues </li></ul><ul><li>All legislators are equal and therefore cannot succumb to more powerful legislators </li></ul><ul><li>Ambiguous information on how to solve problems—legislators vote for policies not outcomes </li></ul>
  51. 51. figure 5.4
  52. 52. Distributive Tendency in Congress <ul><li>Legislators advocate their constituents' interests to secure appropriations for their districts </li></ul><ul><li>During campaigns legislators use federal funding to advertise that they are successful for their districts </li></ul><ul><li>Since all legislators are subject to re-election, there is a tendency for legislators to support others' pet projects in exchange for their support (logrolling) </li></ul>
  53. 53. Congress Members Rely on Staff System <ul><li>Second in importance to committees </li></ul><ul><li>Authorized budget </li></ul><ul><li>Two offices (local and Washington, DC) </li></ul><ul><li>Handle casework of federal matters </li></ul>
  54. 54. Tasks of Congressperson’s Staff <ul><li>Handle constituency requests </li></ul><ul><li>Deal with legislative details </li></ul><ul><li>Formulate and draft proposals </li></ul><ul><li>Negotiate with lobbyists </li></ul><ul><li>Influence legislative process </li></ul>
  55. 55. Other influences on Members <ul><li>Constituent convictions </li></ul><ul><li>Members convictions </li></ul><ul><li>Other members </li></ul><ul><li>Staff </li></ul><ul><li>Interest groups, lobbies, PACs </li></ul><ul><li>Congressional Caucuses (black, Hispanic, etc) </li></ul><ul><li>President </li></ul><ul><li>Campaign contributors </li></ul><ul><li>Media as “watchdog” </li></ul><ul><li>Party membership of member </li></ul><ul><li>“ Iron triangles” ( Congressional committee, related federal agency and impacted interest group) </li></ul>
  56. 56. Caucus System <ul><li>Groups of legislators who share opinions, interests, or social characteristics; </li></ul><ul><li>Congressional interest group </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Examples </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Steel Caucus </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Caucus for Women’s Issues </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Black Caucus </li></ul></ul></ul>
  57. 57. Legislation -Public Bills <ul><li>Concern class action </li></ul><ul><li>10,000 introduced per term </li></ul><ul><li>Five-hundred pass per term </li></ul>
  58. 58. Legislation -Private Bills <ul><li>Relate to actions on behalf of and relating to a named individual </li></ul><ul><li>Twenty per term </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Immigration matters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Claims against the government </li></ul></ul>
  59. 59. Legislation - Resolutions <ul><li>Used to extend existing legislation </li></ul><ul><li>Simple </li></ul><ul><li>Pass in only one House depending whom the bill deals with </li></ul>
  60. 60. Legislation -Concurrent <ul><li>Expression of opinions by Congress and requires approval of both Houses </li></ul><ul><li>Not sent to the president </li></ul><ul><li>Does not have the force of law </li></ul>
  61. 61. Legislation - Executive Documents <ul><li>Treaty ratification (two-thirds of Senate) </li></ul><ul><li>Confirmation of major appointees, judges, and military officers (simple majority) </li></ul><ul><li>Reorganization of the executive branch </li></ul>
  62. 62. After bill is introduced, it is sent to the appropriate committee for deliberation <ul><li>Referred to subcommittee </li></ul><ul><li>Hearings </li></ul><ul><li>Testimony </li></ul><ul><li>Determine whether it should go to full committee for consideration </li></ul><ul><li>Committee </li></ul><ul><ul><li>May accept, hold hearings, amend or the bill may die in committee </li></ul></ul>
  63. 63. If legislation leaves committee, goes to the Rules Committee <ul><li>Closed rule : severe time limits on debate </li></ul><ul><li>Open rule : no time limits </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Open rule can allow time for damaging debate and amendments </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Calendar controls the agenda of the Congress </li></ul><ul><li>Floor debate : •opportunity for a member to make a position public </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Controlled by the Speaker or Senate Majority Leader </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Most time for debate is allotted to bill’s sponsor and its leading opponent </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What can end a filibuster? (three-fifths majority or sixty votes: cloture) </li></ul>
  64. 64. If the Bill survives, the Process Continues <ul><li>Senate: non-germane or rider allowed </li></ul><ul><li>House: limited by the rule that accompanies the bill </li></ul><ul><li>Voting by roll call </li></ul><ul><li>Conference Committee </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reconciles two versions of a similar bill </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Usually a compromise </li></ul></ul><ul><li>President receives the bill and can do three things </li></ul><ul><li>Sign the bill into law </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Veto: return bill within ten days with explanation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pocket veto: president takes no action before Congress adjourns </li></ul></ul>
  65. 65. process box 5.2
  66. 66. Additional Congressional Powers <ul><li>Oversight </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Oversee or supervise Executive Actions; broad area or problem </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Examples </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Intelligence oversight: ensures military does not collect intelligence on civilians </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Uncover illegal activities: Iran-Contra </li></ul></ul></ul>
  67. 67. Additional Congressional Powers <ul><li>Advice and Consent </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Treaties require two-thirds majority in the Senate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Appointments require a majority </li></ul></ul>
  68. 68. Efforts to level the field when campaigning for office <ul><li>Limit amount of money that can be spent on campaigns </li></ul><ul><li>House campaigns every two years </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Average $500,000 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Always campaigning </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Senate every six years </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Average $10 million </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Increase access to ballots </li></ul>
  69. 69. The Case against Congress <ul><li>Congress is inefficient </li></ul><ul><li>Congress is unrepresentative </li></ul><ul><li>Congress is unethical </li></ul><ul><li>Congress is irresponsible </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Example: Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Bill (instituted mandatory budget cuts since Congress could not balance the budget) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Congress delegates its power to Executive </li></ul>
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