CONGRESS
Ch.10-12
CONGRESS
Terms and Sessions of
Congress
• A term of Congress is 2 years long
– First term was March 1789-March 1791
• A session of ...
• Adjourn - Congress will dismiss at the
end of a session until the next year
• Recess - Congress takes a break for a
set ...
The House of
Representatives
• Made up of 435 members
• The seats in the House are apportioned
(distributed) based on stat...
Reapportionment
• Seats in the House must be
redistributed every 10 years (after the
census)
• Reapportionment Act of 1929...
Congressional Elections
• Occur on the 1st Tuesday of November
on even-numbered years (2004, 2008,
2012, etc.)
• Off-Year ...
Districts
• States are divided up into districts, or
sections, and each district votes for
ONE member to go to the House
–...
TN Congressional
Districts (9)
• We live in District 1
of TN (includes 12
counties)
• Our U.S.
Representative is
Dr. Phil Roe
Gerrymandering
• Drawing new districts to give an
advantage to the political party in power
in the State legislature
– Dis...
• Constituents – the people a
Congressperson represents back home
– Remember, members of Congress work for
YOU.
Qualifications for House
Members
• Must be at least 25 years old
• Must have been a U.S. citizen for at
least 7 years
• Mu...
Capitol Virtual Tour
• http://www.aoc.gov/virtual-tours/capitolbldg/to
The Senate
• 100 members (2 for every state)
• Framers believed the smaller Senate
would be more responsible than the
Hous...
Electing Senators
• Elected by the people during the
November elections
• Each senator is elected from the whole
state (NO...
A Senator’s Term
• Senators serve 3x longer than
members of the House of
Representatives
• Continuous body - not all the s...
• Senators are more focused on the “big
picture” of government, while the House
is more personal with the people in their
...
Qualifications for
Senators
• Have higher standards than House
members:
– Must be at least 30 years old
– Must be a U.S. c...
U.S. House of Representatives
U.S. Senate
Classwork/Homework
• Write a half-page letter to me
expressing to me whether you want to
be in the Class House of
Represen...
Congress as a Job
Members of Congress are:
1.) lawmakers
2.) representatives
3.) committee members
4.) servants of their c...
How Do Members of Congress
Represent the People When
They Vote?
• 4 ways they can vote:
1.) Trustee: vote according to the...
Congress and Political
Parties
• Each chamber is controlled by political parties
– Party with over half the seats = majori...
Speaker of the House
• Leader of the House
and majority party
• Presides over and
keeps order in the
House
<---Today’s Spe...
Speaker of the House
(continued)
• Applies the rules of the House
• Sends bills to various committees
• Rules on questions...
President of the Senate
• The Vice-President is the
president of the Senate (but
not a member)
– controls questions, votin...
President Pro Tempore
• Serves as President of
the Senate when the VP
is absent
• Elected by the Senate
and majority party...
Party Officers
• Party caucus - meeting of the political parties
in House and Senate to choose leaders
• Floor Leaders - M...
House Floor Leaders
• House majority leader
(R-LA):
Kevin McCarthy -->
• House minority
leader (D-CA):
Nancy Pelosi --->
Senate Floor Leaders
• Senate majority
leader (R-KY):
Mitch McConnell ---->
• Senate minority
leader (D-NV):
Harry Reid --...
Whips
• Floor leaders are helped by party
whips (majority and minority whips)
• Are a connection between floor leaders
and...
House Whips
• Majority Whip:
Steve Scalise (R-
LA) --->
• Minority Whip:
Steny Hoyer (D-MD)
------>
Senate Whips
• Majority Whip (R-TX):
John Cornyn ---->
• Minority Whip (D-IL):
Dick Durbin -------->
Seniority Rule
• the people who have been in Congress
the longest generally will hold the most
important positions
Expressed Powers of
Congress
(expressed powers are given to Congress
by Constitution)
• Are given sole legislative (law-ma...
Money Powers:
• Tax – money people pay the gov’t to
fund public projects and gov’t expenses
– Can’t tax for personal benef...
The Borrowing Power
• Congress can borrow money to help
pay for gov’t needs
• No limits on how much money they can
borrow ...
The Currency Power
• The power of Congress to print and regulate $$
MONEY $$
• Legal tender - money that someone must acce...
The Commerce Power
• Commerce = trade
• The power of Congress to regulate (or
control) foreign trade and trade between
the...
Other Expressed Powers
of Congress
War Powers - Only Congress can
declare war and raise/maintain armed
forces
Naturalizati...
• Copyrights and Patents
– Copyright - the exclusive right to your own
creative work (good for the life of the
author + 70...
• Judicial Powers of Congress:
– Create federal courts
– Define federal crimes and punishments
• Counterfeiting, piracy an...
Congress’ Implied
Powers
• NECESSARY AND PROPER CLAUSE
– Congress can make laws that are needed
and reasonable in helping ...
McCulloch v. Maryland
• Congress created the Bank of the U.S.
-A Maryland bank thought it wasn’t legal and
tried to tax ba...
Nonlegislative Powers of
Congress
• 1.) Plays a part in amending the
Constitution (2/3 vote…)
• 2.) Electoral Jobs:
– Hous...
Oh, the Scandal!
• Impeach  to accuse/bring charges
against (does NOT mean to remove)
-gov’t officers can be taken out of...
Process of Impeachment
BEGINS in the House: Judiciary Committee
brings the case to the House floor
– Majority vote --> the...
Executive Powers of
Congress
• The Senate ONLY must approve some
things that the executive branch does
– approves presiden...
Investigatory Powers
• Congress can conduct investigations to:
– Gather information for law-making
– Focus public attentio...
QUIZ
• Gerrymandering
• Impeach
• Congressional
oversight
• Whip
• Floor leader
• Speaker of the
House
• Vice President
• ...
How a Bill Becomes a
Law: The House
• Bill - a written idea for a law (a
proposed law)
– Ideas come from members of Congre...
Committees in Congress
• most work in Congress is done is
committees (Congress does group
work!)
– Here they write/edit bi...
1.) Standing Committees
• Permanent committees dealing with
different topics
– Bills are sent here for consideration
• Rep...
House Rules Committee
• Most powerful standing committee in
the House - the “traffic cop”
• Decides which bills make it to...
2.) Select Committees
• Temporary committees formed for a
specific purpose, such as investigation
of the gov’t (ex: commit...
3.) Joint Committees
• Committees that have members of
BOTH the House and the Senate
• Work together in investigating,
man...
The Process
• 1.) The bill is introduced to the House;
numbered and titled by the clerk (ex: H.R. 34)
– Printed and given ...
The Process (Cont’d)
• 3.) Debate in Committee - the bill is
discussed/edited/rewritten, etc. and
either passes or dies in...
Committee Votes on Bills
• Do pass - the bill is passed/agreed to
• Refuse to Report - the bill is ignored
and dies
• Repo...
• 4.)The Rules Committee decides if,
how, and when the bill will be debated
on the floor
• 5.) Debated on the floor of the...
How a Bill Becomes a Law:
The Senate
• 1.) Bill is introduced to the Senate
– Titled and numbered by the clerk
(ex: S. 83)...
A Filibuster
• Filibuster – when a senator talks a bill
“to death” by holding the Senate floor
and not giving it up
• Used...
Cloture Rule
• controls a filibuster by limiting Senate
debate
• Only brought into play in special
circumstances
• If appr...
Types of Votes
• When debate is over, members vote on
passing the bill:
– Voice votes - members say “aye” (yes) or
“no”/“n...
Conference Committee
• BOTH the House and the Senate must
pass the SAME version of a bill
• Conference Committee – group o...
The Bill and the President
• The President can:
– Sign the bill into law
– Veto (reject) the bill
– Put the bill aside for...
Congress
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Congress

  1. 1. CONGRESS Ch.10-12 CONGRESS
  2. 2. Terms and Sessions of Congress • A term of Congress is 2 years long – First term was March 1789-March 1791 • A session of Congress is when they meet during a term (there is 1 session a year) – Sessions begin after Jan. 3rd --> last most of the year
  3. 3. • Adjourn - Congress will dismiss at the end of a session until the next year • Recess - Congress takes a break for a set # of days/weeks to go home • Special session - Congress can be called by the President during emergency situations
  4. 4. The House of Representatives • Made up of 435 members • The seats in the House are apportioned (distributed) based on state populations – The more people your state has, the more representatives you get in the House
  5. 5. Reapportionment • Seats in the House must be redistributed every 10 years (after the census) • Reapportionment Act of 1929: – House “permanently” has 435 seats – Census Bureau decides on the # of seats each state should get
  6. 6. Congressional Elections • Occur on the 1st Tuesday of November on even-numbered years (2004, 2008, 2012, etc.) • Off-Year Elections: occur between presidential elections (2006, 2010, 2014, etc.)
  7. 7. Districts • States are divided up into districts, or sections, and each district votes for ONE member to go to the House – (ex: TN has 9 districts that each vote for one representative = 9 representatives) – Each district must have about the same number of people (about 710,000 people each)
  8. 8. TN Congressional Districts (9)
  9. 9. • We live in District 1 of TN (includes 12 counties) • Our U.S. Representative is Dr. Phil Roe
  10. 10. Gerrymandering • Drawing new districts to give an advantage to the political party in power in the State legislature – Districts can be drawn to contain a larger amount of one party so they win a majority in the district – or districts can be drawn to spread out the opposition so they don’t win the majority in any district
  11. 11. • Constituents – the people a Congressperson represents back home – Remember, members of Congress work for YOU.
  12. 12. Qualifications for House Members • Must be at least 25 years old • Must have been a U.S. citizen for at least 7 years • Must live in the state (and district) they are representing • Representatives have a 2-year term
  13. 13. Capitol Virtual Tour • http://www.aoc.gov/virtual-tours/capitolbldg/to
  14. 14. The Senate • 100 members (2 for every state) • Framers believed the smaller Senate would be more responsible than the House (who could easily be influenced by events) • Given a 6 year term and more qualifications than the House
  15. 15. Electing Senators • Elected by the people during the November elections • Each senator is elected from the whole state (NOT a district)
  16. 16. A Senator’s Term • Senators serve 3x longer than members of the House of Representatives • Continuous body - not all the seats of the Senate are up for grabs every election (only one Senator is elected in each election)
  17. 17. • Senators are more focused on the “big picture” of government, while the House is more personal with the people in their districts • Many presidential candidates come from the Senate
  18. 18. Qualifications for Senators • Have higher standards than House members: – Must be at least 30 years old – Must be a U.S. citizen for 9 years – Must live in the state that they are representing • Senators can be expelled for bad behavior by a 2/3 vote by the Senate
  19. 19. U.S. House of Representatives
  20. 20. U.S. Senate
  21. 21. Classwork/Homework • Write a half-page letter to me expressing to me whether you want to be in the Class House of Representatives or the Class Senate. – What qualifications do you have for this position? – Why should I put you in this chamber?
  22. 22. Congress as a Job Members of Congress are: 1.) lawmakers 2.) representatives 3.) committee members 4.) servants of their constituents 5.) politicians
  23. 23. How Do Members of Congress Represent the People When They Vote? • 4 ways they can vote: 1.) Trustee: vote according to their own judgment and conscience on an issue 2.) Delegate: they vote the way the people from their state would want them to 3.) Partisan: they vote according to what their political parties want 4.) Politico: tries to balance the trustee, delegate, and partisan options.
  24. 24. Congress and Political Parties • Each chamber is controlled by political parties – Party with over half the seats = majority party – Party with less than half the seats = minority party --House currently has a Republican majority (245 R / 188 D) --Senate currently has a Republican majority (54 R /44 D/ 2 Independent)
  25. 25. Speaker of the House • Leader of the House and majority party • Presides over and keeps order in the House <---Today’s Speaker: John Boehner
  26. 26. Speaker of the House (continued) • Applies the rules of the House • Sends bills to various committees • Rules on questions of procedure • Puts motions to a vote • Decides the outcome of votes Speaker is 3rd in line to the presidency
  27. 27. President of the Senate • The Vice-President is the president of the Senate (but not a member) – controls questions, voting, etc. – Cannot speak or debate on the floor; can only vote to break a tie – Today’s VP: Joe Biden ->
  28. 28. President Pro Tempore • Serves as President of the Senate when the VP is absent • Elected by the Senate and majority party • 4th in line to the presidency Today’s Pres. PT: Orrin Hatch (R-UT)----->
  29. 29. Party Officers • Party caucus - meeting of the political parties in House and Senate to choose leaders • Floor Leaders - Most important leaders chosen by their political parties – try to direct floor activities to their political party’s benefit – Two types: majority leader and minority leader (leaders of majority and minority parties)
  30. 30. House Floor Leaders • House majority leader (R-LA): Kevin McCarthy --> • House minority leader (D-CA): Nancy Pelosi --->
  31. 31. Senate Floor Leaders • Senate majority leader (R-KY): Mitch McConnell ----> • Senate minority leader (D-NV): Harry Reid --->
  32. 32. Whips • Floor leaders are helped by party whips (majority and minority whips) • Are a connection between floor leaders and Congress members • Makes sure members are present to vote and get opinions of party members
  33. 33. House Whips • Majority Whip: Steve Scalise (R- LA) ---> • Minority Whip: Steny Hoyer (D-MD) ------>
  34. 34. Senate Whips • Majority Whip (R-TX): John Cornyn ----> • Minority Whip (D-IL): Dick Durbin -------->
  35. 35. Seniority Rule • the people who have been in Congress the longest generally will hold the most important positions
  36. 36. Expressed Powers of Congress (expressed powers are given to Congress by Constitution) • Are given sole legislative (law-making) power (Congress IS the legislative branch)
  37. 37. Money Powers: • Tax – money people pay the gov’t to fund public projects and gov’t expenses – Can’t tax for personal benefit (only public good) – Can’t tax exports (only imports)
  38. 38. The Borrowing Power • Congress can borrow money to help pay for gov’t needs • No limits on how much money they can borrow or what it’s for
  39. 39. The Currency Power • The power of Congress to print and regulate $$ MONEY $$ • Legal tender - money that someone must accept as payment (currency that is worth something) • The federal gov’t can’t spend any money without a law by Congress (CONGRESS SPENDS THE GOV’T’S MONEY) • Appropriate - to assign something for a specific use (ex: to appropriate funds for schools, etc.)
  40. 40. The Commerce Power • Commerce = trade • The power of Congress to regulate (or control) foreign trade and trade between the states (includes physical and electronic goods, even Internet)
  41. 41. Other Expressed Powers of Congress War Powers - Only Congress can declare war and raise/maintain armed forces Naturalization - makes rules on how people become U.S. citizens Postal Power - can create post offices (and what you can and CANNOT mail)
  42. 42. • Copyrights and Patents – Copyright - the exclusive right to your own creative work (good for the life of the author + 70 years) – Patent - the exclusive right to manufacture and sell a new and useful invention(good for 20 years)
  43. 43. • Judicial Powers of Congress: – Create federal courts – Define federal crimes and punishments • Counterfeiting, piracy and felonies on the high seas, offenses against international law, and treason
  44. 44. Congress’ Implied Powers • NECESSARY AND PROPER CLAUSE – Congress can make laws that are needed and reasonable in helping the government do its job
  45. 45. McCulloch v. Maryland • Congress created the Bank of the U.S. -A Maryland bank thought it wasn’t legal and tried to tax bank notes from the Bank of the U.S. -Justice John Marshall upheld the Bank of the U.S., saying it was Necessary and Proper in the Constitution
  46. 46. Nonlegislative Powers of Congress • 1.) Plays a part in amending the Constitution (2/3 vote…) • 2.) Electoral Jobs: – House can choose the president if no one wins the majority of votes (Senate chooses Vice-President)
  47. 47. Oh, the Scandal! • Impeach  to accuse/bring charges against (does NOT mean to remove) -gov’t officers can be taken out of office for “treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors”
  48. 48. Process of Impeachment BEGINS in the House: Judiciary Committee brings the case to the House floor – Majority vote --> the official is impeached • Evidence then SENT to the Senate: official is put on trial -2/3 vote is needed to convict (NO COURTS INVOLVED)
  49. 49. Executive Powers of Congress • The Senate ONLY must approve some things that the executive branch does – approves presidential appointments by majority vote (51+ votes) – approves treaties by a 2/3 vote (67+ votes)
  50. 50. Investigatory Powers • Congress can conduct investigations to: – Gather information for law-making – Focus public attention on an issue – Expose wrong-doings of the Executive Branch (known as congressional oversight)
  51. 51. QUIZ • Gerrymandering • Impeach • Congressional oversight • Whip • Floor leader • Speaker of the House • Vice President • President Pro Tempore • Trustee • Delegate • Partisan • Politico
  52. 52. How a Bill Becomes a Law: The House • Bill - a written idea for a law (a proposed law) – Ideas come from members of Congress, the Executive Branch, and constituents • Resolutions - like bills, but once passed by Congress have the force of law
  53. 53. Committees in Congress • most work in Congress is done is committees (Congress does group work!) – Here they write/edit bills, do research, hold hearings, etc. • 3 types: standing, select, and joint committees
  54. 54. 1.) Standing Committees • Permanent committees dealing with different topics – Bills are sent here for consideration • Reps are assigned to 1-2 committees, senators assigned to 3-4
  55. 55. House Rules Committee • Most powerful standing committee in the House - the “traffic cop” • Decides which bills make it to the floor of the House for debate (schedules them) • Sets time and debate limits
  56. 56. 2.) Select Committees • Temporary committees formed for a specific purpose, such as investigation of the gov’t (ex: committees for impeachment)
  57. 57. 3.) Joint Committees • Committees that have members of BOTH the House and the Senate • Work together in investigating, managing, and writing bills • Ex: conference committee
  58. 58. The Process • 1.) The bill is introduced to the House; numbered and titled by the clerk (ex: H.R. 34) – Printed and given to the members to read • 2.) Speaker sends the bill to the proper committee – Ex: Committee on Agriculture would get bills about agriculture, farming, etc.
  59. 59. The Process (Cont’d) • 3.) Debate in Committee - the bill is discussed/edited/rewritten, etc. and either passes or dies in committee – Subcommittees help do research
  60. 60. Committee Votes on Bills • Do pass - the bill is passed/agreed to • Refuse to Report - the bill is ignored and dies • Report as Amended - the bill is passed with edits • Report Committee bill - committee has written a replacement
  61. 61. • 4.)The Rules Committee decides if, how, and when the bill will be debated on the floor • 5.) Debated on the floor of the House (follows rules/time limits set by Rules Committee)
  62. 62. How a Bill Becomes a Law: The Senate • 1.) Bill is introduced to the Senate – Titled and numbered by the clerk (ex: S. 83) • 2.) Sent to standing committee (read, debated, amended, etc.) • 3.) Sent to floor for debate (no time limit)
  63. 63. A Filibuster • Filibuster – when a senator talks a bill “to death” by holding the Senate floor and not giving it up • Used as a way to block voting on a bill until changes are made to it or it’s dropped
  64. 64. Cloture Rule • controls a filibuster by limiting Senate debate • Only brought into play in special circumstances • If approved by at least 60 senators, it limits debate for no more than 30 hours
  65. 65. Types of Votes • When debate is over, members vote on passing the bill: – Voice votes - members say “aye” (yes) or “no”/“nay” (HR) – Recorded vote - members vote by electronic device (HR) – Standing vote - members stand and are counted (HR) – Roll Call vote- members vote when roll is called (S)
  66. 66. Conference Committee • BOTH the House and the Senate must pass the SAME version of a bill • Conference Committee – group of Reps and Senators that create ONE VERSION of a bill that both houses can agree on
  67. 67. The Bill and the President • The President can: – Sign the bill into law – Veto (reject) the bill – Put the bill aside for 10 days (while Congress is in session) and it becomes a law automatically – put the bill aside for 10 days and if Congress adjourns, the bill dies (pocket veto)
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