The composition and functions of the united states congress

Congress in with Speaker of the House John W. At the beginning of each two-year Congress, the House of Representatives elects a speaker.

The composition and functions of the united states congress

So help me God. As it is for federal employees, congressional retirement is funded through taxes and the participants' contributions. Under FERS, senators contribute 1. The amount of a senator's pension depends on the years of service and the average of the highest three years of their salary.

The composition and functions of the united states congress

Far more senators have been nominees for the presidency than representatives. Furthermore, three senators Warren HardingJohn F. Kennedyand Barack Obama have been elected president while serving in the Senate, while only one Representative James Garfield has been elected president while serving in the House, though Garfield was also a Senator-designate at the time of his election to the Presidency, having been chosen by the Ohio Legislature to fill a Senate vacancy.

Seniority in the United States Senate According to the convention of Senate seniority, the senator with the longer tenure in each state is known as the "senior senator"; the other is the "junior senator". This convention does not have official significance, though seniority generally is a factor in the selection of physical offices.

The most-junior "senior senator" is Bill Cassidy of Louisianawho was sworn in January 3,and is currently 79th in seniority, ahead of senator John Neely Kennedy who was sworn in January 3,and is currently 95th in seniority.

The Organization of Congress. Congress consists of senators The function of the conference committee is to iron out the differences. Members of both the House and Senate who have worked on the bill in their respective standing committees serve on the conference committee. Segregation in the United States Breaking Down . The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States.. The composition and powers of the Senate are established by Article One of the United States Constitution. The Senate is composed of senators, each of whom represents a single state in . Obstructing the work of Congress is a crime under federal law, and is known as contempt of Congress. Each house of Congress has the power to cite individuals for contempt, but may not impose any punishment.

With the th CongressJon Kyl of Arizonawho was sworn in on September 4,will become the most-junior "senior senator", ahead of senator-elect Kyrsten Sinemawho will be sworn in January 3, Expulsion and other disciplinary actions[ edit ] The Senate may expel a senator by a two-thirds vote.

Fifteen senators have been expelled in the Senate's history: William Blountfor treason, inand fourteen in and for supporting the Confederate secession. The Senate has also censured and condemned senators; censure requires only a simple majority and does not remove a senator from office.

Some senators have opted to withdraw from their re-election races rather than face certain censure or expulsion, such as Robert Torricelli in Majority and minority parties[ edit ] The "majority party" is the political party that either has a majority of seats or can form a coalition or caucus with a majority of seats; if two or more parties are tied, the vice president's affiliation determines which party is the majority party.

The next-largest party is known as the minority party. The president pro tempore, committee chairs, and some other officials are generally from the majority party; they have counterparts for instance, the "ranking members" of committees in the minority party.

Independents and members of third parties so long as they do not caucus with or support either of the larger parties are not considered in determining which is the majority party. Seating[ edit ] A typical Senate desk At one end of the chamber of the Senate is a dais from which the presiding officer presides.

The lower tier of the dais is used by clerks and other officials. One hundred desks are arranged in the chamber in a semicircular pattern and are divided by a wide central aisle.

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The Democratic Party traditionally sits to the presiding officer's right, and the Republican Party traditionally sits to the presiding officer's left, regardless of which party has a majority of seats.

Each senator chooses a desk based on seniority within the party.

The composition and functions of the united states congress

By custom, the leader of each party sits in the front row along the center aisle. Forty-eight of the desks date back towhen the Senate chamber was reconstructed after the original contents were destroyed in the Burning of Washington. Further desks of similar design were added as new states entered the Union.

Except for the President of the Senate, the Senate elects its own officers, [1] who maintain order and decorum, manage and schedule the legislative and executive business of the Senate, and interpret the Senate's rules, practices and precedents.

Many non-member officers are also hired to run various day-to-day functions of the Senate. He or she may vote in the Senate ex officiofor he or she is not an elected member of the Senate in the case of a tie, but is not required to.

Since the s, Vice Presidents have presided over few Senate debates. Instead, they have usually presided only on ceremonial occasions, such as swearing in new senators, joint sessions, or at times to announce the result of significant legislation or nomination, or when a tie vote on an important issue is anticipated.

Mistretta v. United States :: U.S. () :: Justia US Supreme Court Center

The Constitution authorizes the Senate to elect a president pro tempore Latin for "president for a time" who presides over the chamber in the vice president's absence, and is, by custom, the senator of the majority party with the longest record of continuous service.

Frequently, freshmen senators newly elected members are asked to preside so that they may become accustomed to the rules and procedures of the body. The powers of the presiding officer of the Senate are far less extensive than those of the Speaker of the House. The presiding officer calls on senators to speak by the rules of the Senate, the first senator who rises is recognized ; ruling on points of order objections by senators that a rule has been breached, subject to appeal to the whole chamber ; and announcing the results of votes.The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote.

United States Constitution: Primary Documents of American History (Virtual Services and Programs, Digital Reference Section, Library of Congress). What the functions of Congress are; 2.

What congressional oversight is, and the meanings of “police patrol oversight” and “fire alarm oversight?” All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States (Article 1, section 1, U.S.

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Constitution). Although shaping policy is certainly the most. This graph shows the composition of the U.S. Senate by political party affiliation since The th Congress consists of 46 Democratic and 52 Republican senators.

Miscellaneous References

The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the Federal government of the United legislature consists of two chambers: the House of Representatives and the Senate.. The Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. Both senators and representatives are chosen through direct election, though vacancies in the Senate may be filled by a gubernatorial.

United States, officially United States of America, abbreviated U.S. or U.S.A., byname America, country in North America, a federal republic of 50 states.

Besides the 48 conterminous states that occupy the middle latitudes of the continent, the United States includes the state of Alaska, at the northwestern extreme of North America, and the island state of Hawaii, in the mid-Pacific Ocean.

• U.S. Senate - composition by political party affiliation | Timeline