Speaker of the House
a member of the majority party who is chosen by that party and then approved by the entire House. Most powerful leader in HofR. Helps to steer legislation through the House and is in charge of floor debates. 3rd in line for President. Use the power of persuasion to exercise influence
president pro tempore
in charge of the Senate for the time being (usually a senator from the majority party)
representative of an interest group who contacts law makers to influence their policy making.
If Congress is not in session, the President can kill a bill by not signing it for 10 days
The powers of the legislature, and what they are allowed to do
Taxing and Spending- has the power to collect taxes
Regulating Commerce- laws dealing with air traffic, railroads, trucking, radio, tv, air pollution, and the stock market
Foreign Relations and Treaties- Only Congress can declare war. Has the power to create, maintain, and oversee the army and navy. Must approve treaties with other countries.
Process a bill must go through to become a law
1. Idea- comes from a citizen or member of Congress; some are suggested by special-interest groups
2. Introduce the bill to Congress, then it goes to committee
3. Chairperson decides which bills they will discuss and research, then the committee decides what to do with it.
4. If the bill is approved by committee then it goes on to be considered by the full House or Senate on a floor debate
5. They vote on it, and if they pass it the President can sign the bill, making it a law, or he can veto it.
The jobs of the people that work for the committee
standing committees- divided into smaller committees that deal with specialized issues
select committees-created to do a special job for a limited amount of time
joint committees- includes members of both houses
conference committee- helps the House and Senate agree on the details of proposed laws