What accounts for the difference in the speed of which bills pass through Congress?
- How much it costs
- How controversial it is
- How many interest groups are involved
How is a bill introduced in Congress?
-Handed to a clerk and dropped in the "hopper" box
-Announced by a member who is recognized by their preceding officer (Senate).
Who may introduce a bill?
Any member of Congress
From where may a bill come from?
-Any member of Congress
-the Executive branch
What is the purpose of a resolution?
To set rules for the making of a bill
Where do tax bills ("the raising of revenue") originate?
The House of Representatives
What committee in the House deals with taxes and tax policy?
The Ways and Means Committee
What is the difference in the procedure of making bills between the House and the Senate?
No rules need to be made on bill-making in the Senate
How do riders affect the Senate?
They help members get legislation passed that may not normally be passed on it's own otherwise
What is a Christmas Tree Bill?
A bill with multiple riders; a bill overshadowed with the variety of riders added to the bill
What is a Rider?
A non-germane provision added to a bill that is going to be passed.
What is Log Rolling?
When members of Congress work together to get their personal legislation passed; "If you take off this rider, I'll do this for you..."
What is Pork Barrel spending?
An "earmark"; a single piece of legislation that gives tangible benefits to constituents in several districts or states in hope of winning the constituents votes in return.
What is the purpose of a cloture ruling?
It stops a filibuster when bills are being debated over
How many votes are needed to stop a filibuster?
Sixty votes are need in the U.S. Senate
Is a filibuster a part of the Constitution?
Can a cloture rule stop a filibuster?
To override a veto, what fraction of Congress needs to vote?
What is the purpose of rules in bill making?
To govern how a bill will be passed
What is the quorum of the "Committee of the Whole"?
What determines the amount of time a member has to debate a bill on the floor of the House?
The type of rule; usually five minutes is allotted
Who schedules bills for floor debate in the Senate?
The Majority Leader
What are the four methods of voting in the House?
Which methods voting record names of the voter?
Where is the real work of Congress done?
In the Legislative committees in the House and Senate.
What are the four types of Committees in Congress?
Why are standing committees the "important ones"?
They are the only committee that can propose legislation by reporting a bill to the House or Senate.
What number of aids does a House member have?
What number of aids does a member of the Senate have?
What is the major job of the Congressional staff?
To help constituents solve problems and help members get re-elected.
Who is the CRS? [Congressional Research Service, 1914]
Looks up facts, indicates arguments for or against a proposed policy, keeps track of status of major bills of Congress and summarizes each bill introduced.
Who is the GAO? [General Accounting Office, 1921]
Makes recommendations on hot topics of Congress (drug enforcement, Medicare+Medicaid, water pollution, etc.), Investigates agencies and policies
Who is the CBO? [General Budget Office, 1974]
Provides information on the economic effects of Congressional spending on proposed policies and spending programs
Estimates future economic trends, analyzes executive budget, gives members different budget arguments to use in debates.
In what officials is the most of the power in Congress found?
In the Chairmanships and their Subcommittees
How many votes are needed to stop a filibuster in the U.S. Congress today?
Sixteen votes are need in the U.S. Senate