Distribution of representatives among the states based on the population of each state
Wesberry v. Sanders
The Supreme Court invalidated unequal congressional districts, saying that all legislative districts must contain about equal numbers of people. One person one vote.
Necessary and Proper Clause
Congress can make all laws "necessary and proper" for executing its powers
Senate Constitutional Power
Confirm presidential appointments, ratify treaties, and act as a jury in impeachment cases
Party leaders who work with the majority leader or minority leader to count votes beforehand and ensure party discipline on those whose votes are crucial to a bill favored by the party
President Pro Tempore
Officer of the Senate selected by the majority party to act as chair in the absence of the vice president
Congressional committees appointed for a specific purpose, such as the Watergate investigation
House Rules Committee
Determines the rules for debate of each bill, including whether the bill may be amended. This is the most powerful committee in the House
Role played by elected representatives who act as trustees or as delegates, depending on the issue
Senate Leadership and Power
VP, President Pro Tempore, Majority/Minority Leader, Majority/Minority Whip, Party Conferences.
Powers of Congress
Collect taxes, coin money, establish post offices, establish standard measurements, declare war
Markups are Congressional cuts or additions. They include attempts at changing or restricting other laws or administration policy through "riders," or additions that have nothing to do with funds but for which the appropriations bill is a convenient vehicle.
Presidential Action With a Bill
Sign, veto (can be overridden by a 2/3 majority in both houses), bill on dest for 10 days when congress is in session (becomes a law without signature), and pocket veto (congress out of session within 10 days).
The effort by congress, through hearings, investigations, and other techniques, to exercise control over the activities of executive agencies
Independent nonpartisan federal agency that makes the executive branch accountable to Congress and the government accountable to citizens of the United States
The inability of the government to act because rival parties control different parts of the government
The redrawing of congressional and other legislative district lines following the census, to accommodate population shifts and keep districts as equal as possible in population.
The drawing of legislative district boundaries to benefit a party, group, or incumbent
House Constitutional Power
Impeach, initiate revenue bills, elect president in electoral college tie.
A joint committee appointed to resolve differences in the senate and house versions of the same bill
A device by which any member of the House, after a committee has had the bill for thirty days, may petition to have it brought to the floor
An official who is expected to vote independently based on his or her judgment of the circumstances
A theory based off the assumption that there are so many conflicting pressures members of congress vote as they please.
Appropriation of government spending for localized projects secured primarily to bring money to a representative's district.
For a committee to set aside a bill without considering it. Can be overridden by a discharge petition
Bill Introduction Process
The clerk assigns a number to each bill. The President of Senate or Speaker of the House assign the bill to a committee.
War Powers Act of 1973
Requires that soldiers sent into military action overseas by the President be brought back within sixty days unless Congress approves the action.
A procedure to keep the Senate going during a filibuster in which the disputed bill is shelved temporarily so that the Senate can get on with other business
Congressional Budget Office (CBO)
This assesses the economic implications and likely costs of proposed federal programs
Congressional Research Service (CRS)
Staff agency looks up facts and indicate the arguments for and against proposed policy.