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Overview of Congress Differences Between the House and Senate

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Overview of Congress

Overview of Congress

The Congress of the United Stated was established as the legislative branch of the Federal Government; it comprises of the House of Representative with 435 members and the Senate with 100 members. ("The Two Houses Of The United States Congress | The Center On Congress At Indiana University", 2015). The congress can be seen as the institution with the driving force in American government, Cushman (2005) stated, “Congress is the mechanism that connects politics and policy in Washington, DC, and Congress provides the form for discussing all the important issues in the national government” (p. 3).

Differences between the House and Senate

There are key differences between the House and the Senate; in the structure the House has 435 members (apportionment based on state population) and the Senate 100 members (2 from each state); the House has a 2 years term with less flexible rules while the Senate has a 6 years term with more flexible rules; the House has Policy specialists with an emphasis on taxes and revenues, the Senate has Policy generalists with an emphasis on foreign policy; the House has a more centralize power, the House has an equal distribution of power among geographical locations (University of Phoenix,  2011).

Powers granted to Congress under the constitution

“Article I, Section 8, lists the powers of the legislative branch” (University of Phoenix, 2011, p. 181). The most important power granted to Congress by the Constitution is the power or the authority to make laws. A Bill becomes law only once approved by the Senate and the House. There are other powers granted to the two houses listed in the constitutions that include power to declare war, coin money, raise an army and navy, regulate commerce, establish rules of immigration and naturalization, and establish the federal courts and their jurisdictions ("The Powers Of Congress [ushistory.org]", 2014).

Organization of political parties as well as leadership roles such as Speaker of the House and so forth

The eight steps involved in a bill becoming a law

References

Cushman, C. B. (2005). Introduction to the U. S. Congress. New York, New York: M.E. Sharpe, Inc..

The Powers of Congress [ushistory.org]. (2014). Retrieved from http://www.ushistory.org/gov/6a.asp

The Two Houses of the United States Congress | The Center On Congress at Indiana University. (2015). Retrieved from http://centeroncongress.org/two-houses-united-states-congress

University of Phoenix. (2011). Living Democracy 3e Ch06. Retrieved from University of Phoenix, PO website.

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