2 Learning ObjectivesExplain the major functions of Congress, including lawmaking, representation, constituent service, oversight, public education, and conflict resolution.Explain the difference between the trustee and instructed-delegate views of representation.
3 Learning ObjectivesCompare the basic differences between the House of Representatives and the Senate.Explain the process and significance of the filibuster.Explain redistricting and gerrymandering.
4 Learning ObjectivesExplain the types of committees in Congress and what impact committees have on the legislative process:Standing committees;Select committees;Joint committees; andConference committees.
5 Learning ObjectivesDescribe the seniority system and its implications for committee work, leadership, and legislating.Identify the leadership positions in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, including the Speaker of the House and the majority and minority leaders of both the House and Senate.
6 Learning ObjectivesProvide the basic steps by which a bill becomes a law.Explain the different kinds of vetoes and articulate the roles that congress plays relative to the president.Explain how the federal budget is developed and the role played by the Office of Management and Budget (OM).
7 The Functions of Congress LawmakingRepresentationService to ConstituentsOversightPublic EducationConflict-Resolution
8 The Powers of Congress Enumerated Powers Necessary and Proper Clause Checks on Congress
9 House-Senate Differences Size and RulesDebate and FilibusteringPrestige
15 Congressional Apportionment Reapportionment : allocation of seats in the House to each state after each census.Redistricting: redrawing of the boundaries of districts within each state.Gerrymandering: legislative boundary-drawing tactics by dominant state party that maximizes its electoral strength at the expense of the minority party.
28 How Members of Congress Decide Party membership is a major determinant of how members vote, but it is not the only factor at work.The Conservative Coalition“Crossing over”Logrolling, Earmarks, and “Pork”
29 How a Bill Becomes a LawFor a bill to become law, it must pass through both houses of CongressHouse of Representatives:IntroductionCommittee StageRules CommitteeFloor Action
30 How a Bill Becomes LawThe procedure in the Senate is similar, but there are no special rules such as those set by the House Rules Committee; the leadership schedules action.
31 How a Bill Becomes Law Conference committee The House and Senate vote on the bill as reported by the conference committee.If it conference version passes both chambers, it is sent to the President.If there are differences between the House and Senate versions of the bill, the bill will be sent to a conference committee.
35 Web LinksUnited States Congress: To view the schedule of activities taking place in Congress: andCongressional Budget Office: provides Congress with nonpartisan analyses for economic and budget decisions:Roll Call: the newspaper of the Capitol that provides an inside view into what’s going on in Washington, D.C.:
36 What If…Pork Were Banned? Earmark spending, or “pork”, directly helps constituents by adding legislation into projects that create more jobs and generate more profits locally.Earmarks have increased substantially: In 2009 Congress approved 10,160 earmarks worth $19.6 billion.
37 What If…Pork Were Banned? Because Congress does not have an unlimited amount of time for debate, eliminating pork might reduce federal spending.Most spending projects coming before Congress would have to pass through the normal budget process.
38 What If…Pork Were Banned? The ban may impact logrolling, which could result in less legislation passing Congress.It could reduce the influence of lobbyists.Candidates may receive fewer campaign contributions.
39 You Can Make a Difference: Why Should You Care About Congress? Legislation passed by Congress can directly impact your life.You can make a difference by voting for representatives that reflect your interests.
40 You Can Make a Difference: Why Should You Care About Congress? To find out who your members of Congress:House of Representatives:U.S. Senate:To track the voting records of members of Congress: