How a Bill becomes a Law
By Trent Baylor, Jake Cumber
- Both committees referred to Standing Committee, both referred to the Subcommittee, reported to Standing Committee, but The House
The Bill is Reported
Bill being Debated
How the Bill is Voted
There are three methods for voting on a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives:
- Viva Voce (voice vote): The Speaker of the House asks the Representatives who support the bill to say “aye” and those that oppose it say “no.”
- Division: The Speaker of the House asks those Representatives who support the bill to stand up and be counted, and then those who oppose the bill to stand up and be counted.
- Recorded: Representatives record their vote using the electronic voting system. Representatives can vote yes, no, or present (if they don’t want to vote on the bill).
If a majority of the Representatives say or select yes, the bill passes in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill is then certified by the Clerk of the House and delivered to the U.S. Senate.
The Bill is sent to the President
hen a bill reaches the President, he has three choices. He can:
- Sign and pass the Bill—the bill becomes a law.
- Refuse to sign, or veto, the Bill—the Bill is sent back to the U.S. House of Representatives, along with the President’s reasons for the veto. If the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate still believe the bill should become a law, they can hold another vote on the Bill. If two-thirds of the Representatives and Senators support the bill, the President’s veto is overridden and the Bill becomes a law.
- Do nothing (pocket veto)—if Congress is in session, the bill automatically becomes law after 10 days. If Congress is not in session, the Bill does not become a law.