The Senate

By Aicha Ajouz

Congressional Specifics & Responsibilities


In the Senate, there are a 100 members who are elected for 6 year terms. There are two senators in each state who are elected at large.


The Senate writes bills and votes on them. The senators confirm nominations (federal judges, president, cabinet members). The Senate also ratifies treaties.

Congressional Leadership Positions

-Vice President

-presides over Senate (only votes to break tie in Senate)

-President Pro Tempore (from majority party usually most senior member)

-presides over Senate when vice president is not there

-Majority leader (elected by party leader)

-Majority whips

-Minority leader

-Minority whip

Congressional Qualifications & Benefits


To become a senator you must be at least 30 years old. You must have been a U.S. citizen for 9 years and you must be a legal resident of state.

Benefits (as of 2002)

-Salary $150 000 (today $174 000)

-"Franking Privilege"-no paying for postage

-Income tax deductions which help maintain 2 homes: D.C. and Home

-Eligibility for pensions of $150 000 a year

-Free from arrest while attending Congress except if felony or treason is committed

-May not be sued for anything they say on House or Senate floor