The US Constitution

Article One deals with the Legislative branch: Regan Brown

Qualifications of Congressmen & Job Expectations

Representatives: must be 25 years old, citizens of the United States for 7 years, and residents of the state they represent.


Senate: must be at least 30 years old, they must have been citizens of the United States for 9 years, and they must be residents of the state they represent.

Meeting times of Congress

Due to the 20th Amendment, ratified in 1933, has changed the date of the opening of the regular session of Congress to January 3.

Powers Granted to the Congress

  1. Revenue
  2. Borrowing
  3. Commerce
  4. Naturalization & Bankruptcy
  5. Currency
  6. Counterfeiting
  7. Post Office
  8. Copyrights & Patents
  9. Courts
  10. Piracy
  11. Declare War
  12. Army
  13. Navy
  14. Rules for Armed Forces
  15. Militia
  16. National Guard
  17. Nation's Capital
  18. Elastic Clause

Rules of Congress

  1. Organization: Until 1969 Congress acted as the sole judge of qualifications.
  2. Rules: each house sets its own rules.
  3. Journals: a complete official record of everything said on the floor.
  4. Adjournment: Neither house may adjourn for more than three days.

How a Bill becomes a Law

A committee made up of the House of Representatives come up with the bill and so do the Senate and then they form together to finalize it. A bill may become a law only by passing both houses of Congress and by being signed by the president. If the president disapproves, or vetoes the bill, it is returned to the house where it originated, along with a written statement of the president's objections. If two-thirds of each house approves the bill after the president vetoed it, it becomes a law. In voting to override a president's veto, the votes of all members of Congress must be recorded in the journals or official reports. If the president does not sign or veto the bill within 10 days (excluding Sundays), it becomes a law. However, if Congress has adjourned during this 10-day period, the bill does not become law. This is known as a "pocket veto".