3.3e Consideration by Senate
After the bill has passed the House it is sent to the Senate. Here it is referred to the appropriate standing committee. The passage of the bill through the Senate is a little different from that in the House. The Senate does not use the committee of the whole except to consider treaties. It has no elaborate system of special days to consider designated types of legislation. It has only two calendars: the general calendar of Business and the Executive Calendar listing treaties and nominations.
A distinguishing feature of Senate procedure is the rule and
procedure permitting senators to speak as long as they please on
the matter under consideration. This sometimes results in the practice
of filibustering, in which there is prolonged debate by a
person in the minority to prevent the majority from passing a bill.
The Senate is thus forced to use certain methods to limit debates
such as the Two-speech Rule under which no member
can speak more than twice on a single subject on the same legislative
The Cloture rule, known as Rule 22,
was also adopted in 1917, by which 16 senators can petition the Senate
to close debate being delayed by a filibuster. This petition has to
be approved by two thirds of the senators voting. Finally debate on
major bills can be brought to a close by unanimous consent agreements
that a final vote will be taken at a set hour. Riders or
amendments totally unrelated the bill, may also be passed, as the
Senate does not restrict the nature of amendments to a bill.
3.1 Powers of Congress
3.2 The Organization of Congress 3.3
How a Bill becomes a Law
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