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What are the functions of Congress?
- present bills
- represent their constituents
- gives advice and consent
- ratifties treaties
- makes a budget
What are the different styles of representation?
- Delegate: elected Rep. acts in accord to the wishes of constituents
- Trustee: elected Rep. that uses her/his own judgement
- these forms of representation are from politician and philosopher Edmund Burke
What is bicameralism?
- The division of power between the House and Senate
- They compromise in bills
The House of Representatives
- Term: 2 yrs
- Elections: all elected in Nov. of even # yrs- by the ppl
- # per state: varies by pop.
- total members: 435
- min. age: 25
- unique pwrs: origination of revenue bills, bringing of impeachment charges
- Term: 6yrs
- Elections: 1/3 elected in Nov. of even # yrs- by the ppl
- # per state: 2
- total members: 100
- min. age: 30
- unique pwrs: trial of impeachment cases, advice and consent for treaties
Rules and Norms in the House and Senate
Reciprocity: members of Congress to the judgement on mostly minor technical bills (matter specialists)
Race, Gender, and occupation in Congress
- Descriptive rep: (statistical rep) the degree to which the composition of a rep. body reflects the demographic comp. of the pop. as a whole
- women and racial minorities are underrepresented in Congress
- hispanics less represented than blacks
- Congress has a better education, come from wealthy families, and are the upper class
How are members of Congress elected?
- The Incumbency Factor: incumbents win in high numbers, not competitive, win due to redistributing
- Redistricting: the redrawing of congressional district lines within a state to ensure roughly = pop. w/in each district
- -> partisan: advantage of the redistributing process
- Gerrymandering: draw lines to help candidatesor party win elections
- majority-minority districts: districts drawn to ensure that a racial minority makes up the majority of votes
- Speaker- John Boehner (under VP in Pres. succession)
- Majority and Minority leader under speaker
- (VP and Dean of Congress)
- Pres. pro-tempor = majority leader