[House Document 110-49]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]




110th Congress                                                 Document
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                     110-49
======================================================================
 
                         HOW OUR LAWS ARE MADE

                          Revised and Updated

                 By John V. Sullivan, Parliamentarian,

                     U.S. House of Representatives




                 Presented by Mr. Brady of Pennsylvania

                 July 24, 2007.--Ordered to be printed


    H. Con. Res. 190                        Agreed to July 25, 2007

                       One Hundred Tenth Congress

                                 of the

                        United States of America

                          AT THE FIRST SESSION

Begun and held at the City of Washington on Thursday, the fourth day of 
                    January, two thousand and seven

                         Concurrent Resolution

    Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate 
concurring),

SECTION 1. HOW OUR LAWS ARE MADE.

    (a) In General.--An edition of the brochure entitled ``How 
Our Laws Are Made'', as revised under the direction of the 
Parliamentarian of the House of Representatives in consultation 
with the Parliamentarian of the Senate, shall be printed as a 
House document under the direction of the Joint Committee on 
Printing.
    (b) Additional Copies.--In addition to the usual number, 
there shall be printed the lesser of--
          (1) 550,000 copies of the document, of which 440,000 
        copies shall be for the use of the House of 
        Representatives, 100,000 copies shall be for the use of 
        the Senate, and 10,000 copies shall be for the use of 
        the Joint Committee on Printing; or
          (2) such number of copies of the document as does not 
        exceed a total production and printing cost of 
        $479,247, with distribution to be allocated in the same 
        proportion as described in paragraph (1), except that 
        in no case shall the number of copies be less than 1 
        per Member of Congress.

Attest:
                                        Lorraine C. Miller,
                             Clerk of the House of Representatives.

Attest:
                                             Nancy Erickson
                                           Secretary of the Senate.
                           EARLIER PRINTINGS

                              ----------                              

                                                                  Number
        Document                                               of copies

1953, H. Doc. 210, 83d Cong. (H. Res. 251 by Mr. Reed)........    36,771

1953, H. Doc. 210, 83d Cong. (H. Res. 251 by Mr. Reed)........   122,732

1955, H. Doc. 210, 83d Cong. (H. Con. Res. 93 by Mr. Willis)..   167,728

1956, H. Doc. 451, 84th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 251 by Mr. Willis)    30,385

1956, S. Doc. 152, 84th Cong. (S. Res. 293 by Senator Kennedy)   182,358

1959, H. Doc. 156, 86th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 95 by Mr. 
    Lesinski).................................................   228,591

1961, H. Doc. 136, 87th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 81 by Mr. Willis).   211,797

1963, H. Doc. 103, 88th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 108 by Mr. Willis)    14,000

1965, H. Doc. 103, 88th Cong. (S. Res. 9 by Senator Mansfield)   196,414

1965, H. Doc. 164, 89th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 165 by Mr. Willis)   319,766

1967, H. Doc. 125, 90th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 221 by Mr. Willis)   324,821

1969, H. Doc. 127, 91st Cong. (H. Con. Res. 192 by Mr. Celler)   174,500

1971, H. Doc. 144, 92d Cong. (H. Con. Res. 206 by Mr. Celler).   292,000

1972, H. Doc. 323, 92d Cong. (H. Con. Res. 530 by Mr. Celler).   292,500

1974, H. Doc. 377, 93d Cong. (H. Con. Res. 201 by Mr. Rodino).   246,000

1976, H. Doc. 509, 94th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 540 by Mr. Rodino)   282,400

1978, H. Doc. 259, 95th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 190 by Mr. Rodino)   298,000

1980, H. Doc. 352, 96th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 95 by Mr. Rodino).   298,000

1981, H. Doc. 120, 97th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 106 by Mr. Rodino)   298,000

1985, H. Doc. 158, 99th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 203 by Mr. Rodino)   298,000

1989, H. Doc. 139, 101st Cong. (H. Con. Res. 193 by Mr. 
    Brooks)...................................................   323,000

1997, H. Doc. 14, 105th Cong. (S. Con. Res. 62 by Senator 
    Warner)...................................................   387,000

2000, H. Doc. 197, 106th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 221 by Mr. 
    Thomas)...................................................   550,000

2003, H. Doc. 93, 108th Cong. (H. Con. Res. 139 by Mr. Ney)...   550,000
                                FOREWORD

                              ----------                              


    First published in 1953 by the Committee on the Judiciary 
of the House of Representatives, this 24th edition of ``How Our 
Laws Are Made'' reflects changes in congressional procedures 
since the 23rd edition, which was revised and updated in 2003. 
This edition was prepared by the Office of the Parliamentarian 
of the U.S. House of Representatives in consultation with the 
Office of the Parliamentarian of the U.S. Senate.
    The framers of our Constitution created a strong federal 
government resting on the concept of ``separation of powers.''
    In Article I, Section 1, of the Constitution, the 
Legislative Branch is created by the following language: ``All 
legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress 
of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House 
of Representatives.'' Article I, Section 5, of the Constitution 
provides that: ``Each House may determine the Rules of its 
Proceedings, . . .''.
    Upon this elegant, yet simple, grant of legislative powers 
and rulemaking authority has grown an exceedingly complex and 
evolving legislative process--much of it unique to each House 
of Congress. To aid the public's understanding of the 
legislative process, we have revised this popular brochure. For 
more detailed information on how our laws are made and for the 
text of the laws themselves, the reader should refer to 
government internet sites or pertinent House and Senate 
publications available from the Superintendent of Documents, 
U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402.

                                                  John V. Sullivan

                    T A B L E  O F  C O N T E N T S

                              ----------                              
                                                                   Page
  I.  Introduction....................................................1
 II.  The Congress....................................................1
III.  Sources of Legislation..........................................4
 IV.  Forms of Congressional Action...................................5
          Bills..................................................     5
          Joint Resolutions......................................     6
          Concurrent Resolutions.................................     7
          Simple Resolutions.....................................     8
  V.  Introduction and Referral to Committee..........................8
 VI.  Consideration by Committee.....................................11
          Committee Meetings.....................................    11
          Public Hearings........................................    12
          Markup.................................................    14
          Final Committee Action.................................    14
          Points of Order With Respect to Committee Hearing 
              Procedure..........................................    15
VII.  Reported Bills.................................................15
          Contents of Reports....................................    16
          Filing of Reports......................................    18
          Availability of Reports and Hearings...................    18
VIII. Legislative Oversight by Standing Committees...................18

 IX.  Calendars......................................................19
          Union Calendar.........................................    19
          House Calendar.........................................    20
          Private Calendar.......................................    20
          Calendar of Motions to Discharge Committees............    20
  X.  Obtaining Consideration of Measures............................20
          Unanimous Consent......................................    21
          Special Resolution or ``Rule''.........................    21
          Consideration of Measures Made in Order by Rule 
              Reported From the Committee on Rules...............    22
          Motion to Discharge Committee..........................    22
          Motion to Suspend the Rules............................    23
          Calendar Wednesday.....................................    24
          District of Columbia Business..........................    24
          Questions of Privilege.................................    24
          Privileged Matters.....................................    25
 XI.  Consideration and Debate.......................................25
          Committee of the Whole.................................    26
          Second Reading.........................................    27
          Amendments and the Germaneness Rule....................    28
          Congressional Earmarks.................................    28
          The Committee ``Rises''................................    28
          House Action...........................................    29
          Motion to Recommit.....................................    29
          Quorum Calls and Rollcalls.............................    30
          Voting.................................................    31
          Electronic Voting......................................    33
          Pairing of Members.....................................    33
          System of Lights and Bells.............................    33
          Recess Authority.......................................    34
          Live Coverage of Floor Proceedings.....................    34
XII.  Congressional Budget Process...................................35
XIII. Engrossment and Message to Senate..............................36

XIV.  Senate Action..................................................37
          Committee Consideration................................    37
          Chamber Procedure......................................    38
 XV.  Final Action on Amended Bill...................................41
          Request for a Conference...............................    42
          Authority of Conferees.................................    43
          Meetings and Action of Conferees.......................    44
          Conference Reports.....................................    46
          Custody of Papers......................................    48
XVI.  Bill Originating in Senate.....................................49
XVII. Enrollment.....................................................49

XVIII.Presidential Action............................................50
     
          Veto Message...........................................    51
          Line Item Veto.........................................    52
XIX.  Publication....................................................52
          Slip Laws..............................................    53
          Statutes at Large......................................    53
          United States Code.....................................    54
Appendix.........................................................    55
                         HOW OUR LAWS ARE MADE

                            I. INTRODUCTION

    This brochure is intended to provide a basic outline of the 
numerous steps of our federal lawmaking process from the source 
of an idea for a legislative proposal through its publication 
as a statute. The legislative process is a matter about which 
every person should be well informed in order to understand and 
appreciate the work of Congress.
    It is hoped that this guide will enable readers to gain a 
greater understanding of the federal legislative process and 
its role as one of the foundations of our representative 
system. One of the most practical safeguards of the American 
democratic way of life is this legislative process with its 
emphasis on the protection of the minority, allowing ample 
opportunity to all sides to be heard and make their views 
known. The fact that a proposal cannot become a law without 
consideration and approval by both Houses of Congress is an 
outstanding virtue of our bicameral legislative system. The 
open and full discussion provided under the Constitution often 
results in the notable improvement of a bill by amendment 
before it becomes law or in the eventual defeat of an 
inadvisable proposal.
    As the majority of laws originate in the House of 
Representatives, this discussion will focus principally on the 
procedure in that body.

                            II. THE CONGRESS
    Article I, Section 1, of the United States Constitution, 
provides that:

    All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a 
Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate 
and House of Representatives.

    The Senate is composed of 100 Members--two from each state, 
regardless of population or area--elected by the people in 
accordance with the 17th Amendment to the Constitution. The 
17th Amendment changed the former constitutional method under 
which Senators were chosen by the respective state 
legislatures. A Senator must be at least 30 years of age, have 
been a citizen of the United States for nine years, and, when 
elected, be an inhabitant of the state for which the Senator is 
chosen. The term of office is six years and one-third of the 
total membership of the Senate is elected every second year. 
The terms of both Senators from a particular state are arranged 
so that they do not terminate at the same time. Of the two 
Senators from a state serving at the same time the one who was 
elected first--or if both were elected at the same time, the 
one elected for a full term--is referred to as the ``senior'' 
Senator from that state. The other is referred to as the 
``junior'' Senator. If a Senator dies or resigns during the 
term, the governor of the state must call a special election 
unless the state legislature has authorized the governor to 
appoint a successor until the next election, at which time a 
successor is elected for the balance of the term. Most of the 
state legislatures have granted their governors the power of 
appointment.
    Each Senator has one vote.
    As constituted in the 110th Congress, the House of 
Representatives is composed of 435 Members elected every two 
years from among the 50 states, apportioned to their total 
populations. The permanent number of 435 was established by 
federal law following the Thirteenth Decennial Census in 1910, 
in accordance with Article I, Section 2, of the Constitution. 
This number was increased temporarily to 437 for the 87th 
Congress to provide for one Representative each for Alaska and 
Hawaii. The Constitution limits the number of Representatives 
to not more than one for every 30,000 of population. Under a 
former apportionment in one state, a particular Representative 
represented more than 900,000 constituents, while another in 
the same state was elected from a district having a population 
of only 175,000. The Supreme Court has since held 
unconstitutional a Missouri statute permitting a maximum 
population variance of 3.1 percent from mathematical equality. 
The Court ruled in Kirkpatrick v. Preisler, 394 U.S. 526 
(1969), that the variances among the districts were not 
unavoidable and, therefore, were invalid. That decision was an 
interpretation of the Court's earlier ruling in Wesberry v. 
Sanders, 376 U.S. 1 (1964), that the Constitution requires that 
``as nearly as is practicable one man's vote in a congressional 
election is to be worth as much as another's.''
    A law enacted in 1967 abolished all ``at-large'' elections 
except in those less populous states entitled to only one 
Representative. An ``at-large'' election is one in which a 
Representative is elected by the voters of the entire state 
rather than by the voters in a congressional district within 
the state.
    A Representative must be at least 25 years of age, have 
been a citizen of the United States for seven years, and, when 
elected, be an inhabitant of the state in which the 
Representative is chosen. Unlike the Senate where a successor 
may be appointed by a governor when a vacancy occurs during a 
term, if a Representative dies or resigns during the term, the 
executive authority of the state must call a special election 
pursuant to state law for the choosing of a successor to serve 
for the unexpired portion of the term.
    Each Representative has one vote.
    In addition to the Representatives from each of the States, 
a Resident Commissioner from the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico 
and Delegates from the District of Columbia, American Samoa, 
Guam, and the Virgin Islands are elected pursuant to federal 
law. The Resident Commissioner, elected for a four-year term, 
and the Delegates, elected for two-year terms, have most of the 
prerogatives of Representatives including the right to vote in 
committees to which they are elected, the right to vote in the 
Committee of the Whole (subject to an automatic revote in the 
House whenever a recorded vote has been decided by a margin 
within which the votes cast by the Delegates and the Resident 
Commissioner have been decisive), and the right to preside over 
the Committee of the Whole. However, the Resident Commissioner 
and the Delegates do not have the right to vote on matters 
before the House.
    Under the provisions of Section 2 of the 20th Amendment to 
the Constitution, Congress must assemble at least once every 
year, at noon on the third day of January, unless by law they 
appoint a different day.
    A Congress lasts for two years, commencing in January of 
the year following the biennial election of Members. A Congress 
is divided into two regular sessions.
    The Constitution authorizes each House to determine the 
rules of its proceedings. Pursuant to that authority, the House 
of Representatives adopts its rules anew each Congress, 
ordinarily on the opening day of the first session. The Senate 
considers itself a continuing body and operates under 
continuous standing rules that it amends from time to time.
    Unlike some other parliamentary bodies, both the Senate and 
the House of Representatives have equal legislative functions 
and powers with certain exceptions. For example, the 
Constitution provides that only the House of Representatives 
may originate revenue bills. By tradition, the House also 
originates appropriation bills. As both bodies have equal 
legislative powers, the designation of one as the ``upper'' 
House and the other as the ``lower'' House is not applicable.
    The chief function of Congress is the making of laws. In 
addition, the Senate has the function of advising and 
consenting to treaties and to certain nominations by the 
President. Under the 25th Amendment to the Constitution, a vote 
in each House is required to confirm the President's nomination 
for Vice-President when there is a vacancy in that office. In 
the matter of impeachments, the House of Representatives 
presents the charges--a function similar to that of a grand 
jury--and the Senate sits as a court to try the impeachment. No 
impeached person may be removed without a two-thirds vote of 
those Senators voting, a quorum being present. The Congress 
under the Constitution and by statute also plays a role in 
presidential elections. Both Houses meet in joint session on 
the sixth day of January following a presidential election, 
unless by law they appoint a different day, to count the 
electoral votes. If no candidate receives a majority of the 
total electoral votes, the House of Representatives, each state 
delegation having one vote, chooses the President from among 
the three candidates having the largest number of electoral 
votes. The Senate, each Senator having one vote, chooses the 
Vice President from the two candidates having the largest 
number of votes for that office.

                      III. SOURCES OF LEGISLATION
    Sources of ideas for legislation are unlimited and proposed 
drafts of bills originate in many diverse quarters. Primary 
among these is the idea and draft conceived by a Member. This 
may emanate from the election campaign during which the Member 
had promised, if elected, to introduce legislation on a 
particular subject. The Member may have also become aware after 
taking office of the need for amendment to or repeal of an 
existing law or the enactment of a statute in an entirely new 
field.
    In addition, the Member's constituents, either as 
individuals or through citizen groups, may avail themselves of 
the right to petition and transmit their proposals to the 
Member. The right to petition is guaranteed by the First 
Amendment to the Constitution. Similarly, state legislatures 
may ``memorialize'' Congress to enact specified federal laws by 
passing resolutions to be transmitted to the House and Senate 
as memorials. If favorably impressed by the idea, a Member may 
introduce the proposal in the form in which it has been 
submitted or may redraft it. In any event, a Member may consult 
with the Legislative Counsel of the House or the Senate to 
frame the ideas in suitable legislative language and form.
    In modern times, the ``executive communication'' has become 
a prolific source of legislative proposals. The communication 
is usually in the form of a message or letter from a member of 
the President's Cabinet, the head of an independent agency, or 
the President himself, transmitting a draft of a proposed bill 
to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the 
President of the Senate. Despite the structure of separation of 
powers, Article II, Section 3, of the Constitution imposes an 
obligation on the President to report to Congress from time to 
time on the ``State of the Union'' and to recommend for 
consideration such measures as the President considers 
necessary and expedient. Many of these executive communications 
follow on the President's message to Congress on the state of 
the Union. The communication is then referred to the standing 
committee or committees having jurisdiction of the subject 
matter of the proposal. The chairman or the ranking minority 
member of the relevant committee often introduces the bill, 
either in the form in which it was received or with desired 
changes. This practice is usually followed even when the 
majority of the House and the President are not of the same 
political party, although there is no constitutional or 
statutory requirement that a bill be introduced to effectuate 
the recommendations.
    The most important of the regular executive communications 
is the annual message from the President transmitting the 
proposed budget to Congress. The President's budget proposal, 
together with testimony by officials of the various branches of 
the government before the Appropriations Committees of the 
House and Senate, is the basis of the several appropriation 
bills that are drafted by the Committees on Appropriations of 
the House and Senate.
    The drafting of statutes is an art that requires great 
skill, knowledge, and experience. In some instances, a draft is 
the result of a study covering a period of a year or more by a 
commission or committee designated by the President or a member 
of the Cabinet. The Administrative Procedure Act and the 
Uniform Code of Military Justice are two examples of enactments 
resulting from such studies. In addition, congressional 
committees sometimes draft bills after studies and hearings 
covering periods of a year or more.

                   IV. FORMS OF CONGRESSIONAL ACTION
    The work of Congress is initiated by the introduction of a 
proposal in one of four forms: the bill, the joint resolution, 
the concurrent resolution, and the simple resolution. The most 
customary form used in both Houses is the bill. During the 
109th Congress (2005-2006), 10,558 bills and 143 joint 
resolutions were introduced in both Houses. Of the total number 
introduced, 6,436 bills and 102 joint resolutions originated in 
the House of Representatives.
    For the purpose of simplicity, this discussion will be 
confined generally to the procedure on a measure of the House 
of Representatives, with brief comment on each of the forms.
                                 bills
    A bill is the form used for most legislation, whether 
permanent or temporary, general or special, public or private.
    The form of a House bill is as follows:
                                 A BILL
           For the establishment, etc. [as the title may be].
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United 
          States of America in Congress assembled, That, etc.

    The enacting clause was prescribed by law in 1871 and is 
identical in all bills, whether they originate in the House of 
Representatives or in the Senate.
    Bills may originate in either the House of Representatives 
or the Senate with one notable exception. Article I, Section 7, 
of the Constitution provides that all bills for raising revenue 
shall originate in the House of Representatives but that the 
Senate may propose, or concur with, amendments. By tradition, 
general appropriation bills also originate in the House of 
Representatives.
    There are two types of bills--public and private. A public 
bill is one that affects the public generally. A bill that 
affects a specified individual or a private entity rather than 
the population at large is called a private bill. A typical 
private bill is used for relief in matters such as immigration 
and naturalization and claims against the United States.
    A bill originating in the House of Representatives is 
designated by ``H.R.'' followed by a number that it retains 
throughout all its parliamentary stages. The letters signify 
``House of Representatives'' and not, as is sometimes 
incorrectly assumed, ``House resolution.'' A Senate bill is 
designated by ``S.'' followed by its number. The term 
``companion bill'' is used to describe a bill introduced in one 
House of Congress that is similar or identical to a bill 
introduced in the other House of Congress.
    A bill that has been agreed to in identical form by both 
bodies becomes the law of the land only after--
          (1) Presidential approval; or
          (2) failure by the President to return it with 
        objections to the House in which it originated within 
        10 days (Sundays excepted) while Congress is in 
        session; or
          (3) the overriding of a presidential veto by a two-
        thirds vote in each House.
    Such a bill does not become law without the President's 
signature if Congress by their final adjournment prevent its 
return with objections. This is known as a ``pocket veto.'' For 
a discussion of presidential action on legislation, see Part 
XVIII.
                           joint resolutions
    Joint resolutions may originate either in the House of 
Representatives or in the Senate--not, as is sometimes 
incorrectly assumed, jointly in both Houses. There is little 
practical difference between a bill and a joint resolution and 
the two forms are sometimes used interchangeably. One 
difference in form is that a joint resolution may include a 
preamble preceding the resolving clause. Statutes that have 
been initiated as bills may be amended by a joint resolution 
and vice versa. Both are subject to the same procedure except 
for a joint resolution proposing an amendment to the 
Constitution. When a joint resolution amending the Constitution 
is approved by two-thirds of both Houses, it is not presented 
to the President for approval. Rather, such a joint resolution 
is sent directly to the Archivist of the United States for 
submission to the several states where ratification by the 
legislatures of three-fourths of the states within the period 
of time prescribed in the joint resolution is necessary for the 
amendment to become part of the Constitution.
    The form of a House joint resolution is as follows:
                            joint resolution
                Authorizing, etc. [as the title may be].
   Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United 
          States of America in Congress assembled, That, etc.
    The resolving clause is identical in both House and Senate 
joint resolutions as has been prescribed by statute since 1871. 
It is frequently preceded by a preamble consisting of one or 
more ``whereas'' clauses indicating the necessity for or the 
desirability of the joint resolution.
    A joint resolution originating in the House of 
Representatives is designated ``H.J. Res.'' followed by its 
individual number which it retains throughout all its 
parliamentary stages. One originating in the Senate is 
designated ``S.J. Res.'' followed by its number.
    Joint resolutions, with the exception of proposed 
amendments to the Constitution, become law in the same manner 
as bills.
                         concurrent resolutions
    A matter affecting the operations of both Houses is usually 
initiated by a concurrent resolution. In modern practice, and 
as determined by the Supreme Court in INS v. Chadha, 462 U.S. 
919 (1983), concurrent and simple resolutions normally are not 
legislative in character since not ``presented'' to the 
President for approval, but are used merely for expressing 
facts, principles, opinions, and purposes of the two Houses. A 
concurrent resolution is not equivalent to a bill and its use 
is narrowly limited within these bounds. The term 
``concurrent'', like ``joint'', does not signify simultaneous 
introduction and consideration in both Houses.
    A concurrent resolution originating in the House of 
Representatives is designated ``H. Con. Res.'' followed by its 
individual number, while a Senate concurrent resolution is 
designated ``S. Con. Res.'' together with its number. On 
approval by both Houses, they are signed by the Clerk of the 
House and the Secretary of the Senate and transmitted to the 
Archivist of the United States for publication in a special 
part of the Statutes at Large volume covering that session of 
Congress.
                           simple resolutions
    A matter concerning the rules, the operation, or the 
opinion of either House alone is initiated by a simple 
resolution. A resolution affecting the House of Representatives 
is designated ``H. Res.'' followed by its number, while a 
Senate resolution is designated ``S. Res.'' together with its 
number. Simple resolutions are considered only by the body in 
which they were introduced. Upon adoption, simple resolutions 
are attested to by the Clerk of the House of Representatives or 
the Secretary of the Senate and are published in the 
Congressional Record.

               V. INTRODUCTION AND REFERRAL TO COMMITTEE
    Any Member, Delegate or the Resident Commissioner from 
Puerto Rico in the House of Representatives may introduce a 
bill at any time while the House is in session by simply 
placing it in the ``hopper,'' a wooden box provided for that 
purpose located on the side of the rostrum in the House 
Chamber. Permission is not required to introduce the measure. 
The Member introducing the bill is known as the primary 
sponsor. Except in the case of private bills, an unlimited 
number of Members may cosponsor a bill. To prevent the 
possibility that a bill might be introduced in the House on 
behalf of a Member without that Member's prior approval, the 
primary sponsor's signature must appear on the bill before it 
is accepted for introduction. Members who cosponsor a bill upon 
its date of introduction are original cosponsors. Members who 
cosponsor a bill after its introduction are additional 
cosponsors. Cosponsors are not required to sign the bill. A 
Member may not be added or deleted as a cosponsor after the 
bill has been reported by, or discharged from, the last 
committee authorized to consider it, and the Speaker may not 
entertain a request to delete the name of the primary sponsor 
at any time. Cosponsors' names may be deleted by their own 
unanimous-consent request or that of the primary sponsor. In 
the Senate, unlimited multiple sponsorship of a bill is 
permitted. A Member may insert the words ``by request'' after 
the Member's name to indicate that the introduction of the 
measure is at the suggestion of some other person or group--
usually the President or a member of his Cabinet.
    In the Senate, a Senator usually introduces a bill or 
resolution by presenting it to one of the clerks at the 
Presiding Officer's desk, without commenting on it from the 
floor of the Senate. However, a Senator may use a more formal 
procedure by rising and introducing the bill or resolution from 
the floor, usually accompanied by a statement about the 
measure. Frequently, Senators obtain consent to have the bill 
or resolution printed in the Congressional Record following 
their formal statement.
    In the House of Representatives, it is no longer the custom 
to read bills--even by title--at the time of introduction. The 
title is entered in the Journal and printed in the 
Congressional Record, thus preserving the purpose of the 
custom. The bill is assigned its legislative number by the 
Clerk. The bill is then referred as required by the rules of 
the House to the appropriate committee or committees by the 
Speaker, with the assistance of the Parliamentarian. The bill 
number and committee referral appear in the next issue of the 
Congressional Record. It is then sent to the Government 
Printing Office where it is printed and copies are made 
available in the document rooms of both Houses. Printed and 
electronic versions of the bill are also made available to the 
public.
    Copies of the bill are sent to the office of the chairman 
of each committee to which it has been referred. The clerk of 
the committee enters it on the committee's Legislative 
Calendar.
    Perhaps the most important phase of the legislative process 
is the action by committees. The committees provide the most 
intensive consideration to a proposed measure as well as the 
forum where the public is given their opportunity to be heard. 
A tremendous volume of work, often overlooked by the public, is 
done by the Members in this phase. There are, at present, 20 
standing committees in the House and 16 in the Senate as well 
as several select committees. In addition, there are four 
standing joint committees of the two Houses, with oversight 
responsibilities but no legislative jurisdiction. The House may 
also create select committees or task forces to study specific 
issues and report on them to the House. A task force may be 
established formally through a resolution passed by the House 
or informally through organization of interested Members by the 
House leadership.
    Each committee's jurisdiction is defined by certain subject 
matter under the rules of each House and all measures are 
referred accordingly. For example, the Committee on the 
Judiciary in the House has jurisdiction over measures relating 
to judicial proceedings and 18 other categories, including 
constitutional amendments, immigration policy, bankruptcy, 
patents, copyrights, and trademarks. In total, the rules of the 
House and of the Senate each provide for over 200 different 
classifications of measures to be referred to committees. Until 
1975, the Speaker of the House could refer a bill to only one 
committee. In modern practice, the Speaker may refer an 
introduced bill to multiple committees for consideration of 
those provisions of the bill within the jurisdiction of each 
committee concerned. Except in extraordinary circumstances, the 
Speaker must designate a primary committee of jurisdiction on 
bills referred to multiple committees. The Speaker may place 
time limits on the consideration of bills by all committees, 
but usually time limits are placed only on additional 
committees to which a bill has been referred following the 
report of the primary committee.
    In the Senate, introduced measures and House-passed 
measures are referred to the one committee of preponderant 
jurisdiction by the Parliamentarian on behalf of the Presiding 
Officer. By special or standing order, a measure may be 
referred to more than one committee in the Senate.
    Membership on the various committees is divided between the 
two major political parties. The proportion of the Members of 
the minority party to the Members of the majority party is 
determined by the majority party, except that half of the 
members on the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct are 
from the majority party and half from the minority party. The 
respective party caucuses nominate Members of the caucus to be 
elected to each standing committee at the beginning of each 
Congress. Membership on a standing committee during the course 
of a Congress is contingent on continuing membership in the 
party caucus that nominated a Member for election to the 
committee. If a Member ceases to be a Member of the party 
caucus, a Member automatically ceases to be a member of the 
standing committee.
    Members of the House may serve on only two committees and 
four subcommittees with certain exceptions. However, the rules 
of the caucus of the majority party in the House provide that a 
Member may be chairman of only one subcommittee of a committee 
or select committee with legislative jurisdiction, except for 
certain committees performing housekeeping functions and joint 
committees.
    A Member usually seeks election to the committee that has 
jurisdiction over a field in which the Member is most qualified 
and interested. For example, the Committee on the Judiciary 
traditionally is populated with numerous lawyers.
    Members rank in seniority in accordance with the order of 
their appointment to the full committee and the ranking 
majority member with the most continuous service is often 
elected chairman. The rules of the House require that committee 
chairmen be elected from nominations submitted by the majority 
party caucus at the commencement of each Congress. No Member of 
the House may serve as chairman of the same standing committee 
or of the same subcommittee thereof for more than three 
consecutive Congresses, except in the case of the Committee on 
Rules.
    The rules of the House provide that a committee may 
maintain no more than five committees, but may have an 
oversight committee as a sixth. The standing rules allow a 
greater number of subcommittees for the Committees on 
Appropriations and Oversight and Government Reform. In 
addition, the House may grant leave to certain committeess to 
establish additional subcommittees during a given Congress.
    Each committee is provided with a professional staff to 
assist it in the innumerable administrative details involved in 
the consideration of bills and its oversight responsibilities. 
For standing committees, the professional staff is limited to 
30 persons appointed by a vote of the committee. Two-thirds of 
the committee staff are selected by a majority vote of the 
majority committee members and one-third of the committee staff 
are selected by a majority vote of minority committee members. 
All staff appointments are made without regard to race, creed, 
sex, or age. Minority staff requirements do not apply to the 
Committee on Standards of Official Conduct because of its 
bipartisan nature. The Committee on Appropriations has special 
authority under the rules of the House for appointment of staff 
for the minority.

                     VI. CONSIDERATION BY COMMITTEE
    One of the first actions taken by a committee is to seek 
the input of the relevant departments and agencies about a 
bill. Frequently, the bill is also submitted to the Government 
Accountability Office with a request for an official report of 
views on the necessity or desirability of enacting the bill 
into law. Normally, ample time is given for the submission of 
the reports and they are accorded serious consideration. 
However, these reports are not binding on the committee in 
determining whether or not to act favorably on the bill. 
Reports of the departments and agencies in the executive branch 
are submitted first to the Office of Management and Budget to 
determine whether they are consistent with the program of the 
President. Many committees adopt rules requiring referral of 
measures to the appropriate subcommittee unless the full 
committee votes to retain the measure at the full committee.
                           committee meetings
    Standing committees are required to have regular meeting 
days at least once a month. The chairman of the committee may 
also call and convene additional meetings. Three or more 
members of a standing committee may file with the committee a 
written request that the chairman call a special meeting. The 
request must specify the measure or matter to be considered. If 
the chairman does not schedule the requested special meeting 
within three calendar days after the filing of the request, to 
be held within seven calendar days after the filing of the 
request, a majority of the members of the committee may call 
the special meeting by filing with the committee written notice 
specifying the date, hour, and the measure or matter to be 
considered at the meeting. In the Senate, the Chair may still 
control the agenda of the special meeting through the power of 
recognition. Committee meetings may be held for various 
purposes including the ``markup'' of legislation, authorizing 
subpoenas, or internal budget and personnel matters.
    A subpoena may be authorized and issued at a meeting by a 
vote of a committee or subcommittee with a majority of members 
present. The power to authorize and issue subpoenas also may be 
delegated to the chairman of the committee. A subpoena may 
require both testimonial and documentary evidence to be 
furnished to the committee. A subpoena is signed by the 
chairman of the committee or by a member designated by the 
committee.
    All meetings for the transaction of business of standing 
committees or subcommittees, except the Committee on Standards 
of Official Conduct, must be open to the public, except when 
the committee or subcommittee, in open session with a majority 
present, determines by record vote that all or part of the 
remainder of the meeting on that day shall be closed to the 
public. Members of the committee may authorize congressional 
staff and departmental representatives to be present at any 
meeting that has been closed to the public. Open committee 
meetings may be covered by the media. Permission to cover 
hearings and meetings is granted under detailed conditions as 
provided in the rules of the House.
    The rules of the House provide that House committees may 
not meet during a joint session of the House and Senate or 
during a recess when a joint meeting of the House and Senate is 
in progress. Committees may meet at other times during an 
adjournment or recess up to the expiration of the 
constitutional term. The rules of the Senate provide that 
Senate committees may not meet after two hours after the 
meeting of the Senate commenced, and in no case after 2 p.m. 
when the Senate is in session. Special leave for this purpose 
may be granted by the Majority and Minority leaders.
                            public hearings
    If the bill is of sufficient importance, the committee may 
set a date for public hearings. The chairman of each committee, 
except for the Committee on Rules, is required to make public 
announcement of the date, place, and subject matter of any 
hearing at least one week before the commencement of that 
hearing, unless the committee chairman with the concurrence of 
the ranking minority member or the committee by majority vote 
determines that there is good cause to begin the hearing at an 
earlier date. If that determination is made, the chairman must 
make a public announcement to that effect at the earliest 
possible date. Public announcements are published in the Daily 
Digest portion of the Congressional Record as soon as possible 
after an announcement is made and are often noted by the media. 
Personal notice of the hearing, usually in the form of a 
letter, is sometimes sent to relevant individuals, 
organizations, and government departments and agencies.
    Each hearing by a committee or subcommittee, except the 
Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, is required to be 
open to the public except when the committee or subcommittee, 
in open session and with a majority present, determines by 
record vote that all or part of the remainder of the hearing on 
that day shall be closed to the public because disclosure of 
testimony, evidence, or other matters to be considered would 
endanger national security, would compromise sensitive law 
enforcement information, or would violate a law or a rule of 
the House. The committee or subcommittee may by the same 
procedure vote to close one subsequent day of hearing, except 
that the Committees on Appropriations, Armed Services, and the 
Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and subcommittees 
thereof, may vote to close up to five additional, consecutive 
days of hearings. When a quorum for taking testimony is 
present, a majority of the members present may close a hearing 
to discuss whether the evidence or testimony to be received 
would endanger national security or would tend to defame, 
degrade, or incriminate any person. A committee or subcommittee 
may vote to release or make public matters originally received 
in a closed hearing or meeting. Open committee hearings may be 
covered by the media. Permission to cover hearings and meetings 
is granted under detailed conditions as provided in the rules 
of the House.
    Hearings on the President's Budget are required to be held 
by the Committee on Appropriations in open session within 30 
days after its transmittal to Congress, except when the 
committee, in open session and with a quorum present, 
determines by record vote that the testimony to be taken at 
that hearing on that day may be related to a matter of national 
security. The committee may by the same procedure close one 
subsequent day of hearing.
    On the day set for a public hearing in a committee or 
subcommittee, an official reporter is present to record the 
testimony. After a brief introductory statement by the chairman 
and often by the ranking minority member or other committee 
member, the first witness is called. Cabinet officers and high-
ranking government officials, as well as interested private 
individuals, testify either voluntarily or by subpoena.
    So far as practicable, committees require that witnesses 
who appear before it file a written statement of their proposed 
testimony in advance of their appearance and limit their oral 
presentations to a brief summary thereof. In the case of a 
witness appearing in a nongovernmental capacity, a written 
statement of proposed testimony shall include a curriculum 
vitae and a disclosure of certain federal grants and contracts.
    Upon request by a majority of them, minority party members 
of the committee are entitled to call witnesses of their own to 
testify on a measure during at least one additional day of a 
hearing.
    Each member of the committee is provided five minutes in 
the interrogation of each witness until each member of the 
committee who desires to question a witness has had an 
opportunity to do so. In addition, a committee may adopt a rule 
or motion to permit committee members to question a witness for 
a specified period not longer than one hour. Committee staff 
may also be permitted to question a witness for a specified 
period not longer than one hour.
    A transcript of the testimony taken at a public hearing is 
made available for inspection in the office of the clerk of the 
committee. Frequently, the complete transcript is printed and 
distributed widely by the committee.
                                 markup
    After hearings are completed, the subcommittee usually will 
consider the bill in a session that is popularly known as the 
``markup'' session. The views of both sides are studied in 
detail and at the conclusion of deliberation a vote is taken to 
determine the action of the subcommittee. It may decide to 
report the bill favorably to the full committee, with or 
without amendment, or unfavorably, or without recommendation. 
The subcommittee may also suggest that the committee ``table'' 
it or postpone action indefinitely. Each member of the 
subcommittee, regardless of party affiliation, has one vote. 
Proxy voting is no longer permitted in House committees.
                         final committee action
    At full committee meetings, reports on bills may be made by 
subcommittees. Bills are read for amendment in committees by 
section and members may offer germane amendments. Committee 
amendments are only proposals to change the bill as introduced 
and are subject to acceptance or rejection by the House itself. 
A vote of committee members is taken to determine whether the 
full committee will report the bill favorably, adversely, or 
without recommendation. If the committee votes to report the 
bill favorably to the House, it may report the bill with or 
without amendments. If the committee has approved extensive 
amendments, the committee may decide to report the original 
bill with one ``amendment in the nature of a substitute'' 
consisting of all the amendments previously adopted, or may 
introduce and report a new bill incorporating those amendments, 
commonly known as a ``clean'' bill. The new bill is introduced 
(usually by the chairman of the committee), and, after referral 
back to the committee, is reported favorably to the House by 
the committee. A committee may table a bill or fail to take 
action on it, thereby preventing its report to the House. This 
makes adverse reports or reports without recommendation to the 
House by a committee unusual. The House also has the ability to 
discharge a bill from committee. For a discussion of the motion 
to discharge, see Part X.
    Generally, a majority of the committee or subcommittee 
constitutes a quorum. A quorum is the number of members who 
must be present in order for the committee to report. However, 
a committee may vary the number of members necessary for a 
quorum for certain actions. For example, a committee may fix 
the number of its members, but not less than two, necessary for 
a quorum for taking testimony and receiving evidence. Except 
for the Committees on Appropriations, the Budget, and Ways and 
Means, a committee may fix the number of its members, but not 
less than one-third, necessary for a quorum for taking certain 
other actions. The absence of a quorum is subject to a point of 
order, an objection that the proceedings are in violation of a 
rule of the committee or of the House. Committees may authorize 
the chairman to postpone votes in certain circumstances.
      points of order with respect to committee hearing procedure
    A point of order in the House does not lie with respect to 
a measure reported by a committee on the ground that hearings 
on the measure were not conducted in accordance with required 
committee procedure. However, certain points of order may be 
made by a member of the committee that reported the measure if, 
in the committee hearing on that measure, that point of order 
was (1) timely made and (2) improperly disposed of.

                          VII. REPORTED BILLS
    If the committee votes to report the bill to the House, the 
committee staff writes a committee report. The report describes 
the purpose and scope of the bill and the reasons for its 
recommended approval. Generally, a section-by-section analysis 
sets forth precisely what each section is intended to 
accomplish. All changes in existing law must be indicated in 
the report and the text of laws being repealed must be set out. 
This requirement is known as the ``Ramseyer'' rule. A similar 
rule in the Senate is known as the ``Cordon'' rule. Committee 
amendments also must be set out at the beginning of the report 
and explanations of them are included. Executive communications 
regarding the bill may be referenced in the report.
    If at the time of approval of a bill by a committee other 
than the Committee on Rules a member of the committee gives 
notice of an intention to file supplemental, minority, or 
additional views, all members are entitled to not less than two 
additional calendar days after the day of such notice 
(excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays unless the 
House is in session on those days) in which to file those views 
with the clerk of the committee. Those views that are timely 
filed must be included in the report on the bill. Committee 
reports must be filed while the House is in session unless 
unanimous consent is obtained from the House to file at a later 
time or the committee is entitled to an automatic filing window 
by virtue of a request for views.
    The report is assigned a report number upon its filing and 
is sent to the Government Printing Office for printing. House 
reports are given a prefix-designator that indicates the number 
of the Congress. For example, the first House report filed 
during the 110th Congress was numbered 110-1.
    In the printed report, committee amendments are indicated 
by showing new matter in italics and deleted matter in line-
through type. The report number is printed on the bill and the 
calendar number is shown on both the first and back pages of 
the bill. However, in the case of a bill that was referred to 
two or more committees for consideration in sequence, the 
calendar number is printed only on the bill as reported by the 
last committee to consider it. For a discussion of House 
calendars, see Part IX.
    Committee reports are perhaps the most valuable single 
element of the legislative history of a law. They are used by 
the courts, executive departments, and the public as a source 
of information regarding the purpose and meaning of the law.
                          contents of reports
    The report of a committee on a measure must include: (1) 
the committee's oversight findings and recommendations; (2) a 
statement required by the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, if 
the measure is a bill or joint resolution providing new budget 
authority (other than continuing appropriations) or an increase 
or decrease in revenues or tax expenditures; (3) a cost 
estimate and comparison prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office; and (4) a statement of general 
performance goals and objectives, including outcome-related 
goals and objectives, for which the measure authorizes funding. 
Each report accompanying a bill or joint resolution relating to 
employment or access to public services or accommodations must 
describe the manner in which the provisions apply to the 
legislative branch. Each of these items is set out separately 
and clearly identified in the report.
    With respect to each record vote by a committee, the total 
number of votes cast for, and the total number of votes cast 
against any public measure or matter or amendment thereto and 
the names of those voting for and against, must be included in 
the committee report. This requirement does not apply to 
certain votes taken in the Committees on Rules and Standards of 
Official Conduct.
    In addition, each report of a committee on a public bill or 
public joint resolution must contain a statement citing the 
specific powers granted to Congress in the Constitution to 
enact the law proposed by the bill or joint resolution. 
Committee reports that accompany bills or resolutions that 
contain federal unfunded mandates are also required to include 
an estimate prepared by the Congressional Budget Office on the 
cost of the mandates on state, local, and tribal governments. 
If an estimate is not available at the time a report is filed, 
committees are required to publish the estimate in the 
Congressional Record. Each report also must contain an 
estimate, made by the committee, of the costs which would be 
incurred in carrying out that bill or joint resolution in the 
fiscal year reported and in each of the five fiscal years 
thereafter or for the duration of the program authorized if 
less than five years. The report must include a comparison of 
the estimates of those costs with any estimate made by any 
Government agency and submitted to that committee. The 
Committees on Appropriations, House Administration, Rules, and 
Standards of Official Conduct are not required to include cost 
estimates in their reports. In addition, the committee's own 
cost estimates are not required to be included in reports when 
a cost estimate and comparison prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office has been submitted prior to the 
filing of the report and included in the report.
    It is not in order to consider bills and joint resolutions 
reported from committee unless the report includes a list of 
congressional earmarks, limited tax benefits and limited tariff 
benefits in the bill or in the report (including the name of 
any Member, Delegate or Resident Commissioner who submitted a 
request to the committee for each respective item included in 
such list) or a statement that the proposition contains no such 
congressional earmarks, limited tax benefits, or limited tariff 
benefits.
                           filing of reports
    Measures approved by a committee are to be reported by the 
chairman promptly after approval. If not, a majority of the 
members of the committee may file a written request with the 
clerk of the committee for the reporting of the measure. When 
the request is filed, the clerk must immediately notify the 
chairman of the committee of the filing of the request, and the 
report on the measure must be filed within seven calendar days 
(excluding days on which the House is not in session) after the 
day on which the request is filed. This does not apply to a 
report of the Committee on Rules with respect to a rule, joint 
rule, or order of business of the House or to the reporting of 
a resolution of inquiry addressed to the head of an executive 
department.
                  availability of reports and hearings
    A measure or matter reported by a committee (except the 
Committee on Rules in the case of a resolution providing a 
rule, joint rule, or order of business) may not be considered 
in the House until the third calendar day (excluding Saturdays, 
Sundays, and legal holidays unless the House is in session on 
those days) on which the report of that committee on that 
measure has been available to the Members of the House. This 
rule is subject to certain exceptions including resolutions 
providing for certain privileged matters and measures declaring 
war or other national emergency. A report of the Committee on 
Rules on a rule, joint rule, or order of business must lay over 
for one legislative day prior to consideration. However, it is 
in order to consider a report from the Committee on Rules on 
the same day it is reported that proposes only to waive the 
availability requirement. If hearings were held on a measure or 
matter so reported, the committee is required to make every 
reasonable effort to have those hearings printed and available 
for distribution to the Members of the House prior to the 
consideration of the measure in the House. Committees are also 
required, to the maximum extent feasible, to make their 
publications available in electronic form. A general 
appropriation bill reported by the Committee on Appropriations 
may not be considered until printed transcripts of committee 
hearings and a committee report thereon have been available to 
the Members of the House for at least three calendar days 
(excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays unless the 
House is in session on those days).

           VIII. LEGISLATIVE OVERSIGHT BY STANDING COMMITTEES
    Each standing committee, other than the Committee on 
Appropriations, is required to review and study, on a 
continuing basis, the application, administration, execution, 
and effectiveness of the laws dealing with the subject matter 
over which the committee has jurisdiction and the organization 
and operation of federal agencies and entities having 
responsibility for the administration and evaluation of those 
laws.
    The purpose of the review and study is to determine whether 
laws and the programs created by Congress are being implemented 
and carried out in accordance with the intent of Congress and 
whether those programs should be continued, curtailed, or 
eliminated. In addition, each committee having oversight 
responsibility is required to review and study any conditions 
or circumstances that may indicate the necessity or 
desirability of enacting new or additional legislation within 
the jurisdiction of that committee, and must undertake, on a 
continuing basis, future research and forecasting on matters 
within the jurisdiction of that committee. Each standing 
committee also has the function of reviewing and studying, on a 
continuing basis, the impact or probable impact of tax policies 
on subjects within its jurisdiction.
    The rules of the House provide for special treatment of an 
investigative or oversight report of a committee. Committees 
are allowed to file joint investigative reports and to file 
investigative and activities reports after the House has 
completed its final session of a Congress. In addition, several 
of the standing committees have special oversight 
responsibilities. The details of those responsibilities are set 
forth in the rules of the House.

                             IX. CALENDARS
    The House of Representatives has four calendars of 
business: the Union Calendar, the House Calendar, the Private 
Calendar, and the Calendar of Motions to Discharge Committees. 
The calendars are compiled in one publication printed each day 
the House is in session. This publication also contains a 
history of Senate-passed bills, House bills reported out of 
committee, bills on which the House has acted, and other useful 
information.
    When a public bill is favorably reported by all committees 
to which referred, it is assigned a calendar number on either 
the Union Calendar or the House Calendar, the two principal 
calendars of business. The calendar number is printed on the 
first page of the bill and, in certain instances, is printed 
also on the back page. In the case of a bill that was referred 
to multiple committees, the calendar number is printed only on 
the bill as reported by the last committee to consider it.
                             union calendar
    The rules of the House provide that there shall be:

    A Calendar of the Committee of the Whole House on the state 
of the Union, to which shall be referred public bills and 
public resolutions raising revenue, involving a tax or charge 
on the people, directly or indirectly making appropriations of 
money or property or requiring such appropriations to be made, 
authorizing payments out of appropriations already made, 
releasing any liability to the United States for money or 
property, or referring a claim to the Court of Claims.

    The large majority of public bills and resolutions reported 
to the House are placed on the Union Calendar. For a discussion 
of the Committee of the Whole House, see Part XI.
                             house calendar
    The rules further provide that there shall be:

    A House Calendar, to which shall be referred all public 
bills and public resolutions not requiring referral to the 
Calendar of the Committee of the Whole House on the state of 
the Union.

    Bills not involving a cost to the government and 
resolutions providing special orders of business are examples 
of bills and resolutions placed on the House Calendar.
                            private calendar
    The rules also provide that there shall be:

    A Private Calendar, . . . to which shall be referred all 
private bills and private resolutions.

    All private bills reported to the House are placed on the 
Private Calendar. The Private Calendar is called on the first 
and third Tuesdays of each month. If two or more Members object 
to the consideration of any measure called, it is recommitted 
to the committee that reported it. By tradition, there are six 
official objectors, three on the majority side and three on the 
minority side, who make a careful study of each bill or 
resolution on the Private Calendar. The official objectors' 
role is to object to a measure that does not conform to the 
requirements for that calendar and prevent the passage without 
debate of nonmeritorious bills and resolutions. Alternative 
procedures reserved for public bills are not applicable to 
reported private bills.
              calendar of motions to discharge committees
    When a majority of the Members of the House sign a motion 
to discharge a committee from consideration of a public bill or 
resolution, that motion is referred to the Calendar of Motions 
to Discharge Committees. For a discussion of the motion to 
discharge, see Part X.

                 X. OBTAINING CONSIDERATION OF MEASURES
    Certain measures, either pending on the House and Union 
Calendars or unreported and pending in committee, are more 
important and urgent than others and a system permitting their 
consideration ahead of those that do not require immediate 
action is necessary. If the calendar numbers alone were the 
determining factor, the bill reported most recently would be 
the last to be taken up as all measures are placed on the House 
and Union Calendars in the order reported.
                           unanimous consent
    The House occasionally employs the practice of allowing 
reported or unreported measures to be considered by the 
unanimous agreement of all Members in the House Chamber. The 
power to recognize Members for a unanimous-consent request is 
ultimately in the discretion of the Chair, and recent Speakers 
have issued strict guidelines on when such a request is to be 
entertained. Most unanimous-consent requests for consideration 
of measures may only be entertained by the Chair when assured 
that the majority and minority floor and committee leaderships 
have no objection.
                     special resolution or ``rule''
    To avoid delays and to allow selectivity in the 
consideration of public measures, it is possible to have them 
taken up out of their order on their respective calendar or to 
have them discharged from the committee or committees to which 
referred by obtaining from the Committee on Rules a special 
resolution or ``rule'' for their consideration. The Committee 
on Rules, which is composed of majority and minority members 
but with a larger proportion of majority members than other 
committees, is specifically granted jurisdiction over 
resolutions relating to the order of business of the House. 
Typically, the chairman of the committee that has favorably 
reported the bill requests the Committee on Rules to originate 
a resolution that will provide for its immediate or subsequent 
consideration. If the Committee on Rules has determined that 
the measure should be taken up, it may report a resolution 
reading substantially as follows with respect to a bill on the 
Union Calendar or an unreported bill:

    Resolved, That at any time after the adoption of this 
resolution the Speaker may, pursuant to rule XVIII, declare the 
House resolved into the Committee of the Whole House on the 
State of the Union for the consideration of the bill (H.R.___) 
entitled, etc. The first reading of the bill shall be dispensed 
with. After general debate, which shall be confined to the bill 
and shall not to exceed ___ hours, to be equally divided and 
controlled by the chairman and ranking minority member of the 
Committee on ___, the bill shall be read for amendment under 
the five-minute rule. At the conclusion of the consideration of 
the bill for amendment, the Committee shall rise and report the 
bill to the House with such amendments as may have been 
adopted, and the previous question shall be considered as 
ordered on the bill and amendments thereto to final passage 
without intervening motion except one motion to recommit with 
or without instructions.

    If the measure is on the House Calendar or the 
recommendation is to avoid consideration in the Committee of 
the Whole, the resolution might read as follows:

    Resolved, That upon the adoption of this resolution it 
shall be in order to consider the bill (H.R. ___) entitled, 
etc., in the House, etc.

    The resolution may waive points of order against the bill. 
A point of order is an objection that a pending matter or 
proceeding is in violation of a rule of the House. The bill may 
be susceptible to various points of order that may be made 
against its consideration, including an assertion that the bill 
carries a retroactive federal income tax increase, contains a 
federal unfunded mandate, or has not been reported from 
committee properly. At times, the rule may ``self-execute'' 
changes to the bill, that is, incorporate the changes in the 
bill upon adoption of the rule. The rule may also make a 
specified ``manager's amendment'' in order prior to any other 
amendment or may make a ``compromise substitute'' amendment in 
order as original text to replace the version reported from 
committee. When a rule limits or prevents floor amendments, it 
is popularly known as a ``closed rule'' or ``modified closed 
rule.'' However, a rule may not deny the minority party the 
right to offer a motion to recommit the bill with proper 
amendatory or general instructions. For a discussion of the 
motion to recommit, see Part XI.
   consideration of measures made in order by rule reported from the 
                           committee on rules
    When a rule has been reported to the House, it is referred 
to the House Calendar and if it is to be considered on the same 
legislative day reported, it requires a two-thirds vote for its 
consideration. Normally, however, the rule is on the calendar 
for at least one legislative day, and if not called up for 
consideration by the Member who filed the report within seven 
legislative days thereafter, any member of the Committee on 
Rules may call it up as a privileged matter, after having given 
one calendar day notice of the Member's intention to do so. The 
Speaker will recognize any member of the committee seeking 
recognition for that purpose.
    If the House has adopted a resolution making in order a 
motion to consider a bill, and such a motion has not been 
offered within seven calendar days thereafter, such a motion 
shall be privileged if offered by direction of all reporting 
committees having initial jurisdiction of the bill.
                     motion to discharge committee
    A Member may present to the Clerk a motion in writing to 
discharge a committee from the consideration of a public bill 
or resolution that has been referred to it 30 legislative days 
prior thereto. A Member also may file a motion to discharge the 
Committee on Rules from further consideration of a resolution 
providing a special rule for the consideration of a public bill 
or resolution reported by a standing committee, or a special 
rule for the consideration of a public bill or resolution that 
has been referred to a standing committee for 30 legislative 
days. This motion to discharge the Committee on Rules may be 
made only when the resolution has been referred to that 
committee at least seven legislative days prior to the filing 
of the motion to discharge. The motion may not permit 
consideration of nongermane amendments. The motion is placed in 
the custody of the Journal Clerk, where Members may sign it at 
the House rostrum when the House is in session. The names of 
Members who have signed a discharge motion are made available 
electronically and published in the Congressional Record on a 
weekly basis. When 218 Members have signed the motion, it is 
entered in the Journal, printed with all the signatures thereto 
in the Congressional Record, and referred to the Calendar of 
Motions to Discharge Committees.
    On the second and fourth Mondays of each month, except 
during the last six days of a session, a Member who has signed 
a motion to discharge that has been on the calendar at least 
seven legislative days may call up the motion. The motion to 
discharge is debated for 20 minutes, one-half in favor of the 
proposition and one-half in opposition.
    If the motion to discharge a standing committee of the 
House from a public bill or resolution pending before the 
committee prevails, a Member who signed the motion may move 
that the House proceed to the immediate consideration of the 
bill or resolution. If the motion is agreed to, the bill or 
resolution is considered immediately under the general rules of 
the House. If the House votes against the motion for immediate 
consideration, the bill or resolution is referred to its proper 
calendar with the same status as if reported by a standing 
committee.
    If the motion to discharge the Committee on Rules from a 
resolution prevails, the House shall immediately consider such 
resolution. If the resolution is adopted, the House proceeds to 
its execution. This is the modern practice for utilization of 
the discharge rule.
                      motion to suspend the rules
    On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of each week and during 
the last six days of a session, the Speaker may entertain a 
motion to suspend the rules of the House and pass a public bill 
or resolution. Sometimes the motion is allowed on other days by 
unanimous consent or a rule from the Committee on Rules. For 
example, the House by rule from the Committee on Rules provided 
for the motion on a Sunday when the House was in session. 
Members need to arrange in advance with the Speaker to be 
recognized to offer such a motion. The Speaker usually 
recognizes only a majority member of the committee that has 
reported or has primary jurisdiction over the bill. The motion 
to suspend the rules and pass the bill is debatable for 40 
minutes, half of the time in favor of the proposition and half 
in opposition. The motion may not be separately amended but may 
be amended in the form of a manager's amendment included in the 
motion when it is offered. Because the rules may be suspended 
and the bill passed only by affirmative vote of two-thirds of 
the Members voting, a quorum being present, this procedure is 
usually used only for expedited consideration of relatively 
noncontroversial measures.
                           calendar wednesday
    On Wednesday of each week, unless dispensed with by 
unanimous consent or by affirmative vote of two-thirds of the 
Members voting, a quorum being present, the standing committees 
are called in alphabetical order. A committee when named may 
call up for consideration any bill reported by it and pending 
on either the House or Union Calendar. The report on the bill 
must have been available for three days and must not be 
privileged under the rules of the House. General debate is 
limited to two hours and must be confined to the subject matter 
of the measure, the time being equally divided between those 
for and those against. An affirmative vote of a simple majority 
of the Members present is sufficient to pass the measure. The 
purpose of this rarely utilized procedure is to provide an 
alternative method of consideration when the Committee on Rules 
has not reported a rule for a specific bill.
                     district of columbia business
    On the second and fourth Mondays of each month, after the 
disposition of motions to discharge committees and after the 
disposal of business on the Speaker's table requiring only 
referral to committee, the Committee on Oversight and 
Government Reform may call up for consideration any District of 
Columbia business reported from that committee. This procedure 
is rarely utilized in the modern House.
                         questions of privilege
    House rules provide special treatment for questions of 
privilege. Questions of privilege are classified as those 
questions: (1) affecting the rights of the House collectively, 
its safety, dignity, and the integrity of its proceedings; or 
(2) affecting the rights, reputations, and conduct of Members, 
individually, in their representative capacity. A question of 
privilege has been held to take precedence over all questions 
except the motion to adjourn. Questions of the privileges of 
the House, those concerning the rights of the House 
collectively, take the form of a resolution which may be called 
up by any Member after proper notice. A question of personal 
privilege, affecting the rights, reputation, and conduct of 
individual Members, may be raised from the floor without formal 
notice and does not result in a vote. Debate on a question of 
privilege proceeds under the hour rule, with debate on a 
question of the privileges of the House divided between the 
proponent and the leader of the opposing party or a designee.
                           privileged matters
    Under the rules of the House, certain matters are regarded 
as privileged matters and may interrupt the order of business. 
Conference reports, veto messages from the President, and 
certain amendments to measures by the Senate after the stage of 
disagreement between the two Houses are examples of privileged 
matters. Certain reports from House committees are also 
privileged, including reports from the Committee on Rules, 
reports from the Committee on Appropriations on general 
appropriation bills, printing and committee funding resolutions 
reported from the Committee on House Administration, and 
reports on Member's conduct from the Committee on Standards of 
Official Conduct. Bills, joint resolutions, and motions may 
also take on privileged status as a result of special 
procedures written into statute. The Member in charge of such a 
matter may call it up at practically any time for immediate 
consideration when no other business is pending. Usually, this 
is done after consultation with both the majority and minority 
floor leaders so that the Members of both parties will have 
advance notice.
    At any time after the reading of the Journal, a Member, by 
direction of the Committee on Appropriations, may move that the 
House resolve itself into the Committee of the Whole House on 
the state of the Union for the purpose of considering a general 
appropriation bill. A general appropriation bill may not be 
considered in the House until three calendar days (excluding 
Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays unless the House is in 
session on those days) after printed committee reports and 
hearing transcripts on the bill have been available to the 
Members.

                      XI. CONSIDERATION AND DEBATE
    Consideration of measures may involve several stages, the 
most pertinent of which are discussed below. Also discussed are 
various restrictions on House consideration, as well as voting 
methods and mechanisms.
                         committee of the whole
    In order to expedite the consideration of bills and 
resolutions, the rules of the House provide for a parliamentary 
mechanism, known as the Committee of the Whole House on the 
state of the Union, that enables the House to act with a quorum 
of less than the requisite majority of the entire House. A 
quorum in the Committee of the Whole is 100 members. All 
measures on the Union Calendar--those involving a tax, making 
appropriations, authorizing payments out of appropriations 
already made, or disposing of property--must be first 
considered in the Committee of the Whole.
    The Committee on Rules reports a rule allowing for 
immediate consideration of a measure by the Committee of the 
Whole. After adoption of the rule by the House, the Speaker may 
declare the House resolved into the Committee of the Whole. 
When the House resolves into the Committee of the Whole, the 
Speaker leaves the chair after appointing a Chairman to 
preside.
    The rule referred to in the preceding paragraph also fixes 
the length of the debate in the Committee of the Whole. This 
may vary according to the importance of the measure. As 
provided in the rule, the control of the time is usually 
divided equally between the chairman and the ranking minority 
member of the relevant committee. Members seeking to speak for 
or against the measure may arrange in advance with the Member 
in control of the time on their respective side to be allowed a 
certain amount of time in the debate. Members may also ask the 
Member speaking at the time to yield to them for a question or 
a brief statement. A transcript of the proceedings in the House 
and the Senate is printed daily in the Congressional Record. 
Frequently, permission is granted a Member by unanimous consent 
to revise and extend his remarks in the Congressional Record if 
sufficient time to make a lengthy oral statement is not 
available during actual debate. These revisions and extensions 
are printed in a distinctive type and cannot substantively 
alter the verbatim transcript.
    The conduct of the debate is governed principally by the 
rules of the House that are adopted at the opening of each 
Congress. In the 106th Congress, the rules were recodified for 
simplification and clarity. Jefferson's Manual, prepared by 
Thomas Jefferson for his own guidance as President of the 
Senate from 1797 to 1801, is another recognized authority. The 
House has a long-standing rule that the provisions of 
Jefferson's Manual should govern the House in all applicable 
cases and where they are not inconsistent with the rules of the 
House. Most parliamentary questions arising during the course 
of debate are responded to by a ruling based on a precedent in 
a similar situation. The Parliamentarian of the House is 
present in the House Chamber in order to assist the Speaker or 
the Chairman in making a correct ruling on parliamentary 
questions.
                             second reading
    During general debate on a bill, an accurate account of the 
time used on both sides is kept and the Chairman terminates the 
debate when all the time allowed under the rule has been 
consumed. After general debate, the second reading of the bill 
begins. The second reading is a section-by-section reading 
during which amendments may be offered to a section when it is 
read. Under many special ``modified closed'' rules adopted by 
the House, certain bills are considered as read and open only 
to prescribed amendments under limited time allocations. Under 
an ``open'' amendment process, a Member is permitted five 
minutes to explain the proposed amendment, after which the 
Member who is first recognized by the Chair is allowed to speak 
for five minutes in opposition to it. There is technically no 
further debate on that amendment, thereby effectively 
preventing filibuster-like tactics. This is known as the 
``five-minute rule.'' However, Members may offer an amendment 
to the amendment, for separate five-minute debate, or may offer 
a pro forma amendment--``to strike the last word''--which does 
not change the language of the amendment but allows the Member 
five minutes for debate. Each substantive amendment and 
amendment thereto is put to the Committee of the Whole for 
adoption unless the House has adopted a special rule ``self-
executing'' the adoption of certain amendments in the Committee 
of the Whole. The House may, after initially adopting an open 
rule, later alter that rule by unanimous consent to establish a 
``universe'' or list of amendments to a bill. This procedure is 
most commonly used on general appropriation bills because of 
the volume of amendments.
    At any time after debate has begun on proposed amendments 
to a section or paragraph of a bill under the five-minute rule, 
the Committee of the Whole may by majority vote of the Members 
present close debate on the amendment or the pending section or 
paragraph. However, if debate is closed on a section or 
paragraph before there has been debate on an amendment that a 
Member has caused to be printed in the Congressional Record at 
least one day prior to floor consideration of the amendment, 
the Member who caused the amendment to be printed in the Record 
is given five minutes in which to explain the amendment. Five 
minutes is also given to speak in opposition to the amendment 
but no further debate on the amendment is allowed. Amendments 
placed in the Congressional Record must indicate the full text 
of the proposed amendment, the name of the Member proposing it, 
the number of the bill or amendment to which it will be 
offered, and the point in the bill or amendment thereto where 
the amendment is intended to be offered. These amendments 
appear in the portion of the Record designated for that 
purpose.
                  amendments and the germaneness rule
    The rules of the House prohibit amendments of a subject 
matter different from the text under consideration. This rule, 
commonly known as the germaneness rule, is one of the most 
important rules of the House of Representatives because of the 
obvious need to keep the focus of a body the size of the House 
on a predictable subject matter. The germaneness rule applies 
to the proceedings in the House, the Committee of the Whole, 
and the standing committees. There are hundreds of prior 
rulings or ``precedents'' on germaneness available to guide the 
Chair.
                         congressional earmarks
    A House rule provides that it is not in order to consider 
bills and joint resolutions reported from a committee unless 
the committee report includes a list of congressional earmarks, 
limited tax benefits and limited tariff benefits in the bill or 
in the report, or a statement that the measure contains none of 
these items. The report must include the name of any Member, 
Delegate or Resident Commissioner who submitted a request to 
the committee for each respective item included in the list. 
This rule also applies to conference reports, unreported bills 
and joint resolutions, and to a so-called ``manager's 
amendment'' offered at the outset of the amendment process by a 
member of the committee of initial referral under the terms of 
a special rule. With respect to unreported bills, unreported 
joint resolutions and managers' amendments, the rule requires 
the list or statement to be printed in the Congressional Record 
prior to consideration. In the case of a conference report, the 
list or statement must be included in the joint explanatory 
statement prepared by the managers of the House and the 
managers of the Senate. A special rule from the Committee on 
Rules that waives the requirements of this rule is subject to a 
special point of order and vote.
                        the committee ``rises''
    At the conclusion of the consideration of a bill for 
amendment, the Committee of the Whole ``rises'' and reports the 
bill to the House with any amendments that have been adopted. 
In rising, the Committee of the Whole reverts back to the House 
and the Chairman of the Committee is replaced by the Speaker of 
the House. The House then acts on the bill and any amendments 
adopted by the Committee of the Whole. If the Committee of the 
Whole rises on motion prior to the conclusion of consideration 
of amendments, the bill must return to the Committee of the 
Whole for subsequent consideration. Thus, the simple motion to 
rise may be used to immediately halt consideration of a bill 
similar to a motion to adjourn in the House.
                              house action
    Debate on a bill in the House is cut off by moving and 
ordering ``the previous question.'' All debate is cut off on 
the bill if this motion is carried by a majority of the Members 
voting, a quorum being present, or by a special rule ordering 
the previous question upon the rising of the Committee of the 
Whole. The Speaker then puts the question: ``Shall the bill be 
engrossed and read a third time?'' If this question is decided 
in the affirmative, the bill is read a third time by title only 
and voted on for passage.
    If the previous question has been ordered by the terms of 
the rule on a bill reported by the Committee of the Whole, the 
House immediately votes on whatever amendments have been 
reported by the Committee in the order in which they appear in 
the bill unless voted on en bloc. After completion of voting on 
the amendments, the House immediately votes on the passage of 
the bill with the amendments it has adopted. However, a motion 
to recommit, as described in the next section, may be offered 
and voted on prior to the vote on passage.
    The Speaker may postpone a recorded vote on final passage 
of a bill or resolution, as well as other matters, for up to 
two legislative days.
    Measures that do not have to be considered in the Committee 
of the Whole are considered in the House in accordance with the 
terms of the rule limiting debate on the measure or under the 
``hour rule.'' The hour rule limits the amount of time that a 
Member may occupy in debate on a pending question to 60 
minutes. Generally, the opportunity for debate may also be 
curtailed if the Speaker makes the rare determination that a 
motion is dilatory.
    After passage or rejection of the bill by the House, a 
motion to reconsider it is automatically laid on the table by 
unanimous consent. The motion to reconsider is tabled to 
prohibit this motion from being made at a later date because 
the vote of the House on a proposition is not final and 
conclusive until there has been an opportunity to reconsider 
it.
                           motion to recommit
    After the previous question has been ordered on a bill or 
joint resolution, it is in order to offer one motion to 
recommit the bill or joint resolution to a committee, and the 
Speaker gives preference in recognition for that purpose to a 
minority party Member who is opposed to the bill or joint 
resolution. This motion is not subject to debate. However, a 
motion to recommit with instructions offered after the previous 
question has been ordered is debatable for 10 minutes, except 
that the majority floor manager may demand that the debate be 
extended to one hour. Whatever time is allotted for debate is 
divided equally between the proponent and an opponent of the 
motion. Instructions in the motion to recommit normally take 
the form of germane amendments proposed by the minority to 
immediately change the final form of the bill prior to passage. 
Instructions may also be ``general,'' consisting of nonbinding 
instructions to the committee to take specified actions such as 
to ``promptly'' review the bill with a particular political 
viewpoint or to hold further hearings. Such general 
instructions may not contain argument.
                       quorum calls and rollcalls
    Article I, Section 5, of the Constitution provides that a 
majority of each House constitutes a quorum to do business and 
authorizes a smaller number than a quorum to compel the 
attendance of absent Members. In order to fulfill this 
constitutional responsibility, the rules of the House provide 
alternative procedures for quorum calls in the House and the 
Committee of the Whole.
    In the absence of a quorum, 15 Members may initiate a call 
of the House to compel the attendance of absent Members. Such a 
call of the House must be ordered by a majority vote. A call of 
the House is then ordered and the call is taken by electronic 
device or by response to the alphabetical call of the roll of 
Members. Absent Members have a minimum of 15 minutes from the 
ordering of the call of the House by electronic device to have 
their presence recorded. If sufficient excuse is not offered 
for their absence, they may be sent for by the Sergeant-at-Arms 
and their attendance secured and retained. The House then 
determines the conditions on which they may be discharged. 
Members who voluntarily appear are, unless the House otherwise 
directs, immediately admitted to the Hall of the House and must 
report their names to the Clerk to be entered on the Journal as 
present. Compulsory attendance or arrest of Members has been 
rare in modern practice.
    The rules of the House provide special authority for the 
Speaker to recognize a Member of the Speaker's choice to move a 
call of the House at any time.
    When a question is put to a vote by the Speaker and a 
quorum fails to vote on such question, if a quorum is not 
present and objection is made for that reason, there is a call 
of the House unless the House adjourns. The call is taken by 
electronic device and the Sergeant-at-Arms may bring in absent 
Members. The yeas and nays on the pending question are at the 
same time considered as ordered and an ``automatic'' recorded 
vote is taken. The Clerk utilizes the electronic system or 
calls the roll and each Member who is present may vote on the 
pending question. If those voting on the question and those who 
are present and decline to vote together make a majority of the 
House, the Speaker declares that a quorum is constituted and 
the pending question is decided as the majority of those voting 
have determined.
    The rules of the House prohibit points of order of no 
quorum unless the Speaker has put a question to a vote.
    If the House should be without a quorum due to catastrophic 
circumstances, the rules of the House establish procedures by 
which a provisional number of the House may operate until a 
sufficient number of Members to constitute a quorum appears.
    The rules for quorum calls are different in some respects 
in the Committee of the Whole. The first time the Committee of 
the Whole finds itself without a quorum during a day the 
Chairman is required to order the roll to be called by 
electronic device, unless the Chairman orders a call of the 
Committee. However, the Chairman may refuse to entertain a 
point of order of no quorum during general debate. If on a 
call, a quorum (100 Members) appears, the Committee continues 
its business. If a quorum does not appear, the Committee rises 
and the Chairman reports the names of the absentees to the 
House. The rules provide for the expeditious conduct of quorum 
calls in the Committee of the Whole. The Chairman may suspend a 
quorum call after 100 Members have recorded their presence. 
Under such a short quorum call, the Committee will not rise and 
proceedings under the quorum call are vacated. In that case, a 
recorded vote, if ordered immediately following the termination 
of the short quorum call, is a minimum of 15 minutes. In the 
alternative, the Chair may choose to permit a full 15-minute 
quorum call, wherein all Members are recorded as present or 
absent, to be followed by a five-minute record vote on the 
pending question. Once a quorum of the Committee of the Whole 
has been established for a day, a quorum call in the Committee 
is only in order when the Committee is operating under the 
five-minute rule and the Chairman has put the pending question 
to a vote. The rules prohibit a point of order of no quorum 
against a vote in which the Committee of the Whole agrees to 
rise. However, an appropriate point of no quorum would be 
permitted against a vote defeating a motion to rise.
                                 voting
    There are three methods of voting in the Committee of the 
Whole that are also employed in the House. These are the voice 
vote, the division, and the recorded vote. The yea-and-nay vote 
is a method used only in the House, and it may be automatic if 
a Member objects to the vote on the ground that a quorum is not 
present.
    To conduct a voice vote the Chair puts the question: ``As 
many as are in favor say `Aye'. As many as are opposed, say 
`No'. '' The Chair determines the result on a comparison of the 
volume of ayes and noes. This is the form in which the vote is 
ordinarily taken in the first instance.
    If it is difficult to determine the result of a voice vote, 
a division may be demanded by a Member or initiated by the 
Chair. The Chair then states: ``As many as are in favor will 
rise and stand until counted.'' After counting those in favor 
he calls on those opposed to stand and be counted, thereby 
determining the number in favor of and those opposed to the 
question.
    If any Member requests a recorded vote and that request is 
supported by at least one-fifth of a quorum of the House (44 
Members), or 25 Members in the Committee of the Whole, the vote 
is taken by electronic device. After the recorded vote is 
concluded, the names of those voting and those not voting are 
entered in the Journal. Members have a minimum of 15 minutes to 
be counted from the time the record vote is ordered. The 
Speaker may reduce the period for voting to five minutes on 
subsequent votes in certain situations where there has been no 
intervening debate or business. The Speaker is not required to 
vote unless the Speaker's vote would be decisive.
    The modern practice in the Committee of the Whole postpones 
and clusters votes on amendments to maximize efficient 
scheduling of voting. The Chairman of the Committee of the 
Whole has discretionary authority to postpone votes on 
amendments and to reduce the time for voting on amendments to 
five minutes following a 15-minute vote on the first amendment 
in a series. The Chairman is not allowed to postpone votes on 
matters other than amendments and is mindful not to postpone 
votes where the outcome could be prejudicial to the offering of 
another amendment.
    In the House, the support of one-fifth of the Members 
present is necessary under the Constitution for ordering the 
yeas and nays. When the yeas and nays are ordered, a recorded 
vote is ordered, or a point of order is made that a quorum is 
not present, the Clerk activates the electronic system or calls 
the roll and reports the result to the Speaker, who announces 
it to the House. Many legislative questions may be postponed to 
a time selected by the Speaker within two legislative days.
    The rules of the House require a three-fifths vote to pass 
a bill, joint resolution, amendment, or conference report that 
contains a specified type of federal income tax rate increase. 
The rules of the House also provide for automatic yeas and nays 
on votes on passage of certain fiscal measures including a 
concurrent resolution on the budget or a general appropriation 
bill. The Constitution requires the yeas and nays on a vote 
overriding a Presidential veto.
    The rules prohibit a Member from: (1) casting another 
Member's vote or recording another Member's presence in the 
House or the Committee of the Whole; or (2) authorizing another 
individual to cast a vote or record the Member's presence in 
the House or the Committee of the Whole.
                           electronic voting
    Recorded votes are usually taken by electronic device, 
except when the Speaker orders the vote to be recorded by other 
methods prescribed by the rules of the House. In addition, 
quorum calls are generally taken by electronic device. The 
electronic system works as follows: A number of vote stations 
are attached to selected chairs in the Chamber. Each station is 
equipped with a vote card slot and four indicators, marked 
``yea'', ``nay'', ``present'', and ``open'' that are lit when a 
vote is in progress and the system is ready to accept votes. 
Each Member is provided with an encyrpted Vote-ID Card. A 
Member votes by inserting the voting card into any one of the 
vote stations and pressing the appropriate button to indicate 
the Member's choice. If a Member is without a Vote-ID Card or 
wishes to change his vote during the last five minutes of a 
vote, the Member may be recorded by handing a paper ballot to 
the Tally Clerk, who then records the vote electronically 
according to the indicated preference of the Member. The paper 
ballots are green for ``yea,'' red for ``nay,'' and orange for 
``present.''
                           pairing of members
    The former system of pairing of Members, where a Member 
could arrange in advance to be recorded as being either in 
favor of or opposed to the question by being ``paired'' with 
another absent Member who holds contrary views on the question, 
has largely been eliminated. The rules still allow for ``live 
pairs.'' A live pair is where a Member votes as if not paired, 
subsequently withdraws that vote, and then asks to be marked 
``present'' to protect the other Member. The most common 
practice is for absent Members to submit statements for the 
Record stating how they would have voted if present on specific 
votes.
                       system of lights and bells
    Due to the diverse nature of daily tasks that they have to 
perform, it is not practicable for Members to be present in the 
House or Senate Chamber at every minute that the body is in 
session. Furthermore, many of the routine matters do not 
require the personal attendance of all the Members. A system 
consisting of electric lights and bells or buzzers located in 
various parts of the Capitol Building and House and Senate 
Office Buildings alerts Members to certain occurrences in the 
House and Senate Chambers.
    In the House, the Speaker has ordered that the bells and 
lights comprising the system be utilized as follows:

          1 long bell followed by a pause and then 3 bells and 3 lights 
        on the left--Start or continuation of a notice or short quorum 
        call in the Committee of the Whole that will be vacated if and 
        when 100 Members appear on the floor. Bells are repeated every 
        five minutes unless the call is vacated or the call is 
        converted into a regular quorum call.
          1 long bell and extinguishing of 3 lights on the left--Short 
        or notice quorum call vacated.
          2 bells and 2 lights on the left--15 minute recorded vote, 
        yea-and-nay vote or automatic rollcall vote by electronic 
        device. The bells are repeated five minutes after the first 
        bell.
          2 bells and 2 lights on the left followed by a pause and then 
        2 more bells--15 minute vote taken by a call of the roll. The 
        bells are repeated when the Clerk reaches the R's in the first 
        call of the roll.
          2 bells followed by a pause and then 5 bells--First vote on 
        clustered votes. Two bells are repeated five minutes after the 
        first bell. The first vote will be not less than 15 minutes 
        with successive votes being not less than five minutes. Each 
        successive vote is signaled by five bells.
          3 bells and 3 lights on the left--15 minute quorum call in 
        either the House or in the Committee of the Whole by electronic 
        device. The bells are repeated five minutes after the first 
        bell.
          3 bells followed by a pause and then 3 more bells--15 minute 
        quorum call by a call of the roll. The bells are repeated when 
        the Clerk reaches the R's in the first call of the roll.
          3 bells followed by a pause and then 5 more bells--Quorum 
        call in the Committee of the Whole that may be followed 
        immediately by a five-minute recorded vote.
          4 bells and 4 lights on the left--Adjournment of the House.
          5 bells and 5 lights on the left--Any five-minute vote.
          6 bells and 6 lights on the left--Recess of the House.
          12 bells at 2-second intervals with 6 lights on the left--
        Civil Defense Warning.
          The 7th light indicates that the House is in session.
                            recess authority
    The House may by vote authorize the Speaker to declare a 
recess under the rules of the House. The Speaker also has the 
authority to declare the House in recess for a short time when 
no question is pending before the House or in the case of an 
emergency.
                   live coverage of floor proceedings
    The rules of the House provide for unedited radio and 
television broadcasting and recording of proceedings on the 
floor of the House. However, the rules prohibit the use of 
these broadcasts and recordings for any political purpose or in 
any commercial advertisement. The rules of the Senate also 
provide for broadcasting and recording of proceedings in the 
Senate Chamber with similar restrictions.

                   XII. CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET PROCESS
    The Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 
1974, as amended, provides Congress with a procedure to 
establish appropriate spending and revenue levels for each 
year. The congressional budget process, as set out in that Act, 
is designed to coordinate decisions on sources and levels of 
revenues and on objects and levels of expenditures. Its basic 
method is to prescribe the overall size of the fiscal pie and 
the particular sizes of its various pieces. Each year the 
Congress adopts a concurrent resolution imposing overall 
constraints on revenues and spending and distributing the 
overall constraint on spending among groups of programs and 
activities.
    Congress aims to complete action on a concurrent resolution 
on the budget for the next fiscal year by April 15. Congress 
may adopt a later budget resolution that revises the most 
recently adopted budget resolution. One of the mechanisms 
Congress uses to implement the constraints on revenue and 
spending is called the reconciliation process. Reconciliation 
is a multiple-step process designed to bring existing law in 
conformity with the most recently adopted concurrent resolution 
on the budget. The first step in the reconciliation process is 
the language found in a concurrent resolution on the budget 
instructing House and Senate committees to determine and 
recommend changes in laws that will achieve the constraints 
established in the concurrent resolution on the budget. The 
instructions to a committee specify the amount of spending 
reductions or revenue changes a committee must attain and leave 
to the discretion of the committee the specific changes to laws 
or bills that must be made. The subsequent steps involve the 
combination of the various instructed committees' 
recommendations into an omnibus reconciliation bill or bills 
which are reported by the Committee on the Budget or by the one 
committee instructed, if only one committee has been 
instructed, and considered by the House. In the Senate, 
reconciliation bills reported from committee are entitled to 
expedited consideration, permitting a majority of Senators, 
rather than sixty, to ensure consideration of the bill with 
limited time for amendments. Congress aims to complete action 
on reconciliation measures by a specified date each year.
    The Budget Act maintains that reconciliation provisions 
must be related to reconciling the budget. This principle is 
codified in section 313 of the Budget Act, the so-called Byrd 
Rule, named after Senator Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia. 
Section 313 provides a point of order in the Senate against 
extraneous matter in reconciliation bills. Determining what is 
extraneous is a difficult task for the Senate's Presiding 
Officer. The Byrd Rule may only be waived in the Senate by a 
three-fifths vote and sixty votes are required to overturn the 
presiding officer's ruling.
    After Congress has completed action on a concurrent 
resolution on the budget for a fiscal year, the Budget Act 
provides a point of order against legislation that does not 
conform to the constraints on spending and revenue set out in 
the resolution.
    Both the House and Senate have in place a budget 
enforcement mechanism informally known as ``pay-as-you-go,'' or 
``Paygo.'' Under this system, it is not in order to consider 
legislation that increases the deficit or reduces the surplus 
over a given period of fiscal years. It is also not in order to 
consider a concurrent resolution on the budget, or an amendment 
thereto, or a conference report thereon, that contains 
reconciliation directives if the effect of such measures would 
be to increase the deficit or reduce the surplus over a given 
period of fiscal years.
    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995, through an 
amendment to the Congressional Budget Act, established 
requirements on committees with respect to measures containing 
unfunded intergovernmental mandates. An unfunded 
intergovernmental mandate is the imposition of a substantial 
financial requirement or obligation on a state, local, or 
tribal government. The Act also established a unique point of 
order to enforce the requirements of the Act with respect to 
intergovernmental mandates in excess of a given threshold. In 
the House, an unfunded mandate point of order is not disposed 
of by a ruling of the Chair but by the Chair putting the 
question of consideration to the body. The House or the 
Committee of the Whole then decides by vote whether or not to 
proceed with the measure with the alleged mandate contained 
therein.

                XIII. ENGROSSMENT AND MESSAGE TO SENATE
    The preparation of a copy of the bill in the form in which 
it has passed the House can be a detailed and complicated 
process because of the large number and complexity of 
amendments to some bills adopted by the House. These amendments 
may be offered during a spirited debate with little or no prior 
formal preparation. The amendment may be for the purpose of 
inserting new language, substituting different words for those 
set out in the bill, or deleting portions of the bill. In some 
cases, amendments offered from the floor are written in 
longhand. Each amendment must be inserted in precisely the 
proper place in the bill, with the spelling and punctuation 
exactly as it was adopted by the House. It is extremely 
important that the Senate receive a copy of the bill in the 
precise form in which it has passed the House. The preparation 
of such a copy is the function of the Enrolling Clerk.
    In the House, the Enrolling Clerk is under the Clerk of the 
House. In the Senate, the Enrolling Clerk is under the 
Secretary of the Senate. The Enrolling Clerk receives all the 
papers relating to the bill, including the official Clerk's 
copy of the bill as reported by the standing committee and each 
amendment adopted by the House. From this material, the 
Enrolling Clerk prepares the engrossed copy of the bill as 
passed, containing all the amendments agreed to by the House. 
At this point, the measure ceases technically to be called a 
bill and is termed ``An Act'' signifying that it is the act of 
one body of the Congress, although it is still popularly 
referred to as a bill. The engrossed bill is printed on blue 
paper and is signed by the Clerk of the House. Bills may also 
originate in the Senate with certain exceptions. For a 
discussion of bills originating in the Senate, see Part XVI.

                           XIV. SENATE ACTION
    The Parliamentarian, in the name of the Vice President, as 
the President of the Senate, refers the engrossed bill to the 
appropriate standing committee of the Senate in conformity with 
the rules of the Senate. The bill is reprinted immediately and 
copies are made available in the document rooms of both Houses. 
This printing is known as the ``Act print'' or the ``Senate 
referred print.''
                        committee consideration
    Senate committees give the bill the same detailed 
consideration as it received in the House and may report it 
with or without amendment. A committee member who wishes to 
express an individual view or a group of Members who wish to 
file a minority report may do so by giving notice, at the time 
of the approval of a report on the measure, of an intention to 
file supplemental, minority, or additional views. These views 
may be filed within three days with the clerk of the committee 
and become a part of the report. When a committee reports a 
bill, it is reprinted with the committee amendments indicated 
by showing new matter in italics and deleted matter in line-
through type. The calendar number and report number are 
indicated on the first and back pages, together with the name 
of the Senator making the report. If the committee chooses to 
file a report to accompany the bill, it is printed at this 
time, along with any minority or individual views.
    All committee meetings, including those to conduct 
hearings, must be open to the public. However, a majority of 
the members of a committee or subcommittee may, after 
discussion in closed session, vote in open session to close a 
meeting or series of meetings on the same subject for no longer 
than 14 days if it is determined that the matters to be 
discussed or testimony to be taken will disclose matters 
necessary to be kept secret in the interests of national 
defense or the confidential conduct of the foreign relations of 
the United States; will relate solely to internal committee 
staff management or procedure; will tend to charge an 
individual with a crime or misconduct, to disgrace or injure 
the professional standing of an individual, or otherwise to 
expose an individual to public contempt, or will represent a 
clearly unwarranted invasion of the privacy of an individual; 
will disclose law enforcement information that is required to 
be kept secret; will disclose certain information regarding 
certain trade secrets; or may disclose matters required to be 
kept confidential under other provisions of law or government 
regulation.
                           chamber procedure
    The rules of procedure in the Senate differ to a large 
extent from those in the House. The Senate relies heavily on 
the practice of obtaining unanimous consent for actions to be 
taken. For example, at the time that a bill is reported, the 
Majority Leader may ask unanimous consent for the immediate 
consideration of the bill. If the bill is of a noncontroversial 
nature and there is no objection, the Senate may pass the bill 
with little or no debate and with only a brief explanation of 
its purpose and effect. If there is any objection, the report 
must lie over one legislative day and the bill is placed on the 
calendar.
    Measures reported by standing committees of the Senate may 
not be considered unless the report of that committee has been 
available to Senate Members for at least two days (excluding 
Sundays and legal holidays) prior to consideration of the 
measure in the Senate. This requirement may be waived by 
agreement of the Majority and Minority leaders and does not 
apply in certain emergency situations or where no report has 
been submitted on the measure.
    In the Senate, measures are brought up for consideration by 
a simple unanimous consent request, by a complex unanimous 
consent agreement, or by a motion to proceed to the 
consideration of a measure on the calendar. A unanimous consent 
agreement, sometimes referred to as a ``time agreement'', makes 
the consideration of a measure in order and often limits the 
amount of debate that will take place on the measure and lists 
the amendments that will be considered. The offering of a 
unanimous consent request to consider a measure or the offering 
of a motion to proceed to the consideration of a measure is 
reserved, by tradition, to the Majority Leader. Usually, a 
motion to consider a measure on the calendar is made only when 
unanimous consent to consider the measure cannot be obtained.
    There are two calendars in the Senate, the Calendar of 
Business and the Executive Calendar. All legislation is placed 
on the Calendar of Business and treaties and nominations are 
placed on the Executive Calendar. Unlike the House, there is no 
differentiation on the Calendar of Business between the 
treatment of: (1) bills raising revenue, general appropriation 
bills, and bills of a public character appropriating money or 
property; and (2) other bills of a public character not 
appropriating money or property.
    The rules of the Senate provide that at the conclusion of 
the morning business for each ``legislative day'' the Senate 
proceeds to the consideration of the calendar. In the Senate, 
the term ``legislative day'' means the period of time from when 
the Senate adjourns until the next time the Senate adjourns. 
Because the Senate often ``recesses'' rather than ``adjourns'' 
at the end of a daily session, the legislative day usually does 
not correspond to the 24-hour period comprising a calendar day. 
Thus, a legislative day may cover a long period of time--from 
days to weeks, or even months. Because of this and the modern 
practice of waiving the call of the calendar by unanimous 
consent at the start of a new legislative day, it is rare to 
have a call of the calendar. When the calendar is called, bills 
that are not objected to are taken up in their order, and each 
Senator is entitled to speak once and for five minutes only on 
any question. Objection may be interposed at any stage of the 
proceedings, but on motion the Senate may continue 
consideration after the call of the calendar is completed, and 
the limitations on debate then do not apply.
    On any day (other than a Monday that begins a new 
legislative day), following the announcement of the close of 
morning business, any Senator, usually the Majority Leader, 
obtaining recognition may move to take up any bill out of its 
regular order on the calendar. The five-minute limitation on 
debate does not apply to the consideration of a bill taken up 
in this manner, and debate may continue until the hour when the 
Presiding Officer of the Senate ``lays down'' the unfinished 
business of the day. At that point consideration of the bill is 
discontinued and the measure reverts back to the Calendar of 
Business and may again be called up at another time under the 
same conditions.
    When a bill has been objected to and passed over on the 
call of the calendar it is not necessarily lost. The Majority 
Leader, after consulting the Minority Leader, determines the 
time at which the bill will be considered. At that time, a 
motion is made to consider the bill. The motion is debatable if 
made after the morning hour.
    When a Senator is recognized by the Presiding Officer, the 
Senator may speak for as long as the Senator wishes and loses 
the floor only when the Senator yields it or takes certain 
parliamentary actions that forfeit the Senator's right to the 
floor. However, a Senator may not speak more than twice on any 
one question in debate on the same legislative day without 
leave of the Senate. Debate ends when a Senator yields the 
floor and no other Senator seeks recognition, or when a 
unanimous consent agreement limiting the time of debate 
dictates that debate is concluded.
    On occasion, Senators opposed to a measure may extend 
debate by making lengthy speeches or a number of speeches at 
various stages of consideration intended to prevent or defeat 
action on the measure. This is the tactic known as 
``filibustering.'' Debate may be closed, however, if 16 
Senators sign a motion to that effect and the motion is carried 
by three-fifths of the Senators duly chosen and sworn. Such a 
motion is voted on one hour after the Senate convenes, 
following a quorum call on the next day after a day of session 
has intervened. This procedure is called ``invoking cloture.'' 
In 1986, the Senate amended its rules to limit ``post-cloture'' 
consideration to 30 hours. ``Post-cloture,'' a Senator may 
speak for not more than one hour and may yield all or a part of 
that time to the majority or minority floor managers of the 
bill under consideration or to the Majority or Minority leader. 
The Senate may increase the time for ``post-cloture'' debate by 
a vote of three-fifths of the Senators duly chosen and sworn. 
After the time for debate has expired, the Senate may consider 
only amendments actually pending before voting on the bill.
    While a measure is being considered it is subject to 
amendment and each amendment, including those proposed by the 
committee that reported the bill, is considered separately. 
Generally, there is no requirement that proposed amendments be 
germane to the subject matter of the bill except in the case of 
general appropriation bills or where ``cloture'' has been 
invoked. Under the rules, a ``rider'', an amendment proposing 
substantive legislation to an appropriation bill, is 
prohibited. However, this prohibition may be suspended by two-
thirds vote on a motion to permit consideration of such an 
amendment on one day's notice in writing. Debate must be 
germane during the first three hours after business is laid 
down unless determined to the contrary by unanimous consent or 
on motion without debate.
    After final action on the amendments the bill is ready for 
engrossment and the third reading, which is by title only. The 
Presiding Officer then puts the question on the passage and a 
voice vote is usually taken although a yea-and-nay vote is in 
order if demanded by one-fifth of the Senators present. A 
simple majority is necessary for passage. Before an amended 
measure is cleared for its return to the House of 
Representatives, or an unamended measure is cleared for 
enrollment, a Senator who voted with the prevailing side, or 
who abstained from voting, may make a motion within the next 
two days to reconsider the action. If the measure was passed 
without a recorded vote, any Senator may make the motion to 
reconsider. That motion is usually tabled and its tabling 
constitutes a final determination. If, however, the motion is 
granted, the Senate by majority vote may either affirm its 
action, which then becomes final, or reverse it.
    The original engrossed House bill, together with the 
engrossed Senate amendments, if any, or the original engrossed 
Senate bill, as the case may be, is then returned to the House 
with a message stating the action taken by the Senate. Where 
the Senate has adopted amendments, the message requests that 
the House concur in them.
    For a more detailed discussion of Senate procedure, see 
Enactment of a Law, by Robert B. Dove, former Parliamentarian 
of the Senate.

                    XV. FINAL ACTION ON AMENDED BILL
    On their return to the House, the official papers relating 
to the amended measure are placed on the Speaker's table to 
await House action on the Senate amendments. Although rarely 
exercised, the Speaker has the authority to refer Senate 
amendments to the appropriate committee or committees with or 
without time limits on their consideration. If the amendments 
are of a minor or noncontroversial nature, any Member, usually 
the chairman of a committee that reported the bill, may, at the 
direction of the committee, ask unanimous consent to take the 
bill with the amendments from the Speaker's table and agree to 
the Senate amendments. At this point, the Clerk reads the title 
of the bill and the Senate amendments. If there is no 
objection, the amendments are then declared to be agreed to, 
and the bill is ready to be enrolled for presentation to the 
President. If unanimous consent is not obtainable, the few 
bills that do not require consideration in the Committee of the 
Whole are privileged and may be called up from the Speaker's 
table by motion for immediate consideration of the amendments. 
A simple majority is necessary to carry the motion and thereby 
complete floor action on the measure. A Senate amendment to a 
House bill is subject to a point of order that it must first be 
considered in the Committee of the Whole, if, originating in 
the House, it would be subject to that point of order. Most 
Senate amendments require consideration in the Committee of the 
Whole and this procedure by privileged motion is seldom 
utilized.
                        request for a conference
    The mere fact that each House may have separately passed 
its own bill on a subject is not sufficient to make either bill 
eligible for conference. One House must first take the 
additional step of amending and then passing the bill of the 
other House to form the basis for a conference. A Member, 
usually the chairman of the committee of jurisdiction, may 
request unanimous consent to take the House bill with the 
Senate amendments from the Speaker's table, disagree to the 
amendments and request or agree to a conference with the Senate 
to resolve the disagreeing votes of the two Houses. In the case 
of a Senate bill with House amendments, the House may insist on 
the House amendments and request a conference. For a discussion 
of bills originating in the Senate, see Part XVI. If there is 
objection, the Speaker may recognize a Member for a motion, if 
offered by the direction of the primary committee and of all 
reporting committees that had initial referral of the bill, to: 
(1) disagree to the Senate amendments and ask for or agree to a 
conference; or (2) insist on the House amendments to a Senate 
bill and request or agree to a conference. This may also be 
accomplished by a motion to suspend the rules with a two-thirds 
vote or by a rule from the Committee on Rules. If there is no 
objection to the request, or if the motion is carried, a motion 
to instruct the managers of the conference would be in order. 
This initial motion to instruct is the prerogative of the 
minority party. The instructions to conferees usually urge the 
managers to accept or reject a particular Senate or House 
provision or to take a more generally described political 
position to the extent possible within the scope of the 
conference. However, such instructions may not contain argument 
and are not binding on House or Senate conferees. After the 
motion to instruct is disposed of, the Speaker then appoints 
the managers, informally known as conferees, on the part of the 
House and a message is sent to the Senate advising it of the 
House action. A majority of the Members appointed to be 
conferees must have been supporters of the House position, as 
determined by the Speaker. The Speaker must appoint Members 
primarily responsible for the legislation and must include, to 
the fullest extent feasible, the principal proponents of the 
major provisions of the bill as it passed the House. The 
Speaker may appoint conferees from more than one committee and 
may specify the portions of the House and Senate versions to 
which they are assigned. The number is fixed by the Speaker and 
majority party representation generally reflects the ratio for 
the full House committee, but may be greater on important 
bills. The Speaker also has the authority to name substitute 
conferees on specific provisions and add or remove conferees 
after the original appointment.
    If the Senate agrees to the request for a conference, a 
similar committee is appointed by the Presiding Officer of the 
Senate. Both political parties may be represented on the Senate 
conference committee. The Senate and House committees need not 
be the same size but each House has one vote in conference as 
determined by a majority within each set or subset of 
conferees.
    The request for a conference may only be made by the body 
in possession of the official papers. Occasionally, the Senate, 
anticipating that the House will not concur in its amendments, 
votes to insist on its amendments and requests a conference on 
passage of the bill prior to returning the bill to the House. 
This practice serves to expedite the matter because time may be 
saved by the designation of the Senate conferees before 
returning the bill to the House. The body asking for the 
conference normally acts last on the report to be submitted by 
the conferees and a motion to recommit the conference report is 
not available to the body that acts last.
                         authority of conferees
    Although the managers on the part of each House meet 
together as one committee they are in effect two separate 
committees, each of which votes separately and acts by a 
majority vote. For this reason, variances in the number of 
managers from each House are largely immaterial.
    The House conferees are strictly limited in their 
consideration to matters in disagreement between the two 
Houses. Consequently, they may not strike or amend any portion 
of the bill that was not amended by the other House. 
Furthermore, they may not insert new matter that is not germane 
to or that is beyond the scope of the differences between the 
two Houses. Where the Senate amendment revises a figure or an 
amount contained in the bill, the conferees are limited to the 
difference between the two numbers and may neither increase the 
greater nor decrease the smaller figure. Neither House may 
alone, by instructions, empower its managers to make a change 
in the text to which both Houses have agreed.
    When a disagreement to an amendment in the nature of a 
substitute is committed to a conference committee, managers on 
the part of the House may propose a substitute that is a 
germane modification of the matter in disagreement, but the 
introduction of any language in that substitute presenting 
specific additional matter not committed to the conference 
committee by either House is not in order. Moreover, their 
report may not include matter not committed to the conference 
committee by either House. The report may not include a 
modification of any specific matter committed to the conference 
committee by either or both Houses if that modification is 
beyond the scope of that specific matter as committed to the 
conference committee.
    The managers on the part of the House are under specific 
guidelines when in conference on general appropriation bills. 
An amendment by the Senate to a general appropriation bill 
which would be in violation of the rules of the House, if such 
amendment had originated in the House, including an amendment 
changing existing law, providing appropriations not authorized 
by law, or providing reappropriations of unexpended balances, 
or an amendment by the Senate providing for an appropriation on 
a bill other than a general appropriation bill, may not be 
agreed to by the managers on the part of the House. However, 
the House may grant specific authority to agree to such an 
amendment by a separate vote on a motion to instruct on each 
specific amendment.
                    meetings and action of conferees
    The rules of the House require that one conference meeting 
be open to the public, unless the House, in open session, 
authorizes the managers to close the meeting. When the report 
of the conference committee is read in the House, a point of 
order may be made that the conferees failed to comply with the 
House rule requiring an open conference meeting. If the point 
of order is sustained, the conference report is considered 
rejected by the House and a new conference is deemed to have 
been requested.
    The rules of the House provide that, in conducting 
conferences with the Senate, the managers on the part of the 
House should endeavor to ensure that meetings for the 
resolution of differences between the two Houses occur only 
under circumstances in which every manager on the part of the 
House has notice of the meeting and a reasonable opportunity to 
attend, that all provisions on which the two Houses disagree 
are considered as open to discussion at any meeting of a 
conference committee, and that papers reflecting a conference 
agreement are held inviolate to change without renewal of the 
opportunity of all managers on the part of the House to 
reconsider their decisions to sign or not to sign the 
agreement. The rules of the House also require that managers on 
the part of the House be provided a unitary time and place at 
which to sign or not sign the conference report and joint 
explanatory statement, and that they have access to at least 
one complete copy of the final conference agreement for the 
purpose of recording or not recording their approval of the 
agreement.
    There are generally three forms of recommendations 
available to the conferees when reporting back to their bodies:
          (1) That one House recede from all (or certain of) 
        its amendments.
          (2) That one House recede from its disagreement to 
        all (or certain of) the other House's amendments and 
        agree thereto.
          (3) That one House recede from its disagreement to 
        all (or certain of) the other House's amendments and 
        agree thereto with amendments.
    In most instances, the result of the conference is a 
compromise growing out of the third type of recommendation 
available to the conferees because one House has originally 
substituted its own bill to be considered as a single 
amendment. The complete report may be composed of any one or 
more of these recommendations with respect to the various 
amendments where there are numbered amendments. In earlier 
practice, on general appropriation bills with numbered Senate 
amendments, because of the special rules preventing House 
conferees from agreeing to Senate amendments changing existing 
law or appropriations not authorized by law, the conferees 
often found themselves, under the rules or in fact, unable to 
reach an agreement with respect to one or more amendments and 
reported back a statement of their inability to agree on those 
particular amendments. These amendments were acted upon 
separately. This partial disagreement is not practicable where, 
as in current practice, the Senate strikes out all after the 
enacting clause and substitutes its own bill that must be 
considered as a single amendment.
    If they are unable to reach any agreement whatsoever, the 
conferees report that fact to their respective bodies and the 
amendments may be disposed of by motion. New conferees may be 
appointed in either or both Houses. In addition, the Houses may 
provide a new nonbinding instruction to the conferees as to the 
position they are to take.
    After House conferees on any bill or resolution in 
conference between the two bodies have been appointed for 20 
calendar days and 10 legislative days and have failed to make a 
report, a motion to instruct the House conferees, or discharge 
them and appoint new conferees, is privileged. The motion can 
be made only after the Member announces his intention to offer 
the motion and only at a time designated by the Speaker in the 
legislative schedule of the following day. Like the initial 
motion to instruct, the 20-day motion may not contain argument 
and must remain within the scope of conference. In addition, 
during the last six days of a session, it is a privileged 
motion to move to discharge, appoint, or instruct House 
conferees after House conferees have been appointed 36 hours 
without having made a report.
                           conference reports
    When the conferees, by majority vote of each group, have 
reached complete agreement or find that they are able to agree 
with respect to some but not all separately numbered 
amendments, they make their recommendations in a report made in 
duplicate that must be signed by a majority of the conferees 
appointed by each body on each provision to which they are 
appointed. The minority of the managers have no authority to 
file a statement of minority views in connection with the 
conference report. The report is required to be printed in both 
Houses and must be accompanied by an explanatory statement 
prepared jointly by the conferees on the part of the House and 
the conferees on the part of the Senate. The statement must be 
sufficiently detailed and explicit to inform Congress of the 
effects of the report on the matters committed to conference.
    In the Senate, the presentation of a conference report 
always is in order except when the Journal is being read, a 
point of order or motion to adjourn is pending, or while the 
Senate is voting or ascertaining the presence of a quorum. When 
the report is received, the question of proceeding to the 
consideration of the report, if raised, is immediately voted on 
without debate. The report is not subject to amendment in 
either body and must be accepted or rejected as an entirety. If 
the time for debate on the adoption of the report is limited, 
the time allotted must be equally divided between the majority 
and minority party. The Senate, acting first, prior to voting 
on agreeing to the report may by majority vote order it 
recommitted to the conferees. When the Senate agrees to the 
report, its managers are thereby discharged and it then 
delivers the original papers to the House with a message 
advising that body of its action.
    A report that contains any recommendations which extend 
beyond the scope of differences between the two Houses is 
subject to a point of order in its entirety unless that point 
of order is waived in the House by unanimous consent, adoption 
of a rule reported from the Committee on Rules, or the 
suspension of the rules by a two-thirds vote. In the Senate, a 
report exceeding the scope of conference is likewise subject to 
a point of order.
    It is not in order in the House to consider a conference 
report that differs in any way (other than clerical) from the 
text agreed to by the conferees, as recorded by their placement 
of their signatures (or not) on the sheets prepared to 
accompany the conference report and joint explanatory 
statement. Furthermore, as described earlier, it is not in 
order to consider a conference report unless the joint 
explanatory statement includes a list of congressional 
earmarks, limited tax benefits and limited tariff benefits in 
the conference report and joint explanatory statement, or a 
statement that the measure contains none of these items.
    The presentation of a conference report in the House is in 
order at any time, except during a reading of the Journal or 
the conduct of a record vote, a vote by division, or a quorum 
call. The report is considered in the House and may not be sent 
to the Committee of the Whole on the suggestion that it 
contains matters ordinarily requiring consideration in that 
Committee. The report may not be received by the House if the 
required joint statement does not accompany it.
    However, it is not in order to consider either: (1) a 
conference report; or (2) a motion to dispose of a Senate 
amendment reported in disagreement by a conference committee, 
until the third calendar day (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and 
legal holidays unless the House is in session on those days) 
after the report and accompanying statement have been filed in 
the House and made available to the Members in the 
Congressional Record. However, these provisions do not apply 
during the last six days of the session. It is also not in 
order to consider a conference report or a motion to dispose of 
a Senate amendment reported in disagreement unless copies of 
the report and accompanying statement, together with the text 
of the amendment, have been available to Members for at least 
two hours before their consideration. By contrast, it is always 
in order to call up for consideration a report from the 
Committee on Rules on the same day reported that proposes only 
to waive the availability requirements for a conference report 
or a Senate amendment reported in disagreement. The time 
allotted for debate on a conference report or motion is one 
hour, equally divided between the majority party and the 
minority party. However, if the majority and minority floor 
managers both support the conference report or motion, one-
third of the debate time must be allotted to a Member who is 
opposed, if claimed. If the House does not agree to a 
conference report that the Senate has already agreed to, the 
report may not be recommitted to conference. In that situation, 
the Senate conferees are discharged when the Senate agrees to 
the report. The House may then request a new conference with 
the Senate and conferees must be reappointed.
    If a conference report is called up in the House containing 
matter which would be in violation of the rules of the House 
with respect to germaneness if the matter had been offered as 
an amendment in the House, and which is contained either: (1) 
in the Senate bill or Senate amendment to the House measure and 
accepted by the House conferees or agreed to by the conference 
committee with modification; or (2) in a substitute amendment 
agreed to by the conference committee, a point of order may be 
made at the beginning of consideration that nongermane matter 
is contained in the report. The point of order may be waived by 
a special rule. If the point of order is sustained, a motion to 
reject the nongermane matter identified by the point of order 
is privileged. The motion is debatable for 40 minutes, half of 
the time in favor of, and half in opposition to, the motion. 
Notwithstanding the final disposition of a point of order made 
with respect to the report, or of a motion to reject nongermane 
matter, further points of order may be made with respect to the 
report, and further motions may be made to reject other 
nongermane matter in the conference report not covered by any 
previous point of order which has been sustained. If a motion 
to reject has been adopted, after final disposition of all 
points of order and motions to reject, the conference report is 
considered rejected and the question then pending before the 
House is whether: (1) to recede and concur with an amendment 
that consists of that portion of the conference report not 
rejected; or (2) to insist on the House amendment. If all 
motions to reject are defeated and the House thereby decides to 
permit the inclusion of the nongermane Senate matter in the 
conference report, then, after the allocation of time for 
debate on the conference report, it is in order to move the 
previous question on the adoption of the conference report.
    Similar procedures are available in the House when the 
Senate proposes an amendment to a measure that would be in 
violation of the rule against nongermane amendments, and 
thereafter it is (1) reported in disagreement by a committee of 
conference or (2) before the House and the stage of 
disagreement is reached.
    The numbered amendments of the Senate reported in 
disagreement may be voted on separately and may be adopted by a 
majority vote after the adoption of the conference report 
itself as though no conference had been had with respect to 
those amendments. The Senate may recede from all amendments, or 
from certain of its amendments, insisting on the others with or 
without a request for a further conference with respect to 
them. If the House does not accept the amendments insisted on 
by the Senate, the entire conference process may begin again 
with respect to them. One House may also further amend an 
amendment of the other House until the third degree of 
amendment within that House is reached.
                           custody of papers
    The custody of the official papers is important in 
conference procedure because either body may act on a 
conference report only when in possession of the papers. 
Traditionally, the papers are transmitted to the body agreeing 
to the conference and from that body to the managers of the 
House that asked for the conference. The latter in turn carry 
the papers with them to the conference and at its conclusion 
turn them over to the managers of the House that agreed to the 
conference. The managers of the House that agreed to the 
conference deliver them to their own House, which acts first on 
the report, and then delivers the papers to the other House for 
final action on the report. However, if the managers on the 
part of the House agreeing to the conference surrender the 
papers to the House asking for the conference, the report may 
be acted on first by the House asking for the conference.
    At the conclusion of the conference, each group of 
conferees retains one copy of the report that has been made in 
duplicate and signed by a majority of the managers of each 
body. The House copy is signed first by the House managers and 
the Senate copy is signed first by its managers.
    A bill cannot become law until it has been approved in 
identical form by both Houses of Congress. When the bill has 
finally been approved by both Houses, all the original papers 
are transmitted to the Enrolling Clerk of the body in which the 
bill originated.

                    XVI. BILL ORIGINATING IN SENATE
    The preceding discussion has described the legislative 
process for bills originating in the House. When a bill 
originates in the Senate, this process is reversed. When the 
Senate passes a bill that originated in the Senate, it is sent 
to the House for consideration unless it is held to become a 
vehicle for a similar House bill if and when passed by the 
House. The Senate bill is referred to the appropriate House 
committee for consideration or held at the Speaker's table at 
the Speaker's discretion. If the committee reports the bill to 
the full House and if the bill is passed by the House without 
amendment, it is enrolled. If the House passes an amended 
version of the Senate bill, the bill is returned to the Senate 
for action on the House amendments. The Senate may agree to the 
amendments or request a conference to resolve the disagreement 
over the House amendments or may further amend the House 
amendments. In accordance with the Constitution, the Senate 
cannot originate evenue measures. By tradition, the House also 
originates general appropriation bills. If the Senate does 
originate a revenue measure either as a Senate bill or an 
amendment to a non-revenue House bill, it can be returned to 
the Senate by a vote of the House as an infringement of the 
constitutional prerogative of the House.

                            XVII. ENROLLMENT
    When a bill has been agreed to in identical form by both 
bodies--either: (1) without amendment by the second House to 
consider it; (2) by the first House's concurrence in the second 
House's amendments; or (3) by agreement in both bodies to the 
conference report--a copy of the bill is enrolled for 
presentation to the President.
    The preparation of the enrolled bill is a painstaking and 
important task because it must reflect precisely the effect of 
all amendments, either by way of deletion, substitution, or 
addition, agreed to by both bodies. The Enrolling Clerk of the 
House, with respect to bills originating in the House, receives 
the original engrossed bill, the engrossed Senate amendments, 
the signed conference report, all messages from the Senate, and 
a notation of the final action by the House, for the purpose of 
preparing the enrolled copy. From these documents, the 
Enrolling Clerk must meticulously prepare for presentation to 
the President the final form of the bill as it was agreed to by 
both Houses. On occasion, as many as 500 amendments have been 
adopted, each of which must be set out in the enrollment 
exactly as agreed to, and all punctuation must be in accord 
with the action taken.
    The enrolled bill is printed on parchment paper and 
certified by the Clerk of the House stating that the bill 
originated in the House of Representatives. A bill originating 
in the Senate is examined and certified by the Secretary of the 
Senate. A House bill is then examined for accuracy by the 
Clerk. When satisfied with the accuracy of the bill, the Clerk 
attaches a slip stating that the bill is truly enrolled and 
sends it to the Speaker of the House for signature. By 
tradition, all bills, regardless of the body in which they 
originated, are signed first by the Speaker and then by the 
Vice President of the United States, who, under the 
Constitution, serves as the President of the Senate, or by the 
elected President pro tempore of the Senate. The Speaker of the 
House may sign enrolled bills whether or not the House is in 
session. The President of the Senate may sign bills only while 
the Senate is actually sitting but advance permission is 
normally granted to sign during a recess or after adjournment. 
If the Speaker or the President of the Senate is unable to sign 
the bill, it may be signed by an authorized Member of the 
respective House. After both signatures are affixed, a House 
bill is returned to the Clerk for presentation to the President 
for action under the Constitution. A Senate bill is presented 
to the President by the Secretary of the Senate.

                       XVIII. PRESIDENTIAL ACTION
    Article I, Section 7, of the Constitution provides in part 
that--

    Every Bill which shall have passed the House of 
Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it becomes a Law, 
be presented to the President of the United States.

    In actual practice, the Clerk, or the Secretary of the 
Senate when the bill originated in that body, delivers the 
original enrolled bill to a clerk at the White House and 
obtains a receipt. The fact of the delivery is then reported to 
the House by the Clerk. Delivery to a White House clerk has 
customarily been regarded as presentation to the President and 
as commencing the constitutional period for presidential 
action.
    Copies of the enrolled bill usually are transmitted by the 
White House to the various departments interested in the 
subject matter so that they may advise the President on the 
issues surrounding the bill.
    If the President approves the bill, he signs it and usually 
writes the word ``approved'' and the date. However, the 
Constitution requires only that the President sign it.
    The bill may become law without the President's signature 
by virtue of the constitutional provision that if the President 
does not return a bill with objections within 10 days 
(excluding Sundays) after it has been presented to the 
President, it becomes law as if the President had signed it. 
However, if Congress by their adjournment prevent its return, 
it does not become law. This is known as a ``pocket veto;'' 
that is, the bill does not become law even though the President 
has not sent his objections to the Congress. The Congress has 
interpreted the President's ability to pocket veto a bill to be 
limited to adjournment ``sine die'' of a Congress and not to 
interim adjournments or first session adjournments where the 
originating House of Congress through its agents is able to 
receive a veto message for subsequent reconsideration by that 
same Congress when it reconvenes. The extent of pocket veto 
authority has not been definitively decided by the courts.
    Notice of the signing of a bill by the President is sent by 
message to the House in which it originated and that House 
informs the other, although this action is not necessary for 
the act to be valid. The action is also noted in the 
Congressional Record.
    A bill becomes law on the date of approval or passage over 
the President's veto, unless it expressly provides a different 
effective date.
                              veto message
    By the terms of the Constitution, if the President does not 
approve the bill ``he shall return it, with his Objections to 
that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter 
the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to 
reconsider it.'' A bill returned with the President's 
objections need not be voted on at once when laid before the 
House since the vetoed bill can be postponed, referred to 
committee, or tabled before the question on passage is pending. 
A vetoed bill is always privileged until directly voted upon, 
and a motion to take it from the table or from committee is in 
order at any time.
    The question of override is put by the Speaker as follows: 
``Will the House, on reconsideration, pass the bill, the 
objections of the President to the contrary notwithstanding?'' 
Under the Constitution, a vote by the yeas and nays is required 
to pass a bill over the President's veto. The Clerk activates 
the electronic system or calls the roll with those in favor of 
passing the bill answering ``Aye,'' and those opposed ``No.'' 
If fewer than two-thirds of the Members present vote in the 
affirmative, a quorum being present, the bill is rejected, and 
a message is sent to the Senate advising that body of the House 
action. However, if two-thirds vote in the affirmative, the 
bill is sent with the President's objections to the Senate, 
unless that body has acted first, together with a message 
advising it of the action in the House.
    If the Senate joins the House and votes two-thirds in the 
affirmative to pass the bill, the measure becomes the law of 
the land notwithstanding the objections of the President, and 
it is ready for publication as a binding statute.
                             line item veto
    From 1997 until it was declared unconstitutional in 1998, 
the Line Item Veto Act provided the President authority to 
cancel certain individual items contained in a bill or joint 
resolution that he had signed into law. The law allowed the 
President to cancel only three types of fiscal items: a dollar 
amount of discretionary budget authority, an item of new direct 
spending, or a tax change benefiting a class of 100 or fewer. 
While the Act has not been repealed, the Supreme Court in 
Clinton v. City of New York, 24 U.S. 417 (1998), struck down 
the Line Item Veto Act as unconstitutional.

                            XIX. PUBLICATION
    One of the important steps in the enactment of a valid law 
is the requirement that it shall be made known to the people 
who are to be bound by it. There would be no justice if the 
state were to hold its people responsible for their conduct 
before it made known to them the unlawfulness of such behavior. 
In practice, our laws are published immediately upon their 
enactment so that the public will be aware of them.
    If the President approves a bill, or allows it to become 
law without signing it, the original enrolled bill is sent from 
the White House to the Archivist of the United States for 
publication. If a bill is passed by both Houses over the 
objections of the President, the body that last overrides the 
veto transmits it. It is then assigned a public law number, and 
paginated for the Statutes at Large volume covering that 
session of Congress. The public and private law numbers run in 
sequence starting anew at the beginning of each Congress and 
are prefixed for ready identification by the number of the 
Congress. For example, the first public law of the 110th 
Congress is designated Public Law 110-1 and the first private 
law of the 110th Congress is designated Private Law 110-1. 
                               slip laws
    The first official publication of the statute is in the 
form generally known as the ``slip law.'' In this form, each 
law is published separately as an unbound pamphlet. The heading 
indicates the public or private law number, the date of 
approval, and the bill number. The heading of a slip law for a 
public law also indicates the United States Statutes at Large 
citation. If the statute has been passed over the veto of the 
President, or has become law without the President's signature 
because he did not return it with objections, an appropriate 
statement is inserted instead of the usual notation of 
approval.
    The Office of the Federal Register, National Archives and 
Records Administration, prepares the slip laws and provides 
marginal editorial notes giving the citations to laws mentioned 
in the text and other explanatory details. The marginal notes 
also give the United States Code classifications, enabling the 
reader immediately to determine where the statute will appear 
in the Code. Each slip law also includes an informative guide 
to the legislative history of the law consisting of the 
committee report number, the name of the committee in each 
House, as well as the date of consideration and passage in each 
House, with a reference to the Congressional Record by volume, 
year, and date. A reference to presidential statements relating 
to the approval of a bill or the veto of a bill when the veto 
was overridden and the bill becomes law is included in the 
legislative history as a citation to the Weekly Compilation of 
Presidential Documents.
    Copies of the slip laws are delivered to the document rooms 
of both Houses where they are available to officials and the 
public. They may also be obtained by annual subscription or 
individual purchase from the Government Printing Office and are 
available in electronic form. Section 113 of title 1 of the 
United States Code provides that slip laws are competent 
evidence in all the federal and state courts, tribunals, and 
public offices.
                           statutes at large
    The United States Statutes at Large, prepared by the Office 
of the Federal Register, National Archives and Records 
Administration, provide a permanent collection of the laws of 
each session of Congress in bound volumes. The latest volume 
containing the laws of the first session of the 109th Congress 
is number 119 in the series. Each volume contains a complete 
index and a table of contents. A legislative history appears at 
the end of each law. There are also marginal notes referring to 
laws in earlier volumes and to earlier and later matters in the 
same volume.
    Under the provisions of a statute enacted in 1895, these 
volumes are legal evidence of the laws contained in them and 
will be accepted as proof of those laws in any court in the 
United States.
    The Statutes at Large are a chronological arrangement of 
the laws exactly as they have been enacted. The laws are not 
arranged according to subject matter and do not reflect the 
present status of an earlier law that has been amended.
                           united states code
    The United States Code contains a consolidation and 
codification of the general and permanent laws of the United 
States arranged according to subject matter under 50 title 
headings, largely in alphabetical order. It sets out the 
current status of the laws, as amended, without repeating all 
the language of the amendatory acts except where necessary. The 
Code is declared to be prima facie evidence of those laws. Its 
purpose is to present the laws in a concise and usable form 
without requiring recourse to the many volumes of the Statutes 
at Large containing the individual amendments.
    The Code is prepared by the Law Revision Counsel of the 
House of Representatives. New editions are published every six 
years and cumulative supplements are published after the 
conclusion of each regular session of the Congress. The Code is 
also available in electronic format.
    Twenty-four of the 50 titles have been revised and enacted 
into positive law, and one title has been eliminated by 
consolidation with another title. Titles that have been revised 
and enacted into positive law are legal evidence of the law and 
may be updated by direct amendment. Eventually all the titles 
will be revised and enacted into positive law.
                            A P P E N D I X

                 SELECT LIST OF GOVERNMENT PUBLICATIONS

Constitution of the United States of America
    Analysis and Interpretation, with annotations of cases 
decided by the Supreme Court of the United States to June 28, 
2002; prepared by Congressional Research Service, Library of 
Congress, Johnny H. Killian, George A. Costello, Kenneth R. 
Thomas, co-editors: Senate Document 103-6 (1996); updated 
Senate Document 107-27 (2002).
House Rules and Manual
    Constitution, Jefferson's Manual, and Rules of the House of 
Representatives of the United States, prepared by John V. 
Sullivan, Parliamentarian of the House, House Document 109-157 
(2007). New editions are published each Congress.
Senate Manual
    Containing the rules, orders, laws, and resolutions 
affecting the business of the United States Senate; Jefferson's 
Manual, Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation, 
Constitution of the United States, etc., prepared under the 
direction of Senate Committee on Rules and Administration. New 
editions are published each Congress.
Hinds' and Cannon's Precedents of the House of Representatives
    Including references to provisions of the Constitution, 
laws, and decisions of the Senate, by Asher C. Hinds. Vols. 1-5 
(1907).
    Vols. 6-8 (1935), as compiled by Clarence Cannon, are 
supplementary to vols. 1-5 and cover the 28-year period from 
1907 to 1935, revised up to and including the 73d Congress.
    Vols. 9-11 (1941) are index-digest to vols. 1-8.
Deschler-Brown Precedents of the United States House of Representatives
    Including references to provisions of the Constitution and 
laws, and to decisions of the courts, covering the period from 
1928 to date, by Lewis Deschler, J.D., D.J., M.P.L., LL.D., 
Parliamentarian of the House (1928-1974), Wm. Holmes Brown, 
Parliamentarian of the House (1974-1994).
    Vols. 1-16 have been published, additional volumes in 
preparation.
Cannon's Procedure in the House of Representatives
    By Clarence Cannon, A.M., LL.B., LL.D., Member of Congress, 
sometime Parliamentarian of the House, Speaker pro tempore, 
Chairman of the Committee of the Whole, Chairman of the 
Committee on Appropriations, etc.
House Practice, A Guide to the Rules, Precedents and Procedures of the 
        House
    By Wm. Holmes Brown, Parliamentarian of the House (1974-
1994); updated 2003 by Charles W. Johnson, Parliamentarian of 
the House (1994-2004).
Procedure in the U.S. House of Representatives, Fourth Edition (1982) 
        (1987 Supp.)
    By Lewis Deschler, J.D., D.J., M.P.L., LL.D., 
Parliamentarian of the House (1928-1974), and Wm. Holmes Brown, 
Parliamentarian of the House (1974-1994).
Senate Procedure
    By Floyd M. Riddick, Parliamentarian Emeritus of the 
Senate, Alan S. Frumin, Parliamentarian of the Senate: Senate 
Document No. 101-28 (1992).
Calendars of the House of Representatives and History of Legislation
    Published each day the House is in session; prepared under 
the direction of the Clerk of the House of Representatives.
Committee Calendars
    Published periodically by most of the standing committees 
of the House of Representatives and Senate, containing the 
history of bills and resolutions referred to the particular 
committee.
Digest of Public General Bills and Resolutions
    A brief synopsis of public bills and resolutions, and 
changes made therein during the legislative process; prepared 
by American Law Division, Congressional Research Service, 
Library of Congress.
Congressional Record
    Proceedings and debates of the House and Senate, published 
daily, and bound with an index and history of bills and 
resolutions at the conclusion of each session of the Congress. 
The record of debates prior to 1874 was published in the Annals 
of Congress (1789-1824), The Register of Debates (1824-1837), 
and the Congressional Globe (1833-1873). Debates from 1774-1873 
are available electronically from a website maintained by the 
Library of Congress.
Journal of the House of Representatives
    Official record of the proceedings of the House, published 
at the conclusion of each session under the direction of the 
Clerk of the House.
Journal of the United States Senate
    Official record of the proceedings of the Senate, published 
at the conclusion of each session under the direction of the 
Secretary of the Senate.
United States Statutes at Large
    Containing the laws and concurrent resolutions enacted, and 
reorganization plans and proclamations promulgated during each 
session of the Congress, published annually under the direction 
of the Archivist of the United States by the Office of the 
Federal Register, National Archives and Records Administration, 
Washington, D.C. 20408.
    Supplemental volumes: Tables of Laws Affected, Volumes 70-
84 (1956-1970), Volumes 85-89 (1971-1975), containing tables of 
prior laws amended, repealed, or patently affected by 
provisions of public laws enacted during that period.
    Additional parts, containing treaties and international 
agreements other than treaties, published annually under the 
direction of the Secretary of State until 1950.
United States Code
    The general and permanent laws of the United States in 
force on the day preceding the commencement of the session 
following the last session the legislation of which is 
included: arranged in 50 titles; prepared under the direction 
and supervision of the Law Revision Counsel of the House of 
Representatives. New editions are published every six years and 
cumulative supplements are published annually.
Federal Register
    Presidential Proclamations, Executive Orders, and federal 
agency orders, regulations, and notices, and general documents 
of public applicability and legal effect, published daily. The 
regulations therein amend the Code of Federal Regulations. 
Published by the Office of the Federal Register, National 
Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C. 20408.
Code of Federal Regulations
    Cumulates in bound volumes the general and permanent rules 
and regulations of Federal agencies published in the Federal 
Register, including Presidential documents. Each volume of the 
Code is revised at least once each calendar year and issued on 
a quarterly basis. Published by the Office of the Federal 
Register, National Archives and Records Administration, 
Washington, D.C. 20408.
Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents
    Containing statements, messages, and other presidential 
materials released by the White House during the preceding 
week, published every Monday by the Office of the Federal 
Register, National Archives and Records Administration, 
Washington, D.C. 20408.
History of the United States House of Representatives
    Prepared by Congressional Research Service, Library of 
Congress, House Document 103-324.
The Senate, 1789-1989, Addresses on the History of the United States 
        Senate, Vol. 1
    By Senator Robert C. Byrd, Senate Document No. 100-20 
(1988).
Historical Almanac of the United States Senate
    By Senator Bob Dole, Senate Document No. 100-35 (1989).