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    U.S. Senate: Senators



    The prescribes that the Senate be composed of two senators from each State (therefore, the Senate currently has 100 Members) and that a senator must be at least thirty years of age, have been a citizen of the United States for nine years, and, when elected, be a resident of the State from which he or she is chosen. A senator's term of office is six years and approximately one-third of the total membership of the Senate is elected every two years.

    Contacting Your Senator

    Current Senators Contact List

    Biographies and Congressional Profiles

    Look up brief biographies of Senators from 1774 to the present in the You can find out other facts about Senators past and present and get an overview of the members of Congress using these links.

    Featured Biographies

    Guide to House and Senate Members (GPO)

    (CRS) (PDF) Senate Spouses

    Internal Organization of the Senate

    Constitutional Qualifications for U.S. Senators


    Senate Oath of Office

    Senate Reform Commission, July 29, 1975

    Appointments, Elections, and Political Parties

    Appointed Senators (1913-Present)

    Senators Who Have Changed Parties (1890-Present)

    Party Division in the Senate (1789-Present)

    Salary and Benefits

    Terms and Salaries, June 26, 1787

    Salary Storm, March 19, 1816

    Senate Salaries Since 1789

    (CRS) (PDF) (CRS) (PDF)

    Bibliography on Books by Sitting Senators

    Former Senators

    Association of Former Members of Congress Web Page (usafmc.org)

    Living Former Senators, Alphabetically

    Living Former Senators, by State

    Senators Who Have Died since 2000

    Senators Who Have Died in Office

    Related Items

    Interested in related materials? Take a look at these Virtual Reference Desk subjects and other links for more information.

    Archives Committees Directories Elections Leadership

    Minorities in the Senate

    Senators and Their States

    Votes Women in the Senate

    Source : www.senate.gov

    United States Senate

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    United States Senate

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Jump to navigation Jump to search

    For current members of the Senate, see List of current United States senators.

    Coordinates: 38°53′26″N 77°0′32″W / 38.89056°N 77.00889°W

    United States Senate

    117th United States Congress

    Seal of the U.S. Senate

    Flag of the U.S. Senate

    Type Type

    Upper house of the United States Congress

    Term limits None History

    New session started January 3, 2021


    President of the Senate Kamala Harris (D)

    since January 20, 2021

    President pro tempore Patrick Leahy (D)

    since January 20, 2021

    Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D)

    since January 20, 2021

    Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R)

    since January 20, 2021

    Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D)

    since January 20, 2021

    Minority Whip John Thune (R)

    since January 20, 2021

    Structure Seats 100

    51 (or 50 plus the Vice President) for a majority

    Political groups Majority (50)[a]

    Democratic (48) Independent (2)[b]

    Minority (50)

    Republican (50)

    Length of term 6 years


    Voting system Plurality voting in 46 states[c]

    show Varies in 4 states

    Last election November 3, 2020[d] (35 seats)

    Next election November 8, 2022 (35 seats)

    Meeting place Senate Chamber

    United States Capitol

    Washington, D.C. United States Website senate.gov Constitution

    United States Constitution


    Standing Rules of the United States Senate

    The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, with the House of Representatives being the lower chamber. Together they compose the national bicameral legislature of the United States.

    The composition and powers of the Senate are established by Article One of the United States Constitution.[2] The Senate is composed of senators, each of whom represents a single state in its entirety. Each state is equally represented by two senators who serve staggered terms of six years. There are currently 100 senators representing the 50 states. The vice president of the United States serves as presiding officer and president of the Senate by virtue of that office, and has a vote only if the senators are equally divided. In the vice president's absence, the president pro tempore, who is traditionally the senior member of the party holding a majority of seats, presides over the Senate.

    As the upper chamber of Congress, the Senate has several powers of advice and consent which are unique to it. These include the approval of treaties, and the confirmation of Cabinet secretaries, federal judges (including Federal Supreme Court justices), flag officers, regulatory officials, ambassadors, other federal executive officials and federal uniformed officers. If no candidate receives a majority of electors for vice president, the duty falls to the Senate to elect one of the top two recipients of electors for that office. The Senate conducts trials of those impeached by the House.

    The Senate is widely considered both a more deliberative[3] and more prestigious[4][5][6] body than the House of Representatives due to its longer terms, smaller size, and statewide constituencies, which historically led to a more collegial and less partisan atmosphere.[7]

    From 1789 to 1913, senators were appointed by legislatures of the states they represented. They are now elected by popular vote following the ratification of the Seventeenth Amendment in 1913. In the early 1920s, the practice of majority and minority parties electing their floor leaders began. The Senate's legislative and executive business is managed and scheduled by the Senate majority leader.

    The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.


    1 History

    2 Current composition and election results

    2.1 Current party standings

    3 Membership 3.1 Qualifications

    3.2 Elections and term

    3.2.1 Term 3.2.2 Elections 3.2.3 Vacancies 3.3 Oath

    3.4 Salary and benefits

    3.5 Seniority

    3.6 Expulsion and other disciplinary actions

    4 Majority and minority parties

    4.1 Seating 5 Officers

    5.1 Presiding officer

    5.2 Party leaders

    5.3 Non-member officers

    6 Procedure 6.1 Daily sessions 6.1.1 Debate

    6.1.2 Filibuster and cloture

    6.1.3 Voting

    6.1.4 Closed session

    6.2 Calendars 6.3 Committees 7 Criticism

    8 Senate office buildings

    9 Functions 9.1 Legislation

    9.2 Checks and balances

    10 See also 11 Notes 12 References 13 Bibliography

    13.1 Official Senate histories

    14 External links


    Main article: History of the United States Senate

    The drafters of the Constitution created a bicameral Congress primarily as a compromise between those who felt that each state, since it was sovereign, should be equally represented, and those who felt the legislature must directly represent the people, as the House of Commons did in Great Britain. This idea of having one chamber represent people equally, while the other gives equal representation to states regardless of population, was known as the Connecticut Compromise. There was also a desire to have two Houses that could act as an internal check on each other. One was intended to be a "People's House" directly elected by the people, and with short terms obliging the representatives to remain close to their constituents. The other was intended to represent the states to such extent as they retained their sovereignty except for the powers expressly delegated to the national government. The Constitution provides that the approval of both chambers is necessary for the passage of legislation.[8]

    Source : en.wikipedia.org

    How Congress Works

    Oftentimes, people have questions about how Congress works. To help answer those questions, I have put together a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the U.S.

    How Congress Works


    Oftentimes, people have questions about how Congress works. To help answer those questions, I have put together a list of Frequently Asked Questions about the U.S. Congress. If your question is not answered here, please feel free to contact me.View the Constitution.What does a member of Congress do?

    Members of Congress represent the people of their district in the United States Congress by holding hearings, as well as developing and voting on legislation. All bills must pass Congress before they can go to the President to be signed into law.

    In order to provide the best representation for Michigan’s 7th District, I spend many hours each week meeting with people in South Central Michigan to discuss my current activities in Congress and listen to their concerns and ideas regarding a variety of issues.

    In addition, I am also available to help you if you are experiencing difficulties dealing with a federal agency. To see how I can help you, click here.

    What are the qualifications to run for office in the House of Representatives and Senate?

    The required qualifications are found in Article 1 of the Constitution:

    House of Representatives

    25 years of age

    A citizen of the United States for at least 7 years

    At the time of election, be a resident of the state

    U.S. Senate

    30 years of age

    A citizen of the United States for 9 years

    At the time of election, be a resident of the state

    How many members of Congress are there?

    There are a total of 535 Members of Congress. 100 serve in the U.S. Senate and 435 serve in the U.S. House of Representatives.

    How long do members of Congress’ terms last?

    Members of the House of Representatives serve two-year terms and are considered for reelection every even year. Senators however, serve six-year terms and elections to the Senate are staggered over even years so that only about 1/3 of the Senate is up for reelection during any election.

    How many members of Congress come from each state?

    Each state sends two Senators to represent their state in the U.S. Senate. However, in the House of Representatives, a state’s representation is based on its population.  For example, smaller states like Vermont and Delaware have one representative while large states like California have 53 representatives.

    Currently, the Michigan Congressional Delegation is composed of 14 representatives in the House and two Senators in the U.S. Senate.

    How many people do congressmen and senators represent?

    Members of the U.S. House of Representatives each represent a portion of their state known as a Congressional District, which averages 700,000 people. Senators however, represent the entire state.

    How do the House and Senate chambers differ?

    In the House of Representatives, the majority party holds significant power to draft chamber rules and schedule bills to reach the floor for debate and voting. In most cases, House rules will limit debate so that important legislation can be passed during one legislative business day.

    In the Senate however, the majority has the power to schedule when various bills come to the floor for voting but a single Senator can slow legislation from coming to the floor for a vote. Since debate in the Senate is not concluded until 60 senators vote for a cloture motion to approve a bill for consideration, the majority must also coordinate with the minority part to set the rules for debate on legislation. Under this system, legislation can be debated for one or two weeks on the Senate floor alone.

    Why does Congress use the committee system?

    Congress deals with a broad variety of different policy issues and it is more efficient to have work done at the committee level than on the House or Senate floor. In addition, this system allows members to gain expertise in specific issue areas they are interested in. Throughout history, committees have been created to address particular issues before Congress. The House has 23 committees while the Senate has a total of 20 committees.

    How does a bill become a law?

    Passing legislation into law is a complicated and lengthy process between the House and Senate before the bill is presented before the President to be signed into law. For a thorough explanation of the legislation process, please see the How a Bill Becomes a Law section on the House website.

    Do Members of Congress pay into the social security system?

    YES. Since January 1, 1984, all Members of Congress participate in the Social Security system and are required to pay Social Security taxes.

    What kind of retirement plan do Members of Congress have?

    Members of Congress who were elected after 1984 are automatically enrolled in the Federal Employees' Retirement System (FERS). For more information on FERS, please visit the FERS handbook for details.

    What kind of health care do Members of Congress receive?

    As written into the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA, P.L. 111-205), on January 1, 2014, Members of Congress are no longer eligible for health plans offered to federal government employees.  They instead must enroll in the District of Columbia’s Health Exchange in order to obtain employment related health plan coverage.

    Source : walberg.house.gov

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