How a Bill Becomes a Law Essay

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Each Congress is elected for a two-year term and holds two annual sessions. During that time, several bills are introduced. Of all bills, only 5 percent to10 percent of them are actually signed into law. While some may pass through Congress rather quickly, others lead to lengthy hearings in the subcommittees or committees and protracted debates on the floor of the House and Senate. (Cliff Notes) Few legislative proposals emerge from the process exactly as they were first written. With the exception of revenue or tax bills, which must originate in the House, legislation can be introduced in either the House or the Senate; sometimes the bills are identical when introduced in both houses but overall, the majority of bills are written by the executive branch. There are four basic types of legislation. Bills, joint resolutions, concurrent resolutions, and simple resolutions. (Boda) There is also a public bill that affects the general public. The Senate or House members may sponsor or introduce a bill. The bill type must be determined. A private bill affects a specific person or organization rather than a population at large. Following, each bill is assigned a number by the clerks of the House or the Senate. From there the bill is forwarded to the appropriate committee by the Speaker of the House or the Senate majority leader. The bill then goes to a standing committee and then to a sub committee. Next the sub committee will hold a hearing. They will issue a report on whether or not they are in favor of the bill. They also have the option of printing a report to amend or change the bill. Once a bill reaches this point, the bill then goes to the House and the Senate. While in the hands of these parties, a senator

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