government and political science. Specifically it will describe the process of how a bill becomes a law in the United States. Creating legislation is a complicated process in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. A bill becomes a law by following a precise string of events, which ensures that only the best and most important bills finally are enacted into law.
Any member of the Senate or House can introduce legislation. In the House, the bill first goes to the Clerk of the House, and if the Clerk is not there, the bill goes into the "hopper," a box on the Clerk's desk specifically to hold new legislation. In the Senate, the Senator must wait until the "morning hour," a 90-minute session on Mondays and Tuesdays reserved for member speeches and bill introduction. If another Senator objects, the bill introduction must wait until the next day. Once the bill is introduced, it is called the "First Reading" of the bill. In the House and the Senate, more than one representative can sponsor a bill. After the bill is introduced, it is assigned a number and identifier (in the House HR is used, in the Senate it is simply S). The bill also gets the sponsor's name. It then travels to the Government Printing Office, where they make copies of the bill.
The Speaker of the House or the seated officer in the Senate then assigns the bill to the appropriate committee. Often, the Senate parliamentarian is the one who assigns the bill, and if the bill is complicated, it can go to more than one committee. If the bill is crucial, a time limit may be set for the committee to adhere to. If a committee does not act on a bill, it is the same as killing the bill. Bills have to have a suitable committee vote to be released from the committee. The only exception to this is the "discharge petition" that is signed by a majority of the House's 218 members.
A bill goes through several steps in committee. If it is applicable, the committee asks for comments from other government agencies. Hearings can be held on the bill, and the committee can even assign it to a subcommittee for review and recommendation. The bill is "ordered to be reported" and the committee votes on it. The committee can also "mark-up" the bill, where it makes additions or changes to the bill. If they make many changes, they can order a "clean bill" that includes all the planned changes. If this happens, the old bill is discarded and the new bill gets a new number. The chamber has to approve all changes before the bill undergoes the final passage vote. After the bill is reported, the committee creates a report that tells why they favor the bill and why they added the changes and amendments. If someone on the committee does not agree with the bill, he or she can file a dissenting opinion. The reported bill is sent back to the chamber and goes on the chamber calendar. In the House, bills usually go to the Rules Committee, which decides what rules the bill has to follow to be considered by the House. The Rules Committee can decide how long the House should take to pass the bill, and does not allow adding any more amendments. There are only three ways to get around the rules committee: House members can ask for the suspension of…