Chapter 11, Lawmakers and Legislatures Chapter 12, Congressional Lawmaking

What makes an effective legislator?

Speaking of Politics 

Today is voting day. And I am part of the local voting community, also I am known as a constituent. The given casework that we had to do was terribly boring. But while doing so I heard a few voters talking about congress and pork barreling. I overheard that in congress there are probably too many committees and subcommittees. Some of those are;  joint committees, standing committees, and conference committees. I also over heard that a joint resolution is an approval that has to be approved. Then I voted for a pile of dog dropping because it was better than most of the candidates and the appropiations  that polititions use without permission.

 Congressman Joe Schwarz questions :

1.) From the photograph and biography, what facts do you know about Congressman Schwarz?

Schwarz is a  Republican from Michigan who served in the U.S. Navy and was a doctor prior to being a congressman. He was a city commissioner, mayor, and state senate for Michigan. He was later elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2004. And in Cali, he serves his eight congressional district.

2.) What things about Joe Schwarz do you think are typical for a member of Congress? What things might be atypical?

It is a usual thing for a Congressman to have some experience in government. A majority have had government positions. A person serving who has no background as a government official or who has never been hired.

3.)What aspects of his background do you think would help make Joe Schwarz an effective legislator? Explain.

In the wonderful world of government, he has had many jobs and has won too many re-elections and seems trustworthy.

4.) What things do you think Congressman Schwarz and his staff will need to do, or learn to do, to help
him be an effective legislator?

To be an effective congress man he will not have to be a jerk, so basically quit as soon as he starts.

Section 2
1. List two formal and two informal qualifications for a member of Congress today (not 40 or 50 years ago). Do you think the informal qualifications for education and occupation help make an effective legislator? Why or why not?

They must live in the state they represent and must be at least 25 years old. The two informal qualifications is gender and race. I believe education determines how effective a legislator will be by showing how committed one is.

2. Study the apportionment map in Section 2, and record information about any change to apportionment in your state. Then describe the process that determined why your state gained or lost representatives or why it stayed the same.

In California, the state has gained more votes in the house because our population increases too much. In congress, the more people a state has, the more votes it gets.

3. Explain the difference between a delegate and a trustee. Which do you think makes a more effective legislator, and why.

A  trustee is one who is not going to consult public opinion polls. A delegate connects to his/her constituents completely, tries the utmost to empathize with their feelings, and wants to be like by the constituents. I think a delegate will be better because they connect closer to the people.
4. Create a bar graph or circle graphs to show the percentage of incumbents who have been re-elected in the House and Senate since 1945. List three factors that help explain your graph or graphs.

-The x- axis contains the election years starting from 1950 to 2000 .
-The y- axis contains the numbers of increase by thousands of people re-electing that specific incumbent .
Section 3 

1. Fill in the blanks to complete this analogy: The Senate “cools” legislation from the House like a cold drink in hell. Create a simple illustration for your analogy. Finally, list at least, two important differences between the House and the Senate that might allow the Senate to “cool” legislation from the House. 

Larger house was to act as the people’s ideal of the democratic society in the U.S. When the senate has the long term goals to the election by the states influence created by the elite chamber.


2. Which leadership position in Congress has the most power? List some specific powers of that position.

The speaker of the HOR has most of the power in congress, he is able to preside over the house, assign bills, and appoint members to committees.

3. Create a simple table listing the five types of committees in Congress. Include these things in your table for each type of committee:

Name of the committee Symbol Functions Example
Natural Resource Committee Wont let me upload photos:/ They want to take care of the environment by protecting it and passing laws that force people to be more careful.
Wont let me upload photos:/
Budget Committee
Wont let me upload photos:/
They want to find ways to save the government money and spend less on useless things.
Wont let me upload photos:/
Agriculture Committee
Won’t let me upload photos:/
They want to reduce obesity in the U.S. by encouraging more people to eat healthy and growing food.
Wont let me upload photos:/

4. Sketch a simple graph showing what has happened to the size of House and Senate staff since 1930. Then list two or three important jobs congressional staffers do.

5. Suppose you are a member of Congress and want to create a new caucus. Come up with a creative
My caucus is going to get rid of all underage children.  It would get rid of all children until they are at the age of 20 plus.

Section 4 
1. According to Article I of the Constitution, what are the specific, or enumerated, powers of Congress? What part of the Constitution allows Congress to broaden its power beyond those enumerated powers? enumerated powers?

Levy and collect taxes,borrow money
regulate interstate and foreign commerce,coin money,declare war.

2. Create a simple diagram that shows the six ways in which Congress checks the other two branches of government. Label each check, and indicate which other branch each check applies to.


3. Draw the spoke diagram below in your notebook. Fill in each rectangle with a key power of Congress. From each of those key powers, add at least two more spokes with important pieces of information about that power of Congress.

4. Create a political cartoon that shows why casework is such an important aspect of being an effective legislator.

Section 5
1. Create a Venn diagram comparing state legislatures with Congress. Identify at least three significant similarities and at least four important differences between the two. Be specific.

2. Overall, do you think term limits are a good idea? Why or why not

Yes because it makes it fair by allowing people to give ideas and gives fairness.

Chapter 12-

Congressional Lawmaking

Speaking of Politics-

Create a short story using these words:

  • So to start off, the local kids in my neighborhood love to smash mail boxes. Not all the mail boxes just mine. So with knowing that I have to go down to my p.o. box every day to get my mail. On my way down, I noticed a flyer that would give me the chance to learn about the government system. When I got to the conference, the leader started the meeting with the congressional pages, they were sponsored by senators. The leader explained to us that the longer a person is in congress, they have a higher Seniority rule. Then he rambled about log rolling, and how it compares to common everyday life. As he finished up on that Then the man got into how a bill became law, bringing up his windows 10 power point and gave a large  speech on Christmas Tree Bills. It is where there was something in it for everyone. They could also add things to the bills that are being written and they are called riders. They are added on to kill the bills so no one wouls vote for it. While debating in the senate, the man said that they filibuster, I guess his entire meeting was one because all he was doing was rambling on about random things.  He then clotured, and I left wondering how and why I wasted so much time on that.



Think of a bill that you would like to see passed into law to improve the lives of high school seniors across the country. Give your bill a catchy title, and write a two- or three-sentence description of its main features. Now draw a mental flowchart of the steps you think it would take to get your bill passed into law, from beginning to end. Include as many steps as you think are necessary, with a minimum of three. (A mental flowchart is a representation of what you think is true. There are no wrong answers as long as you rely only on what is in your head.) After you complete your mental flowchart, star the step that you think is particularly important. Then briefly explain why you think that step is so important.


You know what high school seniors love more than failing classes? Government. Now it is a crucial thing to learn, but that’s what college is for. Let’s just learn it then! We will really only need to know about it if we go to college right? Let’s have just as much fun, just in college.
Idea- Presenting it to people- getting support
  • The idea is the most important because it is what essentially starts everything and could potentially result in a solution to a problem and better cause.
Reading Notes
Section 2-
Create a spoke diagram like the one below. On each spoke, note one important task or ceremony that is completed at the start of each new Congress. Then select one of these tasks, and explain how it might be used to influence or affect how laws really get made.
-Ty Google for the graph^^^^^^^^^
Section 3-
1. Given the current makeup of Congress, choose which of the following members would most likely be selected as chair of the House Armed Services Committee, and explain why.
  • Congressperson W: Democrat, 28 years in Congress, 12 years on committee
  • Congressperson X: Republican, 24 years in Congress, 18 years on committee
  • Congressperson Y: Republican, 20 years in Congress, served as a military officer
  • Congressperson Z: Democrat, 16 years in Congress, former Democratic candidate for president

Congressperson x because they are a republican, which is the majority party and they have the most seniority.V

2. Create a flowchart showing three phases that typically occur when subcommittees consider a bill. For each phase, list two or three important things that happen during that step in the legislative process.
3. Imagine that you are a member of the majority on the House Rules Committee. You are reviewing a bill that the speaker of the House strongly supports. What kind of rule—closed or open—would you likely ask for this bill and why?
  • I would ask for a closed bill because it limits floor debate.

Section 4

1. Create a Venn diagram comparing how the House and Senate conduct debates, amend bills, and vote on bills. List at least three similarities and three differences in your diagram.

2. List at least four groups or individuals who typi-
cally influence or pressure legislators. Which ofthese groups or individuals do you think should have the most impact on how laws really get made? Why?

  • Interest groups
  • Party leaders
  • Colleagues
  • Lobbyists
  • PACs
  • I believe PACs have a lot of power because they lend money and can easily influence the person who is receiving the money by requesting “favors.” Although they  may not be directly attached, I still believe they have power. I think party leaders should have the most impact because they are most directly involved.

Section 5

Create a flowchart of all the possible things that can happen to a bill after it passes the House and Senate.

Be sure your diagram includes these terms: conference committee, presidential veto, and congressional override.


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