What happens to a bill in a standing committee
If the House does not vote on a veto override, the bill is stalled and does not become a law. The secretary then delivers the bills, amendments and reports to the Chief Clerk and begins preparing the committee minutes.
For example, the Speaker may assign a health insurance bill to the Committee on Health and the Committee on Banking and Insurance.
Standing committees have regularly scheduled weekly meetings during the legislative session. These meetings are an opportunity for public debate on bills and issues.
The committee chairman prepares the meeting's agenda in advance. The committee may only discuss items on the agenda. The chairman sets the order that the committee will consider agenda items. The committee chairman calls the meeting to order at the appointed time and the secretary takes attendance.
The bill is placed on the committee's calendar.
The committee debates on and marks up the proposed bill, and may or may not make changes to it. Committee members vote to accept or reject the changes made during the markup session. If a bill includes many amendments, the committee may decide to introduce a "clean bill" with a new number. A committee may stop action, or "table" a bill it deems unwise or unnecessary. Congress Bill Searcha Library of Congress website, posts the status of the bill and updates on major action taken on the bill.
If the bill is not tabled, it will be sent either to a subcommittee for intensive study, or reported back to the House Floor. Subcommittee Action The bill is referred to a subcommittee, and placed on its calendar.
The bill is carefully studied. The subcommittee may hold hearings to obtain the views of experts, supporters, and opponents.
The bill is tabled when the subcommittee deems it unwise or unnecessary. If changes are needed, the subcommittee will meet to mark up the bill. Subcommittee members vote to accept or reject the changes. If the subcommittee accepts the bill, the bill is sent back to the full committee for approval or rejection. Congress Bill Searchfrom the Library of Congress website, receives updates on the status of the bill from the subcommittee and posts the most recent major action on the bill.
The Bill is Reported The bill is released from the committee, along with a report explaining the provisions of the bill, and is thus ordered reported. The reported bill is put on one of five House calendars, the Union Calendar and the House Calendar being the most commonly used.
The bill is sent to the House Floor for consideration.
Committee stage (Commons)
Congress Bill Searcha Library of Congress website, receives updates on the status of the bill from the committee and posts the most recent major action. Many House bills are debated through a parliamentary device known as the Committee of the Whole, which is a mechanism that permits faster consideration.
Floor action begins and Members debate the bill.
The conduct of debate is dictated by the Rules of the House generally, and may also be governed by a special rule granted specifically for the bill under consideration. The first stage consists of general discussion on the Bill as a whole when the principle underlying the Bill is discussed.
How a Bill Becomes a Law
At this stage it is open to the House to refer the Bill to a Select Committee of the House or a Joint Committee of the two Houses or to circulate it for the purpose of eliciting opinion thereon or to straightaway take it into consideration. Amendments can be moved to the various clauses by members of the Committee.
The Committee can also take evidence of associations, public bodies or experts who are interested in the measure.
How a Bill Becomes Law
After the Bill has thus been considered, the Committee submits its report to the House which considers the Bill again as reported by the Committee. If a Bill is circulated for the purpose of eliciting public opinion thereon, such opinions are obtained through the Governments of the States and Union Territories.
It is not ordinarily permissible at this stage to move the motion for consideration of the Bill. Discussion takes place on each clause of the Bill and amendments to clauses can be moved at this stage. Amendments to a clause have been moved but not withdrawn are put to the vote of the House before the relevant clause is disposed of by the House.
The amendments become part of the Bill if they are accepted by a majority of members present and voting. After the hearings, the bill is marked up, or revised, until the committee is ready to send it to the floor.Standing committee (United States Congress)
Floor debate — In the House only, a bill goes from committee to a special Rules Committee that sets time limits on debate and rules for adding amendments. If time limits are short and no amendments are allowed from the floor, the powerful rules committee is said to have imposed a " gag rule. No restrictions on amendments are allowed in the Senate. This lack of rules has led to an occasional filibuster in which a senator literally talks a bill to death.
Filibusters are prohibited in the House. Both houses require a quorum majority of its members to be present for a vote. Passage of a bill generally requires a majority vote by the members present.
Conference committees — Most bills that pass the first two stages do not need to go to conference committee, but those that are controversial, particularly important, or complex often do.
A conference committee is formed to merge two versions of a bill — one from the House and one from the Senate — when the two houses cannot readily agree on alterations.
6e. How a Bill Becomes a Law
The members are chosen from the standing committees that sponsored the bill who come up with a compromise. The revised bill then must go back to the floors of each house and be passed by both houses before it can be sent to the President for signing. Many people criticize Congress for its inefficiency and the length of time that it takes for laws to be passed and enacted. Although the process is long and difficult, the founders intentionally set it up that way.
Some modern critics believe that the system is arcane and simply too slow for a fast-paced country like the United States.