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United States Capitol

The Legislative Branch

Article I of the Constitution defines the powers of the legislative branch of government, which is made up of the Congress and its respective agencies -- Architect of the Capitol, United States Botanic Garden, General Accounting Office, Government Printing Office, Library of Congress, and Congressional Budget Office. The Congress itself is "bicameral"; in other words it is made up of two chambers -- the Senate and the House of Representatives. Each state has two elected senators who represent all of the state's citizens. Thus, there is a total of 100 senators in the United States Senate. A senator is elected for a term of six years. Each state also has anywhere from one to fifty two representatives. Each representative is elected by the citizens who reside in a designated district within the state. There is a total of 435 representatives in the United States House of Representatives. [Note: The District of Columbia has no senators or representatives, but it does have one delegate to the House of Representatives.] A representative is elected for a term of two years.

Congressional Record   The Constitution requires that Congress assemble at least once in every year. The twentieth amendment to the Constitution requires that Congress convene at noon on the third day of January each year unless they appoint a different day by law. The proceedings of Congress are recorded in the Congressional Record.

To check out the Congress' web site, click on the picture of the capitol at the top of this page. If you would like to go directly to your state's listing of representatives and senators, click on the map below. From there you will be provided with additional options to learn more about the individuals who represent you in Congress.

Map of the United States



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