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Encyclopedia > Parliamentarian of the United States Senate

The Parliamentarian of the United States Senate serves at the pleasure of the Senate Majority Leader, and functions under the direction of the Secretary of the Senate as a non-partisan employee of the Senate. The Parliamentarian of the United States House of Representatives serves with the consent of the Speaker of the House, also in a non-partisan capacity, advising Members of both parties. The complexity of the job requires years of apprenticeship, and the leaders of both chambers have respected the institutional experience necessary to perform the job well. Sitting Parliamentarians hire their own assistants, and for decades, those assistants have advanced to the position of Parliamentarian when a vacancy has occurred. The Senate Majority Leader is a member of the United States Senate who is elected by his or her party conference to serve as the chief Senate spokesman for his or her party and to manage and schedule the legislative and executive business of the Senate. ... The Secretary of the Senate, as an elected officer of the United States Senate, supervises an extensive array of offices and services to expedite the day-to-day operations of that body. ... The office of the Parliamentarian of the United States House of Representatives is an office managed, supervised and administered by a non-partisan Parliamentarian appointed by the Speaker. ...


The Parliamentarians in both chambers have as their key responsibility advising the Member of Congress presiding over the floor throughout a day's session. The Parliamentarian guides the Chair in formulating his responses to parliamentary inquiries and his rulings on points of order. In the House, the Parliamentarian on duty stands to the right of the Chair or sits very close by on the rostrum. In the Senate, the Parliamentarian sits on the lower tier of the rostrum just below the presiding officer. He is frequently seen swiveling around in his chair, which faces the Senate floor, to address the Senator presiding behind him. While the Member of Congress presiding is free to take or ignore the advice of the Parliamentarian, most abide by his guidance. Few Members have the independent body of knowledge regarding the chamber's procedures necessary to preside on their own. In the Senate, the Parliamentarian, and in the House, the Parliamentarian's Clerk, also keep track of the time when Members are allotted a specific number of minutes to speak. A Congressman or Congresswoman (generically, Congressperson) is a politician who is a member of a Congress. ...


The Parliamentarians also answer questions from individual Members and congressional staff on a wide variety of subjects, and on a confidential basis. For example, the Parliamentarians are asked to review drafts of bills prior to their introduction and drafts of amendments to ascertain they conform to the rules of the body. They help formulate points of order for Members wishing to mount a floor challenge. Perhaps the most time-consuming element of the job is to review all proposed bills and, based on their content, refer them to the appropriate committee of jurisdiction for legislative consideration. The parliamentarians also assist committees in preparing for and conducting hearings and mark-ups of legislation.


The Office of the Parliamentarian is also responsible for compiling and publishing at the start of each new Congress any changes to the rules of the chamber. They also compile and maintain the parliamentary precedents of the chamber.


Parliamentarians both apprentice for and serve in their positions for long periods. Developing the expertise required for the job is an extensive effort, requiring a law degree and years of watching parliamentary maneuvers play out on the House or Senate floors.


The House Parliamentarian, Charles W. Johnson, has served in the Office of the Parliamentarian for 33 years, and in the position itself since 1994. His predecessor, William Holmes Brown, served as Parliamentarian for 20 years, and Brown's predecessor, Lewis Deschler, held the position for 46 years! Mr. Johnson currently has a staff of six to assist him: two deputy parliamentarians, two assistant parliamentarians, and two clerks.


The Senate Parliamentarian, Robert Dove, has served as Parliamentarian since 1994, and also served in the position from 1981-1987, along with 14 prior years of service as an assistant parliamentarian. Mr. Dove has a staff of three. His immediate predecessor, Alan Frumin, served as Parliamentarian of the Senate for seven years, and now serves as Senior Assistant Parliamentarian. His earlier predecessor, Murray Zweben, was Parliamentarian for five years. Zweben's predecessor, Floyd Riddick served as parliamentarian for ten years, and authored the volume of significant Senate precedents still known as "Riddick's Senate Procedure."


Robert Dove was fired from his position as Parliamentarian by Majority Leader Trent Lott in May of 2001.


See also

The office of the Parliamentarian of the United States House of Representatives is an office managed, supervised and administered by a non-partisan Parliamentarian appointed by the Speaker. ...

References

    External links

    United States Congress(House of Representatives, Senate)
    Members House: Current, Former, Districts | Senate: Current, Former, Current & Former by state
    Groups African Americans, Asian Pacific Americans list, Caucuses, Committees, Demographics
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    Leaders House: Speaker, Majority leader, Minority leader, Majority whip, Minority whip, Dean, Democratic caucus, Republican conference
    Senate: President pro tempore (list), Majority and Minority leaders, Majority whip, Minority whip, Democratic Caucus (Chair, Secretary, Policy committee chair), Republican Conference (Chair, Secretary, Policy committee chair)
    Employees Architect of the Capitol, Capitol guide service (board), Capitol police (board), Library of Congress
    House: Chaplain, Clerk, Doorkeeper, Historian, Page, Parliamentarian, Postmaster, Reading clerk, Sergeant at Arms
    Senate: Chaplain, Curator, Page, Parliamentarian, Secretary, Sergeant at Arms
    Buildings Capitol Complex, Capitol, Botanic Garden

    House: Cannon, Ford, Longworth, O'Neill, Rayburn | Senate: Dirksen, Hart, Russell Congress in Joint Session. ... The chamber of the United States House of Representatives is located in the south wing of the Capitol building, in Washington, D.C.. This photograph shows a rare glimpse of the four vote tallying boards (the blackish squares across the top), which display each members name and vote as... Seal of the Senate The United States Senate is one of the two chambers of the Congress of the United States, the other being the House of Representatives. ... The 109th United States Congress is the current meeting of the United States legislature, comprised of the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate. ... This is an incomplete list of notable former members of the United States House of Representatives. ... Congressional districts for representation in the United States House of Representatives are determined after each census. ... 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The United States Senate Democratic Conference Secretary, also called the Caucus Secretary, is a ranking leadership position within the Democratic Party in the United States Senate. ... Since 1947, the Democratic members of the United States Senate have elected a policy committee chairman. ... The Senate Republican Conference is the formal organization of the (currently) 51 Republican Senators in the United States Senate. ... The Republican conference of the United States Senate chooses a conference chairperson. ... The United States Senate Republican Conferece Secretary is the third-ranking leadership position for within the U.S. Republican Party in the United States Senate. ... Since 1947, the Republican members of the United States Senate have elected a policy committee chairman. ... 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Under the direction of the Office of the Clerk, Pages, who are specially-appointed high school juniors, provide supplemental administrative support to House operations in varying capacities. ... The office of the Parliamentarian of the United States House of Representatives is an office managed, supervised and administered by a non-partisan Parliamentarian appointed by the Speaker. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... The Reading Clerk of the United States House of Representatives reads bills, motions, and other papers before the House and keeps track of changes to legislation made on the floor. ... The United States House of Representatives Sergeant at Arms is an officer of the House with law enforcement, protocol, and administrative responsibilities. ... Among his or her duties, the chaplains job is to open each session of the United States Senate with a prayer. ... The United States Senate Curator is an employee of the United States Senate who is responsible for developing and implementing the museum and preservation programs for the Senate Commission on Art. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... The Secretary of the Senate, as an elected officer of the United States Senate, supervises an extensive array of offices and services to expedite the day-to-day operations of that body. ... The Sergeant at Arms and Doorkeeper of the Senate in is the law enforcer for the United States Senate. ... Aerial view of the United States Capitol Complex from the northweat The United States Capitol Complex is group of about a dozen buildings and facilities in Washington D.C. that are used by the Federal government of the United States. ... The south facade of the United States Capitol The United States Capitol is the US capitol building, that serves as home for Congress, the legislative branch of the United States federal government. ... The United States Botanic Garden (USBG) is a botanic garden run by the Congress of the United States. ... The Cannon House Office Building, completed in 1908, is the oldest congressional office building as well as a significant example of the Beaux Arts style of architecture. ... The Ford House Office Building is one of the four office buildings containing U.S. House of Representatives staff on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. It is the only House Office Building that is not connected underground to either one of the other office buildings or to the Capitol itself. ... The Longworth House Office Building The Longworth House Office Building (LHOB) is one of three office buildings used by the United States House of Representatives. ... The ONeill House Office Building is the name of a former Congressional Office Building, located near the United States Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. History The ONeill House Office Building was named after the former Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Thomas Phillip Tip O... The Rayburn House Office Building (RHOB), named after former Speaker of the House Sam Rayburn, is located between South Capitol Street and First Street in Southwest Washington, D.C. The newest of three U.S. House of Representatives office buildings, the Rayburn House Office Building was completed in early 1965... This Washington, DC congressional office building is named for former Senate Minority Leader Everett Dirksen (R-IL). ... Located on Constitution Avenue, between 1st and 2nd Streets, NE The Hart Senate Office Building, the third U.S. Senate office building, was built in the 1970s. ... This photograph, taken from southwest of the building, shows the main entrance along Constitution Avenue, N.E. The Russell Senate Office Building (built 1903-1908) is the oldest of the United States Senate office buildings as well as a significant example of the Beaux Arts style of architecture. ...

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