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Encyclopedia > State legislature (United States)
United States of America

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In the United States of America, a state legislature is a generic term referring to the legislative body of any of the country's 50 states. The formal name varies from state to state. In 24 states, the legislature is simply called the "Legislature," or the "State Legislature", while in 19 states, the legislature is called the "General Assembly." In Massachusetts and New Hampshire, the legislature is called the "General Court," while North Dakota and Oregon designate the legislature as the "Legislative Assembly." Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      The United States has a federal government, with elected officials at federal (national), state and local... United States presidential elections determine who serves as President and Vice President of the United States for four-year terms, starting on Inauguration Day, which is January 20th of the year after the election. ... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      Midterm elections are elections in the United States in which members of Congress, state legislatures, and... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      This list of political parties in the United States contains past and present political parties in... The Democratic Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States; the other being the Republican Party. ... The Republican Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States; the other being the Democratic Party. ... This article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. ... A state government is the government of a subnational entity in nation-states with federal forms of government, which shares political power with the federal government or national government. ... Local governments are administrative offices of an area smaller than a state or province. ... Current party control of Governors offices (2006). ... In the U.S., a state court has jurisdiction over disputes which occur in a state. ... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      Local government in the United States (sometimes referred to as municipal government in American English) is... Information on politics by country is available for every country, including both de jure and de facto independent states, inhabited dependent territories, as well as areas of special sovereignty. ... Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      A state of the United States is any one of the fifty subnational entities of the...

Contents

Composition

Every state except Nebraska has a bicameral legislature, meaning that the legislature consists of two separate legislative chambers (or "houses"); Nebraska has a unicameral, or one-house legislature. In all 49 state bicameral legislatures, the smaller chamber is called the "Senate" and is usually referred to as the "upper house" (Note that Nebraskan legislators are referred to as senators for historical reasons, when the legislature was unicamerialize, the lower house was abolished and the Senate renamed) The smaller chamber usually, but not always, has the exclusive power to confirm appointments made by the governor and to try articles of impeachment. Members of the smaller chamber represent more citizens and usually serve for longer terms than members of the larger chamber, generally four years. In 41 states, the larger chamber is called the "House of Representatives." Five states designate the larger chamber the "Assembly" and three states call it the "House of Delegates." Members of the larger chamber usually serve for terms of two years. The larger chamber customarily has the exclusive power to initiate taxing legislation and articles of impeachment. Official language(s) English Capital Lincoln Largest city Omaha Largest metro area Omaha Area  Ranked 16th  - Total 77,421 sq mi (200,520 km²)  - Width 210 miles (340 km)  - Length 430 miles (690 km)  - % water 0. ... The bicameral legislature of the United States is housed in a capitol building with two wings. ... Unicameralism is the practice of having only one legislative or parliamentary chamber. ... The articles of impeachment are the set of charges drafted against a public official to initiate the impeachment process. ...


Prior to United States Supreme Court decisions in the 1960s, the basis of representation in most state legislatures was modeled on that of the U.S. Congress: the members of the smaller chamber represented geography and members of the larger chamber represented population. In 1962, the United States Supreme Court announced the "one person, one vote" standard and invalidated state legislative representation based on geography. ("One person, one vote" does not apply to the composition of the U.S. Senate because that chamber's makeup is prescribed by the U.S. Constitution.) The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C. The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C., (large image) The Supreme Court of the United States, located in Washington, D.C., is the highest court (see supreme court) in the United States; that is, it has ultimate judicial authority within the United States... Dr. Seuss Jean Shepherd Ringo Starr John Steinbeck Gloria Steinem Tom Stoppard Hunter S. Thompson Gore Vidal Peter Vincent Kurt Vonnegut Andy Warhol Alan Watts Bob Weir Brian Wilson Tom Wolfe There were six Olympics held during the decade. ... Congress in Joint Session. ... The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C. The Supreme Court Building, Washington, D.C., (large image) The Supreme Court of the United States, located in Washington, D.C., is the highest court (see supreme court) in the United States; that is, it has ultimate judicial authority within the United States... Seal of the U.S. Senate Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      Senate composition following 2006 elections The United States Senate is... Page I of the Constitution of the United States of America Page II of the United States Constitution Page III of the United States Constitution Page IV of the United States Constitution The Syng inkstand, with which the Constitution was signed The Constitution of the United States is the supreme...


Duties and influence

As a legislative branch of government, a legislature generally performs the same duties for a state the Congress performs at Federal level, and a general rule, the same types of checks and balances at the Federal level apply between the state legislature, the state executive officer (a governor) and the state judiciary, though the degree to which this is so varies from one state to the next. Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      The government of the United States of America, established by the U.S. Constitution, is a... The doctrine and practice of dispersing political power and creating mutual accountability between political entities such as the courts, the president or prime minister, the legislature, and the citizens. ... A governor is an official who heads the government of a colony, state or other sub-national state unit. ... The Politics series Politics Portal This box:      In law, the judiciary or judicial is the system of courts which administer justice in the name of the sovereign or state, a mechanism for the resolution of disputes. ...


During a legislative session, the legislature considers matters introduced by its members or submitted by the governor. Businesses and other special interest organizations often lobby the legislature to obtain beneficial legislation, defeat unfavorably perceived measures, or influence other legislative action. A legislature also approves the state's operating and capital budgets, which may begin as a legislative proposal or a submission by the governor. It has been suggested that Interest representation: Academic overview be merged into this article or section. ...


Under the terms of Article V of the U.S. Constitution, state lawmakers retain the power to ratify Constitutional amendments which have been proposed by the Congress and they also retain the ability to apply to the Congress for a national convention to directly propose Constitutional amendments to the states for ratification. Under Article II, state legislatures choose the manner of appointing the state's presidential electors. Formerly, state legislatures appointed the U.S. Senators from their respective states until the ratification of the 17th Amendment in 1917 required the direct election of Senators by a state's voters. Article Five of the United States Constitution describes the process whereby the Constitution may be altered. ... Besides the more common method, there is an option to assemble a national convention to propose amendments to the United States Constitution. ... Wikisource has original text related to this article: Article Two of the United States Constitution Article Two of the United States Constitution creates the executive branch of the government, comprising the President and other executive officers. ... It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles. ... Seal of the U.S. Senate Federal courts Supreme Court Chief Justice Associate Justices Elections Presidential elections Midterm elections Political Parties Democratic Republican Third parties State & Local government Governors Legislatures State Courts Counties, Cities, and Towns Other countries Politics Portal      Senate composition following 2006 elections The United States Senate is... (Redirected from 17th Amendment to the United States Constitution) Amendment XVII (the Seventeenth Amendment) of the United States Constitution passed on April 8, 1913 and first in effect for the election of 1914, amends Article 1 Section 3 of the Constitution to provide for the direct election of Senators by... Year 1917 (MCMXVII) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar (see link for calendar) or a common year starting on Tuesday of the 13-day slower Julian calendar (see: 1917 Julian calendar). ...


Aspects of the career of state legislator

In most states, a new state legislature convenes in January of the odd-numbered year after the election of members to the larger chamber. The period during which the legislature remains in session varies. In states where the legislature is considered part-time, a session may last several months; where the legislature is considered full-time, the session may last all year, with periodic breaks for district work. A legislature is a type of representative deliberative assembly with the power to adopt laws. ...


Currently, there are 7,382 state legislators in the United States. They are usually assisted by staff aides to help prepare and analyze legislation, to review and amend submitted budgets, and to help solve constituent's problems with state government.


State legislatures and their members have generally grown in importance over time. Longtime Pennsylvania state legislator Mark B. Cohen observed that "[t]he biggest change during my tenure in the legislature has been the rise of the individual legislator. Time and again, individual legislators have shown that they have answers for pressing problems that command the support to be enacted into law." Official language(s) English, Pennsylvania Dutch Capital Harrisburg Largest city Philadelphia Area  Ranked 33rd  - Total 46,055 sq mi (119,283 km²)  - Width 280 miles (455 km)  - Length 160 miles (255 km)  - % water 2. ... Please wikify (format) this article or section as suggested in the Guide to layout and the Manual of Style. ...


Many state legislators meet every year at the annual meeting, and other meetings, of the National Conference of State Legislatures, which is headquartered in Denver, Colorado and has a lobbying office in Washington, D.C. The American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative organization focusing on state legislatures, also has an annual meeting attracting many legislators. The National Conference of State Legislatures is a bipartisan organization that serves the legislators and staffs of the nations 50 states, its commonwealths and territories. ... Nickname: The Mile-High City Location of Denver in Colorado Coordinates: Country United States State Colorado City-County Denver (coextensive) Founded November 22, 1858 Incorporated November 7, 1861  - Mayor John Hickenlooper (D) Area    - City  154. ... Nickname: DC, The District Motto: Justitia Omnibus (Justice for All) Location of Washington, D.C., in relation to the states Maryland and Virginia Coordinates: Federal District District of Columbia  - Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D)  - City Council Chairperson: Vincent C. Gray (D) Ward 1: Jim Graham (D) Ward 2: Jack Evans... The American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC, is a nonpartisan, ideologically conservative, non-profit 501(c)(3) membership association of state legislators who work towards a variety of common goals. ...


See also

This is a complete list of State legislatures of the United States states. ... This is a list of the Legislative Assemblies of Canadas provinces and territories. ... The Parliaments of the Australian states and territories are legislative bodies within the federal framework of the Commonwealth of Australia. ...

External links

  • National Conference of State Legislatures

 
 

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