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92 votes
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Was it illegal for Nancy Pelosi to tear up her copy of the State of the Union address?

While there is an act that President Trump and his supporters are citing, titled the Presidential Records Act (PRA), to accuse House Speaker Pelosi of breaking federal law, it is important to ...
UnevenMango's user avatar
62 votes
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If Congress passed a bill written in a language other than English, would it be valid?

It would indeed be valid and legally enforceable. The Constitution places no limits on what languages bills must be written in. The Constitution specifically allows each house of Congress to make its ...
reirab's user avatar
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61 votes

Could one house of Congress completely shut down the other house by passing a large number of frivolous bills?

No, because neither House nor Senate is obliged to consider each and every bill brought to it.
Lag's user avatar
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49 votes

Was it illegal for Nancy Pelosi to tear up her copy of the State of the Union address?

44 U.S.C. 22 That copy was probably not a record (B) does not include any documentary materials that are ...(iv) extra copies of documents produced only for convenience of reference, when such ...
Damila's user avatar
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41 votes

If Congress passed a bill written in a language other than English, would it be valid?

Yes The United States does not have an official language.
Dale M's user avatar
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35 votes
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Could Congress "bribe" the President to sign a bill by including a presidential pay raise?

No. Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution states The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall neither be encreased nor diminished during the Period ...
Justin Cave's user avatar
  • 3,067
28 votes

What happens when Congress violates the Constitution through inaction?

The Constitution grants Congress powers to do things but generally does not obligate them to do any particular thing. Constitutionally, it is equally valid for Congress to pass a bill, to vote a bill ...
Justin Cave's user avatar
  • 3,067
27 votes

Can bills (the documents of laws/legislation) have pictures? Or text only? Can images become part of the legal code?

Regulations - Yes, Acts of Parliament - very rarely In in the united-kingdom diagrams are found in regulations, for example legislation dealing with roadside symbols. There are two kinds of ...
Nemo's user avatar
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27 votes
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I am a US citizen but have never lived in the US. Who is my Congress member?

You would check with the authorities in the state where your parents last lived. Actually, you can write to any congressperson, and they can pay attention to you or ignore you as they like. (This also ...
user6726's user avatar
  • 215k
26 votes

Are legislators ever asked to explain their intent in Supreme Court cases?

Many jurists do accept that it is appropriate to attempt to ascertain the "legislative intent" as part of the exercise of statutory interpretation, but legislative intent is not an aggregate ...
Jen's user avatar
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25 votes

What happens if Congress declares war, but POTUS refuses to fight it?

If President Trump refuses to execute the war, does that become an act of treason on his part? Probably not, but it depends on the definition of treason. Congress could decide that it is, impeach ...
phoog's user avatar
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24 votes
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Could one house of Congress completely shut down the other house by passing a large number of frivolous bills?

The Constitution of the United States allows each house of Congress to make their own rules for their proceedings (Article I, Section 5, paragraph 2.) Neither has any control over the other's rules. ...
reirab's user avatar
  • 2,982
22 votes

What happens when Congress violates the Constitution through inaction?

The only obligation the Constitution imposes upon Congress is that they must meet at least once a year: The Congress shall assemble at least once in every Year, and such Meeting shall be on the first ...
Mark's user avatar
  • 6,387
19 votes

Can bills (the documents of laws/legislation) have pictures? Or text only? Can images become part of the legal code?

There is no legal reason why pictures couldn't be in the text of a bill. I don't know of any examples in the main text of the US Code. However, it has been pointed out to me that Title 4 of the US ...
D M's user avatar
  • 7,213
18 votes

What does "Congress having occupied the field" mean?

There are a number of areas in which the US states can pass laws only to the extend that they do not conflict with Federal laws passed by Congress. When a federal law clearly says that states may not ...
David Siegel's user avatar
14 votes
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How can the US House of Representatives transition to be elected by proportional representation? Would editing "PL 2 USC 2c" work?

In each State entitled in the Ninety-first Congress or in any subsequent Congress thereafter to more than one Representative under an apportionment made pursuant to the provisions of section 2a(a) of ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 221k
14 votes

If Congress passed a bill written in a language other than English, would it be valid?

Under Article VI of the Constitution, treaties have the force of law, and the United States has sometimes ratified treaties in languages other than English. For example, the treaty signed with Morocco ...
Davislor's user avatar
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14 votes

Once a congressional bill has become law, how is it noticed by and overseen within the executive branch?

Bills, once they become laws, seem to be archived and internally published somehow They're published in the United States Statutes at Large, and (for permanent provisions) are incorporated into the ...
littleadv's user avatar
  • 1,000
13 votes

Will a contempt of congress lawsuit actually reach the merits?

"Contempt of Congress" does not extend, in a legal sense, to insulting Congress as a whole, one house, a committee chair, or a member. (Congress and its committees have power to require both members ...
David Siegel's user avatar
13 votes

Can Congress disqualify people from Federal office?

Impeachment In addition to the Constitutional qualifications, one may become ineligible to federal office by being impeached by the House, convicted and removed from office by the Senate, and having ...
David Siegel's user avatar
12 votes

Can Congress disqualify people from Federal office?

The President, Vice-President, Senators and Congressmen are the only elected federal officials, and their qualifications are described in the US Constitution (Art 1, Sect 2, Clause 1 & 2 for ...
user6726's user avatar
  • 215k
12 votes

Durability of Federal legislation protecting abortion rights in US

The Supremacy Clause makes Federal laws superior to state laws and even state constitutions, but that is only true for Constitutional federal laws. If Congress passed a law seeking to restore the ...
David Siegel's user avatar
10 votes

What does "Congress having occupied the field" mean?

"Occupying the field" refers to a situation in where federal regulation of a matter is "so pervasive as to make reasonable the inference that Congress left no room for the States to ...
bdb484's user avatar
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9 votes
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Does Congress have the authority to grant citizenship to an individual?

A law which punishes a specific person – a "bill of attainder" – is unconstitutional. Private laws, which benefit an individual, are legal. An example is Private Law 112-1, which says ...
user6726's user avatar
  • 215k
9 votes
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Can Congress dissolve the other branches?

Congress has the power to propose amendments, but not to enact them. Amendments are only enacted once they're ratified by 3/4ths of the state legislatures. And yes, there's no reason to think it would ...
cpast's user avatar
  • 24.2k
9 votes

Is there a gap in the office of Speaker of the House?

There will be a gap in succession, but only briefly. Speaker Paul Ryan's term extends past the election through the end of the 115th Congress, to 11:59:59 p.m. on January 2, 2018. From there, the ...
bdb484's user avatar
  • 60.7k
9 votes
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If a House member is barred from the House for not wearing a face mask, does that House member's constituents lose their representation in Congress?

There is no current authorization to bar any member of the house from the floor, so the answer depends heavily on what actually happens. Since remote voting was approved, no constituency would be ...
user6726's user avatar
  • 215k
8 votes
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Is there any way a US president could be voted in by popular vote more than two terms?

There are two possible scenarios: The Vice-Presidential President and a mass Write In. In the first, if the elected President is removed from office after 2 years in office, than the Vice-President (...
hszmv's user avatar
  • 23k
8 votes

Will the next Congress (2021) be sworn in on a Sunday?

Final Result: The 117th Congress did actually meet and swear in on a Sunday, January 3, 2021. Per the other answer by @NateEldredge, this was the first Sunday swearing in for at least several ...
DrSheldon's user avatar
  • 394
8 votes
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(U.S.A.) Removing senators not from your state

The only way that a member of the House of Representatives, or a U.S. Senator can be removed from office (other than by resignation, death, or expiration of a term of office without being re-elected) ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 221k

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