There has been quite a bit of news of some real important laws that the US Senate has been trying to pass, including Immigration laws and more recently, repealing Obamacare. Thankfully, there are those willing to cross party lines and stick up for what they believe in and what is good and right for their constituents and the US as a whole.
Some interesting facts of the US Senate:
- there are 2 senators that represent each state equally, with 50 states, that makes 100 senators.
- currently there are 48 Democrat Senators, while 52 are Republicans; it means that the Republicans have veto power if every single Senator voted in line (minus 1) with the rest of the party.
- according to the linked article though, for the Repeal and Replace, and the more bare-bones Repeal/Lets just discuss it legislation, it still couldn’t pass because a few senators wouldn’t vote for it.
- senators serve staggered terms of 6 years (every two years about 1/3 of them are up for election)
- powers include the ratification (approval) of treaties, the confirmation of Cabinet secretaries (e.g. Secretary of State/Defense/Veteran Affairs), Supreme Court Justices, ambassadors and other federal uniformed officers
An important thing to take note is that currently in the US, Republicans control both the House of Representatives, Senate and have a Republican president. That means that if everyone voted for the sole reason of following the party (aka being sheep), they could pass any law they choose. Thankfully democracy, as messy as it can be at times, is working per the news story, and there aren’t sweeping conservative reforms being passed. It might be slow and painful, but hopefully this will lead to a better solution that will be provided by collaborating and working together.
Visit the Senate website.