Evaluate the Claim That the Senate Is Far More Powerful Than the House of Representatives

Topics: United States House of Representatives, United States Senate, President of the United States Pages: 2 (767 words) Published: February 26, 2013
Evaluate the claim that the Senate is far more powerful than the House of Representatives

The US federal legislature is bicameral, therefore it consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives, and in theory they should both be of equal power. However, in reality it is the Senate which is considered to hold the most power, although there are arguments to in favour of them having equal rights. In order to reach a balanced judgement I will consider both sides of the argument, beginning with the claim that the Senate is more powerful than the House of Representatives.

Senators represent an entire state, as members of the House of Representatives only represent districts, highlighting from the outset their different abilities to reach a broader spectrum of people, along with Senates being 1 of 100, and House members being 1 of 435. Therefore Senators have an easier avenue to implement their work, as a House representative has far less status, due to them being far denser in numbers a clear example of this is that of Bill Frist who in January 2003 became majority leader after only eight years in the Senate. While at the same time Representative Nancy Pelosi became House minority leader, but she had been a member in the house since 1987. This further highlights the ability of those with the senate to gain more status. Power within Congress is very much concentrated within committees, rather than that of the Chamber floor in question, which further highlights the Senates greater status, as Senators are far more likely to chair committees, which further heightens their status on Capitol Hill.

Senators are known both state-wide and even some are known nationwide, as House members are generally known in neither category. As a typical American sitting in the public gallery of the senate probably would not find difficulty in recognising such Senators as John McCain and John Kerry, as both have been their party’s presidential candidate. This is a different...
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