United States Senate
The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D. C; the composition and powers of the Senate are established by Article One of the United States Constitution. The Senate is composed of senators; each state, regardless of its population size, is represented by two senators who serve staggered terms of six years. There being at present 50 states in the Union, there are presently 100 senators. From 1789 until 1913, senators were appointed by legislatures of the states; as the upper chamber of Congress, the Senate has several powers of advice and consent which are unique to it. These include the approval of treaties, the confirmation of Cabinet secretaries, Supreme Court justices, federal judges, flag officers, regulatory officials, other federal executive officials and other federal uniformed officers.
In addition to these, in cases wherein no candidate receives a majority of electors for Vice President, the duty falls to the Senate to elect one of the top two recipients of electors for that office. Furthermore, the Senate has the responsibility of conducting the trials of those impeached by the House; the Senate is considered both a more deliberative and more prestigious body than the House of Representatives due to its longer terms, smaller size, statewide constituencies, which led to a more collegial and less partisan atmosphere. The presiding officer of the Senate is the Vice President of the United States, President of the Senate. In the Vice President's absence, the President Pro Tempore, customarily the senior member of the party holding a majority of seats, presides over the Senate. In the early 20th century, the practice of majority and minority parties electing their floor leaders began, although they are not constitutional officers; the drafters of the Constitution created a bicameral Congress as a compromise between those who felt that each state, since it was sovereign, should be represented, those who felt the legislature must directly represent the people, as the House of Commons did in Great Britain.
This idea of having one chamber represent people while the other gives equal representation to states regardless of population, was known as the Connecticut Compromise. There was a desire to have two Houses that could act as an internal check on each other. One was intended to be a "People's House" directly elected by the people, with short terms obliging the representatives to remain close to their constituents; the other was intended to represent the states to such extent as they retained their sovereignty except for the powers expressly delegated to the national government. The Senate was thus not designed to serve the people of the United States equally; the Constitution provides that the approval of both chambers is necessary for the passage of legislation. First convened in 1789, the Senate of the United States was formed on the example of the ancient Roman Senate; the name is derived from Latin for council of elders. James Madison made the following comment about the Senate: In England, at this day, if elections were open to all classes of people, the property of landed proprietors would be insecure.
An agrarian law would soon take place. If these observations be just, our government ought to secure the permanent interests of the country against innovation. Landholders ought to have a share in the government, to support these invaluable interests, to balance and check the other, they ought to be so constituted. The Senate, ought to be this body. Article Five of the Constitution stipulates that no constitutional amendment may be created to deprive a state of its equal suffrage in the Senate without that state's consent; the District of Columbia and all other territories are not entitled to representation allowed to vote in either House of the Congress. The District of Columbia elects two "shadow U. S. Senators", but they are officials of the D. C. City Government and not members of the U. S. Senate; the United States has had 50 states since 1959, thus the Senate has had 100 senators since 1959. The disparity between the most and least populous states has grown since the Connecticut Compromise, which granted each state two members of the Senate and at least one member of the House of Representatives, for a total minimum of three presidential electors, regardless of population.
In 1787, Virginia had ten times the population of Rhode Island, whereas today California has 70 times the population of Wyoming, based on the 1790 and 2000 censuses. This means some citizens are two orders of magnitude better represented in the Senate than those in other states. Seats in the House of Representatives are proportionate to the population of each state, reducing the disparity of representation. Before the adoption of the Seventeenth Amendment in 1913, senators were elected by the individual state legislatures. Problems with repeated vacant seats due to the inability of a legislature to elect senators, intrastate political struggles, bribery and intimidation had led to a growing movement to amend the Constitution to allow for the direct election of senators; the party composition of the Senate during the 116th Congress: Art
1820 United States presidential election
The United States presidential election of 1820 was the ninth quadrennial presidential election. It was held from Wednesday, November 1, to Wednesday, December 6, 1820. Taking place at the height of the Era of Good Feelings, the election saw incumbent Democratic-Republican President James Monroe win re-election without a major opponent, it was the third and last United States presidential election in which a presidential candidate ran unopposed. It was the last election of a president from the Revolutionary generation. Monroe and Vice President Daniel D. Tompkins faced no opposition from other Democratic-Republicans in their quest for a second term; the Federalist Party had fielded a presidential candidate in each election since 1796, but the party's already-waning popularity had declined further following the War of 1812. Although able to field a nominee for vice president, the Federalists could not put forward a presidential candidate, leaving Monroe without organized opposition. Monroe received all but one of the electoral votes.
Secretary of State John Quincy Adams received the only other electoral vote, which came from faithless elector William Plumer. Four different Federalists received electoral votes for vice president, but Tompkins won re-election by a large margin. No other post-Twelfth Amendment presidential candidate has matched Monroe's share of the electoral vote, Monroe and George Washington remain the only presidential candidates to run without any major opposition. Monroe's victory was the last of six straight victories by Virginians in presidential elections. Despite the continuation of single party politics, serious issues emerged during the election in 1820; the nation had endured a widespread depression following the Panic of 1819 and momentous disagreement about the extension of slavery into the territories was taking center stage. James Monroe faced no opposition party or candidate in his re-election bid, although he did not receive quite all of the electoral votes. Massachusetts was entitled to 22 electoral votes four years earlier, but cast only 15 in 1820.
The decrease was brought about by the Missouri Compromise of 1820, which made the region of Maine—long part of Massachusetts—a free state to balance the pending admission of slave state Missouri. Pennsylvania and Mississippi each cast one fewer electoral vote than they were entitled to, on account of one elector from each state dying before the electoral meeting; this explains the anomaly of Mississippi casting only two votes, when any state is always entitled to a minimum of three. Mississippi, Illinois and Missouri participated in their first presidential election in 1820, Missouri with controversy, since it was not yet a state. No new states would participate in American presidential elections until 1836, after the admission to the Union of Arkansas in 1836 and Michigan in 1837. Since President Monroe's re-nomination was never in doubt, few Republicans bothered to attend the nominating caucus in April 1820. Only 40 delegates attended, with few or no delegates from the large states of Virginia, North Carolina and New Jersey.
Rather than name the president with only a handful of votes, the caucus declined to make a formal nomination. Richard M. Johnson offered the following resolution: "It is inexpedient, at this time, to proceed to the nomination of persons for the offices of President and Vice President of the United States." After debate, the resolution was unanimously adopted, the meeting adjourned. President Monroe and Vice President Daniel D. Tompkins thus became de facto candidates for re-election. In the run-up to the caucus, Tompkins made another run for his former post of Governor of New York, leading to potential replacements being informally discussed among the party leadership; the matter was rendered moot when Tompkins lost the election shortly before the nominating caucus took place, though some within the party remained dissatisfied with Tompkins' performance as Vice President, the role was not considered important enough to be worth a formal nomination process after his ability to continue in the office was confirmed.
There was no campaign, since there was no serious opposition to Monroe and Tompkins. On March 9, 1820, Congress had passed a law directing Missouri to hold a convention to form a constitution and a state government; this law stated that "the said state, when formed, shall be admitted into the Union, upon an equal footing with the original states, in all respects whatsoever." However, when Congress reconvened in November 1820, the admission of Missouri became an issue of contention. Proponents claimed and therefore was a state. By the time Congress was due to meet to count the electoral votes from the election, this dispute had lasted over two months; the counting raised a ticklish problem: if Congress counted Missouri's votes, that would count as recognition that Missouri was a state. Knowing ahead of time that Monroe had won in a landslide and that Missouri's vote would therefore make no difference in the final result, the Senate passed a resolution on February 13, 1821 stating that if a protest were made, there would be no consideration of the matter unless the vote of Missouri would change who would become president.
Instead, the President of the Senate would announce the final tally twice
The Democratic-Republican Party was an American political party formed by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison around 1792 to oppose the centralizing policies of the new Federalist Party run by Alexander Hamilton, Secretary of the Treasury and chief architect of George Washington's administration. From 1801 to 1825, the new party controlled the presidency and Congress as well as most states during the First Party System, it began in 1791 as one faction in Congress and included many politicians, opposed to the new constitution. They called themselves Republicans after republicanism, they distrusted the Federalist tendency to centralize and loosely interpret the Constitution, believing these policies were signs of monarchism and anti-republican values. The party splintered in 1824, with the faction loyal to Andrew Jackson coalescing into the Jacksonian movement, the faction led by John Quincy Adams and Henry Clay forming the National Republican Party and some other groups going on to form the Anti-Masonic Party.
The National Republicans, Anti-Masons, other opponents of Andrew Jackson formed themselves into the Whig Party. During the time that this party existed, it was referred to as the Republican Party. To distinguish it from the modern Republican Party, political scientists and pundits refer to this party as the Democratic-Republican Party or the Jeffersonian Republican Party; when the modern Republican Party was founded in 1854, it deliberately chose to name itself after the Jeffersonians. In response, contemporary Democrats embraced the name Democratic-Republican to reinforce their party's claim to the party's pre-Jacksonian history. Modern Democratic politicians continue to claim Jefferson as their founder; the party arose from the Anti-Administration faction which met secretly in the national capital to oppose Alexander Hamilton's financial programs. Jefferson denounced the programs as leading to subversive of republicanism. Jefferson needed to have a nationwide party to challenge the Federalists, which Hamilton was building up with allies in major cities.
Foreign affairs took a leading role in 1794–1795 as the Republicans vigorously opposed the Jay Treaty with the United Kingdom, at war with France. Republicans saw France as more democratic after its Revolution while the United Kingdom represented the hated monarchy; the party denounced many of Hamilton's measures as unconstitutional the national bank. The party was weakest in the Northeast, it demanded states' rights as expressed by the "Principles of 1798" articulated in the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions that would allow states to nullify a federal law. Above all, the party stood for the primacy of the yeoman farmers. Republicans were committed to the principles of republicanism, which they feared were threatened by the supposed monarchical tendencies of the Hamiltonian Federalists; the party came to power in 1801 with the election of Jefferson in the 1800 presidential election. The Federalists—too elitist to appeal to most people—faded away and collapsed after 1815. Despite internal divisions, the Republicans dominated the First Party System until partisanship itself withered away during the Era of Good Feelings after 1816.
The party selected its presidential candidates in a caucus of members of Congress. They included James Madison and James Monroe. By 1824, the caucus system had collapsed. After 1800, the party dominated most state governments outside New England. By 1824, the party was split four ways and lacked a center as the First Party System collapsed; the emergence of the Second Party System in the 1820s and 30s realigned the old factions. One remnant followed Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren into the new Democratic Party by 1828. Another remnant, led by John Quincy Adams and Henry Clay, formed the National Republican Party in 1824 while some remaining smaller factions formed the Anti-Masonic Party, which along with some National Republican groups developed into the Whig Party by 1836. Most remaining National Republicans would soon after go on to be a part of the Free Soil and modern Republican parties in the 1840s and 1850s. Congressman James Madison started the party among Representatives in Philadelphia as the "Republican Party".
He, Jefferson and others reached out to include state and local leaders around the country New York and the South. The precise date of founding is disputed, but 1791 is a reasonable estimate and some time by 1792 is certain; the new party set up newspapers that made withering critiques of Hamiltonianism, extolled the yeoman farmer, argued for strict construction of the Constitution, favored the French Revolution opposed the United Kingdom and called for stronger state governments than the Federalist Party was proposing. The elections of 1792 were the first ones to be contested on anything resembling a partisan basis. In most states, the congressional elections were recognized—as Jefferson strategist John Beckley put it—as a "struggle between the Treasury department and the republican interest". In New York, the candidates for governor were a Federalist. Four states' electors voted for Clinton and one for Jefferson for Vice President in opposition to incumbent John Adams as well as casting their votes for President Washington.
Before 1804, electors cast two votes together wi
James Noble (senator)
James Noble was the first U. S. Senator from the U. S. state of Indiana. Noble was born near Berryville and moved with his parents to Campbell County, Kentucky when he was 10. There he studied law and he became an attorney, after which he moved to Indiana and settled in Brookville around 1808. Once settled in Indiana he became a ferryboat operator, a judge and a member of the state's first constitutional convention, in 1816, as a delegate from Franklin County, he was elected to the first session of the Indiana State House of Representatives in 1816. He was elected as a Crawford faction Democratic Republican to the United States Senate in 1816, he was reelected to two more terms and served from December 11, 1816, until his death in 1831. While in the Senate he was chairman of the U. S. Senate Committee on Pensions for the 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th and 20th Congresses, chairman of the U. S. Committee on the Militia for the 16th and 17th Congresses, he died in Washington, D. C. and is buried in the Congressional Cemetery.
List of United States Congress members who died in office United States Congress. "James Noble". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Delegates to the 1816 Constitutional Convention
David Holmes (politician)
David Holmes was an American politician. He was a Virginia congressman, Mississippi statesman, he was appointed as the fourth and last governor of the Mississippi Territory and became elected as the first governor of the State of Mississippi. He served a term as Senator of Mississippi, returned to serve part of a term as governor before ill health forced him to resign. Born in near Hanover in the Province of Pennsylvania and his family moved to Virginia when he was a child, he served as U. S. Representative from Virginia from 1797 until 1809. 1797. S. House of Representatives with 60.4% of the vote, defeating Democratic-Republican John Bowyer and Federalist John Steele. 1799. 1801. 1803. 1805. 1807. President Thomas Jefferson appointed him fourth governor of Mississippi Territory. Holmes was popular and his appointment marked the end of a long period of factionalism within the territory, he was the last governor of the Mississippi Territory, serving 1809–17. Holmes was successful in dealing with a variety of matters, including expansion, land policy, the War of 1812, the constitutional convention of 1817.
Concerned with problems regarding West Florida, he had a major role in 1810 in negotiations which led to the peaceful occupation of part of that territory. McCain concludes that Holmes' success was not based on brilliance, but upon kindness, persuasiveness, honesty and intelligence. In 1817, Mississippi joined the Union as the 20th state and Holmes won the election to be the first governor of the State of Mississippi unanimously. Holmes took the oath of office in October 1817, though Mississippi did not become a state until December of that year. During his term, he established the state judicial system and the state militia and organized the land east of the Pearl River that the Choctaw Indians ceded. In 1820, the state legislature elected Holmes to be one of Mississippi's Senators in the U. S. Congress, he served from 1821 until late 1825, when his election to another term as governor of Mississippi forced him to resign; because Holmes's declining health forced him to resign, he served only six months as Mississippi's fifth governor.
If both territory and statehood years are counted, he is Mississippi's longest served Governor at over 11 years of service. Holmes returned to his native Virginia where his health continued to fail before his death in 1832 at Jordan's Sulphur Springs, near Winchester, where he still lies in the Mt. Hebron Cemetery, he was predeceased by his brother, Major Andrew Hunter Holmes, a casualty of the War of 1812. Holmes County, Mississippi is named in honor of him. D. H. Conrad, "David Holmes: First Governor of Mississippi," Publications of the Mississippi Historical Society, Centenary Series, vol. 4, pp. 234–257. Howard P. Hildreth, "David Holmes," Virginia Cavalcade, vol. 16, no. 4, pp. 38–40. William D. McCain, "The Administrations of David Holmes, Governor of the Mississippi Territory, 1809–1817," Journal of Mississippi History, vol. 29, no. 3 pp. 328–347. Jo Anne McCormick Quatannens and Diane B. Boyle, Senators of the United States: A Historical Bibliography. Washington, DC: US Government Printing Office, 1995.
United States Congress. "David Holmes". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
State legislature (United States)
A state legislature in the United States is the legislative body of any of the 50 U. S. states. The formal name varies from state to state. In 25 states, the legislature is 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 the Legislative Assembly; every state except Nebraska has a bicameral legislature, meaning that the legislature consists of two separate legislative chambers or houses. In each case the smaller chamber is called the Senate and is referred to as the upper house; this chamber 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 serve for longer terms than members of the larger chamber 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 serve for terms of two years; the larger chamber customarily has the exclusive power to initiate taxing legislation and articles of impeachment. Prior to United States Supreme Court decisions Reynolds v. Sims and Baker v. Carr in the 1960s, the basis of representation in most state legislatures was modeled on that of the U. S. Congress: the state senators represented geographical units while members of the larger chamber represented population. In 1964, the United States Supreme Court announced the one man, one vote standard and invalidated state legislative representation based on geography. Nebraska had a bicameral legislature like the other states, but the lower house was abolished following a referendum, effective with the 1936 elections; the remaining unicameral legislature is called the Nebraska Legislature, but its members continue to be called senators. As a legislative branch of government, a legislature performs state duties for a state in the same way that the United States Congress performs national duties at the national level.
The same system of checks and balances that exists at the Federal level exists between the state legislature, the state executive officer and the state judiciary, though the degree to which this is so varies from one state to the next. During a legislative session, the legislature considers matters introduced by its members or submitted by the governor. Businesses and other special interest organizations lobby the legislature to obtain beneficial legislation, defeat unfavorably perceived measures, or influence other legislative action. A legislature approves the state's operating and capital budgets, which may begin as a legislative proposal or a submission by the governor. 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 both houses of Congress and they retain the ability to call for a national convention to propose amendments to the U. S. Constitution. After the convention has concluded its business 75% of the states will be required to ratify what the convention has proposed.
Under Article II, state legislatures choose the manner of appointing the state's presidential electors. State legislatures appointed the U. S. Senators from their respective states until the ratification of the 17th Amendment in 1913 required the direct election of Senators by the state's voters; the legislative bodies and their committees use either Mason's Manual of Legislative Procedure or an amended form thereof. During official meetings, a professional parliamentarian is available to ensure that legislation and accompanying discussion proceed as orderly as possible without bias; the lawmaking process begins with the introduction of a bill in either the House of Representatives or the Senate. Bills may be introduced in either house, sometimes with the exception of bills increasing or decreasing revenue, which must originate in the House of Representatives; the order of business in each house provides a proper time for the introduction of bills. Bills are assigned consecutive numbers, given in the order of their introduction, to facilitate identification.
A bill cannot become enacted until it has been read on a certain number of days in each house. Upon introduction, a bill is read by its title only, constituting the first reading of the bill; because a bill is read by title only, it is important that the title give the members notice of the subject matter contained in the bill. As with other legislative bodies throughout the world, U. S. state legislatures operate through committees when considering proposed bills. Thus, committee action is the most important phase of the legislative process. Most bills cannot be enacted into law until it has been referred to, acted upon by, returned from, a standing committee in each house. Reference to committee follows the first reading of the bill; each committee is set up to consider bills relating to a particular subject. Standing committees are charged with the important responsibility of examining bills and recommending action to the Senate or House. On days when a legislature is not in session, the committees of each house meet and consider the bills that have been referred to them to decide if the assigned bills should be reported f
John Holmes (Maine politician)
John Holmes was an American politician. He served as a U. S. Representative from Massachusetts and was one of the first two U. S. Senators from Maine. Holmes was noted for his involvement in the Treaty of Ghent. Holmes was born in Kingston and attended public schools in Kingston. In 1796, he graduated from the College of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations in Providence, Rhode Island. Holmes studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1799, opening a law practice in Alfred, Maine — a district of Massachusetts. At this time, he was engaged in literary pursuits. Holmes, a Democratic-Republican, was elected to the Massachusetts General Court in 1802, 1803, 1812, he was elected to the Massachusetts State Senate in 1813 and 1814. In 1816, Holmes was one of the commissioners under the Treaty of Ghent to divide the islands of Passamaquoddy Bay between the United States and Great Britain, he was appointed by the legislature to organize state prisons and revise the Massachusetts criminal code. Holmes was elected as a United States Representative from Massachusetts in 1816, serving from March 4, 1817, to his resignation on March 15, 1820.
During the 16th Congress, Holmes served as chairman of the Committee on Expenditures in the Department of State. Holmes supported William H. Crawford, John Quincy Adams, he was opposed to Andrew Jackson. Holmes supported the Missouri Compromise, was praised by Thomas Jefferson for his pamphlet Mr. Holmes's Letter to the People of Maine. In the letter, Jefferson thanks Holmes for a copy of this pamphlet; this pamphlet defends Holmes's position on supporting the Missouri Compromise–the admission of Maine as a free state with the admission of Missouri as a slave state, an unpopular position in Maine. This letter is notable for being the first written attestation of the phrase "to have the wolf by the ear". Jefferson himself rejected the compromise: "But this momentous question, like a fire bell in the night and filled me with terror. I considered it at once as the knell of the Union, it is hushed indeed for the moment. But this is a reprieve only, not a final sentence. A geographical line, coinciding with a marked principle and political, once conceived and held up to the angry passions of men, will never be obliterated.
An abstinence too from this act of power would remove the jealousy excited by the undertaking of Congress, to regulate the condition of the different descriptions of men composing a state. This is the exclusive right of every state, which nothing in the constitution has taken from them and given to the general government. Could congress, for example say that the Non-freemen of Connecticut, shall be freemen, or that they shall not emigrate into any other state? " Holmes was a delegate to the Maine Constitutional Convention. Upon separation from Massachusetts and the admission of Maine as a state, he was elected to the United States Senate and served from June 13, 1820, to March 3, 1827. Holmes was again elected to the Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Albion Parris, serving from January 15, 1829, to March 3, 1833. During the 17th Congress, Holmes served as chairman of the Committee on Finance. After leaving the Senate, Holmes resumed his law practice. From 1836 to 1837, he was a member of the Maine House of Representatives.
In 1841, Holmes was appointed as the United States Attorney for the District of Maine, a post he held until his death in Portland on July 7, 1843. Holmes was interred in a private tomb of Eastern Cemetery. In 1840, Holmes published The Statesman, Or a law book. "Acquiring Virginia's Treasures." University of Virginia, 12 April 2001. Https://web.archive.org/web/20021107202152/http://www.lib.virginia.edu/speccol/exhibits/mellon/acquiring.html Kestenbaum, Lawrence. Holmes, Political Graveyard. Http://politicalgraveyard.com/bio/holmes.html Sen. John Holmes House United States Congress. "John Holmes". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Engraving of John Holmes from the Maine Memory Network