Dwight D. Eisenhower
Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower was an American army general and statesman who served as the 34th president of the United States from 1953 to 1961. During World War II, he was a five-star general in the United States Army and served as supreme commander of the Allied Expeditionary Forces in Europe, he was responsible for planning and supervising the invasion of North Africa in Operation Torch in 1942–43 and the successful invasion of France and Germany in 1944–45 from the Western Front. Born David Dwight Eisenhower in Denison, Texas, he was raised in Kansas in a large family of Pennsylvania Dutch ancestry, his family had a strong religious background. His mother was born a Lutheran, married as a River Brethren, became a Jehovah's Witness. So, Eisenhower did not belong to any organized church until 1952, he cited constant relocation during his military career as one reason. He graduated from West Point in 1915 and married Mamie Doud, with whom he had two sons. During World War I, he was denied a request to serve in Europe and instead commanded a unit that trained tank crews.
Following the war, he served under various generals and was promoted to the rank of brigadier general in 1941. After the U. S. entered World War II, Eisenhower oversaw the invasions of North Africa and Sicily before supervising the invasions of France and Germany. After the war, Eisenhower served as Army Chief of Staff and took on the role as president of Columbia University. In 1951–52, he served as the first Supreme Commander of NATO. In 1952, Eisenhower entered the presidential race as a Republican to block the isolationist foreign policies of Senator Robert A. Taft, who opposed NATO and wanted no foreign entanglements, he won that election and the 1956 election in landslides, both times defeating Adlai Stevenson II. He became the first Republican to win since Herbert Hoover in 1928. Eisenhower's main goals in office were to contain the expansion of the Soviet Union and reduce federal deficits. In 1953, he threatened the use of nuclear weapons until China agreed to peace terms in the Korean War.
China did agree and an armistice resulted that remains in effect. His New Look policy of nuclear deterrence prioritized inexpensive nuclear weapons while reducing funding for expensive Army divisions, he continued Harry S. Truman's policy of recognizing the Republic of China as the legitimate government of China, he won congressional approval of the Formosa Resolution, his administration provided major aid to help the French fight off Vietnamese Communists in the First Indochina War. After the French left he gave strong financial support to the new state of South Vietnam, he supported local military coups against democratically-elected governments in Guatemala. During the Suez Crisis of 1956, Eisenhower condemned the Israeli and French invasion of Egypt, he forced them to withdraw, he condemned the Soviet invasion during the Hungarian Revolution of 1956 but took no action. During the Syrian Crisis of 1957 he approved a CIA-MI6 plan to stage fake border incidents as an excuse for an invasion by Syria's pro-Western neighbours.
After the Soviet Union launched Sputnik in 1957, Eisenhower authorized the establishment of NASA, which led to the Space Race. He deployed 15,000 soldiers during the 1958 Lebanon crisis. Near the end of his term, his efforts to set up a summit meeting with the Soviets collapsed when a U. S. spy plane was shot down over the Soviet Union. He approved the Bay of Pigs invasion, left to his successor, John F. Kennedy, to carry out. On the domestic front, Eisenhower was a moderate conservative who continued New Deal agencies and expanded Social Security, he covertly opposed Joseph McCarthy and contributed to the end of McCarthyism by invoking executive privilege. Eisenhower signed the Civil Rights Act of 1957 and sent Army troops to enforce federal court orders that integrated schools in Little Rock, Arkansas, his largest program was the Interstate Highway System. He promoted the establishment of strong science education via the National Defense Education Act. Eisenhower's two terms saw widespread economic prosperity except for a minor recession in 1958.
In his farewell address to the nation, Eisenhower expressed his concerns about the dangers of massive military spending deficit spending and government contracts to private military manufacturers. Historical evaluations of his presidency place him among the upper tier of U. S. presidents. The Eisenhauer family migrated from Karlsbrunn in Nassau-Saarbrücken, to North America, first settling in York, Pennsylvania, in 1741, in the 1880s moving to Kansas. Accounts vary as to when the German name Eisenhauer was anglicized to Eisenhower. Eisenhower's Pennsylvania Dutch ancestors, who were farmers, included Hans Nikolaus Eisenhauer of Karlsbrunn, who migrated to Lancaster, Pennsylvania, in 1741. Hans's great-great-grandson, David Jacob Eisenhower, was Eisenhower's father and was a college-educated engineer, despite his own father Jacob's urging to stay on the family farm. Eisenhower's mother, Ida Elizabeth Eisenhower, born in Virginia, of German Protestant ancestry, moved to Kansas from Virginia, she married David on September 23, 1885, in Lecompton, Kansas, on the campus of their alma mater, Lane University.
David owned a general store in Hope, but the business failed due to economic conditions and the family became impoverished. The Eisenhowers lived in Texas from 1889 until 1892, returned to Kansas, with $24 to their name at the time. David worked as a railroad mechanic and at a creamery. By 1898, the parents provided a suitable home for their large family; the future pr
Bremerton is a city in Kitsap County, United States. The population was 41,500 according to the 2018 State Estimate, making it the largest city on the Kitsap Peninsula. Bremerton is home to the Bremerton Annex of Naval Base Kitsap. Bremerton is connected to Downtown Seattle by two ferries: a 60-minute ferry that carries both vehicles and walk-on passengers, a 28-minute fast ferry that carries passengers and a limited number of bicycles. Bremerton, the largest city in Kitsap County, is located directly west of Seattle across the Puget Sound on the Kitsap Peninsula, it is bounded on the southeast and east by Sinclair Inlet and the strait of Port Orchard respectively. The city is divided by the Port Washington Narrows, a strait spanned by two bridges which connect the eastern and western sides of the city; the part of the city northeast of the narrows is referred to as East Bremerton. The city's southern border includes Bremerton National Airport. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 32.29 square miles, of which, 28.41 square miles is land and 3.88 square miles is water.
The ferry terminal and waterfront are the heart of downtown. As Bremerton's historic center, downtown has seen the most dramatic change over the last decade, with blighted blocks being replaced by new apartments and older buildings being restored. Attractions include Harborside Fountain Park, a boardwalk, multiple naval history museums; the Admiral Theatre, a restored 1942 art deco theater, is Bremerton's most prominent venue for live music and entertainment. The district is known for breweries, art galleries, restaurants showcasing diverse cuisines; the city is in the beginning stages of creating a public square on Fourth Street to honor local music icon, Quincy Jones. Across the water from Downtown is Manette, a neighborhood on a separate peninsula that functioned as its own town from 1891-1930. Today, Manette is an upscale neighborhood connected to Bremerton via the new Manette Bridge with trendy bars and restaurants and beautiful mountain and water views. Charleston was an independent town built to house and entertain sailors.
The neighborhood's center is Callow Avenue, a retail corridor anchored by The Charleston music venue. Charleston is a designated center in Bremerton's comprehensive plan, has seen recent improvements to its streetscape. Charleston is casually defined by 11st Street to the north, Naval Avenue to the east, 1st Street to the south, Cambrian Avenue to the west. Between Charleston and Downtown is the Union Hill neighborhood, its borders are Naval to the west, 11th to the north, Warren to the east, PSNS to the south. Union Hill is a predominantly residential neighborhood, showcasing Bremerton's most historic churches and a synagogue along Veneta Avenue. Near Veneta and 6th is a popular local diner, Noah's Ark, Bremerton's most architecturally notable place of worship, Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church, non-native towering Sequioas, a large park. North of downtown's 11th Street boundary is the Evergreen neighborhood, anchored by Evergreen Park and bordered to the west by Warren Avenue. Evergreen Park offers beach access, a boat ramp, hosts a weekly farmer's market in the summer.
Evergreen is characterized by residential neighborhoods and water views. West of Evergreen and north of Union Hill and Charleston is Haddon. Haddon's center is the Lulu Haddon park, but Bremerton High School and Olympic College's campus are main focal points as well. Though an older, sleepier neighborhood traditionally more connected with the shipyard and local business, the Haddon neighborhood has gained notoriety for quirky local breakfast diner Hi-Lo's and an English style barrelhouse, Hale's Ales. Bremerton is divided among three state legislative districts in Kitsap County; the 23rd legislative district to the north, 35th legislative district in the center and 26th legislative district to the south. Before redistricting in 2012, the line separating the first and sixth Congressional districts ran through East Bremerton; as a result of the 2012 redistricting, all of Bremerton now lies within the sixth Congressional district. The district is represented by Derek Kilmer, first elected to that position in 2012.
Prior to Kilmer, Norm Dicks served as sixth district Representative from 1977 to 2013. The mayor is Greg Wheeler, Incorporated as a first-class city, Bremerton has been governed by a nonpartisan strong mayor and seven-member city council since 1985; each member is elected from one of seven districts. The current form of government was established by a 1983 charter that eliminated a decades-old city commission composed of a mayor, public works commissioner and finance commissioner; each member of the Kitsap County Board of Commissioners represents a portion of the city of Bremerton. This arrangement was an attempt to balance Bremerton's commercial influence with the remainder of the county, though most of its sales tax base has since relocated to unincorporated areas. Bremerton politics can vary in intensity, with some city council positions unopposed and others having as many as four candidates in the 2005 primary election. Redevelopment projects have been a major source of debate, including the 2007 construction of a federally funded tunnel that would route ferry traffic under the downtown core as well as a planned waterfront boardwalk extension.
As with most cities in the region, Bremerton precincts have been more favorable for Democratic candidates in state and federal elections, contrasting with more conservat
Guinness World Records
Guinness World Records, known from its inception from 1955 until 2000 as The Guinness Book of Records and in previous United States editions as The Guinness Book of World Records, is a reference book published annually, listing world records both of human achievements and the extremes of the natural world. The brainchild of Sir Hugh Beaver, the book was co-founded by brothers Norris and Ross McWhirter in Fleet Street, London in August 1954; the book itself holds a world record, as the best-selling copyrighted book of all time. As of the 2019 edition, it is now in its 64th year of publication, published in 100 countries and 23 languages; the international franchise has extended beyond print to include museums. The popularity of the franchise has resulted in Guinness World Records becoming the primary international authority on the cataloguing and verification of a huge number of world records. On 10 November 1951, Sir Hugh Beaver the managing director of the Guinness Breweries, went on a shooting party in the North Slob, by the River Slaney in County Wexford, Ireland.
After missing a shot at a golden plover, he became involved in an argument over, the fastest game bird in Europe, the golden plover or the red grouse. That evening at Castlebridge House, he realized that it was impossible to confirm in reference books whether or not the golden plover was Europe's fastest game bird. Beaver knew that there must be numerous other questions debated nightly in pubs throughout Ireland and abroad, but there was no book in the world with which to settle arguments about records, he realised that a book supplying the answers to this sort of question might prove successful. Beaver's idea became reality when Guinness employee Christopher Chataway recommended University friends Norris and Ross McWhirter, running a fact-finding agency in London; the twin brothers were commissioned to compile what became The Guinness Book of Records in August 1954. A thousand copies were given away. After the founding of The Guinness Book of Records at 107 Fleet Street, the first 198-page edition was bound on 27 August 1955 and went to the top of the British best seller lists by Christmas.
The following year, it launched in the US, sold 70,000 copies. Since Guinness World Records has gone on to become a record breaker in its own right; because the book became a surprise hit, many further editions were printed settling into a pattern of one revision a year, published in September/October, in time for Christmas. The McWhirters continued to compile it for many years. Both brothers had an encyclopedic memory. Ross McWhirter was assassinated by the Provisional Irish Republican Army in 1975. Following Ross' assassination, the feature in the show where questions about records posed by children were answered was called Norris on the Spot. Guinness Superlatives Limited was formed in 1954 to publish the first book. Sterling Publishing owned the rights to the Guinness book in the US for decades; the group was owned by Guinness PLC and subsequently Diageo until 2001, when it was purchased by Gullane Entertainment. Gullane was itself purchased by HIT Entertainment in 2002. In 2006, Apax Partners purchased HiT and subsequently sold Guinness World Records in early 2008 to the Jim Pattison Group, the parent company of Ripley Entertainment, licensed to operate Guinness World Records' Attractions.
With offices in New York City and Tokyo, Guinness World Records' global headquarters remain in London, while its museum attractions are based at Ripley headquarters in Orlando, Florida, US. Recent editions have focused on record feats by person competitors. Competitions range from obvious ones such as Olympic weightlifting to the longest egg tossing distances, or for longest time spent playing Grand Theft Auto IV or the number of hot dogs that can be consumed in three minutes. Besides records about competitions, it contains such facts such as the heaviest tumour, the most poisonous fungus, the longest-running soap opera and the most valuable life-insurance policy, among others. Many records relate to the youngest people to have achieved something, such as the youngest person to visit all nations of the world; each edition contains a selection of the records from the Guinness World Records database, as well as select new records, with the criteria for inclusion changing from year to year. The retirement of Norris McWhirter from his consulting role in 1995 and the subsequent decision by Diageo Plc to sell The Guinness Book of Records brand have shifted the focus of the books from text-oriented to illustrated reference.
A selection of records are curated for the book from the full archive but all existing Guinness World Records titles can be accessed by creating a login on the company's website. Applications made by individuals for existing record categories are free of charge. There is an administration fee of $5 to propose a new record title. A number of spin-off books and television series have been produced. Guinness World Records bestowed the record of "Person with the most records" on Ashrita Furman of Queens, NY in April 2009. At that time, he held 100 records. In 2005, Guinness designated 9 November as International Guinness World Records Day to encourage breaking of world records. In 2006, an esti
Los Angeles the City of Los Angeles and known by its initials L. A. is the most populous city in California, the second most populous city in the United States, after New York City, the third most populous city in North America. With an estimated population of four million, Los Angeles is the cultural and commercial center of Southern California; the city is known for its Mediterranean climate, ethnic diversity and the entertainment industry, its sprawling metropolis. Los Angeles is the largest city on the West Coast of North America. Los Angeles is in a large basin bounded by the Pacific Ocean on one side and by mountains as high as 10,000 feet on the other; the city proper, which covers about 469 square miles, is the seat of Los Angeles County, the most populated county in the country. Los Angeles is the principal city of the Los Angeles metropolitan area, the second largest in the United States after that of New York City, with a population of 13.1 million. It is part of the Los Angeles-Long Beach combined statistical area the nation's second most populous area with a 2015 estimated population of 18.7 million.
Los Angeles is one of the most substantial economic engines within the United States, with a diverse economy in a broad range of professional and cultural fields. Los Angeles is famous as the home of Hollywood, a major center of the world entertainment industry. A global city, it has been ranked 6th in the Global Cities Index and 9th in the Global Economic Power Index; the Los Angeles metropolitan area has a gross metropolitan product of $1.044 trillion, making it the third-largest in the world, after the Tokyo and New York metropolitan areas. Los Angeles hosted the 1932 and 1984 Summer Olympics and will host the event for a third time in 2028; the city hosted the Miss Universe pageant twice, in 1990 and 2006, was one of 9 American cities to host the 1994 FIFA men's soccer World Cup and one of 8 to host the 1999 FIFA women's soccer World Cup, hosting the final match for both tournaments. Home to the Chumash and Tongva, Los Angeles was claimed by Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo for Spain in 1542 along with the rest of what would become Alta California.
The city was founded on September 4, 1781, by Spanish governor Felipe de Neve. It became a part of Mexico in 1821 following the Mexican War of Independence. In 1848, at the end of the Mexican–American War, Los Angeles and the rest of California were purchased as part of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, becoming part of the United States. Los Angeles was incorporated as a municipality on April 4, 1850, five months before California achieved statehood; the discovery of oil in the 1890s brought rapid growth to the city. The completion of the Los Angeles Aqueduct in 1913, delivering water from Eastern California assured the city's continued rapid growth; the Los Angeles coastal area was settled by the Chumash tribes. A Gabrieleño settlement in the area was called iyáangẚ, meaning "poison oak place". Maritime explorer Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo claimed the area of southern California for the Spanish Empire in 1542 while on an official military exploring expedition moving north along the Pacific coast from earlier colonizing bases of New Spain in Central and South America.
Gaspar de Portolà and Franciscan missionary Juan Crespí, reached the present site of Los Angeles on August 2, 1769. In 1771, Franciscan friar Junípero Serra directed the building of the Mission San Gabriel Arcángel, the first mission in the area. On September 4, 1781, a group of forty-four settlers known as "Los Pobladores" founded the pueblo they called El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles,'The Town of Our Lady the Queen of the Angels'; the present-day city has the largest Roman Catholic Archdiocese in the United States. Two-thirds of the Mexican or settlers were mestizo or mulatto, a mixture of African and European ancestry; the settlement remained a small ranch town for decades, but by 1820, the population had increased to about 650 residents. Today, the pueblo is commemorated in the historic district of Los Angeles Pueblo Plaza and Olvera Street, the oldest part of Los Angeles. New Spain achieved its independence from the Spanish Empire in 1821, the pueblo continued as a part of Mexico.
During Mexican rule, Governor Pío Pico made Los Angeles Alta California's regional capital. Mexican rule ended during the Mexican–American War: Americans took control from the Californios after a series of battles, culminating with the signing of the Treaty of Cahuenga on January 13, 1847. Railroads arrived with the completion of the transcontinental Southern Pacific line to Los Angeles in 1876 and the Santa Fe Railroad in 1885. Petroleum was discovered in the city and surrounding area in 1892, by 1923, the discoveries had helped California become the country's largest oil producer, accounting for about one-quarter of the world's petroleum output. By 1900, the population had grown to more than 102,000; the completion of the Los Angeles Aqueduct in 1913, under the supervision of William Mulholland, assured the continued growth of the city. Due to clauses in the city's charter that prevented the City of Los Angeles from selling or providing water from the aqueduct to any area outside its borders, many adjacent city and communities became compelled to annex themselves into Los Angeles.
Los Angeles created the first municipal zoning ordinance in the United States. On September 14, 1908, the Los Angeles City Council promulgated residential and industrial land use zones; the new ordinance established three residential zones of a single type, where industrial uses were
Suisun Bay is a shallow tidal estuary in northern California. It lies at the confluence of the Sacramento and San Joaquin Rivers, forming the entrance to the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta, an inverted river delta. Suisun Marsh, the tidal marsh land to the north, is the largest marsh in California. Grizzly Bay forms a northern extension of Suisun Bay; the bay is directly north of Contra Costa County. The bay was named after the Suisunes, a Native American tribe of the area; the word originates with the Patwin. On the west, Suisun Bay is drained by the Carquinez Strait, which connects to San Pablo Bay, a northern extension of San Francisco Bay. In addition to the major bridges at the Carquinez Strait, it is spanned in its center by the Benicia-Martinez Bridge and at its eastern end by the State Route 160 crossing between Antioch and Oakley, it is the anchorage of the Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet, a collection of U. S. Navy and merchant reserve ships, created in the period following World War II; the Glomar Explorer was anchored here after recovering parts of a sunken Soviet submarine in the mid-1970s.
Many ships were sold for scrap in the 1990s. In 2010, plans were announced to remove the mothball fleet in stages, with final removal by 2017; the Central Pacific Railroad built a train ferry that operated between Benicia and Port Costa, California from 1879 to 1930. The ferry boats Solano and Contra Costa were removed from service when the nearby Martinez railroad bridge was completed in 1930. From 1913 until 1954 the Sacramento Northern Railway, an electrified interurban line, crossed Suisun Bay with the Ramon, a distillate-powered train ferry. On April 28, 2004, a petroleum pipeline operated by Kinder Morgan Energy Partners ruptured reported as spilling 1,500 barrels of diesel fuel in the marshes, this was updated to about 2,950 barrels. Kinder Morgan pleaded guilty to operating a corroded pipeline and paid three million dollars in penalties and restitution. Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet Kinder Morgan Information Regarding Pipeline Release Carl Nolte. "Suisun Bay's ghost fleet may R. I. P." SF Gate
Olympia is the capital of the U. S. state of Washington and the county seat of Thurston County. European settlers claimed the area in 1846, with the Treaty of Medicine Creek initiated in 1854, the Treaty of Olympia initiated in January 1856. Olympia was incorporated as a town on January 28, 1859, as a City in 1882; the population was 46,479 as of the 2010 census. The city borders Lacey to the Tumwater to the south. Olympia is a cultural center of the southern Puget Sound region. Olympia is located 60 miles southwest of the largest city in the state of Washington; the site of Olympia has been home to Lushootseed-speaking peoples known as the Steh-Chass for thousands of years. Other Native Americans visited the head of Budd Inlet and the Steh-Chass including the other ancestor tribes of the Squaxin, as well as the Nisqually, Chehalis and Duwamish; the first recorded Europeans came to Olympia in 1792. Peter Puget and a crew from the British Vancouver Expedition are said to have explored the site, but neither recorded any encounters with the resident Indigenous population here.
In 1846, Edmund Sylvester and Levi Smith jointly claimed the land that now comprises downtown Olympia. In 1851, the U. S. Congress established the Customs District of Puget Sound for Washington Territory and Olympia became the home of the customs house, its population expanded from Oregon Trail immigrants. In 1850, the town settled on the name Olympia, at the suggestion of local resident Colonel Isaac N. Ebey, due to its view of the Olympic Mountains to the Northwest; the area began to be served by a small fleet of steamboats known as the Puget Sound Mosquito Fleet. Over the course of two days, December 24–26, 1854, Governor Isaac I. Stevens negotiated the Treaty of Medicine Creek with the representatives of the Nisqually, Squawksin, Steh'Chass, Noo-Seh-Chatl, Squi-Aitl, T'Peeksin, Sah-Heh-Wa-Mish, S'Hotl-Ma-Mish tribes. Stevens' treaty included the preservation of Indigenous fishing, hunting and other rights, it included a section which, at least as interpreted by United States officials, required the Native American signatories to move to one of three reservations.
Doing so would force the Nisqually people to cede their prime farming and living space. One of the leaders of the Nisqually, Chief Leschi. Outraged, refused to give up ownership of this land and instead fought for his peoples' right to their territory, sparking the beginning of the Puget Sound War; the war ended in the controversial execution of Leschi. In 1896, Olympia became the home of the Olympia Brewing Company, which brewed Olympia Beer until 2003; the 1949 Olympia earthquake damaged many historic buildings beyond repair, they were demolished. Parts of the city suffered damage from earthquakes in 1965 and 2001. Olympia is located at 47°2′33″N 122°53′35″W. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 19.68 square miles, of which 17.82 sq mi are land and 1.86 sq mi are water. The city of Olympia is located at the southern end of Puget Sound on Budd Inlet; the Deschutes River estuary was dammed in 1951 to create Capitol Lake. Much of the lower area of downtown Olympia sits on reclaimed land.
The cities of Lacey and Tumwater border Olympia. The region surrounding Olympia has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, whereas the local microclimate has dry summers and cool July and August overnight lows, it is part of USDA Hardiness zone 8a, with isolated pockets around Puget Sound falling under zone 8b. Most of western Washington's weather is brought in by weather systems that form near the Aleutian Islands in Alaska, it contains cold moist air, which brings western Washington cold rain and fog. November through January are Olympia's rainiest months. City streets and rivers can flood during the months of November through February; the normal monthly mean temperature ranges from 38.4 °F in December to 64.1 °F in August. Seasonal snowfall for 1981–2010 averaged 10.8 inches but has ranged from trace amounts in 1991–92 to 81.5 in in 1968–69. Olympia averages 50 inches of precipitation annually and has a year-round average of 75% cloud cover. Annual precipitation has ranged from 29.92 in in 1952 to 66.71 in in 1950.
With a period of record dating back to 1948, extreme temperatures have ranged from −8 °F on January 1, 1979, up to 104 °F, most on July 29, 2009. On average, there are 6.3 days annually with temperatures reaching 90 °F, 1.8 days where the temperature stays at or below freezing all day, 78 nights where the low reaches the freezing mark. The average window for freezing temperatures is October 8 through May 3, allowing a growing season of 157 days, nearly 100 days shorter than in nearby Seattle. Olympia has a wide array of public parks and nature conservation areas; the Woodard Bay Natural Resources Conservation Area is a 600-acre parcel that preserves more than 5 miles of Puget Sound waterfront along the Woodard and Chapman Bays of the Henderson Inlet. Percival Landing Park includes 0.9 miles of boardwalk along Budd Inlet, as well as a playground, picnic areas, a large open space. Percival Landing closed in 2010 for an extensive remodel after saltwater degradation a
United States Congress
The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the Federal Government of the United States. The legislature consists of two chambers: the House of the Senate; the Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D. C.. Both senators and representatives are chosen through direct election, though vacancies in the Senate may be filled by a gubernatorial appointment. Congress has 535 voting members: 100 senators; the House of Representatives has six non-voting members representing Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Northern Mariana Islands, the U. S. Virgin Islands, the District of Columbia in addition to its 435 voting members. Although they cannot vote in the full house, these members can address the house and vote in congressional committees, introduce legislation; the members of the House of Representatives serve two-year terms representing the people of a single constituency, known as a "district". Congressional districts are apportioned to states by population using the United States Census results, provided that each state has at least one congressional representative.
Each state, regardless of population or size, has two senators. There are 100 senators representing the 50 states; each senator is elected at-large in their state for a six-year term, with terms staggered, so every two years one-third of the Senate is up for election. To be eligible for election, a candidate must be aged at least 25 or 30, have been a citizen of the United States for seven or nine years, be an inhabitant of the state which they represent; the Congress was created by the Constitution of the United States and first met in 1789, replacing in its legislative function the Congress of the Confederation. Although not mandated, in practice since the 19th century, Congress members are affiliated with the Republican Party or with the Democratic Party and only with a third party or independents. Article One of the United States Constitution states, "All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives."
The House and Senate are equal partners in the legislative process—legislation cannot be enacted without the consent of both chambers. However, the Constitution grants each chamber some unique powers; the Senate ratifies treaties and approves presidential appointments while the House initiates revenue-raising bills. The House initiates impeachment cases. A two-thirds vote of the Senate is required before an impeached person can be forcibly removed from office; the term Congress can refer to a particular meeting of the legislature. A Congress covers two years; the Congress ends on the third day of January of every odd-numbered year. Members of the Senate are referred to as senators. Scholar and representative Lee H. Hamilton asserted that the "historic mission of Congress has been to maintain freedom" and insisted it was a "driving force in American government" and a "remarkably resilient institution". Congress is the "heart and soul of our democracy", according to this view though legislators achieve the prestige or name recognition of presidents or Supreme Court justices.
One analyst argues that it is not a reactive institution but has played an active role in shaping government policy and is extraordinarily sensitive to public pressure. Several academics described Congress: Congress reflects us in all our strengths and all our weaknesses, it reflects our regional idiosyncrasies, our ethnic and racial diversity, our multitude of professions, our shadings of opinion on everything from the value of war to the war over values. Congress is the government's most representative body... Congress is charged with reconciling our many points of view on the great public policy issues of the day. Congress is changing and is in flux. In recent times, the American south and west have gained House seats according to demographic changes recorded by the census and includes more minorities and women although both groups are still underrepresented. While power balances among the different parts of government continue to change, the internal structure of Congress is important to understand along with its interactions with so-called intermediary institutions such as political parties, civic associations, interest groups, the mass media.
The Congress of the United States serves two distinct purposes that overlap: local representation to the federal government of a congressional district by representatives and a state's at-large representation to the federal government by senators. Most incumbents seek re-election, their historical likelihood of winning subsequent elections exceeds 90 percent; the historical records of the House of Representatives and the Senate are maintained by the Center for Legislative Archives, a part of the National Archives and Records Administration. Congress is directly responsible for the governing of the District of Columbia, the current seat of the federal government; the First Continental Congress was a gathering of representatives from twelve of the thirteen British Colonies in North America. On July 4, 1776, the Second Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence, referring to the new nation as the "United States of America"; the Articles of Confederation in 1781 created the Congress of the Confederation, a