The 116th Congress will convene on January 3rd, 2019. Both the Senate and the House of Representatives will swear new leaders in. In the Senate, the President of the Senate, Vice President Mike Pence, will give new Senators the oath of office. In the House of Representatives, first they will elect the Speaker of the House of Representatives. This is expected to be Nancy Pelosi. After she is sworn in, she will swear the rest of the House of Representatives in.
This congress will have more women than any other congress in history. It will also have more racial diversity than any other congress. The first two Native American congresswomen, Sharice Davids of New Mexico and Deb Haaland of Kansas, and the first Muslim congresswomen, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, will join the House of Representatives.
There is one other important thing to know about this new congress. It is divided. The House of Representatives has a majority of Democrats. The Senate has a majority of Republicans. In order to pass laws that will help Americans, they will need to find ways for both chambers of government, along with the President, to agree.
They will need to do this quickly, since many parts of the federal government are shut down until they can agree on a bill to fund the government. The major issue of disagreement is whether to put $5 billion dollars towards a wall on the United States’ southern border. The president wants to build this wall. Many in Congress disagree with the idea of building it.
What Do You Think? What are some ways that you would try to help settle disagreements if you were in Congress?
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