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Government Documents and Information: Legislative Branch

Finding government documents & information at the Drain-Jordan Library, online, and around the world

Legislative Branch Resources and Agencies

Library of Congress

Library of Congress Logo

"The Library of Congress is the nation's oldest federal cultural institution and serves as the research arm of Congress. It is also the largest library in the world, with millions of books, recordings, photographs, maps and manuscripts in its collections. The Library's mission is to support the Congress in fulfilling its constitutional duties and to further the progress of knowledge and creativity for the benefit of the American people." loc.gov

Quick Links - Government Branches

The Legislative Branch

Established by Article I of the Constitution, the Legislative Branch consists of the House of Representatives and the Senate, which together form the United States Congress. The Constitution grants Congress the sole authority to enact legislation and declare war, the right to confirm or reject many Presidential appointments, and substantial investigative powers. 

For Kids

Definition of the Legislative Branch

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Legislation and Congress

Congress.gov

Presented by the Library of Congress, Congress.gov is the official online portal for U.S. federal legislative information, including current and recent legislation, schedules, and representatives. 

In 1832, Congress established the Law Library of Congress as a separate department of the Library. It houses one of the most complete collections of U.S. Congressional documents in their original format. In order to make these records more easily accessible to students, scholars, and interested citizens, A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation brings together online the records and acts of Congress from the Continental Congress and Constitutional Convention through the 43rd Congress, including the first three volumes of the Congressional Record, 1873-75.

Legislation

Status of Legislation

Upcoming, Pending, and Trending Bills and Resolutions

Summary of Bills Vetoed 1789-present (listed by president)

House of Representatives and Senate

Current and recent (back to 1993) Congressional bills and resolutions are available on FDsys.gov for the House and Senate.

Calendars for both the House and Senate are available on FDsys.gov. 

Current legislation, including sponsors, bill text, finding and contacting your representative, and calendars: House of Representatives / U.S. Senate

List of roll-call votes (how each representative voted) and the dates they did so: House / Senate

MuckRock

"MuckRock helps anyone file, track and share public records requests, using a mix of software and hands-on help to make the process as easy and transparent as possible. Originally made possible by a grant from the Sunlight Foundation, the service is now funded primarily by its users, including journalists, researchers, activists, and people who just want to better understand what their government is up to.

Using MuckRock is easy, and it's free to try it out and see if it's a good fit for you." -MuckRock.com

The site provides a repository of hundreds of thousands of pages of original government materials, information on how to file requests, and tools to make the requesting process easier. In addition, MuckRock staff and outside contributors do original reporting and analysis of many of the documents received through the site.

In addition, MuckRock works with journalists to help conceive, pursue, and publish original stories on issues that matter with exclusive primary materials obtained via public records law.

Government materials on MuckRock are available free of charge and, with some exceptions, without restriction.