House Rules and Manual

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House Rule XVII

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 House Rule XVIII

THE COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE HOUSE ON THE STATE OF THE UNION

Resolving into the Committee of the Whole

1. Whenever the House resolves into the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, the Speaker shall leave the chair after appointing a Member, Delegate, or the Resident Commissioner as Chair to preside. In case of disturbance or disorderly conduct in the galleries or lobby, the Chair may cause the same to be cleared.

2. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) and in clause 6 of rule XV, the House resolves into the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union by motion. When such a motion is entertained, the Speaker shall put the question without debate: ‘‘Shall the House resolve itself into the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union for consideration of this matter?’’, naming it.

(b) After the House has adopted a resolution reported by the Committee on Rules providing a special order of business for the consideration of a measure in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, the Speaker may at any time, when no question is pending before the House, declare the House resolved into the Committee of the Whole for the consideration of that measure without intervening motion, unless the special order of business provides otherwise.

Measures requiring initial consideration in the Committee of the Whole

3. All public bills, resolutions, or Senate amendments (as provided in clause 3 of rule XXII) involving a tax or charge on the people, raising revenue, directly or indirectly making appropriations of money or property or requiring such appropriations to be made, authorizing payments out of appropriations already made, or releasing any liability to the United States for money or property, shall be first considered in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union. A bill, resolution, or Senate amendment that fails to comply with this clause is subject to a point of order against its consideration.

Order of business

4. (a) Subject to subparagraph (b) business on the calendar of the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union may be taken up in regular order, or in such order as the Committee may determine, unless the measure to be considered was determined by the House at the time of resolving into the Committee of the Whole.

(b) Motions to resolve into the Committee of the Whole for consideration of bills and joint resolutions making general appropriations have precedence under this clause.

Reading for amendment

5. (a) Before general debate commences on a measure in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, it shall be read in full. When general debate is concluded or closed by order of the House, the measure under consideration shall be read for amendment. A Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who offers an amendment shall be allowed five minutes to explain it, after which the Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who shall first obtain the floor shall be allowed five minutes to speak in opposition to it. There shall be no further debate thereon, but the same privilege of debate shall be allowed in favor of and against any amendment that may be offered to an amendment. An amendment, or an amendment to an amendment, may be withdrawn by its proponent only by the unanimous consent of the Committee of the Whole.

(b) When a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner offers an amendment in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, the Clerk shall promptly transmit five copies of the amendment to the majority committee table and five copies to the minority committee table. The Clerk also shall deliver at least one copy of the amendment to the majority cloakroom and at least one copy to the minority cloakroom.

Quorum and voting

6. (a) A quorum of a Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union is 100 Members. The first time that a Committee of the Whole finds itself without a quorum during a day, the Chair shall invoke the procedure for a quorum call set forth in clause 2 of rule XX, unless the Chair elects to invoke an alternate procedure set forth in clause 3 or clause 4(a) of rule XX. If a quorum appears, the Committee of the Whole shall continue its business. If a quorum does not appear, the Committee of the Whole shall rise, and the Chair shall report the names of absentees to the House.

(b)(1) The Chair may refuse to entertain a point of order that a quorum is not present during general debate.

(2) After a quorum has once been established on a day, the Chair may entertain a point of order that a quorum is not present only when the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union is operating under the five-minute rule and the Chair has put the pending proposition to a vote.

(3) Upon sustaining a point of order that a quorum is not present, the Chair may announce that, following a regular quorum call under paragraph (a), the minimum time for electronic voting on the pending question shall be not less than two minutes.

(c) When ordering a quorum call in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, the Chair may announce an intention to declare that a quorum is constituted at any time during the quorum call when the Chair determines that a quorum has appeared. If the Chair interrupts the quorum call by declaring that a quorum is constituted, proceedings under the quorum call shall be considered as vacated, and the Committee of the Whole shall continue its sitting and resume its business.

(d) A quorum is not required in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union for adoption of a motion that the Committee rise.

(e) In the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, the Chair shall order a recorded vote on a request supported by at least 25 Members.

(f) In the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, the Chair may reduce to not less than two minutes the minimum time for electronic voting without any intervening business or debate on any or all pending amendments after a record vote has been taken on the first pending amendment.

(g) The Chair may postpone a request for a recorded vote on any amendment. The Chair may resume proceedings on a postponed request at any time. The Chair may reduce to not less than two minutes the minimum time for electronic voting—

(1) on any postponed question that follows another electronic vote without intervening business, provided that the minimum time for electronic voting on the first in any series of questions shall be 15 minutes; or

(2) on any postponed question taken without intervening debate or motion after the Committee of the Whole resumes its sitting if in the discretion of the Chair Members would be afforded an adequate opportunity to vote.

Dispensing with the reading of an amendment

7. It shall be in order in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union to move that the Committee of the Whole dispense with the reading of an amendment that has been printed in the bill or resolution as reported by a committee, or an amendment that a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner has caused to be printed in the Congressional Record. Such a motion shall be decided without debate.

Closing debate

8. (a) Subject to paragraph (b) at any time after the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union has begun five-minute debate on amendments to any portion of a bill or resolution, it shall be in order to move that the Committee of the Whole close all debate on that portion of the bill or resolution or on the pending amendments only. Such a motion shall be decided without debate. The adoption of such a motion does not preclude further amendment, to be decided without debate.

(b) If the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union closes debate on any portion of a bill or resolution before there has been debate on an amendment that a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner has caused to be printed in the Congressional Record at least one day before its consideration, the Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who caused the amendment to be printed in the Record shall be allowed five minutes to explain it, after which the Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who shall first obtain the floor shall be allowed five minutes to speak in opposition to it. There shall be no further debate thereon.

(c) Material submitted for printing in the Congressional Record under this clause shall indicate the full text of the proposed amendment, the name of the Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner proposing it, the number of the bill or resolution to which it will be offered, and the point in the bill or resolution or amendment thereto where the amendment is intended to be offered. The amendment shall appear in a portion of the Record designated for that purpose. Amendments to a specified measure submitted for printing in that portion of the Record shall be numbered in the order printed.

Striking the enacting clause

9. A motion that the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union rise and report a bill or resolution to the House with the recommendation that the enacting or resolving clause be stricken shall have precedence of a motion to amend, and, if carried in the House, shall constitute a rejection of the bill or resolution. Whenever a bill or resolution is reported from the Committee of the Whole with such adverse recommendation and the recommendation is rejected by the House, the bill or resolution shall stand recommitted to the Committee of the Whole without further action by the House. Before the question of concurrence is submitted, it shall be in order to move that the House refer the bill or resolution to a committee, with or without instructions. If a bill or resolution is so referred, then when it is again reported to the House it shall be referred to the Committee of the Whole without debate.

Concurrent resolution on the budget

10. (a) At the conclusion of general debate in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union on a concurrent resolution on the budget under section 305(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the concurrent resolution shall be considered as read for amendment.

(b) It shall not be in order in the House or in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union to consider an amendment to a concurrent resolution on the budget, or an amendment thereto, unless the concurrent resolution, as amended by such amendment or amendments—

(1) would be mathematically consistent except as limited by paragraph (c); and

(2) would contain all the matter set forth in paragraphs (1) through (5) of section 301(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974.

(c)(1) Except as specified in subparagraph (2), it shall not be in order in the House or in the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union to consider an amendment to a concurrent resolution on the budget, or an amendment thereto, that proposes to change the amount of the appropriate level of the public debt set forth in the concurrent resolution, as reported.

(2) Amendments to achieve mathematical consistency under section 305(a)(5) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, if offered by direction of the Committee on the Budget, may propose to adjust the amount of the appropriate level of the public debt set forth in the concurrent resolution, as reported, to reflect changes made in other figures contained in the concurrent resolution.

Applicability of Rules of the House

11. The Rules of the House are the rules of the Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union so far as applicable.

 

 

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House Rule XVII

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House Rule XIX

[BCD § 368]