Treaties (CongressionalGlossary.com)

From the Congressional Glossary – Including Legislative and Budget Terms

Treaties

Benjamin Franklin and Richard Oswald discussing the Treaty of Peace Paris, by Howard Pyle in Scribner Magazine, 1898. Library of Congress

Benjamin Franklin and Richard Oswald discussing the Treaty of Peace Paris, by Howard Pyle in Scribner Magazine, 1898. Library of Congress

Executive proposals – in the form of resolutions of ratification – that must be submitted to the Senate for approval by two-thirds of the senators present. Treaties today are normally sent to the Foreign Relations Committee for scrutiny before the Senate takes action. The Senate Committee on Foreign Relations has jurisdiction over all treaties, regardless of the subject matter. Treaties are read three times and debated on the floor in much the same manner as legislative proposals. After approval by the Senate, the president formally ratifies treaties. Treaties not approved by the Senate at the end of a congressional session do not die. Instead, they can be considered by a future Congress unless withdrawn by the president.

A treaty is an executive document sent by the president to the Senate for its consideration and approval.

Also see Executive Business; Executive Calendar; § 8.30 Congress and the Executive: Ratification of Treaties and Foreign Policy, § 8.150 Congress and Foreign Policy: Treaties and International Agreements, in Congressional Deskbook.

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