From the Congressional Glossary – Including Legislative and Budget Terms
Point of Order
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An objection raised by a member, in committee or on the floor, that the chamber is departing from rules governing its conduct of business. The objector cites the rule violated, and the chair sustains the objection if correctly made. The chair suspends proceedings of the chamber until it conforms to the prescribed “order of business.”
An objection raised on the House or Senate floor or in committees to an action being taken as contrary to that body’s rules. In the House, for example, a point of order may be raised under Rule XXI objecting to an appropriation in an appropriation bill that was not previously authorized by law. In the Senate, a claim made by a Senator from the floor that a rule of the Senate is being violated. If the Chair sustains the point of order, the action in violation of the rule is not permitted.
Earmark Point of Order
Many of the rules established in the Congressional Budget Act and related rules preclude the consideration of legislation that would violate totals in the budget resolutions, spending limits, or committee allocations. These rules are typically enforced through points of order. Points of order may be waived by a majority vote in the House. In the Senate, only points of order under the Budget Act may be waived (not points of order against actions that violate the Senate’s standing rules), but the waiver generally requires a three-fifths vote.
- Appeal the Ruling of the Chair
- Concurrent Resolution on the Budget
- Congressional Budget Act
- Chapter 3.F. Amendment Procedure; Chapter 4.H. Amendment on the House Floor; Chapter 5.I. The Nuclear Option; Chapter 5.K. Filling the Amendment Tree; Chapter 6.D. Conference Committee; Chapter 7.E. The “Byrd Rule”; Chapter 7.M. Congressional Review Act; Chapter 8.M. Appeals of Rulings of the Chair; in Congressional Procedure
- Waiver Rule (CongressionalGlossary.com)
- Rules of the Senate
- House Committee on Rules
- The Congressional Review Act (CRA) (CongressionalGlossary.com)
- “Points of Order in the Congressional Budget Process,” CRS Report 97-865 (21-page PDF)
- “Congressional Budget Act Points of Order,” CRS Report 98-876 (8-page PDF)
- “Points of Order, Rulings, and Appeals in the Senate,” CRS Report 98-306 (7-page PDF)
- “Points of Order, Rulings, and Appeals in the House of Representatives,” CRS Report 98-307 (6-page PDF)
- “The Office of the Parliamentarian in the House and Senate,” CRS Report RS20544 (4-page PDF)
- “The Senate “Two-Hour Rule” Governing Committee Meeting Times,” CRS Report R45170 (21-page PDF)
- “Conference Committee and Related Procedures: An Introduction,” CRS Report 96-708 (15-page PDF)
- “House Committee Markups: Manual of Procedures and Procedural Strategies,” CRS Report R41083 (220-page PDF)
- “The Holman Rule (House Rule XXI, Clause 2(b)),” CRS Report R44736 (11-page PDF)
- “Germaneness of Debate in the Senate: The Pastore Rule,” CRS Report R45134 (14-page PDF)
- Congressional Operations Briefing – Capitol Hill Workshop
- Drafting Federal Legislation and Amendments
- Writing for Government and Business: Critical Thinking and Writing
- Custom Training
- Drafting Effective Federal Legislation and Amendments in a Nutshell, Audio Course on CD
- Congress, the Legislative Process, and the Fundamentals of Lawmaking Series, a Nine-Course series on CD
Legislative Drafter’s Deskbook: A Practical Guide
Citizen’s Handbook to Influencing Elected Officials: A Guide for Citizen Lobbyists and Grassroots Advocates
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