Cloture: A Senate procedure for
cutting off debate during a filibuster. It requires three-fifths
of the senators present and voting to approve the cloture motion.
Committee of the Whole: The
shorthand name for the "Committee of the Whole House for
the State of the Union," comprised of any 100 or more House
members desiring to stay on the floor to debate a measure.
Filibuster: The use of time-consuming
speeches and other parliamentary tactics to slow down the legislative
process and force compromises. The Senate rule of unlimited
debate facilitates filibusters. Filibusters can be thwarted
by extraordinary majorities (see "cloture" above).
Germaneness: Relevant to the issue
Legislative Intent: When applying
and reviewing laws passed by Congress, the bureaucracy and the
courts consider the goals expressed for the legislation during
debate and attempt to make sure the law is carried out consistent
with the purposes members of Congress expressed.
Precedents: Widely accepted
rulings of the presiding officer based on custom and the spirit
of chamber rules.
Recognition: Being called
on to speak by the presiding officer in a chamber. In the Senate,
the presiding officer must recognize the first senator requesting
it. When more than one senator desires recognition, the presiding
officer makes the choice.