1. The use of the plural "processes" is intentional.
The legislative process is complex and intentionally redundant
with multiple players having to make decisions in parallel fashion.
It is inherently a set of political processes in which individuals
seek to gain support for policy preferences whose value generally
cannot be proven, only asserted. Persistence and hard work by
committed politicians are required to steer legislation through
the formal stages in the process when possible, and when not,
to use alternative routes when available. It is no wonder that
it is easier to block legislation than pass it.
[Visual: Initial bill becomes a law
process, duplicated for the Senate and alternative routes included.]
2. Not all legislation results in the expected consequences.
Unintended consequences often take the form of a new problem,
which serves as the basis for a new legislative initiative.
[Visual: (to side)]
3. YOU AND THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS
There is a temptation to see congressional action as something
done at a far distant place. Democracy, though, requires active
citizens who help select representatives through elections, who
make suggestions about possible policy problems, and who monitor
their legislators' actions. Knowing more about how a bill becomes
a law will empower you in these tasks.