VI. The Senate

Catechism of the Constitution Book CoverThe Federalist Papers has posted a PDF copy of an Elementary Catechism on the Constitution from 1828 written by Arthur J. Stansbury. I’m publishing it on Mondays in a series of posts. Because the date of publication was 1828, some content has been changed by later Constitutional amendments. There are no sections in the book, so I’m dividing it into any natural breaks of topics and the posts will vary in length. Any emphases within the text are Stansbury’s.

VI. The Senate

Q. Who choose the Members of the Senate of the United States?

A. The Legislature of each State chooses the Senators for that State.

Q. How many Senators may there be?

A. Two from each State.

Q. When a citizen is chosen by the Legislature of his own State to be a Member of the Senate of the United States, how long does he continue such?

A. For six years. If he dies before the expiration of that time, or resigns his office, (that is, if he declares it to be his wish not to be a Senator any longer) another is appointed in his place.

Q. Are all the Senators chosen at the same time as Members of the House of Representatives are?

A. No. Only one third are chosen at once — two years afterward another third is chosen — and two years after that, another third, so that every two years one third part of the Senators go out of office ; but the same persons may again be chosen if the Legislatures who chose them before wish to send them again; if not, they send others in their place.

Q. How old must a person be before he can be chosen a Senator of the United States?

A. Thirty years old.

Q. Can he be chosen if he has not been born in the United States?

A. Yes, if he has become a citizen by being naturalized, and has been a citizen for nine years.

Q. Can a Senator for one State be chosen by the Legislature of another State ?

A. No. The Legislature of each State must choose its own Senators, from persons residing in its own bounds.

Q. Does the Senate choose a Speaker, as the House of Representatives does?

A. No. The person who is chosen by the people to be Vice President, of the United States, is made, by the Constitution, President of the Senate ; his duties are like those of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, except that he is not obliged to keep order in debate. Their other officers are the same in all respects, as those of the House of Representatives, and are chosen by the Senators in the same manner.

In the heading under Charters of Freedom, you will find a copy of the Constitution as well as links to other pertinent primary documents and commentary on the Constitution.

Elementary Catechism on the Constitution posts:
Elementary Catechism on the Constitution (Preface)
I. The Necessity of Government and Its Forms
II. The American Revolution
III. The Occasion and Purpose of the Constitution
IV. State and National Laws
V. The House of Representatives
__________
Book image from The Federalist Papers. Other reading formats of the Elementary Catechism on the Constitution can be found here.

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