House of Representatives
The House of
Representatives was established as a result of the Great Compromise.
The House is larger than the Senate.
gave Congress the power to determine the size of the House and to
divide representation according to state population. States with
large populations have more representatives than small states.
provided for at least one representative for each state. Originally,
there was one representative for every 30,000 people. Today, there
is one representative per several hundred thousand people. There
are six states with just one representative per state. They are
Alaska, Delaware, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, and Wyoming.
California has the most representatives, a total of 53.
U.S. territories (American
Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands) and the District
of Columbia have more limited representation.
requires a census to be taken every 10 years. If a state's population
increases, that state's number of representatives can increase too.
There were 59 members at the first session of the House of Representatives.
Today there are 435 members. Representatives are elected to serve
for a period of 2 years.
Only the House
can introduce spending bills.
states the qualifications for being a Representative. To be a Representative
a person must be at least 25 years old, a U.S. citizen for at least
7 years, and when elected, must be an inhabitant of that state in
which he shall be chosen.