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Home > History > House of Representatives - U.S. Government Series

House of Representatives - U.S. Government Series

This page tells all about the House of Representatives. It is part of our United States Government series.
House of Representatives

How many Representatives Are There?

The U.S. House of Representatives is one of the two houses of Congress. Unlike the Senate, a state’s number of representatives is based on its population. States with large populations have more representatives than states with small populations. The state of California, America ’s most populous state, currently has 55 representatives. There are 435 total representatives and each serves a two-year term.

Works in Committees

Like the Senate, the House of Representatives performs much of its legislative work in committees. The House of Representatives has 20 standing committees. Much like the Senate committees, these committees meet to review, amend, edit, and consider bills specific to a certain jurisdictions such as agriculture, revenue, or foreign relations.

Speaker of the House and Requirements of Representatives

The top officer of the House of Representatives is referred to as the Speaker of the House. He or she is elected by other members of the House and has substantial powers including: Choosing the order in which other representatives speak, choosing members of conference committees, and choosing which committees reviews specific bills. Representatives must be 25 years old, a U.S. citizen for seven years, and a resident of the state they wish to represent.

Exclusive Powers of the House of Representatives

Much like the Senate, the House of Representatives has exclusive powers including the right to impeach (an impeachment is a legal statement of charges against an official. The Senate only has the power to try impeachment), to initiate revenue bills (those involving money), and to elect the president in the case of an electoral tie.

United States Government Navigation

Executive Branch


Legislative Branch

House of Representatives

Judicial Branch

Supreme Court
U.S. Court of Appeals
U.S. District Courts

Executive Department Heads

Secretary of Agriculture
Secretary of Commerce
Secretary of Defense
Secretary of Education
Secretary of Energy
Secretary of Health and Human Services
Secretary of Homeland Security
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
Secretary of the Interior
Attorney General
Secretary of Labor
Secretary of State
Secretary of Transportation
Secretary of the Treasury
Secretary of Veterans Affairs

Government Structure


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