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How Are States Represented in the House of Representatives

 
By Mary Smith. Updated: January 16, 2017
How Are States Represented in the House of Representatives

The House of representatives, located in Washington DC, is one of the chambers that forms the U.S Congress and is a part of the legislative power of the government. In this chamber, congressmen and congresswomen from all of the United States' 50 states represent their people.

This is the place where the most local issues are debated, this is why it's important to know how the House of Representatives is representing your state and understand how the chamber works. So how are states represented in the house of representatives? Keep on reading this OneHowTo article and find out.

The House of Representatives

As we've mentioned above, the House of Representatives is one of the two chambers that forms the Senate of the United States, as does the U.S Senate. The House has the power of passing federal legislation that can affect all of the country, though the Senate must then approve them.

So what is the difference between these two chambers? Article one of the Constitution states that it is the House of Representatives that can initiate bills, impeaching and choosing a president, whereas the Senate has the power to approve treaties.

The House of representatives has a total of 435 congressmen and congresswomen, and all of them will represent their district for two years, being re-elected every even-numbered year.

How Are States Represented in the House of Representatives - The House of Representatives

How are they represented?

Though the system has changes throughout the years of the USA, nowadays States are represented in the House of Representatives according to the population in each of the 50 states and distributed among all 435 seats.

Every ten years, the census from each state determines the amount of representatives each state is given. However, in order to balance smaller states with more populated states, each state is given at least one representative, no matter what their current population is.

Those states that have more than one congressperson are usually divided into districts, which can be changed after every census.

The States that only have one representative in 2016 are:

  • Alaska
  • South Dakota
  • Vermont
  • Delaware
  • Montana
  • North Dakota
  • Wyoming

However, there are also districts that have members that can only have a voice and vote in a committee and not in votes held in the House. These are:

  • District of Columbia
  • Guam
  • American Samoa
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • U.S Virgin Islands

Puerto Rico is appointed commissioner and has the same powers as the delegates mentioned above.

How to be a member of the House of Representatives

The first step in order to run for House of Representatives congressmen or congresswoman is to present a nomination at one of the District's parties' partisan primary elections. Once the candidate is chosen, he or she will then run for congressmen representing his or her State or district in the Federal Elections, which are held every two years and are also known as Midterm elections.

In order to be an eligible candidate, a representative must fulfill these requirements:

  • Be at least 25 years old
  • Must have been a citizen of the USA for at least 7 years
How Are States Represented in the House of Representatives - How to be a member of the House of Representatives

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