In the Texas Special Report, students learned about the history and evolution of the Texas State government, including the executive, legislative, and judicial branches; the various forms of local government; and political parties and elections in Texas. The legislative branch is responsible for making laws for the state, approving appointments made by the governor, and working with the governor to establish the state budget. In this activity students will take a closer look at the composition and duties of the Texas legislature.
In this activity students will visit the official Web site of the Texas Legislature to learn more about this branch of government. After reading information and answering questions about the speaker of the house, lieutenant governor, and legislative process, students will
- Students will be able to analyze the structure and functions of the legislative branch of the Texas State government.
- Students will be able to evaluate the legislative process by using data from a chart.
Student Web Activity Answers
- As of April 2002, the speaker of the house is James E. "Pete" Laney. The speaker maintains order during floor debate, recognizing legislators who wish to speak and ruling on procedural matters. The speaker also signs all bills and joint resolutions passed by the legislature and may vote on all questions before the house. The other duties and responsibilities of the speaker are determined by the members of the house in the House Rules of Procedure, which are adopted by a majority vote of the members at the beginning of each regular session of the legislature.
- As of April 2002, the lieutenant governor is Bill Ratliff. This office is unique in that the person holding it is part of both the executive and legislative branches.
- After a bill is enrolled, it is signed by the speaker in the presence of the house and by the lieutenant governor in the presence of the senate.
- If the governor vetoes a bill, the veto may be overridden by a two-thirds vote of the house and senate, or the bill simply does not become law.
- Students' vitae may vary.
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