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Committee Assignments

Committees are like "mini Congresses". Most bills begin by being considered by one or several congressional committees which may "report" the bill favorably or unfavorably to the Senate or House as a whole allowing it to receive consideration by the full body and move forward, or may fail to consider a bill at all preventing the bill from moving forward. Most bills never receive any committee consideration and are never reported out. House bills start in House committees and enter Senate committees only after being passed by the House and received by the Senate, and similarly for Senate bills.

Information on committee proceedings is notoriously opaque: committees vary in what information they make public and often do not provide basic public information such as the results of votes electronically or in an understandable format. Furthermore, if your Member of Congress does not sit on any committee relevant to this bill, you generally have no opportunity to voice your opinion on the bill while the bill is receiving its most important consideration.