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1. He shall take the chair every day precisely at the hour to which the House shall have adjourned on the preceding day; shall immediately call the members to order; and, on the appearance of a quorum, shall cause the journal of the preceding day to be read.- April 7, 1789.

2. He shall preserve order and decorum ;? may speak to points of order in preference to other members, rising from his seat for that purpose ; and shall decide questions of order, subject to an appeal to the House by any two members—April 7, 1789; on which appeal no member shall speak more than once, unless by leave of the House. 3—December 23, 1811.


By rule 22 it is made the duty of to motions or propositions, the applithe Sergeant-at-arms to aid in the cability or relevancy, or their admisenforcement of order, under the direc- sibility on the score of time, or in the tion of the Speaker.

order of business, &c. The “call to 2 See rules 57, 58, 61, 62, and 65, on order,"mentioned in rule 61, on which, the subject of "decorum.'

in case of an appeal, there can be no 3 Difficulties have often arisen as to debate, has reference only to “trans. a supposed discrepancy between the gressions of the rules in speaking,” appeal contemplated in this rule and or to indecorum of any kind. See that referred to in rule 61. There is also rule 133, in which debate on an no discrepancy. The question of order appeal, pending a call for the previous mentioned in the second rule relates question, is prohibited.

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3. He shall rise to put a question, but may state it sitting: April 7, 1789.

4. Questions shall be distinctly put in this form, to wit: "As many as are of opinion that (as the question may be) say Ay;" and after the affirmative voice is expressed, “As many as are of the contrary opinion, say No." If the Speaker doubt, or a division be called for, the House shall divide; those in the affirmative of the question shall first rise from their seats, and afterwards those in the negative. If the Speaker still doubt, or a count be required, by at least one-fifth of a quorum of the members, the Speaker shall name two members, one from each side, to tell the members in the affirmative and negative; which being reported, he shall rise and state the decision to the House.March 16, 1860.

5. The Speaker shall examine and correct the journal before it is read. He shall have a general direction of the Hall, and the unappropriated rooms in that part of the Capitol assigned to the House shall be subject to his order and disposal until the further order of the House. He shall have a right to name any member to perform the duties of the Chair, but such substitution shall not extend beyond an adjournment. - December 23, 1811, and May 26, 1824.

6. No person shall be permitted to perform divine service in the chamber occupied by the House of Representatives, unless with the consent of the Speaker.- May 19, 1804.

7. In all cases of ballot? by the House, the Speaker shall


The manner of dividing the House, House was, on the 9th of June, 1789, as originally established by the rule changed to the present form: the of April 17, 1789, was, that the mem- members of each side of the question bers who voted in the affirmative rising in their seats and being there went to the right of the Chair, those counted. in the negative to the left. This was, The word here used in the origidoubtless, taken from the old practice nal formation of the rule was election. of the House of Commons of Eng- On the 14th of January, 1840, it was land. The passing of the members to changed to the word ballot. Accordand fro across the House was found ing to the practice, however, this rule so inconvenient, and took up so much is held to apply to all cases of electime, that the mode of dividing the tion.

vote; in other cases he shall not be required to vote, unless the House be equally divided, or unless his vote, if given to the minority, will make the division equal; and in case of such equal division, the question shall be lost. - April 7, 1789.?

8. All acts, addresses, and joint resolutions, shall be signed by the Speaker; and all writs, warrants, and subpoenas, issued by order of the House, shall be under his hand and seal, attested by the Clerk.—November 13, 1794.

9. In case of any disturbance or disorderly conduct in the galleries or lobby, the Speaker (or chairman of the Committee of the Whole House) shall have power to order the same to be cleared. - March 14, 1794.


10. There shall be elected at the commencement of each Congress, to continue in office until their successors are appointed, a Clerk, Sergeant-at-arms, Doorkeeper, and Postmaster, each of whom shall take an oath for the true and faithful discharge of the duties of his office, to the best of his knowledge and abilities, and to keep the secrets of the House; and the appointees of the Doorkeeper and Postmaster shall be subject to the approval of the Speaker; and, in all cases of election by the House of its officers, the vote shall be taken vivâ voce.March 16, 1860.3

i On a very important question, then existed, claimed and obtained taken December 9, 1803, on an amend- his right to vote, and voted in the ment to the Constitution, so as to affirmative; and it was by that vote change the form of voting for Presi. that the amendment to the Constitudent and Vice-President, which re- tion was carried. The right of the quired a vote of two-thirds, there Speaker, as a member of the House, appeared eighty-three in the affirma- to vote on all questions is secured by tive, and forty-two in the negative; the Constitution. No act of the it wanted one vote in the affirmative House can take it from him when he to make the constitutional majority. chooses to exercise it. The Speaker (Macon), notwithstand- Cong. Globe I. 38. 625. ing a prohibition in the rule as it 3 Until the adoption of this rule


11. In all cases where other than members of the House may be eligible to an office by the election of the House, there shall be a previous nomination.- April 7, 1789.

12. In all other cases of ballot than for committees, a majority of the votes given shall be necessary to an election; and where there shall not be such a majority on the first ballot, the ballots shall be repeated until a majority be obtained.-- April 7, 1789. And in all ballotings blanks shall be rejected, and not taken into the count in enumeration of votes, or reported by the tellers.September 15, 1837.

13. It shall be the duty of the Clerk to make, and cause to be printed, and delivered to each member, at the commencement of every session of Congress, a list of the reports which it is the duty of any officer or department of the government to make to Congress; referring to the act or resolution, and page of the volume of the laws or journal in which it may be contained; and placing under the name of each officer the list of reports required of him to be made, and the time when the report may be expected.- March 13, 1822.

14. It shall be the duty of the Clerk of the House, at the end of each session, to send a printed copy of the journals

there was no law, resolution, rule, or Constitution, a room was set apart in order directing the appointment of the Capitol for the reception and disthe Clerk of the House. On the 1st tribution of letters and packets to and of April, 1789, being the first day that from members of the House, without a quorum of the House asseinbled an order for that purpose, and was under the new Constitution, the House called the post-office; it was superioimmediately elected a Clerk by ballot, tended by the Doorkeeper and bis aswithout a previous order having been sistants. On the 9th of April, 1814, passed for that purpose ; although in a special allowance was made to the the case of a Speaker who was chosen Doorkeeper to meet the expenses of on the same day, an order was pre- this office, and he was authorized to viously adopted. A Clerk has been appoint a Postmaster. The office conregularly chosen at the commence- tinued on this footing till April 4, ment of every Congress since. By 1838, when an order was passed for the rules adopted in 1789, provision the appointment of a Postmaster by was made for the appointment of a the House itself. The provision for Sergeant-at-arms and Doorkeeper. the election of all the officers of the Immediately after the organization House by a virâ voce vote was adopted of the government under the present December 10, 1839.

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