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Arizona State Government Essay

806 words - 3 pages

The legislation of the state of Arizona is bicameral, with a Senate and a House of Representatives. Each Senator and Representative is elected for a two year term. There is a limitation of four consecutive terms. After serving four terms, they must be out of office for one term before they can be reelected to that office. There are certain qualifications to become a legislator. Those seeking office in the state Senate or House of Representatives must be at least 25 years of age, be a United States citizen, reside in the state for three years prior, and live in the county for one year prior to election. The job of a legislator in Arizona is part time, due to the limited time of the regular session. Their salaries, currently at $24,000 per year, are set by public vote. There are several exemptions and special privileges that legislators have when the legislature is in session. The first of these is that they cannot be arrested except if in felony cases, treason, or violation of peace. They are also exempt from being sued on a civil level during the session or fifteen days before the session starts. They also are able to speak freely on the floor of the Senate or House, leaving them free from civil lawsuits involving libel or slander. They are, however, expected to follow the rules of each house, and are subject to punishment for disorderly conduct, or can be removed from chambers if deemed necessary.
How the legislature is organized is very important to the actual processes of making laws. Seniority is not important at the state level, but the division of power between majority and minority parties is. The speaker of the House is the presiding officer, and is chosen by vote of the whole House. In reality, it is the majority party caucus that, by agreeing who they will support as Speaker of the House, who actually chooses the speaker. The majority leader and the assistant floor leader are chosen by the majority party as well. The speaker of the House is important in the organization of the House, because they choose committee chairmanships and committee assignments. The president of the Senate is chosen by the majority party. Like the House, they appoint committee chairmanships and committee assignments. The minority party is not left...

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