The Two Houses of Congress Congress is divided into two chambers, the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Senate is sometimes called the upper chamber and the House the lower chamber because the Founders thought that different sorts of people would be elected to these two bodies. House members face elections every two years in smaller districts, so the Founders thought that representatives would be closer to the people. In contrast, Senators were originally chosen by state legislatures, and with elections every six years and steeper eligibility requirements, the Founders believed that the Senate would serve as a voice for the nation's wealthy and established interests. To a certain extent, the Founders correctly predicted differences between the two chambers. The Senate is more deliberative, with strict rules to encourage debate, and it follows decorous norms of
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Speaker Newt Gingrich, bodies. House members, steeper eligibility requirements