|Legislatures by country|
A lower house is one of two chambers of a bicameral legislature, the other chamber being the upper house.
Despite its official position "below" the upper house, in many legislatures worldwide, the lower house has come to wield more power. The lower house typically is the larger of the two chambers, i.e. its members are more numerous. A legislature composed of only one house is described as unicameral.
In comparison with the upper house, lower houses frequently display certain characteristics (though they vary per jurisdiction).
The government of the day is usually required to present its budget to the lower house, which must approve the budget. It is a widespread practice for revenue (ie., appropriation) bills to originate in the lower house.
Many lower houses are named in manners such as these:
The Sejm of the Republic of Poland is the lower house of the Polish parliament. It consists of 460 deputies elected by universal ballot and is presided over by a speaker called the "Marshal of the Sejm of the Republic of Poland". In the Kingdom of Poland, "Sejm" referred to the entire two-chamber parliament of Poland, comprising the Chamber of Envoys, the Senate and the King. It was thus a three-estate parliament. Since the Second Polish Republic (1918–1939), "Sejm" has referred only to the larger house of the parliament; the upper house is called the Senat Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej.
A senate is a deliberative assembly, often the upper house or chamber of a bicameral legislature. The name comes from the ancient Roman Senate, so-called as an assembly of the senior and therefore allegedly wiser and more experienced members of the society or ruling class. Thus, the literal meaning of the word "senate" is Assembly of Elders.
A legislature is a deliberative assembly with the authority to make laws for a political entity such as a country or city. Legislatures form important parts of most governments; in the separation of powers model, they are often contrasted with the executive and judicial branches of government.
The Parliament of Canada is the federal legislature of Canada, seated at Parliament Hill in Ottawa, the national capital. The body consists of the Canadian monarch, represented by a viceroy, the Governor General; an upper house, the Senate; and a lower house, the House of Commons. Each element has its own officers and organization. By constitutional convention, the House of Commons is dominant, with the Senate and monarch rarely opposing its will. The Senate reviews legislation from a less partisan standpoint and the monarch or viceroy provides royal assent to make bills into law.
A member of parliament (MP) is the representative of the voters to a parliament. In many countries with bicameral parliaments, this category includes specifically members of the lower house, as upper houses often have a different title. Member of Congress is an equivalent term in other jurisdictions.
A bicameral legislature has legislators in two separate assemblies, chambers, or houses. Bicameralism is distinguished from unicameralism, in which all members deliberate and vote as a single group, and from some legislatures that have three or more separate assemblies, chambers, or houses. As of 2015, fewer than half the world's national legislatures are bicameral.
The Congress of the Philippines is the national legislature of the Philippines. It is a bicameral body consisting of the Senate, and the House of Representatives, although colloquially, the term "congress" commonly refers to just the latter.
The Senate of the Philippines is the upper house of the bicameral legislature of the Philippines, the Congress; the House of Representatives is the lower house. The Senate is composed of 24 senators who are elected at-large with the country as one district under plurality-at-large voting.
Tricameralism is the practice of having three legislative or parliamentary chambers. It is contrasted with unicameralism and bicameralism, both of which are far more common.
The speaker of a deliberative assembly, especially a legislative body, is its presiding officer, or the chair. The title was first used in 1377 in England.
The Connecticut General Assembly (CGA) is the state legislature of the U.S. state of Connecticut. It is a bicameral body composed of the 151-member House of Representatives and the 36-member Senate. It meets in the state capital, Hartford. There are no term limits for either chamber.
The Cortes Generales are the bicameral legislative chambers of Spain, consisting of the Congress of Deputies, and the Senate.
An upper house is one of two chambers of a bicameral legislature, the other chamber being the lower house. The house formally designated as the upper house is usually smaller and often has more restricted power than the lower house. A legislature composed of only one house is described as unicameral.
The Congress of the Dominican Republic is the bicameral legislature of the government of the Dominican Republic, consisting of two houses, the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies. Both senators and deputies are chosen through direct election. There are no term limits for either chamber.
In parliamentary and some semi-presidential systems, a dissolution of parliament is the dispersal of a legislature at the call of an election.
The National Congress of Brazil is the legislative body of Brazil's federal government. Unlike the state Legislative Assemblies and Municipal Chambers, the Congress is bicameral, composed of the Federal Senate and the Chamber of Deputies. The Congress meets annually in Brasília, from 2 February to 27 July and from 1 August to 22 December.
The Legislative Assembly of Puerto Rico is the territorial legislature of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, responsible for the legislative branch of the government of Puerto Rico. The Assembly is a bicameral legislature consisting of an upper house, the Senate normally composed by 27 senators, and the lower house, the House of Representatives normally composed by 51 representatives. Eleven members of each house are elected at-large rather than from a specific legislative district with all members being elected for a four-year term without term limits.
The Italian Parliament is the national parliament of the Italian Republic. It is the representative body of Italian citizens and is the successor to the Parliament of the Kingdom of Sardinia (1848–1861), the Parliament of the Kingdom of Italy (1861–1946), the transitional National Council (1945-1946) and the Constituent Assembly (1946-1948). It is a bicameral legislature with 945 elected members and a small number of unelected members (parlamentari). The Italian Parliament is composed of the Chamber of Deputies and Senate of the Republic. The two Houses are independent from one another and never meet jointly except under circumstances specified by the Constitution of Italy.
The Congress of the Republic of Peru is the unicameral body that assumes legislative power in Peru.
House of Representatives is the name of legislative bodies in many countries and sub-national entitles. In many countries, the House of Representatives is the lower house of a bicameral legislature, with the corresponding upper house often called a "Senate". In some countries, the House of Representatives is the sole chamber of a unicameral legislature.