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The Legislative Process

Civics 101 in 120 Seconds (ish) – The Legislative Process (2 min)

Civics 101 in 120 Seconds (ish) is your straightforward guide through the often confounding legislative process.


The Legislative Process is a series of steps that bills must go through to be enacted. Each step must be completed in a certain period of time.

The Legislature is split into 2 chambers (Senate & House)

In order to become law the exact same bill must pass both chambers in the exact same form (no changes) in the exact same session.

This allows more elected officials to “perfect” a bill before it is passed

The basic steps are:

Policy Committee

Fiscal Committee

Floor Debate

Then pass over to the other chamber to start again

If the bill passes through the second chamber unchanged it goes to the Governor’s desk who can sign it, veto it, or do nothing and allow it to pass into law without signature.

Teach with TVW is a free online resource provided by TVW for Washington state social studies teachers to engage their students in state government and help to inspire active citizens.

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