House Rule IV - The hall of the House

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Contents

Rule for the 111th Congress

Use and admittance

1. The Hall of the House shall be used only for the legislative business of the House and for caucus and conference meetings of its Members, except when the House agrees to take part in any ceremonies to be observed therein. The Speaker may not entertain a motion for the suspension of this clause. 2.

(a) Only the following persons shall be admitted to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto:
(1) Members of Congress, Members- elect, and contestants in election cases during the pendency of their cases on the floor.
(2) The Delegates and the Resident Commissioner.
(3) The President and Vice President of the United States and their private secretaries.
(4) Justices of the Supreme Court.
(5) Elected officers and minority employees nominated as elected officers of the House.
(6) The Parliamentarian.
(7) Staff of committees when business from their committee is under consideration, and staff of the respective party leaderships when so assigned with the approval of the Speaker.
(8) Not more than one person from the staff of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner when that Member, Delegate, or Resident Com- missioner has an amendment under consideration (subject to clause 5).
(9) The Architect of the Capitol.
(10) The Librarian of Congress and the assistant in charge of the Law Library.
(11) The Secretary and Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate.
(12) Heads of departments.
(13) Foreign ministers.
(14) Governors of States.
(15) Former Members, Delegates, and Resident Commissioners; former Parliamentarians of the House; and former elected officers and minority employees nominated as elected officers of the House (subject to clause 4).
(16) One attorney to accompany a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who is the respondent in an investigation undertaken by the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct when a recommendation of that committee is under consideration in the House.
(17) Such persons as have, by name, received the thanks of Congress.
(b) The Speaker may not entertain a unanimous consent request or a motion to suspend this clause.

3.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), all persons not entitled to the privilege of the floor during the session shall be excluded at all times from the Hall of the House and the cloakrooms.
(b)Until 15 minutes of the hour of the meeting of the House, persons em- ployed in its service, accredited members of the press entitled to admission to the press gallery, and other persons on request of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner by card or in writing, may be admitted to the Hall of the House.

4.

(a)A former Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner; a former Parliamentarian of the House; or a former elected officer of the House or former minority employee nominated as an elected officer of the House shall not be entitled to the privilege of admission to the Hall of the House and rooms leading thereto if such individual--
(1) is a registered lobbyist or agent of a foreign principal as those terms are defined in clause 5 of rule XXV;
(2) has any direct personal or pecuniary interest in any legislative measure pending before the House or reported by a committee; or
(3) is in the employ of or represents any party or organization for the purpose of influencing, directly or indirectly, the passage, defeat, or amendment of any legislative proposal.
(b) The Speaker may promulgate regulations to carry out this rule including regulations that exempt ceremonial or educational functions from the restrictions of this clause.

5. A person from the staff of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner may be admitted to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto under clause 2 only upon prior notice to the Speaker. Such persons, and persons from the staff of committees admitted under clause 2, may not engage in efforts in the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto to influence Members with regard to the legislation being amended. Such persons shall remain at the desk and are admitted only to advise the Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, or committee responsible for their admission. A person who violates this clause may be excluded during the session from the Hall of the House and rooms leading thereto by the Speaker.

Gallery

6. (a) The Speaker shall set aside a portion of the west gallery for the use of the President, the members of the Cabinet, justices of the Supreme Court, foreign ministers and suites, and the members of their respective families. The Speaker shall set aside another portion of the same gallery for the accommodation of persons to be admitted on the cards of Members, Delegates, or the Resident Commissioner.

(b) The Speaker shall set aside the southerly half of the east gallery for the use of the families of Members of Congress. The Speaker shall control one bench. On the request of a Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, or Senator, the Speaker shall issue a card of admission to the family of such individual, which may include their visitors. No other person shall be admitted to this section.

Prohibition on campaign contributions

7. A Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, officer, or employee of the House, or any other person entitled to admission to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto by this rule, may not knowingly distribute a political campaign contribution in the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto.

Changes to rule in the 110th Congress

There were no changes to the rule in the 110th Congress.

Rule for the 110th Congress

Use and admittance

1. The Hall of the House shall be used only for the legislative business of the House and for caucus and conference meetings of its Members, except when the House agrees to take part in any ceremonies to be observed therein. The Speaker may not entertain a motion for the suspension of this clause. 2. (a) Only the following persons shall be admitted to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto:

(1) Members of Congress, Members-elect, and contestants in election cases during the pendency of their cases on the floor.
(2) The Delegates and the Resident Commissioner.
(3) The President and Vice President of the United States and their private secretaries.
(4) Justices of the Supreme Court.
(5) Elected officers and minority employees nominated as elected officers of the House.
(6) The Parliamentarian.
(7) Staff of committees when business from their committee is under consideration, and staff of the respective party leaderships when so assigned with the approval of the Speaker.
(8) Not more than one person from the staff of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner when that Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner has an amendment under consideration (subject to clause 5).
(9) The Architect of the Capitol.
(10) The Librarian of Congress and the assistant in charge of the Law Library.
(11) The Secretary and Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate.
(12) Heads of departments.
(13) Foreign ministers.
(14) Governors of States.
(15) Former Members, Delegates, and Resident Commissioners; former Parliamentarians of the House; and former elected officers and minority employees nominated as elected officers of the House (subject to clause 4).
(16) One attorney to accompany a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who is the respondent in an investigation undertaken by the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct when a recommendation of that committee is under consideration in the House.
(17) Such persons as have, by name, received the thanks of Congress.
(b) The Speaker may not entertain a unanimous consent request or a motion to suspend this clause.

3. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), all persons not entitled to the privilege of the floor during the session shall be excluded at all times from the Hall of the House and the cloakrooms.

(b) Until 15 minutes of the hour of the meeting of the House, persons employed in its service, accredited members of the press entitled to admission to the press gallery, and other persons on request of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner by card or in writing, may be admitted to the Hall of the House.

4. (a) A former Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner; a former Parliamentarian of the House; or a former elected officer of the House or former minority employee nominated as an elected officer of the House shall not be entitled to the privilege of admission to the Hall of the House and rooms leading thereto if he or she—

(1) is a registered lobbyist or agent of a foreign principal as those terms are defined in clause 5 of rule XXV;
(2) has any direct personal or pecuniary interest in any legislative measure pending before the House or reported by a committee; or
(3) is in the employ of or represents any party or organization for the purpose of influencing, directly or indirectly, the passage, defeat, or amendment of any legislative proposal.
(b) The Speaker may promulgate regulations that exempt ceremonial or educational functions from the restrictions of this clause.

5. A person from the staff of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner may be admitted to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto under clause 2 only upon prior notice to the Speaker. Such persons, and persons from the staff of committees admitted under clause 2, may not engage in efforts in the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto to influence Members with regard to the legislation being amended. Such persons shall remain at the desk and are admitted only to advise the Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, or committee responsible for their admission. A person who violates this clause may be excluded during the session from the Hall of the House and rooms leading thereto by the Speaker.

Gallery

6. (a) The Speaker shall set aside a portion of the west gallery for the use of the President, the members of the Cabinet, justices of the Supreme Court, foreign ministers and suites, and the members of their respective families. The Speaker shall set aside another portion of the same gallery for the accommodation of persons to be admitted on the cards of Members, Delegates, or the Resident Commissioner.

(b) The Speaker shall set aside the southerly half of the east gallery for the use of the families of Members of Congress. The Speaker shall control one bench. On the request of a Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, or Senator, the Speaker shall issue a card of admission to his family, which may include their visitors. No other person shall be admitted to this section.

Prohibition on campaign contributions

7. A Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, officer, or employee of the House, or any other person entitled to admission to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto by this rule, may not knowingly distribute a political campaign contribution in the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto.

Rule for the 109th Congress

Use and admittance

1. The Hall of the House shall be used only for the legislative business of the House and for caucus and conference meetings of its Members, except when the House agrees to take part in any ceremonies to be observed therein. The Speaker may not entertain a motion for the suspension of this clause.

2. (a) Only the following persons shall be admitted to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto:

(1) Members of Congress, Members-elect, and contestants in election cases during the pendency of their cases on the floor.
(2) The Delegates and the Resident Commissioner.
(3) The President and Vice President of the United States and their private secretaries.
(4) Justices of the Supreme Court.
(5) Elected officers and minority employees nominated as elected officers of the House.
(6) The Parliamentarian.
(7) Staff of committees when business from their committee is under consideration, and staff of the respective party leaderships when so assigned with the approval of the Speaker.
(8) Not more than one person from the staff of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner when that Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner has an amendment under consideration (subject to clause 5).
(9) The Architect of the Capitol.
(10) The Librarian of Congress and the assistant in charge of the Law Library.
(11) The Secretary and Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate.
(12) Heads of departments.
(13) Foreign ministers.
(14) Governors of States.
(15) Former Members, Delegates, and Resident Commissioners; former Parliamentarians of the House; and former elected officers and minority employees nominated as elected officers of the House (subject to clause 4).
(16) One attorney to accompany a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner who is the respondent in an investigation undertaken by the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct when a recommendation of that committee is under consideration in the House.
(17) Such persons as have, by name, received the thanks of Congress.
(b) The Speaker may not entertain a unanimous consent request or a motion to suspend this clause.

3. (a) Except as provided in paragraph (b), all persons not entitled to the privilege of the floor during the session shall be excluded at all times from the Hall of the House and the cloakrooms.

(b) Until 15 minutes of the hour of the meeting of the House, persons employed in its service, accredited members of the press entitled to admission to the press gallery, and other persons on request of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner by card or in writing, may be admitted to the Hall of the House.

4. (a) Former Members, Delegates, and Resident Commissioners; former Parliamentarians of the House; and former elected officers and minority employees nominated as elected officers of the House shall be entitled to the privilege of admission to the Hall of the House and rooms leading thereto only if:

(1) they do not have any direct personal or pecuniary interest in any legislative measure pending before the House or reported by a committee; and
(2) they are not in the employ of, or do not represent, any party or organization for the purpose of influencing, directly or indirectly, the passage, defeat, or amendment of any legislative measure pending before the House, reported by a committee, or under consideration in any of its committees or subcommittees.
(b) The Speaker shall promulgate such regulations as may be necessary to implement this rule and to ensure its enforcement.

5. A person from the staff of a Member, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner may be admitted to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto under clause 2 only upon prior notice to the Speaker. Such persons, and persons from the staff of committees admitted under clause 2, may not engage in efforts in the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto to influence Members with regard to the legislation being amended. Such persons shall remain at the desk and are admitted only to advise the Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, or committee responsible for their admission. A person who violates this clause may be excluded during the session from the Hall of the House and rooms leading thereto by the Speaker.

Gallery

6. (a) The Speaker shall set aside a portion of the west gallery for the use of the President, the members of the Cabinet, justices of the Supreme Court, foreign ministers and suites, and the members of their respective families. The Speaker shall set aside another portion of the same gallery for the accommodation of persons to be admitted on the cards of Members, Delegates, or the Resident Commissioner.

(b) The Speaker shall set aside the southerly half of the east gallery for the use of the families of Members of Congress. The Speaker shall control one bench. On the request of a Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, or Senator, the Speaker shall issue a card of admission to his family, which may include their visitors. No other person shall be admitted to this section.

Prohibition on campaign contributions

7. A Member, Delegate, Resident Commissioner, officer, or employee of the House, or any other person entitled to admission to the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto by this rule, may not knowingly distribute a political campaign contribution in the Hall of the House or rooms leading thereto.

Articles and Resources

References

Note: Updates to the rules for the 110th Congress were obtained by Congresspedia staff from House Rules Committee staff. The full source is available upon request.

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