The Constitution organized Congress into two houses (cham-bers): the
Senate, or upper house, and the House of Representatives, the lower house.
The Congress consists of 540 Members: 100 Senators, elected for 6-year
terms; 435 Representatives, elected for 2-year terms; and five Delegates,
non-voting Members of the House: American Samoa, District of Columbia,
Guam, and U. S. Virgin Islands, for 2-year terms; and Puerto Rico, a 4-year
What are the qualifications for being a Member of Congress? Few. The
Constitution requires: age - 25 to hold office in the House, 30 in the
Senate; citizenship - at least 7 years in the House, 9 in the Senate;
residency - must be a resident of state from which elected. No skills,
no expertise are required. Voter satisfaction is the test of ability.
The Congress is housed in 16 buildings on Capitol Hill. The elected
leadership receives a slightly higher salary. All Members receive numerous
allowances to hire staff, for travel, mail-ings,