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[翻译]U.S. HISTORY - United States Congress Explained

更新时间:2018/11/12 7:24:36 来源:本站原创 作者:佚名

In the United States, voters choose members of Congress every two years. But what is Congress?

美国的选民每两年选一次国会议员。然而国会是什么呢?

Imagine that the U.S. government is a chair with three legs.

假设美国政府是一把三条腿的椅子。

One leg is the executive – the president and all the people who carry out the country’s laws.

一条腿是行政机构,即总统以及所有国家法律的执行者。

Another leg is the judiciary – Supreme Court justices and judges on other federal courts. They decide what the law means.

另一条腿是司法部门,即最高法院和其它联邦法院的法官。他们对法律的意义做出裁决。

And another leg is the legislature – the elected officials who make laws. Another word for the legislature is Congress.

另一条腿是立法机关,即制定法律的民选官员。立法机关的另一个叫法就是国会。

What does Congress do?

国会做什么?

The first article of the U.S. Constitution describes the powers Congress has.

美国宪法第一条表述了国会的权力。

First, Congress makes federal laws. These are laws everyone in the country must follow.

首先,国会负责制定联邦法律,这是全国人民都必须遵守的法律。

Historically, Congress has made laws related to Native Americans, slavery and many other issues. They include immigration, business, banking, health, education, voting, foreign relations, and the environment.

历史上,国会制定了与美洲原住民、奴隶制和其它许多问题有关的法律,它们包括移民、商业、银行业、健康、教育、选举、外交以及环境。

Congress has other important powers, too. It can raise money, spend money, and borrow money. It approves Supreme Court justices. It can impeach and remove a president from office. It also can declare war.

国会还有其它重要权力。它可以筹集资金、消费以及借贷,它负责批准最高法院大法官,它可以弹劾总统并将其撤职,它还可以宣战。

Wait, so what is the Senate? And the ‘House’?

等等,那什么是参议院,什么是众议院?

When they are talking about U.S. lawmakers or lawmaking, Americans sometimes use the term “Congress.” And sometimes they talk about the two parts of Congress: the Senate and the House of Representatives or ‘House,’ for short.

当我们谈到美国国会议员或立法时,美国人有时候会使用国会这个术语,有时候他们会谈到国会的两个部分:参议院和众议院。

Members of the Senate are called senators. Members of the House are called House members, representatives, congressmen or congresswomen.

参议院议员被称之为参议员。众议院议员被称之为众议员。

The Congress has a lot more House members than Senators. That is because voters in each of the 50 states elect only two senators … and as many House members as permitted by law.

国会中的众议员比参议员多很多,这是因为美国50个州中,每个州只能选出两名参议员,以及法律规定数量的众议员。

Under the Constitution, House seats are based on the size of a state’s population. For example, California, the most populous state, has 53 House members. Wyoming, the least populous state, has only one. But both California and Wyoming have two senators.

根据宪法,众议院席位是基于一个州的人口规模。例如,人口最多的加州有53名众议员,而人口最少的怀俄明州只有1名众议员。但是加州和怀俄明州都有两名参议员。

In total, the House has 435 voting members, while the Senate has 100 voting members, for a total of 535 lawmakers. They all meet in the Capitol building in Washington, DC.

众议院有435名议员,而参议院有100名议员,加起来一共有535名议员。他们都在华盛顿特区的国会大厦开会。

When Americans want to block, create or change a law in the U.S., they are often urged to contact their member of Congress. Some Americans also campaign for candidates to be elected to the House or Senate. In general, citizens of other countries are not permitted to donate money to members of Congress or lead campaign efforts.

当美国人想要阻止、制定或改变美国的一项法律,他们通常被要求联系他们的国会议员。一些美国人还为参众两院的候选人举行竞选活动。一般而言,其它国家的公民不得给国会议员捐款或是主持竞选活动。

I’m Kelly Jean Kelly.

Words in This Story

article - n. a separate part of a legal document that deals with a single subject

impeach - v. to charge a public official with a crime done while in office

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