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Watch the real U.S. Senate conduct its business. The daily floor activities of both chambers of Congress – the Senate and the House – are recorded, broadcast live and archived. Go to and click on “Floor Webcast” where you can review current and past recordings and daily summaries.

Specifically, view these daily hearings:
• Rand Paul’s 13 hour filibuster against drone attacks March 6, 2013
• Unanimous passage of human trafficking bill April 22, 2015
• James Inhofe on climate change February 26, 2015
• Confirmation hearings for Attorney General February 7, 2017
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• Democrats hold sit-in on gun reform in House of Representatives June 22, 2016
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• Robert Byrd’s speeches examining the Roman Republic and the intent of the U.S. founding fathers. He did 14 hour-long speeches, you can focus on the first and last. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hbIWLYiU6gg and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J-HQ_I0ET_0
Watch these Senate (and 1 House of Representatives) hearings. Diary the procedures and activities of Congress. How do they proceed on a daily basis? No, you do not have to watch every minute – especially not the 13 hour filibuster! But watch enough to absorb and provide in your diary specific examples of Senatorial order (and dis-order) and the ways in which members of Congress use their power of speech as part of their legislative process.

Consider especially the speeches of Paul, Inhofe, Warren and Byrd. What are they presenting these speeches for? As part of what legislative purpose? How are debated or opposing view-points presented? How are they suppressed?

If you need to get a basic understanding of U.S. Senate composition, organization and procedures, you may reference its Wikipedia page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Senate

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Last Updated on March 1, 2021