1 (January 29, 2001)

handle is hein.crs/crsmthaagwb0001 and id is 1 raw text is: 
Order Code 98-156 GOV
Updated January 29, 2001

The Presidential Veto and

Congressional Procedure

            Gary L. Galemore
Analyst in American National Government
    Government and Finance Division


     Vetoes cast by the President represent a rejection of the will and intent of the
 majority in Congress as expressed in legislation. Presidential vetoes, and veto overrides,
 are often the reason for, or a reflection of, serious conflict between Congress and the
 President. The threat of a presidential veto can prompt the modification of bills moving
 through the legislative process. When appropriations measures are vetoed and Congress
 and the President cannot come to an agreement, the result can be the closure of federal
 agencies and the shutdown of federal programs and services.
     Historically, 1,484 bills have been vetoed by Presidents, while another 1,066 have
 experienced a pocket veto. Only 7.2%, or 106, of the 1,484 regular vetoes have been
 overridden by Congress. If pocket vetoes are included with regular vetoes, Congress has
 overturned only 4.2% of all presidential vetoes, see CRS Report 98-157, Congressional
 Overrides of Presidential Vetoes, CRS Report 98-148, Presidential Vetoes, 1789-
 Present: A Summary Overview, and CRS Report 98-147, President Clinton's Vetoes.
 All veto reports are updated regularly.

Veto Process

    When presented with legislation passed by both houses of Congress, the President
may sign it into law within the 10-day period prescribed in the Constitution (Article I,
Section 7), let it become law without his signature, or veto the bill. All bills and joint
resolutions, except those proposing amendments to the Constitution, require the
President's approval before they become law. Amendments to the Constitution, which
require a two-thirds vote of approval in each chamber, are sent directly to the states for

    When Congress is in session, the President must exercise his veto within the
prescribed 10-day period and return the rejected bill to Congress with the reasons for his
veto. If the President neither signs nor vetoes legislation sent to him, it will become law

Congressional Research Service  The Library of Congress

CRS Report for Congress

             Received through the CRS Web

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