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Origins & Development

The framers of the United States Constitution deliberated at length over the Senate's role in the new federal government. Since that time, the Senate has evolved into a complex legislative body, while remaining true to its constitutional origins. This section provides historical essays describing the Senate's institutional developments including establishing direct election of senators, its constitutional powers such as the sole power to try impeachments, and many other unique elements that define the modern Senate.

 
  

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Information provided by the Senate Historical Office.

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