National Congress of Brazil

National Congress

Congresso Nacional
56th Legislature of the National Congress
Logo do Congresso Nacional.png
HousesFederal Senate
Chamber of Deputies
Founded6 May 1826 (1826-05-06)
New session started
2 February 2022 (2022-02-02)
Rodrigo Pacheco, PSD
since 1 February 2021
Arthur Lira, PP
since 1 February 2021
Government Leader
Eduardo Gomes, PL
since 17 October 2019
Majority Leader
Aguinaldo Ribeiro, PP
since 30 March 2021
Minority Leader
Afonso Florence, PT
since 17 March 2022
Seats594 members:
81 Senators
513 Federal Deputies
Federal Senate political groups
  •   MDB (13)
  •   PSD (11)
  •   PODE (8)
  •   Always Forward (7)
  •   PL (7)
  •   PP (7)
  •   PT (7)
  •   UNIÃO (7)
  •   PDT (3)
  •   PROS (2)
  •   PSB (2)
  •   PTB (2)
  •   Avante (1)
  •   No party (1)
  •   PSC (1)
  •   REDE (1)
  •   Republicanos (1)
Chamber of Deputies political groups
Federal Senate voting system
Plurality voting, alternating every four years between single-member elections (FPTP) and dual-member elections (Block voting)
Chamber of Deputies voting system
Open list proportional representation (D'Hondt method) with a 2% election threshold[1]
Last general election
2 October 2022
Next general election
4 October 2026
Meeting place
Brasilia Congresso Nacional 05 2007 221.jpg
Nereu Ramos Palace
Brasília, Federal District, Brazil
Federal Senate
Chamber of Deputies

The National Congress of Brazil (Portuguese: Congresso Nacional do Brasil) is the legislative body of Brazil's federal government. Unlike the state legislative assemblies and municipal chambers, the Congress is bicameral, composed of the Federal Senate (the upper house) and the Chamber of Deputies (the lower house). The Congress meets annually in Brasília from 2 February to 22 December, with a mid-term break taking place between 17 July and 1 August.[2][3]

The Senate represents the 26 states and the Federal District. Each state and the Federal District has a representation of three senators, who are elected by popular ballot for a term of eight years. Every four years, renewal of either one third or two-thirds of the Senate (and of the delegations of the States and the Federal District) takes place.[citation needed] The Chamber of Deputies represents the people of each state, and its members are elected for a four-year term by a system of proportional representation. Seats are allotted proportionally according to each state's population, with each state eligible for a minimum of 8 seats (least populous) and a maximum of 70 seats (most populous). Unlike the Senate, the whole of the Chamber of Deputies is renewed every four years.[citation needed]

Until recently it was common for politicians to switch parties and the proportion of congressional seats held by each party would often change. However, a decision of the Supreme Federal Court has ruled that the seats belong to the parties and not to the politicians; one can only change parties and retain his seat in a very limited set of cases. Consequently, politicians who abandon the party for which they were elected now face the loss of their congressional seat.[citation needed] Each house of the Brazilian Congress elects its president and the other members of its directing board from among its members.[citation needed] The President of the Senate is ex officio the President of the National Congress, and in that capacity summons and presides over joint sessions, as well as over the joint services of both houses. The President of the Chamber is second in the presidential line of succession while the President of the Senate (and of Congress) is third.

  1. ^ "Com dura cláusula de barreira, metade das siglas corre risco de acabar". O Tempo (in Brazilian Portuguese). 12 July 2021. Retrieved 9 November 2021.
  2. ^ "Brazil - The legislature". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2020-01-09.
  3. ^ "The National Congress". Portal da Câmara dos Deputados (in Brazilian Portuguese). Retrieved 2020-01-09.

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