Difference Between Senator and Congressman

Main Difference

The main difference between senator and congressman is that the term senator refers to someone who is a part of the U.S. Senate whereas the term congressman refers to any member of the U.S. Congress that is composed of Senate and House of Representative.

Senator vs. Congressman

Politicians are all the same. But they are different from each other based on the job they do. There is often much confusion surrounding the terms senator and congressman within the context of the multifaceted and multilayered American government. It is important to understand the relationship between these two terms to understand their differences. The term senator refers to someone who is a part of the U.S. Senate. The term congressman refers to any member of the U.S. Congress that is composed of Senate and House of Representative. In reality, a senator is a congressman, but not a congressman is a senator. A congressman (congressperson or congresswoman) is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives. Congress directs both the Senate and the House of Representatives. A senator is the member of the legislative branch. A congressman is any member of either the House of Representatives or the Senate. The job of senators is to represent the people living in their state or to assist the President in foreign policy. For example, individuals can contact their state senator to support a bill which aims to reduce poverty. These bills are passed by the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives (later signed by the president to become law). Among other duties, senators have the power to reject or ratify the treaties and initiatives of the President and to confirm the President’s nominees for Federal Judges, Ambassadors, and Cabinet Members. The job of a congressman is to deal with foreign policy or legislative issues, depending on their part of the chamber.

Comparison Chart

SenatorCongressman
A member of one chamber (the Senate) of the US CongressMember of either one of the two US Congress chambers (House of Representatives or Senate)
Number in US Congress
100435 (100 senators, 335 elected representatives
Age Limit for Nominees
Over 30Over 25 and 30
Serve Terms
Six yearssix years (for Senate), two years (for the House of Representatives)
US Citizenship
For at least nine yearsfor at least seven years and nine years

What is Senator?

A senate is the smaller of the two chambers that make up the US Congress. A senator is a member of Senate which is the smaller and more aristocratic of the two chambers. It is composed of 100 senators and has various roles. Each of the 50 states has a right to send two senators, regardless of their size or number of population. The main task of the senators is to assist the President in foreign policy like analysis of treaties, initiation, and ending of wars, etc. Senators have the power to reject or ratify the treaties and initiatives of the President and to confirm the President’s nominees for Federal Judges, Ambassadors, and Cabinet Members. With a 2/3 vote, senators have the power to ratify or reject treaties approved by the President. Each state must send not more than two senators to Washington. When it comes to elected representatives, the number of senators depends on the size of the state’s population. Moreover, the Article 1, Section 3 of the U.S. Constitution states that the Senate of the United States should be composed of two Senators from each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof; and each Senator should have one Vote. The constitution further states that senate nominees should be at least 30 years old and at least seven to nine-year citizens of the United States. The duration of a senator lasts six years.

What is Congressman?

A congressman is one of the total of 435 members of the US Congress. US Congress includes the Senate and the House of Representatives. Congressmen and congresswomen serve a two-year term. They are directly accountable to people and more responsive to popular demand. The job of a congressman is to deal with foreign policy or legislative issues, depending on their part of the chamber. The number of congressmen varies depending on the number of persons living in the given State (proportional representation). The nominees for congressmen and congresswomen must be at least 25 years old. Also, they must have lived at least seven years in the state they wish to represent. Every congressman is accountable for his decisions made to the constituency that gave him his vote. There are two senators sent from each state (depending on the number of people in a state). Some other duties of a congressman are to serve on committees, to create all revenue bills, to offer amendments; and to introduce resolutions and bills. The congress has an important role in national defense. It includes the power to declare war, raise and maintain armed forces, and create rules for the military. However, a congressman is not largely involved in foreign policy matters.

Key Differences

  1. The term senator refers to someone who is a part of the U.S. Senate whereas the term congressman refers to any member of the U.S. Congress that is composed of Senate and House of Representative.
  2. A senator is a congressman, but not a congressman is a senator; on the other hand, a congressman is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives.
  3. A senator is the member of the legislative branch conversely a congressman is any member of either the House of Representatives or the Senate.
  4. The job of senators is to represent the people living in their state or to assist the President in foreign policy on the flip side the job of a congressman is to deal with foreign policy or legislative issues, depending on their part of the chamber.
  5. In the US Congress, there are 100 senators while 435 congressmen in total.

Conclusion

Senator and congressmen are the two roles that are used interchangeably to represent someone who composes and works the legislature of the United States. The difference between senator and congressmen lies in their roles, influences, and powers.

Author:

Aimie Carlson

Aimie Carlson is an English language enthusiast who loves writing and has a master degree in English literature. Follow her on Twitter at @AimieCarlson

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