Texas Politics - The Legislative Branch
  1. Tradition and Modernity
  2. Looking Ahead
  1. Sessions
  2. Special Sessions
  3. Bicameral Structure
  4. Membership
  5. Compensation
  6. Terms of Office
  1. Formal
  2. Informal
  3. Party
  4. Gender, Race, Ethnicity
  5. Incumbency
  6. Age and Occupation
  1. Historical Perspective
Powers and Immunities
  1. Bills
  2. Resolutions
  3. Administrative Powers
  4. Investigative, Impeachment
  5. Immunities
Presiding Officers and Powers
  1. Senate Pres./Lt. Governor
  2. Speaker of the House
  3. Pro Tempore Positions
  1. Committees
  2. System Impact
How a Bill Becomes a Law
  1. Intro, Referral
  2. Committee Action
  3. Floor Action
  4. Conference Committee
  5. Governor's Desk
Citizens Legislative Power
  1. Constitutional Amendments
  2. Initiative and Referendum
10  Conclusions
  1. Reforms
  2. Citizen Participation
  1. Print-friendly format
  2. Key words and phrases
  3. Multimedia resources
  4. Lt. Governors table
  5. Speakers table
2.4    Membership

Texas has a total of 181 state legislators, with 150 members of the House and 31 members of the Senate. The membership of both houses is elected from single-member districts, whose boundaries are redrawn every decade after the U.S. Census is taken and the movements and growth of the population across the nation and the state are identified.

Every Texas resident lives in a single district for the state House, another for the state Senate, and yet one more for the U.S. House of Representatives. The Senate districts are much larger than the state House districts, because there are only 31 regular members of the Texas Senate, compared to the 150 members of the Texas House.

In addition to its 31 members, the Texas Senate has one additional position: the office of the President of the Senate, which is an office that is constitutionally assigned to the Lieutenant Governor. Technically, the Lieutenant Governor is not a member of the Senate, but nevertheless plays a significant role in that chamber. This arrangement is similar to the national government in which the Vice-President serves as the president of the U.S. Senate. However, the Lieutenant Governor has much more authority as a legislator.

Texas Politics:
© 2005, Liberal Arts Instructional Technology Services
University of Texas at Austin