Model Congress

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2016

During the weekend of November 17, a group of twenty five students visited Washington D.C. to participate in Princeton Model Congress. PMC is run by Princeton students and attempts to model both the Executive Branch, through a presidential election and a presidential cabinet, and the legislative branch, through a model Senate and House of Representatives. Each congressperson was tasked with writing a bill that applied to their committee and presenting it before the committee. Members of the Chatham High School delegation were members of committees ranging from Foreign Relations to Banking, Housing and Urban Developments.

Each of the bills was thoroughly debated and amended in committee. Eventually, each bill was voted upon and either passed or killed. From there, several bills were selected to be presented in a session of the full Senate or House of Representatives. If the bill passes there, it is sent to the PMC president, who is selected on the first day of the convention, who signs it or kills it. Several of Chatham’s bills passed through committee, and some even got passed into law.

The trip allowed for students from Florida, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, California, Maryland, Connecticut and Virginia to come together and attempt to model a perfect version of the congress that currently exists in America, which has a low satisfaction rate and is known to be divisive. Furthermore, PMC had Representative Jared Polis from Colorado to speak to the delegations about being a member of Congress and about how the recent presidential election results would affect the workings of Congress.

The students who participated in this trip had an excellent time and had a chance to interact with interesting and unique people from all around the county.