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Joint Sessions and Meetings

Counting Electoral Ballots, 1913

Occasionally, the House or Senate adopts a concurrent resolution to meet in joint session to conduct formal business or to hear the president’s state of the union address. Congress also meets in joint session every four years to count electoral ballots.

When the House and Senate agree by unanimous consent to recess in order to hear an address by a dignitary, they meet in a joint meeting. For example, Congress welcomed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill in a joint meeting on December 26, 1941.