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Senate Voices: Senate Sessions

Floyd M. Riddick

"How it got out of closed session, I don't know. Somebody had to tell it."

Floyd M. Riddick: Senate Parliamentarian

Riddick explains a 1929 change to the Senate Rules that allowed for open executive sessions of the Senate, redefining a "closed session."

Martin P. Paone

"It's human nature. Sort of like college students cramming for exams."

Martin P. Paone: Senate Democratic Cloakroom Staff; Minority and Majority Secretary

Paone discusses the influx of legislative activity in the Senate that tends to occur at the end of the final session of every Congress.

"Photo of Dorothye Scott"

"On the day of the joint session, the Senators would line up. The page boys would go first, carrying the boxes. . ."

Dorothye G. Scott: Administrative Assistant to the Senate Democratic Secretary and to the Secretary of the Senate.

Scott describes the official, ceremonial joint sessions of Congress held every four years to count electoral ballots for the election of the president and vice president.