I'm Just A Bill




School House Rock
America Rock

I'm Just A Bill

Boy:
Whew! You sure gotta climb a lot of steps to get to this Capitol Building here in Washington. But I wonder who that sad little scrap of paper is?
Bill:
I'm just a bill.
Yes, I'm only a bill.
And I'm sitting here on Capitol Hill.
Well, it's a long, long journey
To the capital city.
It's a long, long wait
While I'm sitting in committee,
But I know I'll be a law some day
At least I hope and pray that I will
But today I am still just a bill.
Boy:
Gee, Bill, you certainly have a lot of patience and courage.
Bill:
Well, I got this far. When I started I wasn't even a bill, I was just an idea. Some folks back home decided they wanted a law passed, so they called their local Congressman, and he said, "You're right, there oughta be a law." Then he sat down and wrote me out and introduced me to Congress. And I became a bill, and I'll remain a bill until they decide to make me a law.
I'm just a bill
Yes I'm only a bill,
And I got as far as Capitol Hill.
Well, now I'm stuck in committee
And I'll sit here and wait
While a few key Congressmen discuss and debate
Whether they should let me be a law.
How I hope and pray that they will,
But today I am still just a bill.
Boy:
Listen to those Congressmen arguing! Is all that discussion and debate about you.
Bill:
Yeah, I'm one of the lucky ones. Most bills never even get this far. I hope they decide toreport on me favorably, otherwise I may die.
Boy:
Die?
Bill:
Yeah, die in committee. Ooh, but it looks like I'm gonna live! NOW I go to the House of Representatives, and they vote on me.
Boy:
If they vote yes, what happens?
Bill:
Then I go to the Senate and the whole thing starts all over again.
Boy:
Oh no!
Bill:
Oh yes!
I'm just a bill
Yes, I'm only a bill
And if they vote for me on Capitol Hill
Well, then I'm off to the White House
Where I'll wait in a line
With a lot of other bills
For the president to sign
And if he signs me, then I'll be a law.
HOW I hope and pray that he will,
But today I am still just a bill.
Boy:
You mean even if the whole Congress says you should be a law, the president can still say no?
Bill:
Yes, that's called a veto. If the president vetoes me, I have to go back to Congress and they vote on me again, and by that time you're so old ...
Boy:
By that time it's very unlikely that you'll become a law. It's not easy to become a law, is it?
Bill:
No!
But how I hope and pray that I will,
But today I am still just a bill.
MAN:
He signed you, Bill! Now you're a law!
Bill:
Oh yes!!!

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