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Legislative History Research (Federal): Bills

Locating the Text of Bills

Bills are proposed legislation by the House or Senate.  Bills from each chamber are assigned a number in the order in which they are introduced. 

Ex.  H.R. 8       S. 535

The text of bills can be found in a number of resources  including those recommended and listed below.

Bills are also often found within specific Congressional Reports and also in the Congressional Record. 


Westlaw provides the following:

Congressional Bills includes summaries and the text of  congressional bills and resolutions introduced into the current session of Congress.

Historical Federal Bills, 1995 - 

Bill Tracking includes summaries and status information for current legislation. A legislative calendar is also included.

CRS Bill Summaries for introduced bills, are written by the Congressional Research Service, for the current session of Congress.

Bloomberg Law

Bloomberg Law provides the following:

Congressional Bills 1993 -  In All Legal Content, type "bills" into the Select Sources box. Filter from the drop down menu. 

Lexis Advance

Lexis provides the following:

> Bill Text (Congressional Full Text Bills),   1989 -    (in separate databases by congressional session)

> Congressional Bill Tracking Reports        1989 -    (in  separate databases by congressional session) 

In the VLS LIbrary

Congressional Bills 1980-2000  can be found in the Library's Microfiche Collection

Searching  the Julien catalog for: Bills, Legislative -- United States is also recommended. Note the many Congressional Research Service Reports specific to bills that are listed for HeinOnline.

ProQuest Congressional

ProQuest Congressional provides:

Bill Text  1989 -

Bill Tracking  (with summaries) 1989 -


HeinOnline provides: 

In the  U.S. Congressional Documents Collection, under Additional Resources, a list of House and Senate bills 1900-2010. provides: 

Text of Congressional Bills, 1993-

FDSys, GovInfo and the Library of Congress

FDSys and GovInfo provide:

Text of Congressional Bills, 1993-

The Library of Congress provides:

Text of House Bills 1799-1873 and Text of Senate Bills 1819-1873