The American Congress is made up of two houses — the House of Representatives and the Senate. In this system, the House is the governing body that is closest to the people. It's where the majority sets the agenda and passions run high. When it comes to understanding public policy issues, one of the best ways to take the pulse of the American people is to observe the House of Representatives. Whether it's health care insurance or increasing the minimum wage, popular issues do not reach critical mass until taken up in the House.