Details Emerge about House Freshmen Orientation

Details are emerging about the orientation for prospective freshmen House members, elected to Congress on Tuesday.

FOX has learned that the new member orientation will start Sunday, November 14 at the L'Enfant Plaza Hotel in Washington. The House Administration Committee runs the orientation and plans to make arrangements to shuttle the lawmakers-elect from Washington's airports to the hotel, where they will stay for the week.

The freshman class is expected to attend a welcome reception that night at one of the Smithsonian Institution's museums along the National Mall.

On November 15 and 16, the freshman will gather in the Capitol Visitor's Center for a series of orientation sessions. The meetings are informally known around Capitol Hill as "how to be a Member of Congress" classes. The new members will receive information about how to set up their offices, learn about Congressional ethics and also get a security briefing. Top House officers such as the Clerk, Parliamentarian, Chief Administrative Officer, Chief of the Capitol Police and Sergeant-at-Arms are expected to speak.

The class will also get a tour of the House floor and receive briefings on parliamentary procedure and floor operations.

Members will pose on the House steps Tuesday morning for the class photo.

It's tradition for the lawmakers to also hear from the Speaker of the House. House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) is expected to be speaker next year. It's unclear what if any role current Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) might have in the orientation.

November 17 and 18 are reserved for members to caucus with either the Democrats or Republicans and participate in leadership elections.

The new class and current members are invited to a reception mid-week at the U.S. Botanic Garden at the foot of Capitol Hill.

November 19 is reserved for the office lottery. That's where all freshmen gather to draw numbers out of a hat. The better the number, the better chance the member has for scoring a better office. Congressional veterans hold the most-coveted pieces of real estate on Capitol Hill.

Lawmakers who either lost re-election or who decided to retire must vacate their current offices by the end of the month. The new lawmakers won't be able to move in to their new digs until sometime in December.

The freshman class won't be sworn-in until the new Congress convenes in early January.

Some people who won't actually become House members might attend the orientation. Historically, the House has invited a few candidates in undecided races to Washington for the orientation.

Several House races remain undecided now and could face a recount.