A law is a public rule that is issued by an established authority, backed by an institutional structure and enforced by sanctions. In the United States, a federal law is typically enacted when a measure passes a majority vote in both the House of Representatives and the Senate and is then signed by the president. A measure can become law without the president’s signature if it passes by a 2/3 vote in both the House and the Senate. State laws are usually created by a similar process, with legislatures and governors taking the place of Congress and the president.