With many congressional retirements already announced and more incumbents likely to be unseated this fall, get ready to scratch several dozen new names onto the list of individuals to have served as U.S. Representatives next January. More than 10,700 individuals have served as representatives since 1789, with two states tallying more than 1,000: New York (1,439 representatives) and Pennsylvania (1,026). Ohio is the only other state to eclipse the 500 mark (with 650) with Illinois coming in at #4 (463) and Massachusetts at #5 (415). Twenty states have yet to reach 100, including three which achieved statehood in the 1700s: Delaware (62), Rhode Island (73), and Vermont (96). Virginia has had the most U.S. House members from the South at 413 with California leading in the West at 348. The average length of service for the 10,700+ representatives has been 3.4 terms.
Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.
When the 114th Congress convenes in a few days, Maine will be represented by one home-grown U.S. Representative: Waterville-born Republican Bruce Poliquin. With the departure of Millinocket-born Mike Michaud, who launched a failed gubernatorial bid, the Pine Tree State was poised to send a House delegation to D.C. without any Maine-born members for the first time since 1821. Three-term U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (born in Minnesota) coasted to reelection as expected, however Poliquin edged Kentucky-born Emily Cain by 5.3 points to keep the streak alive. Since 1876, a total of 208 of the 222 candidates elected to the nation's lower legislative chamber from the state have been born in Maine, or 94 percent.
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