80th United States Congress


80th United States Congress
80th United States Congress
USCapitol1956.jpg
United States Capitol (1956)

Duration: January 3, 1947 – January 3, 1949

Senate President: Vacant
Senate Pres. pro tem: Arthur H. Vandenberg
House Speaker: Joseph William Martin, Jr.
Members: 96 Senators
435 Representatives
3 Non-voting members
Senate Majority: Republican Party
House Majority: Republican Party

Sessions
1st: January 3, 1947 – December 19, 1947
Special: November 17, 1947 – December 19, 1947
2nd: January 6, 1948 – December 31, 1948
Special: July 26, 1948 – August 7, 1948
<79th 81st>

The Eightieth United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, composed of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met in Washington, DC from January 3, 1947 to January 3, 1949, during the third and fourth years of Harry S. Truman's presidency. The apportionment of seats in this House of Representatives was based on the Sixteenth Census of the United States in 1940. Republicans gained a majority in both chambers for this Congress. The Democrats had the majorities in the previous Congress and they regained them back in the next Congress.

The 80th Congress was nicknamed the "Do Nothing Congress" by President Harry Truman. The Congress opposed many of the bills passed during the Franklin Roosevelt administration. They also opposed most of Truman's Fair Deal bills. Yet they passed many pro-business bills. During the 1948 election Truman campaigned as much against the "Do Nothing Congress" as against his formal opponent, Thomas Dewey.

Contents

Major events

The 1947 HUAC hearings in session. On the right, standing with his hand raised, is committee chairman J. Parnell Thomas; congressman Richard Nixon is seated immediately to Thomas's left.

Major legislation

  • May 22, 1947: Assistance to Greece and Turkey Act (Truman Doctrine), Sess. 1, ch. 81, Pub.L. 80-75,
  • June 23, 1947: Taft–Hartley Act, Sess. 1, ch. 120, 61 Stat. 136
  • July 26, 1947: National Security Act of 1947, Sess. 1, ch. 343, 61 Stat. 495
  • August 7, 1947: Mineral Leasing Act for Acquired Lands, Sess. 1, ch. 513, 61 Stat. 913
  • January 27, 1948: United States Information and Educational Exchange Act, Sess. 2, ch. 36, 62 Stat. 6
  • April 3, 1948: Foreign Assistance Act (Marshall Plan), Pub.L. 80-47, Sess. 2, ch. 169, 62 Stat. 137
  • April 3, 1948: Greek-Turkish Assistance Act of 1948, Sess. 2, ch. 169, Pub.L. 80-75, title III, 62 Stat. 157
  • May 26, 1948: Civil Air Patrol Act, Pub.L. 80-557, 62 Stat. 274
  • June 17, 1948: Reed-Bulwinkle Act
  • June 25, 1948: Presidential Succession Act, Sess. 2, ch. 644, Pub.L. 89-174, 62 Stat. 677
  • June 28, 1948: Commodity Credit Corporation Charter Act of 1948
  • June 30, 1948: Federal Water Pollution Control Act, Sess. 2, ch. 758
  • July 3, 1948: War Claims Act of 1948, Pub.L. 80-896, 62 Stat. 1240
  • 1948: Agricultural Act of 1948

Constitutional provisions

Party summary

House Chaplain Bernard Braskamp delivering the opening prayer for the 80th Congress, 1947

Senate

From the beginning to the end of this Congress, there was no net change in party power.

Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Total
Republican Democratic Progressive Vacant
End of previous Congress 38 57 1 96 0
Begin 51 45 0 96 0
End
Final voting share 53.1% 46.9% 0.0%
Beginning of the next Congress 42 54 0 96 0

House of Representatives

From the beginning to the end of this Congress, there was no net change in party power. The Democrats lost one seat, which remained vacant until the next Congress.

Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Total
Republican Democratic American Labor Progressive Vacant
End of previous Congress 191 242 1 1 435 0
Begin 248 185 1 0 434 1
End 244 184 2 430 5
Final voting share 56.7% 43.1% 0.2% 0.0%
Beginning of the next Congress 171 263 1 0 435 0

Leadership

[ Section contents: Senate: Majority (R), Minority (D)House: Majority (R), Minority (D) ]

Senate

Majority (Republican) leadership

  • Majority leader: Wallace White
  • Majority whip: Kenneth Wherry

Minority (Democratic) leadership

  • Minority leader: Alben Barkley
  • Minority whip: Scott Lucas

House of Representatives

Majority (Republican) leadership

Minority (Democratic) leadership

Members

Senate

Senators are popularly elected statewide every two years, with one-third beginning new six year terms with each Congress. Preceding the names in the list below are Senate class numbers, which indicate the cycle of their election.

Alabama

  • 2. John J. Sparkman (D)
  • 3. Joseph Lister Hill (D)

Arizona

Arkansas

California

Colorado

  • 3. Eugene D. Millikin (R)
  • 2. Edwin Carl Johnson (D)

Connecticut

Delaware

Florida

Georgia

  • 2. Walter Franklin George (D)
  • 3. Richard Brevard Russell (D)

Idaho

Illinois

Indiana

Iowa

Kansas

Kentucky

Louisiana

  • 2. Allen Joseph Ellender (D)
  • 3. John Holmes Overton (D), until May 14, 1948

Maine

Maryland

Massachusetts

Michigan

  • 2. Homer Ferguson (R)
  • 1. Arthur Hendrick Vandenberg (R)

Minnesota

Mississippi

  • 1. Theodore Gilmore Bilbo (D), until August 21, 1947
  • 2. James O. Eastland (D)

Missouri

Montana

Nebraska

Nevada

New Hampshire

New Jersey

New Mexico

  • 1. Dennis Wyatt Chavez (D)
  • 2. Carl Atwood Hatch (D)

New York

  • 1. Irving M. Ives (R)
  • 3. Robert Ferdinand Wagner (D)

North Carolina

North Dakota

Ohio

Oklahoma

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island

South Carolina

South Dakota

Tennessee

  • 1. Kenneth D. McKellar (D)
  • 2. Arthur Thomas Stewart (D)

Texas

Utah

  • 1. Arthur V. Watkins (R)
  • 3. Elbert Duncan Thomas (D)

Vermont

Virginia

Washington

West Virginia

Wisconsin

Wyoming

Percentage of members from each party by state at the opening of the 80th Congress, ranging from dark blue (most Democratic) to dark red (most Republican).

House of Representatives

The names of members of the House of Representatives elected statewide at-large, are preceded by an "At-Large," and the names of those elected from districts, whether plural or single member, are preceded by their district numbers.

The congressional district numbers are linked to articles describing the district itself. Since the boundaries of the districts have changed often and substantially, the linked article may only describe the district as it exists today, and not as it was at the time of this Congress.

Alabama

Arizona

Arkansas

California

Colorado

Connecticut

Delaware

Florida

Georgia

Idaho

Illinois

Indiana

Iowa

Kansas

Kentucky

Louisiana

Maine

Maryland

* 3. Edward Garmatz (D), from July 15, 1947

Massachusetts

* 9. Donald W. Nicholson (R), from November 18, 1947

Michigan

Minnesota

Mississippi

Missouri

Montana

Nebraska

Nevada

New Hampshire

  • 1. Charles Earl Merrow (R)
  • 2. Norris H. Cotton (R)

New Jersey

New Mexico

New York

North Carolina

North Dakota

Ohio

Oklahoma

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island

South Carolina

South Dakota

  • 1. Karl E. Mundt (R), until December 30, 1948, vacant thereafter
  • 2. Francis Case (R)

Tennessee

Texas

Utah

Vermont

Virginia

Washington

West Virginia

Wisconsin

Wyoming

Non-voting members

Changes in membership

The count below reflects changes from the beginning of the first session of this Congress

Senate

There were 3 deaths, 2 resignations, and one lost mid-term election.


State
(class)
Former senator Reason for change Successor Date of successor's
installation
Mississippi
(1)
Theodore Bilbo (D) Died August 21, 1947.
Successor was elected to finish term.
John Stennis (D) Appointed November 17, 1947
Louisiana
(3)
John Holmes Overton (D) Died May 14, 1948.
Successor was appointed to serve until a special election.
William C. Feazel (D) Appointed May 18, 1948
South Dakota
(2)
Harlan Bushfield (R) Died September 27, 1948.
Successor was appointed to serve until a special election.
Vera Bushfield (R) Appointed October 6, 1948
South Dakota
(2)
Vera Bushfield (R) Resigned December 26, 1948.
Successor was elected to finish term.
Karl Earl Mundt (R) Appointed December 31, 1948
Louisiana
(3)
William C. Feazel (D) Resigned December 30, 1948.
Successor was elected to finish term.
Russell B. Long (D) Appointed December 31, 1948
North Carolina
(2)
William Umstead (D) Resigned December 30, 1948.
Successor was elected to finish term.
Melville Broughton (D) Won mid-term election and seated December 31, 1948

House of Representatives

There were 9 deaths and 7 resignations.


District Vacator Reason for change Successor Date of successor's
installation
Alabama
8th
Vacant John Sparkman resigned in previous Congress after being elected to the US Senate Robert E. Jones, Jr. (D) Seated January 28, 1947
Wisconsin
2nd
Vacant Robert K. Henry died during previous Congress Glenn R. Davis (R) Seated April 22, 1947
Washington
3rd
Fred Norman (R) Died April 18, 1947 Russell Mack (R) Seated June 7, 1947
Pennsylvania
8th
Charles Gerlach (R) Died May 5, 1947 Franklin Lichtenwalter (R) Seated September 9, 1947
Maryland
3rd
Thomas D'Alesandro, Jr. (D) Resigned May 16, 1947 after being elected Mayor of Baltimore Edward Garmatz (D) Seated July 15, 1947
Michigan
11th
Fred Bradley (R) Died May 24, 1947 Charles Potter (R) Seated August 26, 1947
Texas
9th
Joseph J. Mansfield (D) Died July 12, 1947 Clark W. Thompson (D) Seated August 23, 1947
Texas
16th
R. Ewing Thomason (D) Resigned July 31, 1947 after being appointed as a judge of the US District Court for the Western District of Texas Kenneth M. Regan (D) Seated August 23, 1947
Massachusetts
9th
Charles Gifford (R) Died August 23, 1947 Donald Nicholson (R) Seated November 18, 1947
Indiana
10th
Raymond S. Springer (R) Died August 28, 1947 Ralph Harvey (R) Seated November 4, 1947
Ohio
4th
Robert Franklin Jones (R) Resigned September 2, 1947, to become a member of the Federal Communications Commission William M. McCulloch (R) Seated November 4, 1947
New York
14th
Leo Rayfiel (D) Resigned September 13, 1947, having been appointed a judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York Abraham Multer (D) Seated November 4, 1947
Illinois
21st
George E. Howell (R) Resigned October 5, 1947 after being appointed judge of the US Court of Claims Vacant until next Congress
Virginia
4th
Patrick Drewry (D) Died December 21, 1947 Watkins Abbitt (D) Seated February 17, 1948
New York
24th
Benjamin J. Rabin (D) Resigned December 31, 1947 Leo Isacson (AL) Seated February 17, 1948
Kentucky
2nd
Earle Clements (D) Resigned January 6, 1948 to become Governor of Kentucky John Whitaker (D) Seated April 17, 1948
Kentucky
9th
John Robsion (R) Died February 17, 1948 William Lewis (R) Seated April 24, 1948
Missouri
10th
Orville Zimmerman (D) Died April 7, 1948 Paul Jones (D) Seated November 2, 1948
Virginia
6th
Lindsay Almond (D) Resigned April 17, 1948, having been elected Attorney General of Virginia Clarence Burton (D) Seated November 2, 1948
Illinois
7th
Thomas L. Owens (R) Died June 7, 1948 Vacant until next Congress
Indiana
6th
Noble J. Johnson (R) Resigned July 1, 1948 after being appointed as judge of US Court of Customs & Patent Appeals Vacant until next Congress
Texas
15th
Milton H. West (D) Died October 28, 1948 Lloyd Bentsen (D) Seated December 4, 1948
New York
7th
John Delaney (D) Died November 18, 1948 Vacant until next Congress
South Dakota
1st
Karl E. Mundt (R) Resigned December 30, 1948 after being appointed to the U.S. Senate Vacant until next Congress

Employees

Senate

House of Representatives


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