97th United States Congress

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97th United States Congress
96th ← → 98th
United States Capitol (2002)

Duration: January 3, 1981 – January 3, 1983

Senate President: Walter Mondale (D)
until Jan. 20, 1981
George Bush (R)
from Jan. 20, 1981
Senate Pres. pro tem: Strom Thurmond (R)
House Speaker: Tip O'Neill (D)
Members: 100 Senators
435 Representatives
5 Non-voting members
Senate Majority: Republican Party
House Majority: Democratic Party

1st: January 5, 1981 – December 16, 1981
2nd: January 25, 1982 – December 23, 1982

The Ninety-seventh 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, D.C. from January 3, 1981 to January 3, 1983, during the final weeks of Jimmy Carter's presidency and the first two years of Ronald Reagan's presidency. The apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives was based on the Nineteenth Census of the United States in 1970. The House of Representatives had a Democratic majority. The Republicans gained control of the Senate, the first time that Republicans gained control of any chamber of Congress since 1953.


Major events

Major legislation

Constitutional amendments

Special or select committees

Party summary


Party standings on the opening day of the 97th Congress
  46 Democratic Senators
  1 Independent Senator, caucusing with Democrats
  53 Republican Senators
Affiliation Members
  Republican Party 53
  Democratic Party 46
  Independent 1
Total 100

House of Representatives

Affiliation Members Voting
  Democratic Party 244 56.1%
  Republican Party 191 43.9%
Total 435



Majority (Republican) leadership

Minority (Democratic) leadership

House seats by party holding plurality in state
  >80% Republican
  >80% Democratic
  >60% Republican
  >60% Democratic
  >50% Republican
  >50% Democratic
  (Striped): even split

House of Representatives

Majority (Democratic) leadership

Minority (Republican) leadership


This list is arranged by chamber, then by state. Senators are listed in order of seniority, and Representatives are listed by district.


Senators are popularly elected statewide every two years, with one-third beginning new six-year terms with each Congress.

House of Representatives

Members of the House of Representatives are listed by their districts.

Changes in membership


There were 2 resignations.

Vacator Reason for change Successor Date of successor's
formal installation
New Jersey
(Class 1)
Harrison A. Williams
Resigned March 11, 1982 before a planned expulsion vote, having been convicted of bribery in the Abscam sting operation. His successor was appointed to complete the term. Nicholas F. Brady
April 27, 1982
New Jersey
(Class 1)
Nicholas F. Brady
Resigned December 27, 1982 so his elected successor could be appointed for preferential seniority. Frank Lautenberg
December 27, 1982

House of Representatives

There were 4 deaths, 4 resignations, one declared vacancy, and one party change.

District Vacator Reason for change Successor Date successor
Michigan 4th David Stockman (R) Resigned January 27, 1981 after being appointed Director of the Office of Management and Budget Mark D. Siljander (R) April 21, 1981
Maryland 5th Gladys Spellman (D) Incapacitated since last Congress and seat declared vacant February 24, 1981 Steny H. Hoyer (D) May 19, 1981
Ohio 4th Tennyson Guyer (R) Died April 12, 1981 Mike Oxley (R) June 25, 1981
Mississippi 4th Jon Hinson (R) Resigned April 13, 1981 Wayne Dowdy (D) July 7, 1981
Pennsylvania 3rd Raymond F. Lederer (D) Resigned April 29, 1981, before a planned expulsion vote, having been convicted of bribery in the Abscam sting operation Joseph F. Smith (D) July 21, 1981
Connecticut 1st William R. Cotter (D) Died September 7, 1981 Barbara B. Kennelly (D) January 12, 1982
Pennsylvania 25th Eugene Atkinson (D) Changed parties October 14, 1981 Eugene Atkinson (R) October 14, 1981
California 30th George E. Danielson (D) Resigned March 9, 1982 after being appointed associate justice of the California Courts of Appeal Matthew G. Martínez (D) July 13, 1982
Ohio 17th John M. Ashbrook (R) Died April 24, 1982 Jean Spencer Ashbrook (R) June 29, 1982
Indiana 1st Adam Benjamin, Jr. (D) Died September 7, 1982 Katie B. Hall (D) November 2, 1982



House of Representatives

See also


  • Martis, Kenneth C. (1989). The Historical Atlas of Political Parties in the United States Congress. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  • Martis, Kenneth C. (1982). The Historical Atlas of United States Congressional Districts. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links