President Franklin Roosevelt’s ham-fisted attempt to pack the Supreme Court and then to purge conservative Democrats from the party, contributed to Democratic losses in the 1938 elections. Democrats nevertheless retained their congressional majorities, and the 76th Congress (1939–1941) authorized the President to reorganize executive agencies and outlawed using federal employees or facilities for political purposes. The outbreak of war in Europe quickly monopolized Congress’s attention. Neutrality legislation allowed belligerents to pay cash for supplies and ship it themselves. Congress also passed internal security measures that required foreign nationals to register with federal authorities and established the first peacetime draft.
2Elected Majority Leader on September 26, 1940, to fill the vacancy created when Majority Leader Sam Rayburn was elected Speaker. From September 19 to 26, 1940, Representative Lindsay Warren of North Carolina served as the acting Majority Leader.
3Elected Speaker on September 16, 1940, filling the vacancy caused by the death of Speaker William Bankhead.
4Resigned following election as majority floor leader, September 16, 1940; records do not indicate that a successor was chosen during the remainder of the Congress.