Democratic Caucus Chairmen (1849 to present)

Samuel Randall Carte-de-visite Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
About this object
Democratic Caucus Chairman Samuel Randall later rose to the Speakership.
The House Democratic Caucus Chairman presides over caucus meetings, which are composed of all members of the Democratic party. The chair is elected by the caucus, and is limited to two consecutive full terms. A list of House Democratic Chairmen from 1849 to present is presented below.

The House Democratic Caucus serves as the organizational forum to elect party leaders at the outset of each new Congress. The caucus meets on a weekly basis to discuss party policy,  pending legislative issues, and other matters of mutual concern. Further information on the caucus'  current activities is available on the House Democratic Caucus Web site.

There is no clear data on Democratic Caucus Chairmen for the 32nd, 35th, 37th-40th, 42nd, and 47th Congresses.

Congress and Years Name State or Territory
31st (1849–1851) THOMPSON, James PA
33rd (1853–1855) OLDS, Edson Baldwin OH
34th (1855–1857) JONES, George Washington TN
36th (1859–1861) HOUSTON, George Smith AL
41st (1869–1871) 1 NIBLACK, William Ellis IN
41st (1869–1871) RANDALL, Samuel Jackson PA
43rd (1873–1875) NIBLACK, William Ellis IN
44th (1875–1877) LAMAR, Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus MS
45th (1877–1879) CLYMER, Hiester PA
46th (1879–1881) HOUSE, John Ford TN
48th (1883–1885) GEDDES, George Washington OH
49th (1885–1887) TUCKER, John Randolph VA
50th (1887–1889) 2 COX, Samuel Sullivan NY
51st (1889–1891) HOLMAN, William Steele IN
52nd (1891–1893) HOLMAN, William Steele IN
53rd (1893–1895) HOLMAN, William Steele IN
54th (1895–1897) CULBERSON, David Browning TX
55th (1897–1899) RICHARDSON, James Daniel TN
56th (1899–1901) HAY, James VA
57th (1901–1903) HAY, James VA
58th (1903–1905) HAY, James VA
59th (1905–1907) HENRY, Robert Lee TX
60th (1907–1909) CLAYTON, Henry De Lamar AL
61st (1909–1911) 3 CLAYTON, Henry De Lamar AL
62nd (1911–1913) 4 BURLESON, Albert Sidney TX
63rd (1913–1915) PALMER, Alexander Mitchell PA
64th (1915–1917) SAUNDERS, Edward Watts VA
65th (1917–1919) SAUNDERS, Edward Watts VA
66th (1919–1921) DEWALT, Arthur Granville PA
67th (1921–1923) RAYBURN, Samuel Taliaferro TX
68th (1923–1925) RAINEY, Henry Thomas IL
69th (1925–1927) CARTER, Charles David OK
70th (1927–1929) GREENWOOD, Arthur Herbert IN
71st (1929–1931) 5 KINCHELOE, David Hayes KY
72nd (1931–1933) ARNOLD, William Wright IL
73rd (1933–1935) LEA, Clarence Frederick CA
74th (1935–1937) TAYLOR, Edward Thomas CO
75th (1937–1939) DOUGHTON, Robert Lee NC
76th (1939–1941) 6 MCCORMACK, John William MA
77th (1941–1943) DUNCAN, Richard Meloan MO
78th (1943–1945) SHEPPARD, Harry Richard CA
79th (1945–1947) COOPER, Jere TN
80th (1947–1949) FORAND, Aime Joseph RI
81st (1949–1951) WALTER, Francis Eugene PA
82nd (1951–1953) COOPER, Jere TN
83rd (1953–1955) MILLS, Wilbur Daigh AR
84th (1955–1957) ROONEY, John James NY
85th (1957–1959) PRICE, Charles Melvin IL
86th (1959–1961) PRICE, Charles Melvin IL
87th (1961–1963) WALTER, Francis Eugene PA
88th (1963–1965) 7 WALTER, Francis Eugene PA
88th (1963–1965) THOMAS, Albert TX
89th (1965–1967) KEOGH, Eugene James NY
90th (1967–1969) ROSTENKOWSKI, Daniel David IL
91st (1969–1971) ROSTENKOWSKI, Daniel David IL
92nd (1971–1973) TEAGUE, Olin Earl TX
93rd (1973–1975) TEAGUE, Olin Earl TX
94th (1975–1977) BURTON, Phillip CA
95th (1977–1979) FOLEY, Thomas Stephen WA
96th (1979–1981) FOLEY, Thomas Stephen WA
97th (1981–1983) LONG, Gillis William LA
98th (1983–1985) LONG, Gillis William LA
99th (1985–1987) GEPHARDT, Richard Andrew MO
100th (1987–1989) GEPHARDT, Richard Andrew MO
101st (1989–1991) 8 GRAY, William Herbert, III PA
101st (1989–1991) 9 HOYER, Steny Hamilton MD
102nd (1991–1993) HOYER, Steny Hamilton MD
103rd (1993–1995) HOYER, Steny Hamilton MD
104th (1995–1997) FAZIO, Victor Herbert, Jr. CA
105th (1997–1999) FAZIO, Victor Herbert, Jr. CA
106th (1999–2001) FROST, Jonas Martin TX
107th (2001–2003) FROST, Jonas Martin TX
108th (2003–2005) MENENDEZ, Robert NJ
109th (2005–2007) 10 MENENDEZ, Robert NJ
109th (2005–2007) 11 CLYBURN, James Enos SC
110th (2007–2009) EMANUEL, Rahm IL
111th (2009–2011) LARSON, John B. CT
112th (2011–2013) LARSON, John B. CT
113th (2013–2015) BECERRA, Xavier CA

Footnotes

1Caucus records show Representative Niblack and Representative Randall as both having served as chairman during the Congress, but no dates of service were specified.

2Former Parliamentarian Clarence Cannon's notes state "Cox died during this Congress and [Representative James B.] McCreary evidently succeeded or acted for him." However, Representative Cox died on September 10, 1889, six months after the sine die adjournment of the 50th Congress and the convening of the 51st Congress.

3Caucus records are contradictory for this period. They show the election of Representative James Hay as chairman on January 19, 1911, but do not mention a resignation by incumbent chairman Clayton, nor do they specify that Hay was elected chairman for the new Congress. Later, they show the election of Representative Burleson on April 11, 1911.

4Caucus records are contradictory for this period. They show the election of Representative James Hay as chairman on January 19, 1911, but do not mention a resignation by incumbent chairman Clayton, nor do they specify that Hay was elected chairman for the new Congress. Later, they show the election of Representative Burleson on April 11, 1911.

5Resigned from the House, October 5, 1930; there is no record of an election to fill the vacancy as caucus chair.

6Resigned following election as majority floor leader, September 16, 1940; records do not indicate that a successor was chosen during the remainder of the Congress.

7Died in office on May 31, 1963. Caucus chairman post was vacant until January 21, 1964.

8Representative Gray was elected Democratic Whip on June 14, 1989.

9Representative Hoyer was elected Caucus Chairman on June 21, 1989, following the June 14, 1989, election of Representative William (Bill) H. Gray III as Majority Whip.

10On January 16, 2006, Representative Menendez resigned from the House after he was appointed to the Senate.

11Representative Clyburn was selected Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus on December 16, 2005, effective January 18, 2006.