List of Speaker of the United States House of Representatives elections

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In the United States Congress, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives elections are held when the House of Representatives first convenes after a general election for its two-year term, or when a Speaker of the House dies, resigns or is removed from the position intra-term. The speaker is the political and parliamentary leader of the House, and is simultaneously the body's presiding officer, the de facto leader of the body's majority party, and the institution's administrative head. [1]

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There have been 127 elections for speaker since the office was created in 1789. [2] Traditionally, each party's caucus or conference selects a candidate for speaker from among its senior leaders prior to the vote. Prior to 1839, the House elected its speaker by paper ballot, but since, on all but three occasions, has done so by roll call vote. [1] A majority of votes cast (as opposed to a majority of the full membership of the House) is necessary to elect a speaker. By House precedents, votes of present are not to be included in the official vote total, only votes cast for a person by name are; even so, they have been counted on several occasions. [3]

If no candidate receives a majority vote, then the roll call is repeated until a speaker is elected. In the longest speaker election in House history, 133 ballots (cast over a two-month period) were needed before representatives chose Nathaniel Banks as their presiding officer for the 34th Congress (1855–1857). Multiple roll calls have been necessary only 14 times since 1789, and not since 1923. [2]

Representatives are not restricted to voting for the candidate nominated by their party, but generally do. Additionally, as the U.S. Constitution does not explicitly state that the speaker must be an incumbent member of the House, it is permissible for representatives to vote for someone who is not a member of the House at the time, and non-members have received a few votes in various speaker elections over the past several years. Nevertheless, every person elected speaker has been a member. [4]

Altogether, 54 people have served as speaker over the past 231 years; 32 of them served multiple terms (seven of those served nonconsecutive terms). Sam Rayburn holds the record for electoral victories, with 10. He led the House from September 1940 to January 1947, January 1949 to January 1953, and January 1955 to November 1961 (a tenure totaling 17 years). [5] The youngest person elected to the office was Robert M. T. Hunter, age 30 when he became speaker in 1839; [6] the oldest person elected for the first time was Henry T. Rainey in 1933, at age 72. [7] In the most recent election for speaker, held January 3, 2021, the first day of the 117th Congress, members elected Nancy Pelosi to a fourth (second consecutive) term. She is the first woman to serve as speaker. [8]

Elections from 1789 to 1799

April 1789

The first-ever election for Speaker of the House took place on April 1, 1789, at the start of the 1st Congress, following the 1788 /89 elections in which candidates who supported the new Frame of Government won a majority of the seats. Frederick A. Muhlenberg, who had promoted the ratification of the Constitution, received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [9] Though political parties did not yet exist, political factions, from which they evolved, formed almost immediately after Congress began its work. Those who supported the Washington administration were referred to as "Pro-Administration", while those in opposition were known as "Anti-Administration". [10]

1789 election for Speaker [11]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Pro-Administration Frederick Muhlenberg ( PAAt-large ) 23 76.67
   Others723.33
Total votes30 100
Votes necessary16>50

October 1791

An election for speaker took place October 24, 1791, at the start of the 2nd Congress, following the 1790 /91 elections in which Pro-Administration candidates won a majority of the seats. Jonathan Trumbull Jr. received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [12]

1791 election for speaker [11]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Pro-Administration Jonathan Trumbull Jr. ( CTAt-large ) Majority [lower-alpha 1] 00
Total votes(?) 100
Votes necessary(?)>50

December 1793

An election for speaker took place December 2, 1793, at the start of the 3rd Congress, following the 1792 /93 elections in which anti-administration candidates won a majority of the seats. Former speaker Frederick Muhlenberg received a majority of the votes cast in the 3rd ballot and was elected speaker. This was the first Speaker of the House election to be contested primarily on a partisan basis. [13]

1793 election for Speaker [11]
December 2, 1793 1st ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Pro-Administration Theodore Sedgwick ( MA2 )2436.36
Anti-Administration Frederick Muhlenberg ( PAAt-large )2131.82
Anti-Administration Abraham Baldwin ( GAAt-large )1421.22
   Others710.60
Total votes:66100
Votes necessary:34>50
December 2, 1793 3rd Ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Anti-Administration Frederick Muhlenberg ( PAAt-large )37 [lower-alpha 2]
Pro-Administration Theodore Sedgwick ( MA2 )27
   Others(?)
Total votes:64+100
Votes necessary:~34>50

December 1795

An election for speaker took place December 7, 1795, at the start of the 4th Congress, following the 1794 /95 elections. During the preceding Congress, the Pro-Administration faction coalesced into the Federalist Party, and the Anti-Administration faction into the Democratic-Republican Party. Though Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats in these elections, several joined with the Federalists to elect Jonathan Dayton speaker on the first ballot. [13]

1795 election for Speaker [11]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Federalist Jonathan Dayton ( NJAt-large ) 46 58.23
Democratic-Republican Frederick Muhlenberg ( PA2 ) (Incumbent)3139.24
   Others22.53
Total votes79 100
Votes necessary40>50

May 1797

An election for speaker took place May 15, 1797, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 5th Congress, following the 1796 /97 elections in which Federalists won a majority of the seats. In a near-unanimous vote, Jonathan Dayton was re-elected Speaker. [13]

1797 election for Speaker [11]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Federalist Jonathan Dayton ( NJAt-large ) (Incumbent) 78 97.50
Federalist George Dent ( MD1 )11.25
Democratic-Republican Abraham Baldwin ( GAAt-large )11.25
Total votes80 100
Votes necessary41>50

December 1799

An election for speaker took place December 2, 1799, at the start of the 6th Congress, following the 1798 /99 elections in which Federalists won a majority of the seats. Theodore Sedgwick received a majority of the votes cast in the 2nd ballot and was elected speaker. [13]

1799 election for Speaker [15]
December 2, 1799 1st Ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Federalist Theodore Sedgwick ( MA1 )4249.41
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC5 )2731.76
Federalist George Dent ( MD1 )1315.30
   Others33.53
Total votes:85100
Votes necessary:43>50
December 2, 1799 2nd ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Federalist Theodore Sedgwick ( MA1 )4451.16
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC5 )3846.51
Federalist George Dent ( MD1 )31.75
Federalist John Rutledge Jr. ( SC2 )10.58
Total votes:86100
Votes necessary:44>50

Elections from 1801 to 1899

December 1801

An election for speaker took place on December 7, 1801, at the start of the 7th Congress, following the 1800 /01 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Nathaniel Macon received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [13]

1801 election for Speaker [11]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC5 ) (Incumbent) 53 65.43
Federalist James A. Bayard ( DEAt-large )2632.10
Federalist John C. Smith ( CTAt-large )22.47
Total votes81 100
Votes necessary41>50

October 1803

An election for speaker took place on October 17, 1803, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 8th Congress, following the 1802 /03 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Nathaniel Macon received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [13]

1803 election for Speaker [11]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC6 ) (Incumbent) 76 71.03
Democratic-Republican Joseph Varnum ( MA4 )3028.04
Democratic-Republican John Dawson ( VA10 )10.93
Total votes107 100
Votes necessary054>50

December 1805

An election for speaker took place December 2, 1805, at the start of the 9th Congress, following the 1804 /05 elections in which the Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Nathaniel Macon received a majority of the votes cast in the 3rd ballot and was re-elected speaker. [13] A number of Democratic-Republicans did not support Macon's bid for a third term as he had broken ranks with President Jefferson and aligned himself with the splinter Quids faction. [16]

1805 election for Speaker [11]
December 2, 1805 1st ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC6 ) (Incumbent)5148.58
Democratic-Republican Joseph Varnum ( MA4 )2624.76
Federalist John C. Smith ( CTAt-large )1615.24
Democratic-Republican John Dawson ( VA10 )109.52
Democratic-Republican Andrew Gregg ( PA5 )21.90
Total votes:105100
Votes necessary:53>50
December 2, 1805 3rd ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC6 ) (Incumbent)5854.71
Democratic-Republican Joseph Varnum ( MA4 )2321.70
Federalist John C. Smith ( CTAt-large )1816.98
Democratic-Republican John Dawson ( VA10 )32.83
Democratic-Republican Andrew Gregg ( PA5 )21.89
   Others21.89
Total votes:106100
Votes necessary:54>50

October 1807

An election for speaker took place on October 26, 1807, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 10th Congress, following the 1806 /07 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Joseph B. Varnum received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [13]

1807 election for Speaker [11]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Joseph Varnum ( MA4 ) 59 50.43
Federalist Charles Goldsborough ( MD8 )1714.53
Democratic-Republican Burwell Bassett ( VA12 )1714.53
Democratic-Republican Josiah Masters ( NY10 )86.84
Democratic-Republican Thomas Blount ( NC3 )75.98
   Others97.69
Total votes117 100
Votes necessary059>50

May 1809

An election for speaker took place May 22, 1809, at the start of the 11th Congress, following the 1808 /09 elections in which the Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. On the first ballot, Joseph Varnum received 60 of the 118 votes cast for individuals. In addition to these, two ballots were returned blank. The question arose over whether or not the blank ballots counted. If they were, then the total number of votes cast would be 120, making the threshold for election 61. If they were not, then the threshold would be 60 (of 118), thus making Varnum the winner. After a brief debate a motion to proceed with a second ballot was approved. Varnum received a majority of the votes cast in the 2nd ballot and was re-elected speaker. [17]

1809 election for Speaker [18]
May 22, 1809 1st Ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Joseph Varnum ( MA4 ) (Incumbent)6050.00
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC6 )3630.00
Federalist Timothy Pitkin ( CTAt-large )2016.67
Democratic-Republican Roger Nelson ( MD4 )10.83
Federalist Charles Goldsborough ( MD8 )10.83
    Blank 21.67
Total votes:120100
Votes necessary:61>50
May 22, 1809 2nd ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Joseph Varnum ( MA4 ) (Incumbent)6554.62
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC6 )4537.82
Federalist Timothy Pitkin ( CTAt-large )65.04
Democratic-Republican Benjamin Howard ( KY5 )10.84
Democratic-Republican Roger Nelson ( MD4 )10.84
Federalist Charles Goldsborough ( MD8 )10.84
Total votes:119100
Votes necessary:60>50

November 1811

An election for speaker took place on November 4, 1811, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 12th Congress, following the 1810 /11 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Henry Clay, a freshman congressman, received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [19]

1811 election for Speaker [20]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Henry Clay ( KY2 ) 75 63.03
Democratic-Republican William W. Bibb ( GAAt-large )3831.93
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC6 )32.52
Democratic-Republican Hugh Nelson ( VA21 )21.68
Democratic-Republican Burwell Bassett ( VA12 )10.84
Total votes119 100
Votes necessary060>50

May 1813

An election for speaker took place on May 24, 1813, at the start of the 13th Congress, following the 1812 /13 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Henry Clay received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [19]

1813 election for Speaker [21]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Henry Clay ( KY5 ) (Incumbent) 89 60.13
Federalist Timothy Pitkin ( CTAt-large )5436.49
   Others53.38
Total votes148 100
Votes necessary075>50

January 1814

On January 19, 1814, during the third session of the 13th Congress, Henry Clay resigned as speaker to accept a commission from President James Madison to serve as a negotiator for a peace agreement to end the War of 1812. [19] Later that day, an intra-term election for a new speaker was held. Langdon Cheves received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [22]

1814 special election for Speaker [23]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Langdon Cheves ( SC1 ) 94 56.97
Democratic-Republican Felix Grundy ( TN5 )5935.76
   Others127.27
Total votes165 100
Votes necessary83>50

December 1815

An election for speaker took place on December 4, 1815 at the start of the 14th Congress following the 1814 /15 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Elected again to the House, former speaker Henry Clay received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [19]

1815 election for Speaker [24]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Henry Clay ( KY2 ) 87 71.31
Democratic-Republican Hugh Nelson ( VA22 )1310.65
Federalist Timothy Pitkin ( CTAt-large )97.38
Democratic-Republican Nathaniel Macon ( NC6 )75.74
Federalist Joseph Lewis Jr. ( VA8 )21.64
Federalist Timothy Pickering ( MA3 )10.82
    Blank 32.46
Total votes122 100
Votes necessary62>50

December 1817

An election for speaker took place on December 1, 1817 at the start of the 15th Congress following the 1816 /17 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. In a near-unanimous vote, Henry Clay was re-elected Speaker. [19] [25]

1817 election for Speaker [26]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Henry Clay ( KY2 ) (Incumbent) 143 95.33
Democratic-Republican Samuel Smith ( MD5 )64.00
    Blank 10.67
Total votes150 100
Votes necessary76>50

December 1819

An election for speaker took place on December 6, 1819 at the start of the 16th Congress following the 1818 /19 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. In a near-unanimous vote, Henry Clay was re-elected Speaker. [19] [25]

1819 election for Speaker [27]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Henry Clay ( KY2 ) (Incumbent) 147 94.84
   Others85.16
Total votes155 100
Votes necessary78>50

November 1820

In October 1820, between the first and the second session of the 16th Congress, Henry Clay resigned as speaker so he could return to his private law practice; he kept his House seat however, until his term ended the following March (he had not run for re-election in 1820). [19] Consequently, an intra-term election for a new speaker was held on November 13–15, 1820. Coming as it did less than a year after the rancorous Missouri statehood debate, the choice of Clay's successor became mired in the continuing national debate between Northerners and Southerners over the expansion of slavery into territories and future states. The chief candidate of Northern antislavery members, John W. Taylor of New York, finally received a majority of the votes cast in the 22nd ballot and was elected speaker. [28] In addition to discord over slavery, Taylor's path to victory was made even more difficult by a division within that state's congressional delegation between supporters of Governor DeWitt Clinton and those who opposed him (known as the Bucktails). [25]

1820 special election for Speaker [29]
November 13, 1820 1st ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican John W. Taylor ( NY11 )4030.30
Democratic-Republican William Lowndes ( SC2 )3425.75
Democratic-Republican Samuel Smith ( MD5 )2720.45
Federalist John Sergeant ( PA1 )1813.65
Democratic-Republican Hugh Nelson ( VA22 )107.58
   Others32.27
Total votes132100
Votes necessary67>50
November 15, 1820 22nd ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican John W. Taylor ( NY11 )7651.35
Democratic-Republican William Lowndes ( SC2 )4429.73
Democratic-Republican Samuel Smith ( MD5 )2718.25
   Others10.67
Total votes148100
Votes necessary75>50

December 1821

An election for speaker took place December 3–4, 1821, at the start of the 17th Congress, following the 1820 /21 elections in which the Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Philip Barbour received a majority of the votes cast in the 12th ballot and was elected speaker. [17]

1821 election for Speaker [30]
December 3, 1821 1st ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican John W. Taylor ( NY11 ) (Incumbent)6037.26
Democratic-Republican Caesar A. Rodney ( DEAt-large )4527.95
Federalist Louis McLane ( DEAt-large )2918.01
Democratic-Republican Samuel Smith ( MD5 )2012.42
Democratic-Republican Hugh Nelson ( VA22 )53.11
   Others21.24
Total votes:161100
Votes necessary:81>50
December 4, 1821 12th ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Philip P. Barbour ( VA11 )8851.16
Democratic-Republican John W. Taylor ( NY11 ) (Incumbent)6738.95
Democratic-Republican Henry Baldwin ( PA14 )63.49
Democratic-Republican Samuel Smith ( MD5 )42.33
Democratic-Republican Caesar A. Rodney ( DEAt-large )31.74
   Others42.33
Total votes:172100
Votes necessary:87>50

December 1823

An election for speaker took place on December 1, 1823 at the start of the 18th Congress following the 1822 /23 elections in which Democratic-Republicans won a majority of the seats. Elected again to the House, former speaker Henry Clay received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [19]

1823 election for Speaker [31]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic-Republican Henry Clay ( KY3 ) 139 76.80
Democratic-Republican Philip P. Barbour ( VA11 ) (Incumbent)4223.20
Total votes181 100
Votes necessary91>50

December 1825

An election for speaker took place December 5, 1825, at the start of the 19th Congress, following the 1824 /25 elections and the 1825 presidential contingent election. In the aftermath of these elections, the Democratic-Republican Party rapidly splintered between those who supported the new president, John Quincy Adams, and those who supported Andrew Jackson. Representatives who supported Adams held a slim majority in the House. Former speaker John W. Taylor received a majority of the votes cast in the 2nd ballot and was elected speaker. [17]

1825 election for Speaker [32]
December 5, 1825 1st ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Adams John W. Taylor ( NY17 )8945.88
Adams John W. Campbell ( OH5 )4121.13
Jackson Louis McLane ( DEAt-large )3618.55
Jackson Andrew Stevenson ( VA16 )178.76
Adams Lewis Condict ( NJAt-large )63.10
   Others52.58
Total votes:194100
Votes necessary:98>50
December 5, 1825 2nd ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Adams John W. Taylor ( NY17 )9951.30
Jackson Louis McLane ( DEAt-large )4422.80
Adams John W. Campbell ( OH5 )4221.76
Jackson Andrew Stevenson ( VA16 )52.59
   Others31.55
Total votes:193100
Votes necessary:97>50

December 1827

An election for speaker took place on December 3, 1827 at the start of the 20th Congress following the 1826 /27 elections in which Jacksonians, candidates supporting Andrew Jackson in opposition to President John Quincy Adams won a majority of the seats. Andrew Stevenson won a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [33]

1827 election for Speaker [34]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Jacksonian Andrew Stevenson ( VA16 ) 104 50.73
Adams John W. Taylor ( NY17 ) (Incumbent)9445.86
Jacksonian Philip P. Barbour ( VA11 )41.95
   Others31.46
Total votes205 100
Votes necessary103>50

December 1829

An election for speaker took place on December 7, 1829 at the start of the 21st Congress following the 1828 /29 elections in which Jacksonians, candidates supporting now-President Andrew Jackson won a majority of the seats. Andrew Stevenson won a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [33]

1829 election for Speaker [35]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Jacksonian Andrew Stevenson ( VA16 ) (Incumbent) 152 79.58
   Others3920.42
Total votes191 100
Votes necessary96>50

December 1831

An election for speaker took place on December 5, 1831 at the start of the 22nd Congress following the 1830 /31 elections in which Jacksonians won a majority of the seats. Andrew Stevenson won a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [33]

1831 election for Speaker [36]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Jacksonian Andrew Stevenson ( VA16 ) (Incumbent) 98 50.26
Jacksonian Joel B. Sutherland ( PA1 )5427.69
Anti-Jacksonian John W. Taylor ( NY17 )189.23
Jacksonian Charles A. Wickliffe ( KY9 )157.69
Anti-Jacksonian Lewis Condict ( NJ1 )42.05
   Others63.08
Total votes195 100
Votes necessary98>50

December 1833

An election for speaker took place on December 2, 1833 at the start of the 23rd Congress following the 1832 /33 elections in which Jacksonians won a majority of the seats. Andrew Stevenson won a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [37]

1833 election for Speaker [38]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Jacksonian Andrew Stevenson ( VA11 ) (Incumbent) 142 65.44
Anti-Jacksonian Lewis Williams ( NC13 )3917.97
Anti-Jacksonian Edward Everett ( MA4 )156.91
Jacksonian John Bell ( TN7 )41.84
   Others94.15
    Blank 83.69
Total votes217 100
Votes necessary109>50

June 1834

In June 1834, Andrew Stevenson resigned as speaker of the House and from Congress to accept President Andrew Jackson's nomination as the U.S. minister to the United Kingdom. [39] Consequently, an intra-term election for a new speaker was held on June 2, 1834, during the 23rd Congress. The president favored James K. Polk for the post, but when members of his "Kitchen Cabinet" went to Capitol Hill and lobbied on Polk's behalf, they were rebuffed. Perceived as an encroachment upon a constitutional prerogative of the House, the effort to influence the vote splintered Jacksonian party unity and energized the opposition. John Bell ultimately received a majority of the votes cast in the 10th ballot and was elected speaker. [40] [lower-alpha 4]

1834 special election for Speaker [42]
June 2, 1834 1st ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Jacksonian Richard H. Wilde ( GAAt-large )6429.09
Jacksonian James K. Polk ( TN9 )4219.09
Jacksonian Joel B. Sutherland ( PA1 )3415.45
Jacksonian John Bell ( TN7 )3013.64
Jacksonian Jesse Speight ( NC4 )188.18
Jacksonian James M. Wayne ( GAAt-large )156.82
Anti-Jacksonian Lewis Williams ( NC13 )41.82
Anti-Jacksonian Edward Everett ( MA4 )31.36
   Others62.73
    Blank 41.82
Total votes:220100
Votes necessary:111>50
June 2, 1834 10th ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Jacksonian John Bell ( TN7 )11452.29
Jacksonian James K. Polk ( TN9 )7835.78
Jacksonian Richard H. Wilde ( GAAt-large )115.05
Jacksonian James M. Wayne ( GAAt-large )62.75
Jacksonian Joel B. Sutherland ( PA1 )20.92
Jacksonian Jesse Speight ( NC4 )10.46
    Blank 62.75
Total votes:218100
Votes necessary:110>50

December 1835

An election for speaker took place on December 7, 1835, at the start of the 24th Congress, following the 1834 /35 elections in which Jacksonians won a majority of the seats. James K. Polk won a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [43]

1835 election for Speaker [44]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Jacksonian James K. Polk ( TN9 ) 132 58.67
Anti-Jacksonian John Bell ( TN7 ) (Incumbent)8437.33
Anti-Jacksonian Charles F. Mercer ( VA14 )31.33
Anti-Masonic John Quincy Adams ( MA12 )20.89
Anti-Jacksonian Francis Granger ( NY26 )10.44
    Blank 31.33
Total votes225 100
Votes necessary113>50

September 1837

An election for speaker took place on September 4, 1837, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 25th Congress, following the 1836 /37 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. James K. Polk won a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [43]

1837 election for Speaker [45]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic James K. Polk ( TN9 ) (Incumbent) 116 51.79
Whig John Bell ( TN7 )10345.98
   Others52.23
Total votes224 100
Votes necessary113>50

December 1839

An election for speaker took place December 14–16, 1839, at the start of the 26th Congress, following the 1838 /39 elections in which the Democrats won a slim majority of the seats. Balloting was delayed for two weeks as Democrats and Whigs contested the seating of five representatives-elect from New Jersey, [46] commencing only after the House resolved not to seat either delegation immediately. Once underway, the narrowly divided House was unable to make a quick choice. Finally, on the 11th ballot, Robert M. T. Hunter received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [17]

1839 election for Speaker
December 14, 1839 1st ballot [47]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic John W. Jones ( VA3 )11348.09
Whig John Bell ( TN7 )10243.40
Whig William Dawson ( GAAt-large )114.68
Democratic Francis W. Pickens ( SC5 )52.13
Democratic Dixon H. Lewis ( AL4 )31.28
Conservative George W. Hopkins ( VA18 )10.42
Total votes:235100
Votes necessary:118>50
December 16, 1839 11th ballot [48]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Whig Robert M. T. Hunter ( VA9 )11951.29
Democratic John W. Jones ( VA3 )5523.71
Democratic George M. Keim ( PA9 )2410.35
Democratic Zadok Casey ( IL2 )104.31
Democratic Francis W. Pickens ( SC5 )93.88
Democratic Francis Thomas ( MD6 )31.29
   Others125.17
Total votes:232100
Votes necessary:117>50

May 1841

An election for speaker took place on May 31, 1841, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 27th Congress, following the 1840 /41 elections in which Whigs won a majority of the seats. John White won a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [49]

1841 election for Speaker [50]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Whig John White ( KY9 ) 121 54.75
Democratic John W. Jones ( VA3 )8438.01
Whig Henry A. Wise ( VA8 )83.62
Whig Joseph Lawrence ( PA21 )52.26
Whig George N. Briggs ( MA7 )10.45
Democratic Nathan Clifford ( ME1 )10.45
Whig William C. Johnson ( MD5 )10.45
Total votes221 100
Votes necessary111>50

December 1843

An election for speaker took place December 4, 1843, at the start of the 28th United States Congress following the 1842 /43 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. John W. Jones received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker.

1843 election for Speaker [51]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic John W. Jones ( VA6 ) 128 68.09
Whig John White ( KY6 ) (Incumbent)5931.38
Democratic William Wilkins ( PA21 )10.53
Total votes188 100
Votes necessary95>50

December 1845

An election for speaker took place December 1, 1845, at the start of the 29th United States Congress following the 1844 /45 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. John W. Davis received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [52]

1845 election for Speaker [53]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic John W. Davis ( IN6 ) 119 56.67
Whig Samuel F. Vinton ( OH12 )7234.29
Democratic Moses Norris ( NHAt-large )94.28
American William S. Miller ( NY3 )52.38
   Others52.38
Total votes210 100
Votes necessary106>50

December 1847

An election for speaker took place December 6, 1847, at the start of the 30th Congress, following the 1846 /47 elections in which the Whigs won a slim majority of the seats. Robert C. Winthrop received a majority of the votes cast in the 3rd ballot and was elected speaker. [17] The election became a multi-ballot affair when a few "Conscience Whigs" initially refused to support Winthrop because he rejected their demand for a pledge to constitute key House committees so as to favor the reporting of antislavery legislation. [54]

1847 election for Speaker [55]
December 6, 1847 1st ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Whig Robert C. Winthrop ( MA1 )10849.09
Democratic Linn Boyd ( KY1 )6127.73
Democratic Robert McClelland ( MI1 )2310.45
Democratic John A. McClernard ( IL2 )115.00
Democratic James McKay ( NC6 )52.27
Democratic Howell Cobb ( GA6 )31.37
Whig James Wilson ( NH3 )20.91
   Others73.18
Total votes:220100
Votes necessary:111>50
December 6, 1847 3rd ballot
PartyCandidateVotes%
Whig Robert C. Winthrop ( MA1 )11050.46
Democratic Linn Boyd ( KY1 )6429.36
Democratic Robert McClelland ( MI1 )146.42
Democratic John A. McClernard ( IL2 )83.67
Democratic Robert Rhett ( SC7 )73.21
Democratic Armistead Burt ( SC5 )41.83
Democratic Howell Cobb ( GA6 )41.83
Whig James Wilson ( NH3 )20.92
   Others52.30
Total votes:218100
Votes necessary:110>50

December 1849

An election for speaker took place December 3–22, 1849, at the start of the 31st Congress, following the 1848 /49 elections in which the Democrats won a slim majority of the seats. Divisions within both the Democratic Party and Whig Party over slavery plus the presence of the new Single-issue antislavery Free Soil Party led to pandemonium in the House and a protracted struggle to elect a speaker. After 59 ballots without a majority choice, the House adopted a plurality rule stating that, if after three more ballots no one garnered a majority of the votes, the person receiving the highest number of votes on the next ensuing ballot would be declared to have been chosen speaker. [17] On the decisive 63rd ballot, Howell Cobb received the most votes, 102 votes out of 221, or nine less than a majority, and was elected speaker. [56]

1849 election for Speaker
December 3, 1849 1st ballot [57]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Howell Cobb ( GA6 )10346.61
Whig Robert C. Winthrop ( MA1 ) (Incumbent)9643.44
Free Soil David Wilmot ( PA12 )83.62
Whig Meredith P. Gentry ( TN7 )62.71
Whig Horace Mann ( MA8 )20.91
   Others62.71
Total votes:221100
Votes necessary:111>50
December 22, 1849 63rd ballot [58]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Howell Cobb ( GA6 )10246.16
Whig Robert C. Winthrop ( MA1 ) (Incumbent)9944.80
Free Soil David Wilmot ( PA12 )83.62
Whig Charles S. Morehead ( KY8 )41.81
Democratic William Strong ( PA9 )31.34
   Others52.27
Total votes:221100
Votes necessary: Plurality [lower-alpha 5]

December 1851

An election for speaker took place December 1, 1851, at the start of the 32nd Congress following the 1850 /51 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Linn Boyd received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker.

1851 election for Speaker [59]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Linn Boyd ( KY1 ) 118 55.40
Whig Edward Stanly ( NC8 )219.86
Whig Joseph R. Chandler ( PA2 )209.39
Whig Thaddeus Stevens ( PA8 )167.51
Democratic Thomas H. Bayly ( VA7 )83.75
Whig John L. Taylor ( OH8 )62.82
Whig Alexander Evans ( MD5 )41.88
Democratic Thomas S. Bocock ( VA4 )41.88
Whig Meredith P. Gentry ( TN7 )31.41
Unionist Junius Hillyer ( GA6 )20.94
   Others115.16
Total votes213 100
Votes necessary107>50

December 1853

An election for speaker took place December 5, 1853, at the start of the 33rd Congress following the 1852 /53 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Linn Boyd received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1853 election for Speaker [60]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Linn Boyd ( KY1 ) (Incumbent) 143 65.90
Whig Joseph R. Chandler ( PA2 )356.13
Whig Lewis D. Campbell ( OH8 )115.07
Whig Presley Ewing ( KY3 )73.23
Whig Solomon G. Haven ( NY32 )62.77
Democratic James L. Orr ( SC5 )41.84
Whig William Preston ( KY7 )31.38
Whig John G. Miller ( MO5 )31.38
Whig Thomas M. Howe ( PA22 )20.92
   Others31.38
Total votes217 100
Votes necessary109>50

December 1855 – February 1856

An election for speaker took place over the course of two months, December 3, 1855 through February 2, 1856, at the start of the 34th Congress, following the 1854 /55 elections in which candidates primarily in Northern states running on various fusion tickets—included members from the Whig, Free Soil and American parties, along with members of the nascent Republican Party—grouped together under the Opposition Party label, won a majority of the seats. This new, but transitional, party sprang-up amid the fallout from the Kansas–Nebraska Act (approved by Congress in mid 1854), which had sparked violence over slavery in Kansas and hardened sectional positions on the subject. [61] Personal views on slavery drove members' words and actions during this protracted electoral contest. After 129 ballots without a majority choice, the House once again adopted a plurality rule to break the deadlock. On the decisive 133rd ballot, Nathaniel P. Banks [lower-alpha 6] received the most votes, 103 votes out of 214, or five less than a majority, and was elected speaker. [56] [61] A record 135 individual congressmen received votes in this the longest Speaker election in House history. [63]

1855–56 election for Speaker
December 3, 1855 1st ballot [61] [64]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic William A. Richardson ( IL5 )7432.89
Opposition Lewis D. Campbell ( OH3 )5323.56
American Humphrey Marshall ( KY7 )3013.34
American Nathaniel P. Banks ( MA7 )219.33
Opposition Henry M. Fuller ( PA11 )177.56
Opposition Alexander Pennington ( NJ5 )73.11
Opposition Aaron Harlan ( OH7 )31.33
Democratic John Wheeler ( NY6 )31.33
American Benjamin B. Thurston ( RI2 )31.33
Opposition Israel Washburn Jr. ( ME5 )20.89
Opposition William A. Howard ( MI1 )20.89
   Others104.44
Total votes:225100
Votes necessary:113>50
February 2, 1856 133rd ballot [61] [65]
PartyCandidateVotes%
American Nathaniel P. Banks ( MA7 )10348.13
Democratic William Aiken Jr. ( SC2 )10046.73
Opposition Henry M. Fuller ( PA11 )62.80
Opposition Lewis D. Campbell ( OH3 )41.87
Democratic Daniel Wells Jr. ( WI1 )10.47
Total votes:214100
Votes necessary: Plurality [lower-alpha 7]

December 1857

An election for speaker took place on December 7, 1857 at the start of the 35th Congress, following the 1856 /57 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. James L. Orr received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker.

1857 election for Speaker [67]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic James L. Orr ( SC5 ) 128 56.89
Republican Galusha A. Grow ( PA14 )8437.33
American Felix Zollicoffer ( TN8 )31.33
Republican Lewis D. Campbell ( OH3 )31.34
American H. Winter Davis ( MD4 )20.90
American James B. Ricaud ( MD2 )20.90
   Others31.32
Total votes225 100
Votes necessary113>50

December 1859 – February 1860

An election for speaker took place over the course of eight weeks, December 5, 1859 through February 1, 1860, at the start of the 36th Congress, following the 1858 /59 elections in which the Republicans won a plurality of the seats. William Pennington, a freshmen congressmen, received a majority of the votes cast in the 44th ballot and was elected speaker. [68] The bitter election dispute deepened the rift between slave states and free states and helped push Southern political leaders further toward secession. [69]

1859–60 election for Speaker
December 5, 1859 1st ballot [70]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Thomas S. Bocock ( VA5 )8637.40
Republican John Sherman ( OH13 )6628.70
Republican Galusha A. Grow ( PA14 )4318.70
Opposition Alexander Boteler ( VA8 )146.08
Opposition Thomas A. R. Nelson ( TN1 )52.17
Opposition John A. Gilmer ( NC5 )31.30
Anti-Lecompton Democrat Garnett Adrain ( NJ3 )20.87
Anti-Lecompton Democrat John G. Davis ( IN7 )20.87
Anti-Lecompton Democrat John B. Haskin ( NY9 )20.87
   Others73.04
Total votes:230100
Votes necessary:116>50
February 1, 1860 44th ballot [71]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican William Pennington ( NJ5 )11750.22
Democratic John A. McClernand ( IL6 )8536.48
Opposition John A. Gilmer ( NC5 )166.86
Democratic Martin J. Crawford ( GA2 )41.72
Opposition William N. H. Smith ( NC1 )41.72
Democratic John McQueen ( SC1 )20.86
   Others52.14
Total votes:233100
Votes necessary:117>50

July 1861

An election for speaker took place July 4, 1861, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 37th Congress, following the 1860 /61 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats, and the subsequent secession of several states from the Union at the outset of the Civil War. [lower-alpha 8] Galusha A. Grow received a majority of the votes cast on the first ballot and was elected speaker, but only after his chief opponent, Francis Preston Blair Jr., withdrew following the roll call vote, at which time 28 votes shifted to Grow. [73]

1861 election for Speaker [74] [lower-alpha 9]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Galusha A. Grow ( PA14 ) 99 62.27
Republican Francis P. Blair Jr. ( MO1 )127.55
Unionist John J. Crittenden ( KY8 )127.55
Democratic John S. Phelps ( MO6 )74.40
Democratic Clement Vallandingham ( OH3 )74.40
Democratic Erastus Corning ( NY14 )74.40
Democratic Samuel S. Cox ( OH12 )63.77
Democratic William A. Richardson ( IL5 )31.89
Democratic John A. McClernand ( IL5 )21.26
   Others42.51
Total votes159 100
Votes necessary080>50

December 1863

An election for speaker took place on December 7, 1863, at the start of the 38th Congress, following the 1862 /63 elections in which Republicans won only a plurality of the seats, but retained control of the House with the assistance of Unconditional Unionist members. Schuyler Colfax received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker.

1863 election for Speaker [75]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Schuyler Colfax ( IN9 ) 101 55.49
Democratic Samuel S. Cox ( OH12 )4223.08
Democratic John L. Dawson ( PA21 )126.59
Unionist Robert Mallory ( KY5 )105.49
Democratic Henry G. Stebbins ( NY1 )84.40
Unionist Austin A. King ( MO1 )63.30
Republican Francis P. Blair Jr. ( MO6 )21.10
Democratic John D. Stiles ( PA6 )10.55
Total votes182 100
Votes necessary092>50

December 1865

An election for speaker took place on December 4, 1865, at the start of the 39th Congress, following the 1864 /65 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Schuyler Colfax received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1865 election for Speaker [76]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Schuyler Colfax ( IN9 ) (Incumbent) 139 79.43
Democratic James Brooks ( NY8 )3620.57
Total votes175 100
Votes necessary088>50

March 1867

An election for speaker took place on March 4, 1867, at the start of the 40th Congress, following the 1866 /67 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Schuyler Colfax received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1867 election for Speaker [77]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Schuyler Colfax ( IN9 ) (Incumbent) 127 80.89
Democratic Samuel S. Marshall ( IL11 )3019.11
Total votes157 100
Votes necessary079>50

March 1869 (40th Congress)

On March 3, 1869, the final full day of the 40th Congress, Schuyler Colfax, who was to be sworn into office as the nation's 17th vice president the next day, resigned as speaker. Immediately afterward, the House passed a motion declaring Theodore Pomeroy duly elected speaker in place of Colfax (for one day). [78]

1869 special election for Speaker [79]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Theodore M. Pomeroy ( NY24 ) Voice U C

March 1869 (41st Congress)

An election for speaker took place on March 4, 1869, at the start of the 41st Congress, following the 1868 /69 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. James G. Blaine received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker.

1869 election for Speaker [80]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican James G. Blaine ( ME3 ) 135 70.31
Democratic Michael C. Kerr ( IN2 )5729.69
Total votes192 100
Votes necessary097>50

March 1871

An election for speaker took place on March 4, 1871, at the start of the 42nd Congress, following the 1870 /71 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. James G. Blaine received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1871 election for Speaker [81]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican James G. Blaine ( ME3 ) (Incumbent) 126 57.80
Democratic George W. Morgan ( OH13 )9242.20
Total votes218 100
Votes necessary110>50

December 1873

An election for speaker took place on December 2, 1873, at the start of the 43rd Congress, following the 1872 /73 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. James G. Blaine received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1873 election for Speaker [82]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican James G. Blaine ( ME3 ) (Incumbent) 189 70.26
Democratic Fernando Wood ( NY9 )7628.25
   Others41.49
Total votes269 100
Votes necessary135>50

December 1875

An election for speaker took place on December 6, 1875, at the start of the 44th Congress, following the 1874 /75 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Michael C. Kerr, who had just returned to Congress after losing re-election two years earlier, received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [83] This was the first time in 16 years, since 1859, that Democrats controlled the House. [84]

1875 election for Speaker [85]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Michael C. Kerr ( IN3 ) 173 61.35
Republican James G. Blaine ( ME3 ) (Incumbent)10637.59
   Others31.06
Total votes282 100
Votes necessary142>50

August 1876

Michael C. Kerr died on August 19, 1876, [83] between the first and second sessions of the 44th Congress. Consequently, an intra-term election for a new speaker was held on December 4, 1876, when Congress reconvened. Samuel J. Randall received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [86] [87]

1876 special election for Speaker [88]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Samuel J. Randall ( PA3 ) 162 65.59
Republican James A. Garfield ( OH19 )8233.20
   Others31.21
Total votes247 100
Votes necessary124>50

October 1877

An election for speaker took place on October 15, 1877, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 45th Congress, following the 1876 /77 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats, and the electoral crisis spawned by the contentious 1876 presidential election. Samuel J. Randall received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [86]

1877 election for Speaker [89]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Samuel J. Randall ( PA3 ) (Incumbent) 149 53.03
Republican James A. Garfield ( OH19 )13246.97
Total votes281 100
Votes necessary141>50

March 1879

An election for speaker took place on March 18, 1879, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 46th Congress, following the 1878 /79 elections in which Democrats won only a plurality of the seats, but retained control of power with the help of several Independent Democrats. Samuel J. Randall received a slim majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [90]

1879 election for Speaker [90] [91]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Samuel J. Randall ( PA3 ) (Incumbent) 144 50.88
Republican James A. Garfield ( OH19 )12544.17
Greenback Hendrick B. Wright ( PA12 )134.59
Republican William D. Kelley ( PA4 )10.35
Total votes283 100
Votes necessary142>50

December 1881

An election for speaker took place on December 5, 1881, at the start of the 47th Congress following the 1880 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. J. Warren Keifer won a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [92]

1881 election for Speaker [93]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican J. Warren Keifer ( OH8 ) 148 51.93
Democratic Samuel J. Randall ( PA3 ) (Incumbent)12945.26
Greenback Nicholas Ford ( MO9 )82.81
Total votes285 100
Votes necessary143>50

December 1883

An election for speaker took place on December 3, 1883, at the start of the 48th Congress following the 1882 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. John G. Carlisle received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [94]

1883 election for Speaker [95]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic John G. Carlisle ( KY6 ) 190 61.69
Republican J. Warren Keifer ( OH8 ) (Incumbent)11336.69
Republican George D. Robinson ( MA12 )20.66
Republican James W. Wadsworth ( NY27 )10.32
Republican Edward S. Lacey ( MI3 )10.32
Readjuster John S. Wise ( VAAt-large )10.32
Total votes308 100
Votes necessary155>50

December 1885

An election for speaker took place on December 7, 1885, at the start of the 49th Congress following the 1884 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. John G. Carlisle received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [94]

1885 election for Speaker [96]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic John G. Carlisle ( KY6 ) (Incumbent) 178 56.33
Republican Thomas B. Reed ( ME1 )13843.67
Total votes316 100
Votes necessary159>50

December 1887

An election for speaker took place on December 5, 1887, at the start of the 50th Congress following the 1886 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. John G. Carlisle received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [94]

1887 election for Speaker [97]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic John G. Carlisle ( KY6 ) (Incumbent) 163 52.24
Republican Thomas B. Reed ( ME1 )14747.12
Republican Charles N. Brumm ( PA13 )20.64
Total votes312 100
Votes necessary157>50

December 1889

An election for speaker took place on December 2, 1889, at the start of the 51st Congress following the 1888 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Thomas B. Reed received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [98]

1889 election for Speaker [99]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Thomas B. Reed ( ME1 ) 166 51.71
Democratic John G. Carlisle ( KY6 ) (Incumbent)15447.98
Democratic Amos J. Cummings ( PA9 )10.31
Total votes321 100
Votes necessary161>50

December 1891

An election for speaker took place on December 8, 1891, at the start of the 52nd Congress following the 1890 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Charles F. Crisp received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [100]

1891 election for Speaker [101]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Charles F. Crisp ( GA3 ) 228 71.47
Republican Thomas B. Reed ( ME1 )8326.02
Populist Thomas E. Watson ( GA10 )82.51
Votes necessary160>50

August 1893

An election for speaker took place on August 7, 1893, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 53rd Congress following the 1892 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Charles F. Crisp received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [100]

1893 election for Speaker [102]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Charles F. Crisp ( GA3 ) (Incumbent) 213 62.46
Republican Thomas B. Reed ( ME1 )12135.49
Populist Jerry Simpson ( KS7 )72.05
Total votes341 100
Votes necessary171>50

December 1895

An election for speaker took place on December 2, 1895, at the start of the 54th Congress following the 1894 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Former speaker Thomas B. Reed received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [103]

1895 election for Speaker [104]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Thomas B. Reed ( ME1 ) 240 70.18
Democratic Charles F. Crisp ( GA3 ) (Incumbent)9527.78
Populist John C. Bell ( CO2 )61.75
Democratic David B. Culberson ( TX4 )10.29
Total votes342 100
Votes necessary172>50

March 1897

An election for speaker took place on March 15, 1897, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 55th Congress following the 1896 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Thomas B. Reed received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [103]

1897 election for Speaker [105]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Thomas B. Reed ( ME1 ) (Incumbent) 200 59.52
Democratic Joseph W. Bailey ( TX4 )11433.93
Populist John C. Bell ( CO2 )216.25
Silver Francis G. Newlands ( NVAt-large )10.30
Total votes336 100
Votes necessary169>50

December 1899

An election for speaker took place December 4, 1899, at the start of the 56th Congress following the 1898 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. David B. Henderson received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [106]

1898 election for Speaker [107]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican David B. Henderson ( IA3 ) 177 52.68
Democratic James D. Richardson ( TN5 )15345.54
Populist John C. Bell ( CO2 )41.19
Silver Francis G. Newlands ( NVAt-large )20.59
Total votes336 100
Votes necessary169>50

Elections from 1901 to 1999

December 1901

An election for speaker took place December 2, 1901, at the start of the 57th Congress following the 1900 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. David B. Henderson received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. [108]

1901 election for Speaker [109]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican David B. Henderson ( IA3 ) (Incumbent) 192 55.49
Democratic James D. Richardson ( TN5 )15243.93
Populist William L. Stark ( NE4 )10.29
Democratic Amos J. Cummings ( NY10 )10.29
Total votes346 100
Votes necessary174>50

November 1903

An election for speaker took place November 9, 1903, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 58th Congress following the 1902 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Joseph Cannon received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker.

1903 election for Speaker [110]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Joseph Cannon ( IL12 ) 198 54.25
Democratic John Williams ( MS8 )16745.75
Total votes365 100
Votes necessary183>50

December 1905

An election for speaker took place December 4, 1905, at the start of the 59th Congress following the 1904 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Joseph Cannon received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1905 election for Speaker [111]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Joseph Cannon ( IL18 ) (Incumbent) 243 65.50
Democratic John Williams ( MS8 )12834.50
Total votes371 100
Votes necessary186>50

December 1907

An election for speaker took place December 2, 1907, at the start of the 60th Congress following the 1906 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Joseph Cannon received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1907 election for Speaker [112]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Joseph Cannon ( IL18 ) (Incumbent) 213 56.80
Democratic John Williams ( MS8 )16243.20
Total votes375 100
Votes necessary188>50

March 1909

An election for speaker took place March 15, 1909, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 61st Congress following the 1908 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Joseph Cannon received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. Cannon's election to a fourth term as speaker was challenged by a group of dissatisfied progressive Republicans; 12 of these insurgents voted for other people. [113] [114]

1909 election for Speaker [115]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Joseph Cannon ( IL18 ) (Incumbent) 204 53.40
Democratic Champ Clark ( MO9 )16643.46
Republican Henry A. Cooper ( WI1 )82.10
Republican George W. Norris ( NE5 )20.52
Republican John J. Esch ( WI7 )10.26
Republican William P. Hepburn ( IA8 )10.26
Total votes382 100
Votes necessary192>50

April 1911

An election for speaker took place April 4, 1911, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 62nd Congress following the 1910 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Champ Clark received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. This was the first time in 16 years, since 1895, that Democrats controlled the House. [116]

1911 election for Speaker [117]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Champ Clark ( MO9 ) 220 59.78
Republican James R. Mann ( IL2 )13135.60
Republican Henry A. Cooper ( WI1 )164.35
Republican George W. Norris ( NE5 )10.27
Total votes368 100
Votes necessary185>50

April 1913

An election for speaker took place April 7, 1913, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 63rd Congress following the 1912 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Champ Clark received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1913 election for Speaker [118]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Champ Clark ( MO9 ) (Incumbent) 272 66.99
Republican James R. Mann ( IL2 )11127.34
Republican Victor Murdock ( KS8 )184.43
Republican Henry A. Cooper ( WI1 )40.99
Republican John M. Nelson ( WI3 )10.25
Total votes406 100
Votes necessary204>50

December 1915

An election for speaker took place December 6, 1915, at the start of the 64th Congress following the 1914 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Champ Clark received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1915 election for Speaker [119]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Champ Clark ( MO9 ) (Incumbent) 222 52.61
Republican James R. Mann ( IL2 )19546.21
    Present 51.18
Total votes422 100
Votes necessary212>50

April 1917

An election for speaker took place April 2, 1917, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 65th Congress following 1916 elections in which Republicans won a plurality of the seats. Even so, Champ Clark received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker. Democrats were able to retain control of the House by forming a Coalition with third-party (Progressive, Prohibition and Socialist) members. [120]

1917 election for Speaker [121]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Champ Clark ( MO9 ) (Incumbent) 217 50.70
Republican James R. Mann ( IL2 )20547.89
Republican Frederick H. Gillett ( MA2 )20.47
Republican Irvine Lenroot ( WI11 )20.47
    Present 20.47
Total votes428 100
Votes necessary215>50

May 1919

An election for speaker took place May 19, 1919, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 66th Congress following 1918 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Frederick H. Gillett received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [122]

1919 election for Speaker [123]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Frederick H. Gillett ( MA2 ) 228 57.00
Democratic Champ Clark ( MO9 ) (Incumbent)17243.00
Total votes400 100
Votes necessary201>50

April 1921

An election for speaker took place April 11, 1921, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 67th Congress following 1920 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Frederick H. Gillett received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1921 election for Speaker [124]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Frederick H. Gillett ( MA2 ) (Incumbent) 297 70.01
Democratic Claude Kitchin ( NC2 )12229.05
    Present 10.24
Total votes420 100
Votes necessary211>50

December 1923

An election for speaker took place December 3–5, 1923, at the start of the 68th Congress, following the 1922 elections in which the Republicans won a majority of the seats. Frederick H. Gillett received a majority of the votes cast in the 9th ballot and was re-elected speaker. Progressive Republicans had refused to support Gillett for the first eight ballots. Only after winning concessions from Republican conference leaders (a seat on the House Rules Committee and a pledge that requested House rules changes would be considered) did they agree to support him. [125]

1923 election for Speaker
December 3, 1923 1st ballot [126]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Frederick H. Gillett ( MA2 ) (Incumbent)19747.58
Democratic Finis J. Garrett ( TN9 )19547.10
Republican Henry A. Cooper ( WI1 )174.11
Republican Martin B. Madden ( IL1 )51.21
Total votes:414100
Votes necessary:208>50
December 5, 1923 9th ballot [127]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Frederick H. Gillett ( MA2 ) (Incumbent)21551.94
Democratic Finis J. Garrett ( TN9 )19747.58
Republican Martin B. Madden ( IL1 )20.48
Total votes:414100
Votes necessary:208>50

December 1925

An election for speaker took place December 7, 1925, at the start of the 69th Congress following 1924 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Nicholas Longworth received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker, even though progressive Republicans refused to vote for him. [128]

1925 election for Speaker [129]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Nicholas Longworth ( OH1 ) 229 54.52
Democratic Finis J. Garrett ( TN9 )17341.19
Republican Henry A. Cooper ( WI1 )133.10
    Present 51.19
Total votes420 100
Votes necessary211>50

December 1927

An election for speaker took place December 5, 1927, at the start of the 70th Congress following 1926 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Nicholas Longworth received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1927 election for Speaker [130]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Nicholas Longworth ( OH1 ) (Incumbent) 225 53.96
Democratic Finis J. Garrett ( TN9 )17742.44
    Present 51.20
Total votes417 100
Votes necessary209>50

April 1929

An election for speaker took place April 15, 1929, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 71st Congress following 1928 elections in which Republicans won a majority of the seats. Nicholas Longworth received a majority of the votes cast and was re-elected speaker.

1929 election for Speaker [131]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Republican Nicholas Longworth ( OH1 ) (Incumbent) 254 63.82
Democratic John N. Garner ( TX15 )14335.93
    Present 10.25
Total votes398 100
Votes necessary200>50

December 1931

An election for speaker took place on December 7, 1931, at the start of the 72nd Congress, following the 1930 elections in which Republicans won a one-seat majority. However, during the 13 months between Election Day and the start of the new Congress, 14 members-elect died, including the incumbent speaker, Nicholas Longworth, who died on April 9, 1931. After the Republicans lost four of the special elections called to fill the vacancies, when Congress convened, the Democrats held a three-seat majority in the House. John N. Garner received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [132] [133]

1931 election for Speaker [134]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic John N. Garner ( TX15 ) 218 50.69
Republican Bertrand Snell ( NY31 )20748.14
Republican George J. Schneider ( WI9 )51.17
Total votes430 100
Votes necessary216>50

March 1933

An election for speaker took place March 9, 1933, at the start [lower-alpha 3] of the 73rd Congress, following the 1932 elections in which Democrats won a majority of the seats. Henry T. Rainey received a majority of the votes cast and was elected speaker. [135]

1933 election for Speaker [136]
PartyCandidateVotes%
Democratic Henry T. Rainey (