Only 3 World War II Veterans Left in Congress

Saturday, December 22, 2012
Sen. Frank Lautenberg

With the death of U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), the Senate has lost yet another of its World War II veterans, who once dominated the upper chamber of Congress.


In 1963, when Inouye joined the Senate, 39 of 100 senators had served in WWII and another 25 had served in World War I. As of next month when Congress reconvenes, there will be only one WWII vet in the Senate: Democrat Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey.


In the House, there will be only two: Republican Ralph Hall, 89, of Texas, and 86-year-old Democrat John Dingell of Michigan.


Some Democrats in New Jersey think Lautenberg, who will turn 89 in January, won’t seek reelection in 2014. Lautenberg has not said anything yet about his plans to run again.


When Barack Obama and Joe Biden faced Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan in the 2012 presidential elections, it marked the first time in 80 years that neither major party included a veteran on their ticket.

-Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky


To Learn More:

Analysis: Veterans No Longer Dominate American Politics (by George E. Condon Jr., National Journal)

Booker Eyes Lautenberg’s Senate Seat (by Jeremy Herb, The Hill)

Many Members of Congress Invest in Businesses They Oversee (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)


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