Massachusetts

The U.S. Senator from Massachusetts By the Numbers

  • U.S. Rep. Frederick H. Gillet

    U.S. Rep. Frederick H. Gillet

    Only 57 men and 1 woman gained admission to the U.S. Senate from Massachusetts. Those who manage to survive their first term in that exclusive club tend to hold onto the seat like barnacles to a ship’s hull.

  •  8 members of 3 Massachusetts families have served as U.S. senators from Massachusetts for a total of 112 years – half the Senate’s existence.
  •  Massachusetts senators averaged 3 years in office from the beginning of the Senate to 1810. In the last 100 years, the average is 9.6. The average for all time is 8. Take out the last four, and the average is 8.7.
  •  26, or 45%, of U.S. senators from Massachusetts did not complete their full term in office.  They either resigned or died.
  •  4 Massachusetts senators also served as Speaker of the House of Representatives: Theodore Sedgwick, Joseph Bradley Varnum, Robert Charles Winthrop and Frederick Gillett.  (By the way, 8 House speakers have come from Massachusetts, more than any other state.)
  •  70% attended Ivy League Schools, and 47% attended Harvard. Only 4 received their higher education outside of New England, and half of those are in the Senate right now: Elizabeth Warren and Mo Cowan, appointed to John Kerry’s seat after he resigned. 
  •  29 served in the U.S. House of Representatives. 41 were Massachusetts natives and 35 were lawyers.
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