Bonus List

STATES WITH U.S. SENATORS WHO HAVE SPENT THE MOST (AND LEAST) AMOUNT OF TIME IN OFFICE

Some states have a lot of U.S. Senators who have been in office a long time, while others have many short-timers (some for a few months, or even just a few days). Overall, low-population states tend to have Senators with longer/more terms, while high-population states tend to have those with shorter terms (California and New York, while not quite making that list, are still below average with length of service). Part of this could be because a senior Senator in a low-population state can give his or her state a disproportionate amount of power (which would be lost if he/she were not reelected). Also, the Western United States (and to a smaller extent, New England) has Senators with longer periods in office than the rest of the country, while industrial states tend to have shorter lengths of service.

Note that two states with extremely long-term Senators, South Carolina (Strom Thurmond) and West Virginia (Robert Byrd), each with about 47 years of service, did not make the list of states with the longest average periods. It takes more than just one Senator to rank high. Arizona, which ranks #1, has only had 10 U.S. Senators in its entire state history!

The statistics below include all U.S. Senators who were in office starting in 1914. Direct elections of Senators by the residents of their states began in 1913 (and thus the terms of the "new wave" of Senators began in 1914). However, Senators who were already in office in 1914 due to previous elections by the state legislatures are also included in these statistics. Except for Alaska and Hawaii (which are both above average, especially Hawaii, in average length of service of Senators), the 1914 cutoff also rids any biases that older states (if data from the 1800s were included) and states admitted to the union later in U.S. history might have (since Senators generally served less time earlier in U.S. history).

Most Time per Senator:

STATE


1. Arizona
2. Mississippi
3. Hawaii
3. Utah
5. Virginia
6. Montana
7. North Dakota
7. Rhode Island
7. Vermont
10. Wisconsin
AVERAGE NUMBER OF
YEARS PER U.S. SENATOR
(1914-present)
18.8
18.7
18.5
18.5
15.8
15.5
14.4
14.4
14.4
14.1

Least Time per Senator:

STATE


1. Kentucky
2. New Jersey
3. Colorado
4. Ohio
5. Illinois
6. Nebraska
6. Tennessee
8. Minnesota
8. North Carolina
8. South Dakota
AVERAGE NUMBER OF
YEARS PER U.S. SENATOR
(1914-present)
7.4
7.8
8.1
8.2
8.7
8.9
8.9
9.0
9.0
9.0


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Copyright 2005 Brandt Maxwell.