No wonder Washington never changes – 79 members of Congress have been there since Bill Clinton’s first term in the White House. This list includes names such as Reid, Feinstein, McConnell, McCain, Pelosi, Boehner, Rangel and Boxer. In this article, I am going to share with you a complete list of the members of Congress that have been “serving” us for at least 20 years. They believe that they are “serving” us well, but without a doubt most Americans very much wish that true “change” would come to Washington. In fact, right now Congress has a 15 percent approval rating with the American people, and that approval rating has been consistently below 20 percent since mid-2011. So of course we took advantage of the 2014 mid-term election to dump as many of those Congress critters out of office as we possibly could, right? Wrong. Sadly, incumbents were re-elected at a 95 percent rate in 2014. This just shows how broken and how corrupt our system has become. The American people absolutely hate the job that Congress is doing, and yet the same clowns just keep getting sent back to Washington again and again.
Our founders never intended for service in Congress to become a career, but that is precisely what it has become for many of our “public servants”. As of this moment, there are 79 members of Congress that have been in office for at least 20 years, and there are 16 members of Congress that have been in office for at least 30 years.
No wonder so many Americans are advocating term limits these days. When there are dozens of members of Congress that know that they are going to be sent back to Washington over and over again no matter how the American people feel about things, that can cause them to become extremely callous toward the will of the people. Instead, often these politicians become increasingly responsive to the needs of their big donors, because it takes big money to win campaign after campaign. I am sure that if George Washington, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson were running around today, they would be absolutely disgusted by how our system has evolved.
The following is a list from rollcall.com of the Republicans in the U.S. Senate that have served for at least 20 years and the dates when they first took office…
Orrin G. Hatch, Utah Jan. 4, 1977
Thad Cochran, Miss. Dec. 27, 1978
Charles E. Grassley, Iowa Jan. 5, 1981
Mitch McConnell, Ky. Jan. 3, 1985
Richard C. Shelby, Ala. Jan. 6, 1987
John McCain, Ariz. Jan. 6, 1987
James M. Inhofe, Okla. Nov. 30, 1994
The following is a list from rollcall.com of the Democrats in the U.S. Senate that have served for at least 20 years and the dates when they first took office…
Patrick J. Leahy, Vt. Jan. 14, 1975
Barbara A. Mikulski, Md. Jan. 6, 1987
Harry Reid, Nev. Jan. 6, 1987
Dianne Feinstein, Calif. Nov. 4, 1992
Barbara Boxer, Calif. Jan. 5, 1993
Patty Murray, Wash. Jan. 5, 1993
The following is a list from rollcall.com of the Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives that have served for at least 20 years and the dates when they first took office…
Don Young, Alaska March 6, 1973
Jim Sensenbrenner, Wis. Jan. 15, 1979
Harold Rogers, Ky. Jan. 5, 1981
Christopher H. Smith, N.J. Jan. 5, 1981
Joe L. Barton, Texas Jan. 3, 1985
Lamar Smith, Texas Jan. 6, 1987
Fred Upton, Mich. Jan. 6, 1987
John J. Duncan Jr., Tenn. Nov. 8, 1988
Dana Rohrabacher, Calif. Jan. 3, 1989
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Fla. Aug. 29, 1989
John A. Boehner, Ohio Jan. 3, 1991
Sam Johnson, Texas May 18, 1991
Ken Calvert, Calif. Jan. 5, 1993
Robert W. Goodlatte, Va. Jan. 5, 1993
Peter T. King, N.Y. Jan. 5, 1993
John L. Mica, Fla. Jan. 5, 1993
Ed Royce, Calif. Jan. 5, 1993
Frank D. Lucas, Okla. May 10, 1994
Rodney Frelinghuysen, N.J. Jan. 4, 1995
Walter B. Jones, N.C. Jan. 4, 1995
Frank A. LoBiondo, N.J. Jan. 4, 1995
Mac Thornberry, Texas Jan. 4, 1995
Edward Whitfield, Ky. Jan. 4, 1995
The following is a list from rollcall.com of the Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives that have served for at least 20 years and the dates when they first took office…
John Conyers Jr., Mich. Jan. 4, 1965
Charles B. Rangel, N.Y. Jan. 21, 1971
Steny H. Hoyer, Md. May 19, 1981
Marcy Kaptur, Ohio Jan. 3, 1983
Sander M. Levin, Mich. Jan. 3, 1983
Peter J. Visclosky, Ind. Jan. 3, 1985
Peter A. DeFazio, Ore. Jan. 6, 1987
John Lewis, Ga. Jan. 6, 1987
Louise M. Slaughter, N.Y. Jan. 6, 1987
Nancy Pelosi, Calif. June 2, 1987
Frank Pallone Jr., N.J. Nov. 8, 1988
Eliot L. Engel, N.Y. Jan. 3, 1989
Nita M. Lowey, N.Y. Jan. 3, 1989
Jim McDermott, Wash. Jan. 3, 1989
Richard E. Neal, Mass. Jan. 3, 1989
José E. Serrano, N.Y. March 20, 1990
David E. Price, N.C. Jan. 7, 1997 Also served 1987-95
Rosa DeLauro, Conn. Jan. 3, 1991
Collin C. Peterson, Minn. Jan. 3, 1991
Maxine Waters, Calif. Jan. 3, 1991
Jerrold Nadler, N.Y. Nov. 3, 1992
Jim Cooper, Tenn. Jan. 7, 2003 Also served 1983-95
Xavier Becerra, Calif. Jan. 5, 1993
Sanford D. Bishop Jr., Ga. Jan. 5, 1993
Corrine Brown, Fla. Jan. 5, 1993
James E. Clyburn, S.C. Jan. 5, 1993
Anna G. Eshoo, Calif. Jan. 5, 1993
Gene Green, Texas Jan. 5, 1993
Luis V. Gutierrez, Ill. Jan. 5, 1993
Alcee L. Hastings, Fla. Jan. 5, 1993
Eddie Bernice Johnson, Texas Jan. 5, 1993
Carolyn B. Maloney, N.Y. Jan. 5, 1993
Lucille Roybal-Allard, Calif. Jan. 5, 1993
Bobby L. Rush, Ill. Jan. 5, 1993
Robert C. Scott, Va. Jan. 5, 1993
Nydia M. Velázquez, N.Y. Jan. 5, 1993
Bennie Thompson, Miss. April 13, 1993
Sam Farr, Calif. June 8, 1993
Lloyd Doggett, Texas Jan. 4, 1995
Mike Doyle, Pa. Jan. 4, 1995
Chaka Fattah, Pa. Jan. 4, 1995
Sheila Jackson Lee, Texas Jan. 4, 1995
Zoe Lofgren, Calif. Jan. 4, 1995
As you looked over those lists, you probably noticed that they contain many of the members of Congress that Americans complain about the most.
Unfortunately, because the vast majority of these individuals come from states or congressional districts that are basically a lock to vote a certain way, there is very little hope of ever removing them. That means that most of these Congress critters are going to get to keep coming back for as long as they want.
No matter which political party you prefer, this should greatly disturb you.
Our founders certainly never intended for a permanent class of elitists to rule over us.
But that is what we have.
We are supposed to have a government of the people, by the people and for the people, but instead we have a government of the elite, by the elite and for the elite. Most people do not realize this, but today most members of Congress are actually millionaires. The disconnect between members of Congress and average Americans has never been greater than it is right now, and I think that is a very troubling sign for the future of this nation.
So is there a solution to this problem?
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