Monday, December 29, 2008

Pew Forum Study Shows 14 Latter-Day Saints, Mostly Republican, In The New 111th Congress

Note: This post retained solely for historical purposes. It's now superseded by a similar list for the 112th Congress, which shows 15 LDS members in Congress.

The Salt Lake Tribune's Out Of Context blog informs us that the Pew Forum for Religion and Public Life released a breakdown of the faiths and denominations of the members of the incoming 111th Congress last week, and that the percentage of Mormons in the new Congress is still slightly greater than the percentage in overall society, although the number of Mormons dropped slightly.

Latter-day Saints now comprise 2.6 percent of the body vs. 1.7 percent of the American public. LDS members make up 5 percent of the Senate, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV). But the number of Mormons has been dwindling, from 17 in the 106th Congress down to 14 today (this also includes Eni Faleomavaega, the non-voting delegate from American Samoa). The Pew report is available HERE; the 15-page appendix listing all individual members of Congress is HERE.

And here is the list of LDS members of Congress (10 Republicans, 3 Democrats, 1 non-specified). Click on their names to go directly to their official Congressional websites:

(1). U.S. Senate:
-- Michael Crapo (R-ID)
-- Harry Reid (D-NV)
-- Tom Udall (D-NM)
-- Bob Bennett (R-UT)
-- Orrin Hatch (R-UT)

(2). U.S. House:
-- Jeff Flake (R-AZ)
-- Wally Herger (R-CA)
-- Howard McKeon (R-CA)
-- Mike Simpson (R-ID)
-- Dean Heller (R-NV)
-- Rob Bishop (R-UT)
-- Jason Chaffetz (R-UT)
-- Jim Matheson (D-UT)
-- Eni Faleomavaega (non-voting delegate from American Samoa)

While researching this information, I found out that the Community of Christ (formerly Reorganized LDS) is also represented in Congress in the person of Leonard Boswell (D-IA). Though having just a fraction of the Utah-based LDS membership, the Community of Christ is fairly strong in Missouri, southern Iowa, and Illinois, so it's no surprise that a CoC member would be elected from any of those areas.

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