Texas's 4th congressional district
|Texas's 4th congressional district|
|Current Representative||John Ratcliffe (R–Heath)|
|Ethnicity||83.0% White, 10.4% Black, 0.6% Asian, 7.9% Hispanic, 0.8% Native American, 0.2% other|
|Cook PVI||R+21 (2012)|
Texas District 4 of the United States House of Representatives is a Congressional district that serves an area that includes some counties along the Red River north of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, including semi-rural Rockwall County and the large non-urbanized portion of Collin County. It also includes counties in East Texas such as Rains County. As of the 2000 census, District 4 represents 651,620 people who are predominantly Caucasian (80.8%) and middle-class (median family income is US$46,086, compared to $50,046 nationwide).
Texas has had at least four congressional districts since the state was readmitted to the Union after the Civil War. The district's current seat dates from 1903; only four men have represented it since then.
Once a reliably Democratic district, the district swung rapidly into the Republican column as Dallas' suburbs spilled into the western portion of the district. In fact, it has not supported a Democrat for president since 1964. For many years, it was based in Tyler, but a controversial 2003 redistricting orchestrated by then-House Majority Leader Tom DeLay drew it and neighboring Longview out of District 4 and into neighboring District 1 which made District 1 significantly more Republican. In the process, District 4 was pushed slightly to the north, picking up Texarkana from District 1.
Ralph Hall, the one-time dean of the Texas congressional delegation, represented the district from 1981 to 2015. Originally a Democrat, he became a Republican in 2004. Hall's voting record had been very conservative even by Texas Democratic standards, which served him well as the district abandoned its Democratic roots. By the turn of the century, he was the only elected Democrat above the county level in much of the district. He had been rumored as a party switcher for some time, and many experts believed his district was almost certain to be taken over by a Republican anyway once he retired.
Hall was defeated in the 2014 Republican primary by John Ratcliffe, a former United States Attorney and the former mayor of Heath, near Hall's hometown of Rockwall. No Democrat even filed, though the district is so heavily Republican that any Democratic candidate would have faced nearly impossible odds in any event. Ratcliffe took office in January 2015, becoming only the fourth person to hold the seat.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower was born in the fourth district.
Even as late as 1996, Bill Clinton carried 10 of the 16 counties currently in this district; many of those counties were in District 1 at the time.
After the 2012 redistricting process, a large portion of Collin County had been removed, and replaced with the portion of Cass County that had been in Texas's 1st congressional district, all of Marion County, and a large portion of Upshur County.
Election results from recent presidential races
|2000||Bush 66 - 34%|
|2004||Bush 70 - 29%|
|2008||McCain 69 - 30%|
List of representatives
The district was created in 1869, one of two new districts that Texas gained after the 1860 Census, but was not filled due to the Civil War and Reconstruction.
|American Civil War/Reconstruction|
|Edward Degener||Republican||March 31, 1870 –
March 3, 1871
|John Hancock||Democratic||March 4, 1871 –
March 3, 1875
|Redistricted to the 5th district|
|Roger Q. Mills||Democratic||March 4, 1875 –
March 3, 1883
|Redistricted from the At-large district;
Redistricted to the 9th district
|David B. Culberson||Democratic||March 4, 1883 –
March 3, 1897
|Redistricted from the 2nd district|
|John W. Cranford||Democratic||March 4, 1897 –
March 3, 1899
|Vacant||March 3, 1899 –
March 4, 1899
|John Levi Sheppard||Democratic||March 4, 1899 –
October 11, 1902
|Vacant||October 11, 1902 –
November 15, 1902
|Morris Sheppard||Democratic||November 15, 1902 –
March 3, 1903
|Redistricted to the 1st district|
|Choice B. Randell||Democratic||March 4, 1903 –
March 3, 1913
|Redistricted from the 5th district|
|Sam Rayburn||Democratic||March 4, 1913 –
November 16, 1961
|Vacant||November 16, 1961 –
January 30, 1962
|Ray Roberts||Democratic||January 30, 1962 –
January 3, 1981
|Ralph Hall||Democratic||January 3, 1981 –
January 5, 2004
|First elected in 1980
Changed party in 2004
|Republican||January 5, 2004 –
January 3, 2015
|John Ratcliffe||Republican||January 3, 2015 –
||First elected in 2014|
|US House election, 2004: Texas District 4|
|Libertarian||Kevin D. Anderson||3,491||1.3|
|US House election, 2006: Texas District 4|
|Libertarian||Kurt G. Helm||3,496||2.11|
|US House election, 2008: Texas District 4|
|US House election, 2010: Texas District 4|
|Libertarian||Jim D. Prindle||4,729||2.53|
Historical district boundaries
- Office of the Secretary of State (November 2, 2004). "Race Summary Report". 1992 - Current Election History. Texas Secretary of State. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
- Office of the Secretary of State (November 7, 2006). "Race Summary Report". 1992 - Current Election History. Texas Secretary of State. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
- Office of the Secretary of State (November 4, 2008). "Race Summary Report". 1992 - Current Election History. Texas Secretary of State. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
- Office of the Secretary of State (November 2, 2010). "Race Summary Report". 1992 - Current Election History. Texas Secretary of State. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
- Martis, Kenneth C. (1989). The Historical Atlas of Political Parties in the United States Congress. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.
- Martis, Kenneth C. (1982). The Historical Atlas of United States Congressional Districts. New York: Macmillan Publishing Company.
- Congressional Biographical Directory of the United States 1774–present