United States elections, 1946

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Partisan control of Congress and the presidency
Previous party
Incoming party
President Democratic Democratic
House Democratic Republican
Senate Democratic Republican

The 1946 United States elections were held on November 5, 1946, and elected the members of the 80th United States Congress. In the first election after the end of World War II, incumbent President Harry S. Truman (who had taken office after the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1945) and the Democratic Party suffered large losses. After having been in the minority of both chambers of Congress since 1932, Republicans took control of both the House and the Senate.[1][2]

Democrats lost fifty-four seats to the Republican Party in the House of Representatives, and Democrats also lost eleven seats to the Republicans in the U.S. Senate, allowing Republicans to take control of both chambers. A Progressive also lost a seat to a Republican.[3]

The election stymied Truman's efforts to enact his Fair Deal policies and helped ensure the passage of the Labor Management Relations Act of 1947. However, Truman was able to implement the Marshall Plan, the National Security Act of 1947, and other Cold War policies following the election. Future presidents John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon first won election to Congress in this election, while Thomas Dewey's re-election as Governor of New York helped him earn the 1948 Republican nomination for president. Joseph McCarthy also won election as Senator from Wisconsin in 1946.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Party Divisions of the House of Representatives". United States House of Representatives. Retrieved 25 June 2014. 
  2. ^ "Party Division in the Senate, 1789-Present". United States Senate. Retrieved 25 June 2014. 
  3. ^ "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 5, 1946" (PDF). U.S. House of Reps, Office of the Clerk. Retrieved 27 December 2011. 
  4. ^ Busch, Andrew (1999). Horses in Midstream. University of Pittsburgh Press. pp. 159–164.