United States elections, 1974

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The 1974 United States elections were held on November 5, and elected the members of the 94th United States Congress. The elections occurred 3 months into Republican President Gerald Ford's term.[1] Ford had become president on August 9, 1974, upon the resignation of his predecessor, Richard Nixon, in the wake of the Watergate scandal. He granted Nixon a pardon on September 8. In addition, an energy crisis hit the country at this time, resulting in soaring inflation. These circumstances, along with the six-year itch phenomenon, hurt the Republicans, and they lost seats in both houses of Congress. Many of the newly elected Democrats were liberal northerners (known as Watergate Babies), and the influx of liberals moved power away from the conservative southern Democrats who held most committee chairs in both houses.[2]

United States House of Representatives[edit]

The Democrats made large gains in the House, taking 49 seats from the Republicans and increasing their majority above the two-thirds mark.

United States Senate[edit]

The Democrats made a net gain of four Senate seats from the Republicans. Democrat John A. Durkin won a special election in New Hampshire after the Senate voided the original contested election. After the special election, Democrats possessed 60 seats to 38 for the Republicans, with one independent who caucused with the Democrats and one Conservative who caucused with the Republicans.

Gubernatorial elections[edit]

The Democratic Party picked up a net of four seats in the gubernatorial elections.


  1. ^ "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 5, 1974" (PDF). U.S. House of Reps, Office of the Clerk. Retrieved 10 April 2017.
  2. ^ Sinclair, Barbara (2006). Party Wars. University of Oklahoma Press. pp. 187–188. |access-date= requires |url= (help)