Neha Patil (Editor)

86th United States Congress

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Senate President  Richard Nixon (R)
House Speaker:  Sam Rayburn (D)
House Majority:  Democratic
Senate Pres. pro tem:  Carl Hayden (D)
Senate Majority:  Democratic
86th United States Congress
Members:  96 (then increasing to 100) Senators 435 (then temporarily increasing to 437) Representatives

The Eighty-sixth United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, composed of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met in Washington, D.C. from January 3, 1959 to January 3, 1961, during the last two years of the presidency of Dwight D. Eisenhower. The apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives was based on the Seventeenth Census of the United States in 1950. Both chambers had a Democratic majority. When Alaska and Hawaii were admitted as states in 1959, the membership of the House temporarily increased to 437 (seating one member from each of those newly admitted states and leaving the apportionment of the other 435 seats unchanged); it would remain at 437 until reapportionment resulting from the 1960 census.


Major events

  • January 7, 1959: The United States recognizes the new Cuban government of Fidel Castro
  • February 12, 1959: In commemorations of the 150th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's birth, Congress met in joint session to hear actor Fredric March give a dramatic reading of the Gettysburg Address, followed with an address by writer Carl Sandburg
  • February 1, 1960: Greensboro sit-ins begin
  • May 1, 1960: U-2 incident
  • June 29, 1960: King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand addresses a Joint Meeting of Congress
  • November 8, 1960: United States presidential election, 1960
  • Major legislation

  • 1959: Airport Construction Act, Pub.L. 86–72
  • September 14, 1959: Landrum–Griffin Act, Pub.L. 86–257, 73 Stat. 519
  • April 22, 1960: Narcotics Manufacturing Act of 1960, Pub.L. 86–429, 74 Stat. 55
  • May 6, 1960: Civil Rights Act of 1960, Pub.L. 86–449, 74 Stat. 86
  • June 12, 1960: Multiple-Use Sustained-Yield Act of 1960, Pub.L. 86–517, 74 Stat. 215
  • July 14, 1960: Flood Control Act of 1960, Pub.L. 86–845, 74 Stat. 488
  • September 13, 1960: Social Security Amendments (Kerr-Mill aid), Pub.L. 86–778, 74 Stat. 976
  • Treaties

  • December 1, 1959: Antarctic Treaty signed
  • January 19, 1960: Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan signed
  • Constitutional amendment

  • June 17, 1960: The Twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution passed Congress, which would allow residents of Washington, D.C. to vote in presidential elections. It would be ratified by the states in the next Congress.
  • States admitted

  • August 21, 1959: Hawaii was admitted as the 50th state.
  • Senate

  • Democratic: 64 (majority), then 65
  • Republican: 34, then 35
  • TOTAL members: 98, then 100

    House of Representatives

  • Democratic: 283 (majority)
  • Republican: 153
  • Independent: 1
  • TOTAL members: 437. The increase over the usual 435 members was due to the admission of Alaska and Hawaii, whose seats were temporary until reapportionment following the 1960 Census.


  • President of the Senate: Richard Nixon (R)
  • President pro tempore: Carl Hayden (D)
  • Majority (Democratic) leadership

  • Majority Leader: Lyndon B. Johnson
  • Majority Whip: Mike Mansfield
  • Caucus Secretary: Thomas C. Hennings Jr., until September 13, 1960
  • George Smathers, afterwards
  • Minority (Republican) leadership

  • Minority Leader: Everett Dirksen
  • Minority Whip: Thomas Kuchel
  • Republican Conference Chairman: Leverett Saltonstall
  • Republican Conference Secretary: Milton Young
  • National Senatorial Committee Chair: Andrew Frank Schoeppel
  • Policy Committee Chairman: Styles Bridges
  • House of Representatives

  • Speaker: Sam Rayburn (D)
  • Majority (Democratic) leadership

  • Majority Leader: John William McCormack
  • Majority Whip: Carl Albert
  • Democratic Caucus Chairman: Charles Melvin Price
  • Caucus Secretary: Leonor Sullivan
  • Democratic Campaign Committee Chairman: Michael J. Kirwan
  • Minority (Republican) leadership

  • Minority Leader: Charles A. Halleck
  • Minority Whip: Leslie C. Arends
  • Conference Chair: Charles B. Hoeven
  • Policy Committee Chairman: John W. Byrnes
  • Caucuses

  • House Democratic Caucus
  • Senate

    Senators are popularly elected statewide every two years, with one-third beginning new six-year terms with each Congress. Preceding the names in the list below are Senate class numbers, which indicate the cycle of their election.

    House of Representatives

    The names of members of the House of Representatives are preceded by their district numbers.


    Lists of committees and their party leaders.


  • Aeronautical and Space Sciences
  • Agriculture and Forestry
  • Appropriations
  • Banking and Currency
  • District of Columbia
  • Finance
  • Foreign Relations
  • Government Operations
  • Interior and Insular Affairs
  • Interstate and Foreign Commerce
  • Judiciary
  • Labor-Management Relations (Select)
  • Labor and Public Welfare
  • National Water Resources (Select)
  • Preserve Historical Records of the Senate (Special)
  • Post Office and Civil Service
  • Public Works
  • Small Business (Select)
  • Space and Aeronautics (Special)
  • Subcommittee on Internal Security
  • Unemployment Problems (Special)
  • Whole
  • House of Representatives

  • Agriculture
  • Appropriations
  • Banking and Currency
  • District of Columbia
  • Education and Labor
  • Foreign Affairs
  • Government Operations
  • House Administration
  • Interior and Insular Affairs
  • Merchant Marine and Fisheries
  • Post Office and Civil Service
  • Public Works
  • Rules
  • Science and Astronautics
  • Small Business (Select)
  • Standards of Official Conduct
  • Un-American Activities
  • Veterans' Affairs
  • Ways and Means
  • Whole
  • Joint committees

  • Atomic Energy
  • Conditions of Indian Tribes (Special)
  • Construction of a Building for a Museum of History and Technology for the Smithsonian
  • Defense Production
  • Disposition of Executive Papers
  • Economic
  • Immigration and Nationality Policy
  • Legislative Budget
  • The Library
  • Navajo-Hopi Indian Administration
  • Printing
  • Reduction of Nonessential Federal Expenditures
  • Taxation
  • Washington (DC) Metropolitan Problems
  • Legislative branch agency directors

  • Architect of the Capitol: J. George Stewart
  • Attending Physician of the United States Congress: George Calver
  • Comptroller General of the United States: Joseph Campbell
  • Librarian of Congress: Lawrence Quincy Mumford
  • Public Printer of the United States: Raymond Blattenberger
  • Senate

  • Chaplain: Frederick Brown Harris, Methodist
  • Parliamentarian: Charles Watkins
  • Secretary: Felton McLellan Johnston
  • Sergeant at Arms: Joseph C. Duke
  • House of Representatives

  • Clerk: Ralph R. Roberts
  • Doorkeeper: William Mosley "Fishbait" Miller
  • Parliamentarian: Lewis Deschler
  • Postmaster: H. H. Morris
  • Sergeant at Arms: Zeake W. Johnson, Jr.
  • Chaplain: Bernard Braskamp - Presbyterian
  • References

    86th United States Congress Wikipedia

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