House Democrats Have Slim Vote Margin After Republican Julia Letlow’s Swearing-In

New member of Congress Rep. Julia Letlow (R-LA) holds her one-year old daughter Jacqueline as she participates in a ceremonial swearing in with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) at the U.S. Capitol on April 14, 2021 in Washington, DC. Letlow is taking the seat her late husband won …
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

House Democrats are holding on to a slim majority after Rep. Julia Letlow (R-LA) was sworn in Wednesday morning.

Letlow joins the House in the seat originally won by her late husband, Luke Letlow, who died in December 2020 from the coronavirus days before he was set to be sworn in.

Julia Letlow won a special election for her late husband’s seat in March.

With Letlow’s addition to Congress, Republicans now have 212 seats in Congress while Democrats have 218.

Since tie votes mean a failure to move forward with House legislation, Democrats cannot lose more than two of their party’s votes to pass legislation if Republicans fully oppose it.

The slim margin of error could hinder Democrats from passing far-left bills moderates in the party may not throw their weight behind.

Their margin may not be as slim as projected, however, as Democrats are projected to win two out of the three House special elections in the next two months.

Another special election scheduled to take place April 24 in Louisiana’s 2nd Congressional District has two Democrat candidates facing off in a runoff election in a solidly blue district.

The race will fill former Rep. Cedric Richmond’s (D-LA) seat. Richmond resigned to join the Biden administration.

On May 1, there will also be a special election to fill the seat of the late Rep. Ronald Wright (R-TX) in Texas’s 6th Congressional District. Wright died from complications stemming from the coronavirus.

A month later, there will be another special election in New Mexico’s 1st Congressional District, which leans Democrat. The race would be to fill the seat of former Rep. Debra Haaland (D-NM), who was confirmed as Secretary of the Interior.


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