Presidents of the United States and control of Congress

Last updated on 11 April 2017

The degree to which the President of the United States's political party has control over the House of Representatives and Senate often determines his political strength - such as the ability to pass sponsored legislation, ratify treaties, and have Cabinet members and judges approved.

Combined--Control of the U.S. House of Representatives - Control of the U.S. Senate.png
Party control of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives (including President's party): 1855-2015

Presidential impact

Many presidents' elections produced what is known as a coattail effect, in which the success of a presidential candidate also leads to electoral success for other members of his or her party. In fact, all newly elected presidents except Zachary Taylor, Richard Nixon, and George H. W. Bush were accompanied by control of at least one house of Congress.

Presidents by congressional control and terms won/served

No. President President's Party Senate with Senate opposed House with House opposed Congress with Congress opposed Congress divided Years served Elections won
1 George Washington None 8 0 6 2 6 0 2 8 2
2 John Adams Federalist 4 0 4 0 4 0 0 4 1
3 Thomas Jefferson Democratic-Republican 8 0 8 0 8 0 0 8 2
4 James Madison Democratic-Republican 8 0 8 0 8 0 0 8 2
5 James Monroe Democratic-Republican 8 0 8 0 8 0 0 8 2
6 John Quincy Adams Adams 0 4 2 2 0 2 2 4 1
7 Andrew Jackson Democratic 8 0 8 0 8 0 0 8 2
8 Martin Van Buren Democratic 4 0 4 0 4 0 0 4 1
9 William Harrison Whig 0.1 0 0.1 0 0.1 0 0 0.1 1
10 John Tyler Whig/Independent 4 0 2 2 2 0 2 4 0
11 James Polk Democratic 4 0 2 2 2 0 2 4 1
12 Zachary Taylor Whig 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 1 1
13 Millard Fillmore Whig 0 3 0 3 0 3 0 3 0
14 Franklin Pierce Democratic 4 0 2 2 2 0 2 4 1
15 James Buchanan Democratic 4 0 2 2 2 0 2 4 1
16 Abraham Lincoln Republican 4 0 4 0 4 0 0 4 2
17 Andrew Johnson National Union 0 4 0 4 0 4 0 4 0
18 Ulysses Grant Republican 8 0 6 2 6 0 2 8 2
19 Rutherford Hayes Republican 2 2 0 4 0 2 2 4 1
20 James Garfield Republican 0 0.5 0.5 0 0 0 0.5 0.5 1
21 Chester Arthur Republican 4 0 2 2 2 0 2 4 0
22 Grover Cleveland Democratic 0 4 4 0 0 0 4 4 1
23 Benjamin Harrison Republican 4 0 2 2 2 0 2 4 1
24 Grover Cleveland Democratic 2 2 2 2 2 2 0 4 1
25 William McKinley Republican 4.5 0 4.5 0 4.5 0 0 4.5 2
26 Theodore Roosevelt Republican 7.5 0 7.5 0 7.5 0 0 7.5 1
27 William Taft Republican 4 0 2 2 2 0 2 4 1
28 Woodrow Wilson Democratic 6 2 6 2 6 2 0 8 2
29 Warren Harding Republican 2 0 2 0 2 0 0 2 1
30 Calvin Coolidge Republican 6 0 6 0 6 0 0 6 1
31 Herbert Hoover Republican 4 0 2 2 2 0 2 4 1
32 Franklin Roosevelt Democratic 12 0 12 0 12 0 0 12.1 4
33 Harry Truman Democratic 6 2 6 2 6 2 0 7.8 1
34 Dwight Eisenhower Republican 2 6 2 6 2 6 0 8 2
35 John Kennedy Democratic 2.8 0 2.8 0 2.8 0 0 2.8 1
36 Lyndon Johnson Democratic 5.2 0 5.2 0 5.2 0 0 5.2 1
37 Richard Nixon Republican 0 5.6 0 5.6 0 5.6 0 5.6 2
38 Gerald Ford Republican 0 2.4 0 2.4 0 2.4 0 2.4 0
39 Jimmy Carter Democratic 4 0 4 0 4 0 0 4 1
40 Ronald Reagan Republican 6 2 0 8 0 2 6 8 2
41 George H. W. Bush Republican 0 4 0 4 0 4 0 4 1
42 Bill Clinton Democratic 2 6 2 6 2 6 0 8 2
43 George W. Bush Republican 4.5 3.5 6 2 4.5 2 1.5 8 2
44 Barack Obama Democratic 6 2 2 6 2 2 4 8 2
45 Donald Trump Republican 2 0 2 0 2 0 0 0.1 1
No. President President's Party Senate with Senate opposed House with House opposed Congress with Congress opposed Congress divided Years served Elections won

See also

Content from Wikipedia