Open main menu

The 1934 United States elections were held on November 6, 1934. The election took place in the middle of Democratic President Franklin D. Roosevelt's first term, during the Great Depression. The Democrats built on the Congressional majorities they had won in the previous two elections. In the House of Representatives, Roosevelt's party gained nine seats, mostly from the Republican Party. The Democrats also gained nine seats in the U.S. Senate, thereby winning a supermajority. A Progressive also unseated a Republican in the Senate. This marked the first time since the Civil War that an incumbent president's party gained seats in a midterm election, followed by 1998, 2002 and 2018.[2]

1934 United States elections
Midterm elections
Election dayNovember 6
Incumbent presidentFranklin D. Roosevelt (Democratic)
Next Congress74th
Senate elections
Overall controlDemocratic Hold
Seats contested36 of 96 seats
(32 Class 1 seats + 5 special elections)[1]
Net seat changeDemocratic +9
US 1934 senate election map.svg
1934 Senate election results

  Democratic gain   Democratic hold
  Republican gain   Republican hold
  Progressive gain   Farmer–Labor hold

House elections
Overall controlDemocratic Hold
Seats contestedAll 435 voting seats
Net seat changeDemocratic +9
1934 House Elections in the United States.png
1934 House of Representatives election results

  Democratic gain   Democratic hold
  Republican gain   Republican hold
  Third party gain   Third party hold

Gubernatorial elections
Seats contested34
Net seat changeDemocratic +1
1934 gubernatorial election results

  Democratic gain   Democratic hold
  Republican gain   Republican hold
  Progressive gain   Farmer–Labor hold

The election was perhaps the most successful midterm of the 20th century for the party in control of the presidency. Despite opposition from Republicans, business organizations such as the US Chamber of Commerce, and disaffected Democrats who formed the American Liberty League, Roosevelt's New Deal policies were bolstered and his New Deal coalition was solidified. The election was critical in re-centering the Democratic Party in Northern, urban areas, as opposed to the party's traditional base in the South. Conservative Republicans also suffered major losses across the country. Future president Harry S. Truman won election as Senator from Missouri during this election.[3]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ One Class 1 seat held both a regular election and a special election in 1934. This seat is not double-counted for the total number of seats contested.
  2. ^ "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 6, 1934" (PDF). U.S. House of Reps, Office of the Clerk. Retrieved 28 December 2011.
  3. ^ Busch, Andrew (1999). Horses in Midstream. University of Pittsburgh Press. pp. 138–145.