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This fall, Congress is poised to become younger.

Let’s take a look at who is leaving Congress, and not seeking another office. Twenty members of the House are retiring, along with six senators.

(Source: Roll Call casualty list)

The average age for House lawmakers at the beginning of this Congress was 57, and for senators, it was 62. So the retirees skew older than their colleagues.

(Source, Congressional Research Service)

The number of retirements are pretty much on par with the amount we’ve seen before past elections.


But several influential figures with decades of experience are leaving the House. Rep. John Dingell (D-Mich.), the longest-serving member of Congress in history, is stepping down after nearly six decades in office. California’s George Miller (D) and Henry Waxman (D), who have each served 20 terms and left their mark on landmark legislation, are also leaving.

In addition, the retirement of Rep. Doc Hastings (R-Wash.) will shrink the dwindling number of lawmakers elected during the 1994 Republican Revolution.

The departing House and Senate members have served in Congress for 22.7 years on average. That’s a significant loss of institutional memory.


Dingell, 87, once played a key role in passing clean air and water bills, as well as civil-rights legislation and Obamacare. But he delivered a stinging rebuke to Congress upon announcing his retirement.

“I find serving in the House to be obnoxious,” he told the Detroit News this week. “It’s become very hard because of the acrimony and bitterness, both in Congress and in the streets.”

The retirements will most likely lead to an injection of younger blood into Congress, for better or for worse. The average age for newly elected House lawmakers in 2013 was 49 years old, and for senators it was 53 years old.

(Source, Congressional Research Service)

The youngest members currently serving are:

But with the average age of lawmakers much higher, they might be the new kids on the block for a long time.

Jordan Fabian is Fusion's politics editor, writing about campaigns, Congress, immigration, and more. When he's not working, you can find him at the ice rink or at home with his wife, Melissa.