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The New Hampshire House of Representatives is the lower house in the New Hampshire General Court. The House of Representatives consists of 400 members coming from 103 districts across the state, created from divisions of the state's counties. On average, each legislator represents about 3,300 residents. If the same level of representation were present in the U.S. Congress, that body would have approximately 99,000 members, according to current population estimates. Members are paid a salary of $200 per biennium, as are New Hampshire State Senators.

Districts vary in number of seats based on their populations, with the least-populous districts having only one member and the most having 13. In multi-member districts, voters are allowed to cast as many votes as there are seats to be filled, which can result in the same party winning all the seats in the district.

Unlike in many state legislatures, there is no "aisle" to cross per se, as members of both parties sit partially segregated in five sections, which is then put on the legislator's license plate (chairpersons and party leaders in green, non-chairs in red). Party seating location is not enforced, as seating is often decided on the personal preference of the legislator. The sixth section, which is the speaker's seat at the head of the hall, is an exception.

Until recently, the House was dominated by the Republican Party, which at the end of the 2004-6 session held a 249–151 majority. However, even with this 98-vote majority, the Republicans were often divided between the more conservative House Republican Alliance (HRA) and moderates known as the Main Street Republicans. The division was approximately 141 voting with along HRA lines and 110 voting along Main Street lines if the difference is considered to be the 50% line of the HRA's 2004 scorecard. However, in the 2006 election, the Democrats swept into control of the chamber for the first time since 1923, and currently hold a wide majority of seats in the House. It is as yet unclear if divisions between the HRA and Main Street Republicans will remain while the party is in the minority.

Contents

2009–2010 biennial session

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Composition

Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Total
Democratic Republican Independent Vacant
End of previous legislature 231 158 1 390 10
Begin 225 175 0 400 0
Indeterminate time 1 224 174 398 2
Indeterminate time 2 224 175 399 1
Indeterminate time 3 223 174 397 3
November 3, 2009[1] 223 175 398 2
January 12, 2010[2] 222 177 399 1
Latest voting share 55.6% 44.4% 0%

Leadership

The Speaker of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, as of March 2009, is Democrat Terie Norelli. She is the second female speaker of that body and the first Democratic speaker in 84 years. Democrat Mary Jane Wallner of Concord is the Majority Leader, and Republican Sherman Packard of Londonderry is the Minority Leader.

Position Name Party District
Speaker of the House Terie Norelli Democratic Rockingham-16
Majority Leader Mary Jane Wallner Democratic Merrimack-12
Minority Leader Sherman Packard Republican Rockingham-3

References

  1. ^ Republican Lynne Blankenbeker won special election for the vacant seat in Merrimack County's District 11
  2. ^ Republicans Kenneth Weyler and Steven Cunningham won special election for the vacant seats in Rockingham County District 8 and Sullivan County District 2, respectively [1] [2]

External links


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