Pennsylvania House of Representatives Article

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House of Representatives
Pennsylvania General Assembly
Coat of arms or logo
Term limits
New session started
January 3, 2017
Speaker of the House
Mike Turzai ( R)
Since January 6, 2015
Majority Leader
Dave Reed ( R)
Since January 6, 2015
Minority Leader
Frank Dermody ( D)
Since January 4, 2011
Pennsylvania House January 23, 2018.svg
Political groups


Length of term
2 years
AuthorityArticle II, section 1, Pennsylvania Constitution
Salary$85,338.65/year [1]
Last election
November 8, 2016
(203 seats)
Next election
November 6, 2018
(203 seats)
Meeting place
Pennsylvania State Capitol House Chamber.jpg
House of Representatives Chamber
Pennsylvania State Capitol
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

The Pennsylvania House of Representatives is the lower house of the bicameral Pennsylvania General Assembly, the legislature of the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. There are 203 members, elected for two-year terms from single member districts. [2] [3]

Following the 2016 elections, the house consisted of 121  Republicans and 82  Democrats. Republican Mike Turzai was first elected Speaker of the House on January 6, 2015. In 2012, a State Representative district had an average population of 60,498 residents.[ citation needed]

It is the largest full-time state legislature in the country. (The New Hampshire House of Representatives is larger but only serves part-time.)

Hall of the House

The Hall of the House contains important symbols to Pennsylvania history and the work of legislators.

  • Speaker's Chair: a throne-like chair of rank that sits directly behind the Speaker's rostrum. Architect Joseph Huston designed the chair in 1906, the year the Capitol was dedicated.
  • Mace: the House symbol of authority, peace, order and respect for law rests in a pedestal to the right of the Speaker. Its base is solid mahogany, intricately carved and capped by a brass globe engraved with the Pennsylvania coat of arms. An American Eagle perches on top. The tradition of the mace may date to the Roman Republic when attendants of Roman consuls carried bundles of sticks wrapped around an axe to enforce order. The tradition is common may also come directly from Pennsylvania's English heritage.
  • Murals: a colorful panorama of Pennsylvania history appear in murals by Edwin Austin Abbey. The most commanding of the series hangs behind the Speaker's rostrum and dominates the wall behind the Speaker. It is called The Apotheosis of Pennsylvania
  • Ceiling: a work of art in itself with its ornate geometry of gold leaf buttoned at the center by a charming painted illustration. In "The Hours", Abbey represents the passage of time in the form of 24 maidens revolving in an endless circle amidst the moon, the sun and the stars of the Milky Way. [4]

Speaker of the House

The speakership is the oldest elected statewide office in the Commonwealth. Since its first session in 1682—presided over by William Penn—over 130 house members have been elevated to the speaker's chair. The house cannot hold an official session in the absence of the speaker or his designated speaker pro tempore. Speaker Leroy Irvis was the first African American elected speaker of any state legislature in the United States since Reconstruction. Speaker Dennis O'Brien was the only minority-party Speaker known in Pennsylvania and only the second known nationwide. Pennsylvania has never had a female speaker.


Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Democratic Republican Vacant
End of previous legislature 84 118 202 1
Begin 82 121 203 0
January 3, 2017 [5] 81 202 1
March 24, 2017 [6] 82 203 0
September 8, 2017 [7] 81 202 1
November 6, 2017 [8] 80 201 2
December 6, 2017 [9] 81 202 1
January 2, 2018 [10] 80 120 200 3
January 23, 2018 [11] 81 201 2
February 19, 2018 [12] 119 200 3
June 4, 2018 [13] 82 121 203 0
July 24, 2018 [14] 81 121 202 1
August 1, 2018 [15] 81 120 201 2
October 15, 2018 [16] 80 120 200 3
October 16, 2018 [17] 79 120 199 4
Latest voting share 39.6985% 60.3015%

Gender composition

As of October 17, 2018, 42 of the 203 representatives are women. [18] At 20.7%, this is below the national average of 23.1% women for statewide legislative positions.[ citation needed]

House of Representatives leadership

As of November 13, 2018

Speaker of the House of Representatives: Mike Turzai (R)

Majority Party (R) Leadership Position Minority Party (D)
Bryan Cutler Floor Leader Frank Dermody
Kerry Benninghoff Whip Jordan Harris
Marcy Toepel Caucus Chairperson Joanna McClinton
Mike Reese Caucus Secretary Rosita Youngblood
Stan Saylor Appropriations Committee Chairman [[ ]]
Kurt Masser Caucus Administrator [[ ]]
Donna Oberlander Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla

Members of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Past composition of the House of Representatives

See also


  1. ^ "Comparison of state legislative salaries - Ballotpedia".
  2. ^ Article II, section 2, Pennsylvania Constitution.
  3. ^ Article II, section 16, Pennsylvania Constitution.
  4. ^ Center, Legislativate Data Processing. "Page Not Found - The official website for the Pennsylvania General Assembly". The official website for the Pennsylvania General Assembly.
  5. ^ Democrat Leslie Acosta (District 197) resigned at the beginning of the session after pleading guilty to embezzlement prior to the election
  6. ^ Democrat Emilio Vazquez elected to succeed Acosta
  7. ^ Rep. Daniel McNeill (D-133) dies [1]
  8. ^ Rep. Marc Gergely (D-35) resigned after pleading guilty to corruption charges [2]
  9. ^ Rep. Jeanne McNeill elected to replace her late husband, Rep. Daniel McNeill (D-133) [3]
  10. ^ "Rep. Brandon Neuman (D) resigned to become a state trial judge. Rep. Scott Petri (R) resigned to become Executive Director of the Philadelphia Parking Authority".
  11. ^ Democrat Austin Davis elected to succeed Rep. Marc Gergely (D-35) [4]
  12. ^ REVIEW, FOR THE. "Rep. Matt Baker (R-68) resigned on February 19, 2018, to serve as a regional director for the Department of Health and Human Service (HHS)". The Daily Review. Retrieved 2018-04-30.
  13. ^ "Tim O'Neal (R-48), Clint Owlett (R-68), and Helen Tai (D-178) won special elections to fill vacant seats on May 15, 2018. They will be sworn into office on June 4, 2018". Retrieved 2018-05-29.
  14. ^ "Rep. Flo Fabrizio (D-2nd) passed away on July 24, 2018".
  15. ^ "Murrysville's Eli Evankovich resigning from state House in August". Retrieved 2018-10-16.
  16. ^ "Representative Michael O'Brien died on October 15, 2018". NBC 10 Philadelphia. Retrieved 2018-10-16.
  17. ^ "Representative Sid Michaels Kavulich died on October 16, 2018". WBRE-TV. Retrieved 2018-10-16.
  18. ^ Members of the House

External links


40°15′53″N 76°52′59″W / 40.26469°N 76.88315°W / 40.26469; -76.88315