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Fix Clip -N- Save: 'First families' of politics

When the Fix posse -- yes, we have "Fix" tattoos (or we may get them) -- started to ponder who the first family (aka the political dynasty) was in each of the 50 states, we came up with about 10 off the top of our heads.

That's where the Fixistas came in. We asked for your suggestions on the first family (or families) in each state and boy did you respond. Our list, which includes at least one family from every state(!) and is culled from reader input, is below.

Who did we miss? Send suggestions in via the comments section and we will keep updating our chart.


The Wallaces: The late Gov. George Wallace (D) served as governor for four terms and ran for president four times. (His wife, Lurleen Burns Wallace, also served as governor from 1967 until her death from cancer in 1968.) George Wallace Jr., has also been involved in politics -- he has served as state treasurer, made a run for lieutenant governor in 2006 and was said to be looking at a run against Rep. Bobby Bright (D) last year.

The Folsoms: Lt. Gov. (and former governor) James "Little Jim" Folsom Jr. (D) is the son of former governor James "Big Jim" Folsom Sr. (D). Some Fixistas believe that "Little Jim" may one day become governor again.


The Murkowskis: Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R), who's facing a primary challenge from Tea Party favorite Joe Miller (R), is the daughter of former governor Frank Murkowski (R). While both sides deny it, the Murkowskis and the family of former Alaska governor Sarah Palin have been long-standing political rivals; as one reader points out, the Murkowskis may be hoping the Palin kids choose a different profession.

The Stevenses: Former state Senate president Ben Stevens (R) is the son of former senator Ted Stevens (R) and was mentioned as a possible Senate appointee in 2004 before Murkowski chose his own daughter.

The Begiches: Sen. Mark Begich (D), the state's junior senator, is the son of the late Rep. Nick Begich (D) who was killed in a plane crash with late Rep. Hale Boggs of Louisiana.


The Goddards: State Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Terry Goddard (D) is the son of former governor Samuel Pearson Goddard Jr. (D).

The Udalls: The ubiquitous Udall family has its roots in Arizona: brothers Mo and Stewart represented the state in Congress; Stewart went on to serve as secretary of the Interior in the Kennedy administration. Their sons, Mark (Mo's son) and Tom (Stewart's son), are serving as senators from Colorado and New Mexico.


The Pryors: Sen. Mark Pryor (D) is the son of former senator David Pryor (D).


The Browns: State Attorney General and former governor Jerry Brown (D) is the son of former governor Pat Brown (D); Kathleen Brown, Pat Brown's daughter, served as state treasurer and ran unsuccessfully for governor in 1994. According to one Fixista, there has been a Brown on the statewide ballot every gubernatorial year except 2002, 1998 and 1986 going all the way back to the Truman presidency. Whoah.

The Burtons: California Democratic Party chairman (and former representative ) John Burton is the younger brother of Philip Burton (D), who represented the 5th district from 1964 to 1983. Philip Burton's wife, Sala, won a special election to fill the vacancy created by her husband's death and served for two full terms thereafter.


The Salazars: Former governor (and current Interior Secretary) Ken Salazar (D) is the younger brother of Rep. John Salazar (D).

The Romers: Former Democratic governor Roy Romer's son, state Sen. Chris Romer (D), is running for mayor of Denver.

The Udalls: Sen. Mark Udall (D) is the cousin of New Mexico's junior senator, Tom. Both of their fathers, Mo and Stewart, were involved in politics -- Stewart, most prominently, as secretary of the Interior, Mo as a congressman from Arizona.


The Dodds: Sen. Chris Dodd (D) is the son of former senator Thomas Dodd (D). (Also worth noting: The Bush family has its roots in Connecticut. Former senator Prescott Bush (R), the father of George H.W. Bush and grandfather of George W., represented the state from 1952 to 1963.)


The Bidens: Long ago, the du Pont family was the powerhouse of Delaware politics, but more recently, the Bidens have taken their place. Vice President Joe Biden is the father of state Attorney General Beau Biden (D). The dynasty took a sideways step this year when Beau shocked the political world by announcing that he would not run for his father's Senate seat.


The Bushes: Florida is home to several of the rising stars in the Bush family. Former governor Jeb Bush (R) is the father of George P. Bush (R) and Jeb Bush Jr. (R); all three are active in politics although none of the three are currently in office.

The Macks: Rep. Connie Mack IV (R) is the son of former Sen. Connie Mack III (R) and is also married to Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.). The family's political roots can be traced back to John Levi Sheppard, a former Democratic congressman from Texas.


The Carters: Long ago, the Talmadge family was the central force in Georgia politics. More recently, it's the Carters. Former president Jimmy Carter's grandson, Jason Carter (D), won a special election in May for a state Senate seat. Many see Jason Carter as a rising star in state politics.


The Waihees: Hawaii is the lone state that was ruled for centuries by an actual royal family, but the Aloha State doesn't appear to have many modern-day political dynasties. One prominent political family is the Waihees: former governor John Waihee III's (D), son, John Waihee IV (D), is an elected trustee of the office of Hawaiian Affairs; his daughter, attorney Jennifer Waihee, made an unsuccessful bid for state House in 2004.


The Whites: Idaho doesn't appear to have any "first family" at present, but the White family was a dominant force in the state for years: former representative Compton White Sr. (D) was the father of former representative Compton White Jr. (D).


The Madigans: State House Speaker Mike Madigan (D) is the father of state Attorney General (and rising star) Lisa Madigan (D). Lisa Madigan was recruited to run for Senate by the Obama White House this year but declined.

The Simons: Democratic lieutenant governor nominee Sheila Simon is the daughter of the legendary late Sen. Paul Simon, whose wife, Jeanne, was also a member of the state legislature.

The Daleys: When it comes to Chicago politics, few can compare with the Daleys. Richard J. Daley (D) was mayor of the city for more than two decades; one of his sons, Richard M. Daley (D), is the current mayor, and has held office for almost as long. His brothers -- John Daley (D) and Bill Daley -- are a Cook County commissioner and former Commerce secretary in the Clinton administration, respectively. In addition, Richard M. Daley's son, Patrick, is seen as a rising star; he's serving in the Army.


The Bayhs: Sen. Evan Bayh (D) is the son of former senator Birch Bayh (D). The most popular Bayh in Indiana politics, however, was Marvella -- the late wife of Birch and mother to Evan.


The Culvers: Gov. Chet Culver (D), who is running for reelection this year, is the son of former senator John Culver (D).

The Grassleys: State Rep.Pat Grassley (R) is the grandson of Sen. Chuck Grassley (R). The younger Grassley is in his mid-20s, and many in Iowa political circles speculate that he may one day run for his grandfather's seat.


The Landons: Former governor Alf Landon (R), who also was the Republican nominee for president in 1936, was the father of Sen. Nancy Kassebaum (R), who married former senator and White House chief of staff Howard Baker. (Small world.) Nancy Kassebaum's son, Bill, also served in the state House -- and his elder brother, the late documentary filmmaker Richard Kassebaum, made a movie about the campaign.

The Sebeliuses: Former Kansas governor Kathleen Sebelius is now secretary of Health and Human Services in the Obama administration. Her father-in-law, Keith, was a well known Republican member of the U.S. House for more than a decade. (Kathleen Sebelius also can make a claim to Ohio first family status; her father, John Gilligan, served as governor of the Buckeye State in the 1970s.)


The Chandlers: Rep. Ben Chandler (D) is the grandson of former two-time governor, senator and commissioner of baseball A.B. "Happy" Chandler (D).


The Landrieus: Sen. Mary Landrieu (D) and New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu (D) are the two of the nine children of former New Orleans mayor and HUD secretary Maurice Edwin "Moon" Landrieu (D).

The Longs: Four Long brothers held elected office: Former senator and governor Huey Long (D), former Winn Parish district attorney Julius Long, former representative George "Doc" Long (D) and former governor Earl Long (D). Other members of the long political dynasty include Huey Long's son, Russell, who went on to become a senator, and former Reps. Speedy and Gillis Long (D). One member of the family, state Sen. Gerald I. Long, is holding office, but as a Republican. (Huey Long -- or a character very much like him -- is the protagonist in the Fix's best political work of fiction ever: "All the King's Men".)


The Pingrees: Maine's most famous political power couple is probably Sen. Olympia Snowe (R) and her husband, former governor John McKernan (R), but often overlooked are the Pingrees. Rep. Chellie Pingree's (D) daughter, Hannah, is the speaker of the state House and is considered a rising star. (Sidenote: Snowe's first husband, Peter, held a seat in the Maine state House. Olympia Snowe won a race to replace him after his death in a car accident.)


The Sarbanes: Rep. John Sarbanes (D) is the son of former senator Paul Sarbanes (D).


The Kennedies: The Kennedy family (Jack, Ted, Joe Jr.) is unquestionably the family with the most lasting political pedigree in the state, although the Kennedy political brand has sprouted (or attempted to sprout) in Maryland, New York and Rhode Island as well.


The Dingells: Rep. John Dingell (D) is the son of former representative John Dingell Sr.; he's also married to Democratic National Committee member Debbie Dingell.

The Levins: Sen. Carl Levin (D) is the younger brother of Rep. Sander Levin (D); other members of their family have been state Supreme Court justices and federal judges.

The Romneys: The Romney clan, like the Bushes and the Udalls, has members all over the country. But its roots can be traced back to Michigan: former governor George Romney (R) is the father of former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney (R); George Romney's wife, Lenore, ran unsuccessfully for Senate in 1970. And Mitt Romney's former sister-in-law, Ronna, ran unsuccessfully for Senate in 1994 and 1996.


The Humphreys: State Attorney General Skip Humphrey, who made an unsuccessful bid for governor in 1998, is the son of the late Senator and Vice President Hubert Humphrey and Muriel Humphrey, who was appointed to her husband's former Senate seat.


The Wallers: William Waller, the Chief Justice of the Mississippi Supreme Court, is the son of former governor Bill Waller (D); his name has been floated as a potential contender for governor in 2011.

The Barbours: Gov. Haley Barbour (R) is the uncle of Henry Barbour, a Republican National Committeeman from Mississippi. The future appears bright for both Barbours: Haley, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, is eyed as a potential contender for president in 2012, and Henry's name was recently floated as a potential replacement for embattled RNC chairman Michael Steele.


The Carnahans: Secretary of State (and Senate hopeful) Robin Carnahan (D) is the daughter of the late Gov. Mel Carnahan (D) and Sen. Jean Carnahan (D). Robin Carnahan's grandfather, A.S.J. Carnahan (D), served as a congressman; her brother, Russ Carnahan, represents the state's 3rd district.


The Williamses: Former representative Pat Williams's (D) wife, Carol, is the state Senate minority leader. Their daughter, Whitney, is rumored to be a future candidate for office.


The Weavers: The late Rep. Archibald Weaver (R) was the father of the late Gov. Arthur Weaver (R) and the grandfather of former representative Philip Hart Weaver (R).


The Reids: This year, both Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D) and his son, Clark County Commissioner Rory Reid (D), are on the ballot (Reid the elder is running for a fifth term, while Reid the younger is pursuing a bid for governor).

New Hampshire

The Sununus: Former senator John E. Sununu (R) is the son of former governor John H. Sununu (R). (Both remain power players in Granite State politics.)

The Greggs: Sen. Judd Gregg (R) is the son of former governor Hugh Gregg (R).

New Jersey

The Keans: State Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean Jr. (R) -- the Republican U.S. Senate nominee in 2006 -- is the son of former governor Tom Kean Sr. (R). The Kean family line goes back much further, though; Tom Kean Sr.'s grandfather and great-uncle both served in the Senate.

The Frelinghuysens: Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen's (R) political lineage can be traced all the way back to Sens. Theodore and Frederick Frelinghuysen (R) in the late 1800s. A New Jersey Fixista points out that "it seems like a Frelinghuysen has been in high political office in N.J. for forever."

New Mexico

The Domenicis: Former senator Pete Domenici Sr. (R) is the father of Pete Domenici Jr. (R), who made a disastrous bid for governor this year.

The Udalls: Sen. Tom Udall (D) is the cousin of Colorado's senior senator, Mark Udall (D). Both of their fathers, Mo and Stewart, were congressmen from Arizona.

New York

The Cuomos: Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Andrew Cuomo is the son of former governor Mario Cuomo (D). Cuomo the younger is heavily favored to win the office his dad once held this fall. (Worth noting: New York's many other power political families include the Rockefellers, the Quinns, the Vances, the Clayton Powells and the Roosevelts. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D) also comes from a family with a strong presence in state politics; her grandmother was a force in Albany Democratic politics and her father is a prominent lobbyist in the state Capitol.)

North Carolina

The Scotts: Former agriculture commissioner Meg Scott Phipps (D) is the daughter of former governor Bob Scott (R), who is the son of the late Gov. W. Kerr Scott (D). The family legacy was tarnished, however, after Meg Scott became embroiled in scandal shortly after winning her office in 2000 and resigned in 2003.

North Dakota

The Heitkamps: Former state Attorney General Heidi Heitkamp (D), who ran for governor in 2000 and recently announced that she is not pursuing a Senate bid this year, is the sister of former state senator and talk radio host Joel Heitkamp.


The Tafts: Former governor Bob Taft (R) is the son of former senator Robert Taft Jr. (R). The family line goes back to the 1600s and includes such prominent figures in American politics as President and Supreme Court Chief Justice William Howard Taft (Bob Taft's great-grandfather) and former Senate Majority Leader Robert A. Taft (R) (Bob Taft's grandfather). One member of the family, former Attorney General and Secretary of War Alphonso Taft, was also the co-founder of the Skull and Bones -- a secret society at Yale University.


The Borens: Rep. Dan Boren (D) is the son of former senator and governor David Boren (D). Dan Boren's grandfather is former representative Lyle Boren (D).

The Edmondsons: State Attorney General Drew Edmondson (D) is the son of former representative Ed Edmondson (D), the brother of state Supreme Court Justice James Edmondson and the nephew of former governor and senator J. Howard Edmondson. Ed Edmondson ran for Senate three times and lost each time -- the third and final time, he lost to then-Gov. David Boren (D) in the Democratic primary. Drew Edmondson followed in those losing footsteps Tuesday night when he was defeated in the Democratic primary for governor by Lt. Gov. Jari Askins.


The Smiths: Oregon appears to be short on political dynasties, but one member of a famous political family is former senator Gordon Smith (R), who is a cousin of Sens. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) and Tom Udall (D-N.M.).


The Caseys: Sen. Bob Casey Jr. (D) is the son of the late Gov. Bob Casey Sr. (D). One of his brothers, Pat, also ran unsuccessfully for Congress in the 1990s (against then-Rep. Don Sherwood) and has been floated as a possible contender for the seat of Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D). Another brother, Chris, is an attorney who was considered for a U.S. attorney position and may be a possible contender for state attorney general.

Rhode Island

The Chaffees: Former senator Lincoln Chafee (I), who is pursuing an independent gubernatorial bid, is the son of former senator and governor John Chafee (R). Lincoln Chafee's great-great grandfather, Henry Lippitt, was governor in the 1870s; other Lippitts include former governor Charles Warren Lippitt (R) and former senator Henry Frederick Lippitt (R).

South Carolina

The Thurmonds: The late Sen. and Gov. Strom Thurmond (R) served for decades; his son, attorney Paul Thurmond (R), ran unsuccessfully in the 1st district House race this year and lost to state Rep. Tim Scott (R) in the Republican primary. In addition, Strom Thurmond Jr. was U.S. attorney for a number of years.

The Campbells: Businessman Carroll "Tumpy" Campbell III (R), who ran unsuccessfully for the GOP nod in South Carolina's 1st district this year (coming in third behind Paul Thurmond and Tim Scott), is the son of late Gov. Carroll Campbell Jr. (R). Another of the governor's sons, businessman Michael Campbell (R), ran for lieutenant governor nod in 2006.

South Dakota

The Herseths: Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin's (D) grandfather was former governor Ralph Herseth (D); her grandmother was former state Secretary of State Lorna Herseth (D). Her father, Lars Herseth, served in the state legislature and made an unsuccessful bid for governor in 1986.

The McGoverns: Former senator (and presidential candidate) George McGovern's (D) grandson, Matt McGovern (D), currently serves as the South Dakota state director of Repower America; he has been floated as a possible statewide candidate.


The Gores: Former vice president (and senator) Al Gore Jr. (D) is the son of former senator Al Gore Sr. (D).


The Bushes: Former president (and governor) George W. Bush (R) is perhaps the best known political progeny from Texas. He and his father -- 41st president George H.W. Bush -- have their presidential libraries in the Lone Star State.


The Romneys: Josh Romney, son of former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney (R), had been rumored to be eyeing a bid against Rep. Jim Matheson (D) last year but decided not to run.

The Bennetts: Sen. Bob Bennett (R), who lost a bid for re-nomination this year, is the son of former senator Wallace Foster Bennett (R).


The Snellings: Businessman Mark Snelling (R), who's currently running for lieutenant governor, is the son of the late Gov. Richard "King Richard" Snelling (R) and former lietenant governor and state senator Barbara Snelling (R). After Barbara Snelling's death, her daughter, Diane Snelling, was appointed to her state Senate seat.


The Byrds/Floods: Longtime former governor and senator Harry Flood Byrd Sr. (D) was succeeded in the upper chamber by his son, former senator Harry Flood Byrd Jr. (I). The elder Byrd's father was a state House speaker, and he also had two uncles -- Henry De La Warr Flood and Joel West Flood -- who served in Congress, with the latter also being a longtime federal judge in Richmond.


The Dunns/Gortons: Late Rep. Jennifer Dunn's (R) mother, Helen Gorton, was a distant cousin of former senator Slade Gorton (R).

West Virginia

The Kees: Three members of one immediate family -- John, wife Elizabeth and son John -- held down one congressional seat for four decades between 1933 and 1973.

The Staggerses: Former representative Harley Staggers Sr. (D) served three decades in the 50s, 60s and 70s and deregulated the railroads at the end of his tenure. He also begat former representative Harley Staggers Jr. (D) and current state Del. Margaret Anne Staggers (D).

The Mollohans: Former representative Robert Mollohan (D) and son Rep. Alan Mollohan (D) will have served a combined 23 terms in the U.S. House when the younger Mollohan leaves Congress at the end of this year (he lost a primary).

The Moores/Capitos: Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R) is the daughter of former three-term governor Arch Moore (R) and is thought to be a potential statewide officeholder herself, even though she passed on running against Gov. Joe Manchin (D) in the Senate race this year. The family legacy was tarnished, though, when the former governor served three years in prison for corruption.


The LaFollettes: Robert "Fighting Bob" La Follette Sr. (R) served in the House, the Senate and as governor. He also ran for president as the Progressive Party nominee in 1924, taking 17 percent of the vote nationally. Sons Phillip and Robert Jr. became governor and senator, respectively, serving under both the GOP and Progressive banners. Junior's son Bronson served as state attorney general for a combined 16 years in the 1960s, 70s and 80s, and current Wisconsin Secretary of State Doug La Follette is Fighting Bob's first cousin, three times removed. (How about that!)


The Simpsons: Former senator Alan Simpson's (R) son Colin served as state House speaker and is running for governor; his grandfather Milward is a former senator and governor. Alan's brother, former state representative Peter Simpson, was the GOP nominee for governor in 1986.

By Chris Cillizza  |  July 29, 2010; 11:30 AM ET
Categories:  Fix Notes  
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you should have a 'multistate first families' list, e.g., the udalls, the rockefellers, the holts (cong rush holt's father was elected 'boy governor' of wv at 32), kennedy's, kassebaums, sebelius's, bush's, etc.

Posted by: copelandglenn | July 30, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

you should have a 'multistate first families' list, e.g., the udalls, the rockefellers, the holts (cong rush holt's father was elected 'boy governor' of wv at 32), kennedy's, kassebaums, sebelius's, bush's, etc.

Posted by: copelandglenn | July 30, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

you should have a 'multistate first families' list, e.g., the udalls, the rockefellers, the holts (cong rush holt's father was elected 'boy governor' of wv at 32), kennedy's, kassebaums, sebelius's, bush's, etc.

Posted by: copelandglenn | July 30, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

you should have a 'multistate first families' list, e.g., the udalls, the rockefellers, the holts (cong rush holt's father was elected 'boy governor' of wv at 32), kennedy's, kassebaums, sebelius's, bush's, etc.

Posted by: copelandglenn | July 30, 2010 6:22 PM | Report abuse

are we including former first families? There are the Kilpatricks of Detroit and Fords of Tennessee . . .

Posted by: smitten2 | July 30, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Rep. Niki Tsongas (MA-05)is the widow of former Sen and Prez candidate Paul Tsongas.

Posted by: smitten2 | July 30, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Long-time Mayor of Tempe, AZ and current AZ-05 Rep. Harry Mitchell's son Mark Mitchell currently serves as Vice Mayor of Tempe. Harry Mitchell's brother, Robert Mitchell, was Mayor of Casa Grande and his grandfather W.W. Mitchell served in the state legislature.

Posted by: smitten2 | July 30, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

New Mexico -- Rep. Ben Ray Lujan is the son of powerful long-time NM State House Speaker Ben Lujan

Posted by: smitten2 | July 30, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Utah -- Rep. Jim Matheson is son of former two-term Gov. Scott Matheson. Scott Matheson Jr is a former US Attorney for Utah, ran for Governor, and was recently appointed to the federal bench.

Posted by: smitten2 | July 30, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

In re: Wisconsin.

I noticed at first you have "LaFollette" and then in the description "La Follette." Normally, it is not a big deal, but as WI political hacks know, an unrelated "La Follette" running for office in Wisconsin officially had has name changed to "LaFollette" in order to make it seem like he was indeed related. He ended up winning, but I doubt if anyone noticed the distinction.

Posted by: ragingbull913 | July 30, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

I would suggest the Cavanaghs, descended or related to the late former Mayor of Detroit(1961-69) and US Senate candidate (1966)Jerome P. Cavanagh: Supreme Court justice Michael Cavanagh (brother), Court of Appeals judge Mark Cavanagh (son), Wayne County Commissioners (at various times) Philip, David and Chris Cavanagh (sons), likely State Representative winner Philip Cavanagh (son), Wayne County Circuit judge Jerome C. Cavanagh (son)and Redford Township treasurer Lily Cavanagh (daughter-in-law).

Also, the Hathaways, led by Michigan Supreme Court justice Diane Hathaway, Wayne County Circuit judges (former and present) James (Half-a-day) Hathaway, William Hathaway, Richard Hathaway, Amy Hathaway, Daniel Hathaway, Michael Hathaway,and Cynthia Gray Hathaway. No Hathaway has ever lost on the state or local ballot.

Posted by: mcknight131 | July 30, 2010 7:44 AM | Report abuse

Louisiana - The McKeithens

John McKeithen was governor from 1964-1972, after having served for nearly 20 years in the legislature and public service commission. He was the first governor to serve two consecutive terms and oversaw the construction of the Super Dome.

His son, Fox, served as Secretary of State from 1988 until his death in 2005. He was something of an institution in the state, and his sudden injury and passing was felt and mourned throughout Louisiana.

Fox's daughter, Marjorie, served as an Assistant Secretary of the Department of Natural Resources during Gov. Kathleen Blanco's administration, and ran for Congress in 1998 against Rep. Richard Baker, and only narrowly lost the strongly Republican district. She was rumored to be interested in running again in 2006 and in running for the vacant treasury position last year had John Kennedy defeated Sen. Landrieu in 2008. Obviously the vacancy never materialized, but he'll be termed out of office next year, so I'm sure the rumor mill will start kicking again.

Posted by: eschro4 | July 30, 2010 1:44 AM | Report abuse

Chris you forgot your native history back in the good old Nutmeg state my friend. Read this Wikipedia Post about Mr. Roger Griswold. A long time ago it may be but talk about a familial pedigree!

Posted by: Why_Not1 | July 29, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

There's another family I forgot.

State Representative Albert Rostenkowsi in 1923, his nephew Joe Rostenkowski, former alderman of Chicago's 32nd ward and Joe's son Dan "Rosty" Rostenkowski, former Ways and Means chairman and longtime Congressman

Posted by: COSDem | July 29, 2010 8:58 PM | Report abuse

From Maryland (my home state):

The Cardins: Sen. Ben Cardin's father Meyer and uncle Maurice both served in the state House of Delegates, where Ben began his career, moving up to Speaker of the state House before going to the US House and Senate. Ben's nephew Jon Cardin is a current state Delegate.

The Shrivers: Generally considered a wing of the Kennedys, but it is worth noting that Sargent Shriver, the former director of the Peace Corps, Office of Economic Opportunity, Ambassador to France, and 1972 Democratic Vice-Presidential nominee is a lifelong Maryland resident, and a son, Mark Shriver, served in the state House of Delegates before losing a primary for Congress in 2002. Sargent Shriver's daughter Maria is First Lady of California (Mrs. Arnold Schwarznegger).

In fact, the Shriver presence in Maryland politics goes all the way back to colonial times; David Shriver was a signer of the Maryland Constitution and Bill of Rights at the colony's 1776 Constitutional Convention.

Posted by: mkarns | July 29, 2010 6:38 PM | Report abuse

You missed a South Dakota family: The Heidepriems. Scott Heidepriem, current Democratic candidate for Governor, served in the 80's as Republican Speaker Pro Tem in the SD House and currently is the Democratic Senate Leader. His father, Herb, was a Republican leader in the State Senate in the 50's and 60's.

Posted by: glantzing | July 29, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Another one for Mississippi: The Pickerings. Charles Pickering was a judge whom Bush Jr. tried to appoint to the Federal bench, and was one of the 5 judges that Republicans considered deploying the "nuclear option" to seat. Charles is the father of former Congressman Chip Pickering. Chip's cousin Stacey is a former state Senator and currently serves as state Auditor.

Posted by: Haners | July 29, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Aren't there two brothers who are Congressmen in Florida Baldez-Diaz or something like that

Posted by: YouCanPostThis | July 29, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

You forgot the Clintons. Bill - Attorney General, Governor, President. Hillary - First Lady, US Senator, Presidential candidate and US Secretary of State. Hugh Rodham, brother of Hillary - ran for US Senate in FL 1994.

Posted by: COSDem | July 29, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

For Montana, you completely overlooked the obvious: Senator Max Baucus. He is a descendant of the powerful ranching scion Henry Sieben, and Max's cousin, republican Chase Hibbard, served as a member of the Montana legislature for several terms. The Baucus-Hibbard extended family are very wealthy and powerful, behind-the-scenes movers and shakers in the state in both parties.

It is worth noting that Sieben ranch has its own Interstate Exit, off of I-15. This is a testament to the power and influence of this family.

The Williamses are wonderful people, but their power pales to that of the Baucus clan.

Posted by: gadflyMT | July 29, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

The Adlai Stevensons (I, II, and III) of Illinois...Vice President, two time Presidential Candidate, Senator and Governor.

Posted by: Coloradem1 | July 29, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Although the Shaheens only have one elected member of the family, I would argue that the influence exerted behind the scenes by Bill Shaheen makes them the most powerful family in NH. Certainly, they have exerted much greater influence over the last two decades in the state than either the Greggs or the Sununus.

Posted by: Hoya4Life | July 29, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Did you forget the Sanchez sisters in California?

Posted by: deden53 | July 29, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

No Rockefellers?

Posted by: VelvetUn | July 29, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Great job putting this together. Definite political wonkery going on here. I'd make one addition to Mississippi: The Espys. Mike - Former Rep. 2nd Congressional District and Former Ag. Secretary before unfortunate scandal. Henry (Brother of Mike) - Mayor of Clarksdale, MS, unsuccessfully battled Bennie Thompson in an effort to get his brother's seat back. Chuck (Son of Henry) - currently a state representative. He also tried to take on Bennie in a democratic primary and avenge his father to no avail. Sidenote, Mike's son is a serviceable wide receiver free agent in the NFL looking for a home...advocacy for my Mississippi brethren.

Posted by: MileHighMississippi | July 29, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Huey Long's son was a Senator for decades.

Minnesota has the Mondales too

Posted by: YouCanPostThis | July 29, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

This list could probably be significantly expanded - if you had the Fix interns call the political reporters in the local papers - significant finds are to be had.

I think there is a Todd family in New Jersey - Christie Todd Whitman maybe is related to Mary Todd Lincoln - Im not sure - but there is a Todd family.

Also the Adams in Massachusetts should be on the list - two Presidents plus a beer company should make the list.


Posted by: YouCanPostThis | July 29, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

I am so proud of Oregon and Washington, proudly bereft of political dynasties.

Posted by: shrink2 | July 29, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

MN Post reports on the MN DFL primary ground game:

Those of you who enjoyed the fivethirtyeight coverage of the 2008 POTUS ground game will find this report to be in that vein. I've been thinking Dayton has the advantage with name recognition & as likely winner of the senior vote. But Kelliher has the party's backing, voter list & an apparently far more extensive ground game. If that's the key factor, Kelliher may pull it out.

Posted by: bsimon1 | July 29, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

There was a 4th brother named Bob.

Posted by: MikeEgger | July 29, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to print this and carry it around. It'll look like the original manuscript for On the Road.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | July 29, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Good job on finding one for Hawaii.

Posted by: DDAWD | July 29, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

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