Texas Rep. Ralph Hall, oldest serving House member, defeated by Tea Party candidate in runoff

By Daniel S Levine,

Texas Republican Ralph Hall, the oldest ever member of the U.S. House of Representatives, was defeated on Tuesday in a runoff election. Tea Party candidate John Ratcliffe, who is little more than half of Hall’s age, won the election.

Hall and Ratcliffe were vying for a district that includes suburban Dallas and stretches all the way to the border with Oklahoma and Louisiana, notes NPR. Ratcliffe portrayed himself as a Republican outsider who was not a part of the establishment, like Hall had become after 34 years in the House.

Hall was elected to the House in 1980. As The Associated Press points out, he had been elected a Democrat, but switched to the GOP in 2004.

At age 91, he is the oldest ever House member and only one of two World War II veterans still in Congress.

“I’ve been 45 and I did better. I’ve been 65 and I did better. I’m 90 now and I didn’t do better,” Hall said after the results came in, notes The Dallas News.”I’m not hurt about it. I’m not really terribly surprised about it, and I’m not happy about it. I’m going to keep on doing my job and coming home and visiting people that I love.”

Ratcliffe, a former U.S. attorney, does not have a Democratic opponent, so he will be going to WAshington after the November election.



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