The Minnesota State Legislature

The Legislature consists of two chambers: a 67-member Senate and a 134-member House of Representatives. The most recent election for the State Senate was November 8, 2016 and the most recent election for the House of Representatives was November 6, 2018. A candidate must be at least 21 years of age to run for a position in either the Senate or the House of Representatives.

 

Minnesota Demographic Background

The largest generation in Minnesota is the Baby Boomer Generation, consisting of about 25% of the population. The smallest generation is the Silent Generation, consisting of about 10% of the population. About 80% of people in Alaska are White/Caucasian, 5% are Hispanic or Latino, 8% are other, and 6% are Black or African American.3

Generational Breakdown of the Minnesota State Legislature

About 20% of members of the Minnesota House of Representatives are Millennials, while there are 4 Millennial members in the Minnesota State Senate. The largest generation represented in the Minnesota State Legislature is the Baby Boomer Generation, comprising about 70% of the Minnesota House of Representatives and 60% of the Minnesota State Senate. The Baby Boomer Generation comprises only about 25% of the Minnesota population. The Millennial Generation is underrepresented in the Minnesota State Legislature. The average age of an Minnesota state legislator is 56. There are 13 Young Elected Leaders age 35 or younger in the legislature.

Generational Composition of the Minnesota State Legislature

 

Generational Breakdown of the Minnesota House of Delegates
Generation Number of Members % of Total Members
Millenial Generation 19 14.18%
Generation X 44 13.84%
Baby Boomer Generation 57 42.54%
Silent Generation 8 5.97%
NA* 6 4.47%

Note: *Indicates state legislators for whom there is no birth date on record.

  • The average age of a member in the Minnesota House of Representatives is 54
  • The youngest member is 24 years old (Hunter Cantrell)
  • The oldest member is 79 years old (Lyndon R. Carlson Sr.)
  • Ten individuals are Young Elected Leaders
    • Carlie Kotyza-Witthuhn, age: 32/33
    • Joe Schomacker, age: 33
    • Ami Wazlawik, age: 33
    • Dan Wolgamott, age: 29
    • Nolan West, age: 29
    • Samantha Vang, age: 25
    • Hunter Cantrell, age: 24
    • Tou Xiong, age: 29/30
    • Fue Lee, age: 28
    • Zach Stephenson, age: 34/35
Generational Breakdown of the Minnesota State Senate
Generation Number of Members % of Total Members
Millenial Generation 4 5.97%
Generation X 15 22.39%
Baby Boomer Generation 42 62.69%
Silent Generation 4 5.97%
NA* 2 2.98%

Note: *Indicates state legislators for whom there is no birth date on record.

  • The average age of the Minnesota State Senate is 59
  • The youngest member is 31/32 (Andrew M. Mathews)
  • The oldest member is 82 years old (Gerald F. Newton)
  • Three individuals are Young Elected Leaders
    • Andrew M. Mathews, age: 31/32
    • Matt Little, age: 34
    • Justin Elchom, age: 35

Gender Breakdown of the Minnesota State Legislature

Sixty-four of the 201 legislators are female. On average, there is no age difference between female legislators and male colleagues. There are three female Young Elected Leaders in the Minnesota House of Representatives.

Approximately 35% of members of the Minnesota House of Representatives and about 24% of members of the Minnesota State Senate are women.

 

Gender Composition of the Minnesota House of Representatives

 

Gender by Generation in the Minnesota House of Representatives

 

Gender of Young Elected Leaders in the Minnesota House of Representatives

There are 7 male and 3 female Young Elected Leaders in the Minnesota House of Representatives.

 

Gender of the Minnesota State Senate

 

Gender by Generation in the Minnesota State Senate

Ethnic Breakdown of the Minnesota State Legislature

Ninety percent of state legislators are White/Caucasian. There are 2 Black/African-American members in the Minnesota State Senate, and 2 Black/African-American members in the Minnesota House of Representatives. Blacks/African-Americans and Hispanics/Latinos are slightly underrepresented in the Minnesota State Legislature compared to the Minnesota state population.

 

Ethnicity by Generation in the Minnesota House of Representatives

 

Ethnicity of Young Elected Leaders in the Minnesota House of Representatives

There are 7 White/Caucasian and 3 Asian/Pacific Islander Young Elected Leaders in the Minnesota House of Representatives.

 

Ethnicity by Generation in the Minnesota State Senate

Partisan Breakdown of the Minnesota State Legislature

A majority of the members of the Minnesota State Senate are Republican and a majority of the members of the Minnesota House of Representatives are Democratic. Out of the 10 Young Elected Leaders in the Minnesota House of Representatives, 8 are Democrats and 2 are Republicans.

 

Partisanship of the Minnesota State Legislature

 

Partisanship by Generation of the Minnesota House of Representatives

 

Partisanship by Generation of the Minnesota State Senate

Notes

  1. The Young Elected Leaders Project collects and analyzes data on young elected officials across the country. We define Young Elected Leaders as officials 35 years and younger. We define the generations following the Pew Research Center:
  • Generation Z: 1997-2012
  • Millennial Generation: 1981-1996
  • Generation X: 1965-1980
  • Baby Boom Generation: 1946-1964
  • Silent Generation: 1928-1945

2. Single Years of Age and Sex, 2010, US Census.

3. Geographic and Housing Estimates (Age, Sex, Race, Households and Housing, …) 2017, US Census.

This analysis is based on data from January 2019 and was conducted on May 8, 2019.

Our previous analysis of the Alaska state legislature in 2016 can be found here.

 

See the Young Elected Leaders in the 116th United States Senate