Skip Content
U.S. Flag

Senators Representing Third or Minor Parties

While most U.S. senators have been affiliated with one of the major political parties, many members of the Senate have represented a third or other minor party. This list provides the names, service dates, and political party affiliation of the Senate's many independent members. The names of current senators appear in bold print.
Filter by:
HayneRobert Y. Hayne (SC) Nullifier1831_18321831–1832
MillerStephen D. Miller (SC) Nullifier1831_18331831–1833
CalhounJohn C. Calhoun (SC) Nullifier1832_18371832–1837
PrestonWilliam C. Preston (SC) Nullifier1833_18371833–1837
FrancisJohn B. Francis (RI) Law and Order1844_18451844–1845
CilleyJoseph Cilley (NH) Liberty1846_18471846–1847
HaleJohn P. Hale (NH) Independent Democrat1847_18491847–1849
HaleJohn P. Hale (NH) Free Soil1849_18531849–1853
ChaseSalmon P. Chase (OH) Free Soil1849_18551849–1855
SumnerCharles Sumner (MA) Free Soil1851_18551851–1855
BrainerdLawrence Brainerd (VT) Free Soil1854_18551854–1855
GilletteFrancis Gillette (CT) Free Soil1854_1855_11854–1855
HoustonSamuel Houston (TX) American (Know-Nothing)1855_18591855–1859
BellJohn Bell (TN) American (Know-Nothing)1857_18591857–1859
ThompsonJohn B. Thompson (KY) American (Know-Nothing)1857_1859_11857–1859
CrittendenJohn J. Crittenden (KY) American (Know-Nothing)1857_18611857–1861
KennedyAnthony Kennedy (MD) American (Know-Nothing)1857_18611857–1861
KennedyAnthony Kennedy (MD) Unionist1861_18631861–1863
WilleyWaitman T. Willey (WV) Unionist1861_1863_11861–1863
CarlileJohn S. Carlile (VA) Unionist1861_18651861–1865
DavisGarrett Davis (KY) Unionist1861_1865_11861–1865
HendersonJohn B. Henderson (MO) Unionist1862_18631862–1863
HicksThomas H. Hicks (MD) Unionist1862_1863_11862–1863
WilsonRobert Wilson (MO) Unionist1862_1863_21862–1863
WrightJoseph Albert Wright (IN) Unionist1862_1863_31862–1863
BowdenLemuel J. Bowden (VA) Unionist1863_18641863–1864
BrownBenjamin G. Brown (MO) Unconditional Unionist1863_18651863–1865
HendersonJohn B. Henderson (MO) Unconditional Unionist1863_1865_11863–1865
HicksThomas H. Hicks (MD) Unconditional Unionist1863_1865_21863–1865
JohnsonReverdy Johnson (MD) Unionist1863_1865_31863–1865
WilleyWaitman T. Willey (WV) Unconditional Unionist1863_1865_41863–1865
Van WinklePeter G. Van Winkle (WV) Unconditional Unionist1863_18671863–1867
CreswellJohn A. J. Creswell (MD) Unconditional Unionist1865_1867_11865–1867
FowlerJoseph S. Fowler (TN) Unconditional Unionist1865_1867_21865–1867
PattersonDavid T. Patterson (TN) Unionist1865_1867_31865–1867
SchurzCarl Schurz (MO) Liberal Republican1871_18751871–1875
SumnerCharles Sumner (MA) Liberal Republican1873_18741873–1874
FentonReuben Eaton Fenton (NY) Liberal Republican1873_18751873–1875
FerryOrris S. Ferry (CT) Liberal Republican1873_1875_11873–1875
HamiltonMorgan C. Hamilton (TX) Liberal Republican1873_1875_21873–1875
SpragueWilliam Sprague (RI) Liberal Republican1873_1875_31873–1875
TiptonThomas W. Tipton (NE) Liberal Republican1873_1875_41873–1875
BoothNewton Booth (CA) Independent Republican1875_18771875–1877
DavisDavid Davis (IL) Independent1877_18831877–1883
MahoneWilliam Mahone (VA) Readjuster1881_18851881–1885
RiddlebergerHarrison H. Riddleberger (VA) Readjuster1883_18851883–1885
PefferWilliam A. Peffer (KS) Populist1891_18971891–1897
KyleJames H. Kyle (SD) Populist1891_19011891–1901
AllenWilliam Vincent Allen (NE) Populist1893_19011893–1901
StewartWilliam M. Stewart (NV) Silver1893_1901_11893–1901
ButlerMarion Butler (NC) Populist18951895–1901
JonesJohn P. Jones (NV) Silver1895_1901_11895–1901
CannonFrank J. Cannon (UT) Silver Republican1896_18991896–1899
MantleLee Mantle (MT) Silver Republican1896_1899_11896–1899
PettigrewRichard F. Pettigrew (SD) Silver Republican1896_19011896–1901
TellerHenry M. Teller (CO) Silver Republican1896_1901_11896–1901
HeitfeldHenry Heitfeld (ID) Populist1897_19011897–1901
TurnerGeorge Turner (WA) Silver Republican1897_1901_11897–1901
HarrisWilliam A. Harris (KS) Populist1897_19031897–1903
PoindexterMiles Poindexter (WA) Progressive1913_19151913–1915
JohnsonMagnus Johnson (MN) Farmer–Labor1923_19251923–1925
ShipsteadHenrik Shipstead (MN) Farmer–Labor1923_19411923–1941
BensonElmer A. Benson (MN) Farmer–Labor1935_19361935–1936
La FolletteRobert M. La Follette, Jr. (WI) Progressive1935_19471935–1947
LundeenErnest Lundeen (MN) Farmer–Labor1937_19401937–1940
NorrisGeorge W. Norris (NE) Independent1937_19431937–1943
MorseWayne L. Morse (OR) Independent1953_19551953–1955
ThurmondStrom Thurmond (SC) Independent Democrat1954_19561954–1956
BuckleyJames L. Buckley (NY) Conservative1977_19711971–1977
ByrdHarry F. Byrd, Jr. (VA) Independent1983_19711971–1983
SmithRobert C. Smith (NH) Independent1999_199919991
JeffordsJames M. Jeffords (VT) Independent2001_20072001–20072
BarkleyDean Barkley (MN) Independent2002–20032002–2003
LiebermanJoseph I. Lieberman (CT) Independent Democrat1989–20131989–20133
SandersBernard Sanders (VT) Independent2007_20072007–present
KingAngus S. King, Jr. (ME) Independent2013_20132013–present
SinemaKyrsten Sinema (AZ) Independent2023_20232023–present

Total: 77 individuals (Three senators, John P. Hale, Anthony Kennedy, and Waitman T. Willey, each represented two third parties at different times.)

1 Smith announced his change from the Republican party on July 13, 1999. On November 1, 1999, he announced that he was changing back to Republican. He noted that, since his home town in New Hampshire had not yet changed his voter registration, he had technically never left the Republican party.

2 Jeffords announced his change on May 24, 2001, effective June 6, 2001, indicating that he would caucus with the Democratic party, thus changing control of the evenly divided Senate from the Republicans to the Democrats.

3 Lieberman was elected as a Democrat to the U.S. Senate in 1988, and reelected in 1994 and 2000. In 2006, he lost the Democratic primary and chose to run as an Independent Democrat, winning the 2006 election under that party affiliation.

4 Sinema was elected as a Democrat to the U.S. Senate in 2018, for the 116th Congress. On December 9, 2022, she announced that she was switching her affiliation to Independent.