Senate swears-in six new lawmakers as 117th Congress convenes

Senate swears-in six new lawmakers as 117th Congress convenes
© Greg Nash

Six new senators were sworn in Sunday as part of the 117th Congress.

New members of the chamber included: Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), who defeated Sen. Doug Jones (D); Sen. John HickenlooperJohn HickenlooperDemocrats race to squash Cruz's Nord Stream 2 sanctions bill Biden addresses Coloradans after wildfires: 'Incredible courage and resolve' Equilibrium/Sustainability — Mars may start 'terraforming itself' MORE (D-Colo.), who defeated Sen. Cory GardnerCory GardnerEleven interesting races to watch in 2022 The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden to tackle omicron risks with new travel rules Gun control group alleges campaign finance violations in lawsuit against NRA MORE (R); Sen. Roger MarshallRoger W. MarshallSwalwell slams House Republican for touting funding in bill she voted down The Hill's Morning Report: Biden takes it on the chin GOP senator plans to introduce FAUCI Act after clash at hearing MORE (R-Kan.), who succeeded Sen. Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsBiden remembers Dole as 'master of the Senate' at National Cathedral Bob Dole: heroic, prickly and effective McConnell gets GOP wake-up call MORE (R); Sen. Ben Ray LujanBen Ray LujanBipartisan lawmakers propose 'TLDR Act' to simplify terms of service agreements Democrats mull hardball tactics to leapfrog parliamentarian on immigration Lawmakers take aim at 'Grinches' using bots to target consumers during holidays MORE (D-N.M.), who succeeded Sen. Tom UdallTom UdallCruz to get Nord Stream 2 vote as part of deal on Biden nominees Democrats threaten to play hardball over Cruz's blockade Rubio vows to slow-walk Biden's China, Spain ambassador nominees MORE (D); Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), who succeeded Sen. Lamar AlexanderLamar AlexanderMcConnell gets GOP wake-up call The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Alibaba - Democrats return to disappointment on immigration Authorities link ex-Tennessee governor to killing of Jimmy Hoffa associate MORE (R); and Sen. Cynthia LummisCynthia Marie LummisCheney challenger wins Wyoming Republican activists' straw poll Overnight Energy & Environment — Lummis holds up Biden EPA picks GOP senator blocks Biden EPA nominees over coal plant decision MORE (R-Wyo.), who succeeded Sen. Mike EnziMichael (Mike) Bradley EnziLobbying world Cheney on same-sex marriage opposition: 'I was wrong' What Republicans should demand in exchange for raising the debt ceiling MORE (R).

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California Secretary of State Alex Padilla (D), who Gov. Gavin NewsomGavin NewsomLos Angeles lawmakers vote to support ban on new oil wells Newsom, California lawmakers reach deal on COVID-19 sick pay California bill would require all schoolchildren to be vaccinated against COVID-19 MORE (D) named as Vice President-elect Kamala HarrisKamala HarrisHarris discusses pandemic, migration during visit with new Honduran president Biden has done just three local interviews in first year in office Clyburn predicts Supreme Court contender J. Michelle Childs would get GOP votes MORE’ replacement, is set to assume the seat after Harris resigns following the Jan. 20 inauguration.

"To say the 117th Congress convenes at a challenging time would indeed be an understatement," Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMcConnell: I'm going to give Biden's Supreme Court nominee 'a fair look' Progressive millionaire group backs Cisneros, McBath in first public endorsements Clyburn calls for full-court press on voting rights MORE (R-Ky.) said in a statement after senators were sworn in. "From political division to a deadly pandemic to adversaries around the world, the hurdles before us are many and they are serious."

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"But there's also plenty of reason for hope," McConnell continued. "An optimistic forward-looking ... spirit has been one of our country's most distinctive calling cards since our very earliest days. And with safe and effective vaccines rolling out across our nation every day, I'd say 2021 looks bright already."

The chamber’s balance of power will not become clear until after Tuesday’s Senate runoffs in Georgia, where Sens. Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerThese Senate seats are up for election in 2022 Eleven interesting races to watch in 2022 Democrats' selective hearing on law and order issues puts everyone at risk MORE (R) and David PerdueDavid PerdueBiden approval rating drops to 34 percent in Georgia: poll The Hill's Morning Report - Who will replace Justice Breyer? Kemp leading Perdue in Georgia gubernatorial primary: poll MORE (R) will defend their seats against the Rev. Raphael Warnock (D) and Jon Ossoff (D), respectively.

A Democratic victory in both seats would result in a 50-50 split in the chamber, with tie votes broken by Harris.