In all of US history, which Congressional marjority/minority leaders and speakers are considered historically important? For example, FDR and Lincoln are, for better or worse, considered historically important Presidents.

  • Ok, well it seems you know where I am going, but you don't like where I am going. I'd just like to ask about Congressional leaders in a way that narrows them down to a few. Back later.
    – Mr. A
    Oct 8, 2013 at 21:12
  • @Mr.A I think if you restructured the question to be focused on the WHY leadership positions in the House or Senate are powerful that might help your question out. I like the spirit of the question, but it's wording is a little problematic.
    – ihtkwot
    Oct 9, 2013 at 2:20
  • 1
    Asking for the "why" were they powerful seems to invite a list which isn't really what we aim for in questions.
    – ihtkwot
    Oct 9, 2013 at 2:22
  • 2
    This is a list question and it strikes me as an opinion question.
    – MCW
    Oct 9, 2013 at 12:22
  • 1
    Since the last try didn't take, I've taken a simpler crack at improving the question.
    – T.E.D.
    Oct 9, 2013 at 13:22

1 Answer 1


Probably the most famous and historically significant US Congressional leader was Henry Clay, who was a dominant, if not the dominant leader of the early 19th Century Congress. He was the founder and leader of the Whig party (one of the two main parties of the era), and was the driving force behind The Missouri Compromise and (as a Senator) The Compromise of 1850, both of which for a time defused major pre-Civil war Slavery crises.

The role of Speaker regained a lot of power in the mid 20'th Century under Sam Rayburn, but never really the same stature. During part of his tenure, his protege Lyndon Johnson asumed similar control of the Senate, producing a fairly imposing legislative partnership.

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