Representative Julia Letlow of Louisiana is set to be sworn in on Wednesday morning, tightening the margin between Democrats and Republicans in the house, Fox News reports.
The seat Letlow will be filling was originally held by her now late husband Luke Letlow, who passed away from COVID-19 in September before he could be sworn in. A special election was held in March in which Julia Letlow won her seat.
With Letlow's swearing in, House Republicans now hold 212 seats to the 218 Democrats hold. Democrats now cannot lose more than two votes from within their party to pass legislation if the entire GOP party votes against it. Tie votes fail in the house.
Although that margin has the potential to prevent progressive bills that moderate Democrats do not support from passing for now, three special elections for House seats are being held over the next two months, and the Democrats are favored to win two of those.
In Louisiana's 2nd Congressional District, a special runoff election is being held to fill the seat left by former Rep. Cedric Richmond, who joined the Biden Administration as Director of the Office of Public Liaison and a senior advisor. Both candidates running in the April 24 election are Democrat.
In Texas' 6th Congressional District, a May 1 special election will decide who will fill GOP Rep. Ronald Wright's seat, who passed away due to COVID-19 complications. The District is Republican leaning, and Democrats are not favored to win this one.
New Mexico will also hold a special election for it's Democratic-leaning 1st Congressional District on June 1 to fill the seat of Democratic Rep. Debra Haaland, who was confirmed into the Biden Administration as Interior Secretary.
Even with the shrinking margin, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer of Maryland remained optimistic and said that "frankly, we're doing OK as Democrats as you look at this quarter."
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