By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
WASHINGTON—Tuesday, January 3, 2017, US Senator Richard Shelby (R-Alabama) was sworn in for his sixth term in the United States Senate.
“It is a tremendous honor and privilege to represent the people of Alabama for another six years in the United States Senate,” Shelby stated. “In this next term, I am committed to continuing my record of service and working to ensure that Alabama’s interests are represented and protected in Washington.
“The 115th Congress presents a great opportunity for Alabamians and all Americans under the leadership of President-elect Trump and our Republican majorities in Congress. From filling the late Justice Antonin Scalia’s seat on the Supreme Court with a conservative voice to rolling back burdensome rules and regulations, I am confident that we will make much-needed progress for our country in the coming weeks, months, and years.”
Senator Shelby was first elected to the Senate in 1986 as a Democrat. Shelby switched to the Republican Party in the 1990s after winning a second term. He had previously served in the US House of Representatives and the Alabama State Senate.
Alabama’s senior Senator faced a host of opponents in the 2016 Republican Primary, but ultimately won the Republican Party Primary without a runoff. In the November general election, Sen. Shelby easily defeated his Democratic opponent, Ron Crumpton.
The Senators were sworn in for the 115th Congress and the Senate convened at 12:00 noon Eastern Time and adjourned at 2:09pm. No votes were recorded on the first day.
Shelby was the Chairman of the Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee in the 114th Congress, but was term limited from serving again as chair. Instead, Shelby will chair the Senate Rules and Administration Committee, where he succeeds Missouri Sen. Roy Blunt (R). He is 82 years old.