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  5. Two House Republicans are dating. Here are four other couples who have dated — or married — while in Congress.

Two House Republicans are dating. Here are four other couples who have dated or married — while in Congress.

Bryan Metzger   

Two House Republicans are dating. Here are four other couples who have dated — or married — while in Congress.
Rep. Beth Van Duyne confirmed on Friday that she's "engaged in a relationship" with Rep. Rich McCormick.Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call via Getty Images
  • Two sitting House Republicans are dating each other — and one of them is getting a divorce.
  • It's not the first time two lawmakers have dated while serving in Congress together.

Two current members of the House Republican conference are dating each other.

On Friday, Rep. Beth Van Duyne of Texas confirmed to the Daily Mail that she's "happily engaged in a relationship" with Rep. Rich McCormick of Georgia.

That's appeared to cause some trouble back home for McCormick: according to the Daily Mail, his wife filed for divorce earlier this month. Van Duyne — who's been divorced for over a decade — told the outlet that the congressman's marriage has "been over for quite some time as I understand it."

A spokesperson for Van Duyne declined to comment further, while a McCormick's spokesperson confirmed that the congressman and his wife have been "separated for quite some time." Neither disputed the Daily Mail's reporting.

The two mid-50s lawmakers, both of whom were only elected in recent years, aren't the first congressional couple.

In fact, there are four known cases of lawmakers dating one another — and ultimately marrying — while serving in Congress.

2000s: Reps. Connie Mack and Mary Bono

2000s: Reps. Connie Mack and Mary Bono
Reps. Connie Mack and Mary Bono Mack at the State of the Union in 2010.      Bill Clark/Roll Call/Getty Images

Republican Rep. Mary Bono got to Congress in 1998 after her husband — singer-turned-politician Sonny Bono — died in a skiing accident.

Bono opted to run for in the special election to fill her late husband's House seat, triggering the special election that she would ultimately win.

She remarried in 2001, only to file for divorce in 2005 — the same year she began dating fellow Republican Rep. Connie Mack IV of Florida.

The two later married in 2007, with the congresswoman changing her name to Mary Bono Mack.

In 2012, Connie Mack IV ran for US Senate in Florida, only to lose to Democrat Bill Nelson.

Mary Bono Mack lost reelection to her House seat at the same time, and the couple got divorced in 2013, with one source telling the Washington Post that losing their races — and no longer being in DC together — played a key role.

1990s: Reps. Bill Paxon and Susan Molinari

1990s: Reps. Bill Paxon and Susan Molinari
Reps. Bill Paxon and Susan Molinari at an event outside the Capitol in 1996.      Harry Hamburg/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images

The two New York Republicans arrived in Congress within a few years of each other. Paxon was elected to a Buffalo-area House seat in 1988, while Molinari won a special election for her father's Staten Island House seat in 1990.

Molinari and Paxon began dating a few years later and got married in 1994, after Paxon proposed to Molinari on the House floor.

"What she said was, 'Yes, I'll marry you, but get off the floor,'" Paxon recalled Molinari saying, according to the Associated Press.

They later had two children together, moving to the Washington, DC, area together permanently after they each left the House in the late 1990s.

1980s: Sen. Olympia Snowe and Gov. John McKernan

1980s: Sen. Olympia Snowe and Gov. John McKernan
Sen. Olympia Snowe and Gov. John McKernan at the Capitol in 2012.      AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Olympia Snowe and John McKernan — both Republicans — represented Maine's two House seats at the same time from 1983 to 1987. But they began dating years before that, when they served together in the Maine state legislature.

They ultimately got married in 1989, after McKernan had been elected governor of Maine. That gave Snowe the distinction of being the first person to serve simultaneously as a member of Congress and the First Lady of a state.

Snowe was later elected to the Senate in 1994, where she served until 2013. The duo are still married to this day.

1970s: Reps. Andrew Jacobs and Martha Keys

1970s: Reps. Andrew Jacobs and Martha Keys
Andrew Jacobs and Martha Keys outside the Capitol in 1977.      Bettmann/Getty Images

While every other couple has been Republican, the first known congressional marriage was between two Democrats.

Rep. Andrew Jacobs of Indiana and Martha Keys of Kansas got married in 1976, the year after both of them were elected to the House.

While Jacobs would go on to serve until 1997, Keys lost her 1978 reelection race. She later joined the Carter administration, serving in the now-defunct Department of Health, Education, and Welfare.

The couple separated in 1981.


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