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Congress Diversity Peaks As 113th Class Members Are Sworn In

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The Senate and House have officially sworn in a new Congress, and the new members are unlike any class before them in U.S. history, representing a diverse number of races, genders and religions.

The 113th U.S. Congress convened at noon Thursday, ushering in 82 freshman House members and 12 new senators. Of that group four African Americans, five Asian Americans, 10 Latinos and 24 women were sworn in, ultimately marking a shift in which white males no longer make up the majority of House Democrats.

Rep. Tim Scott was named to replace outgoing Republican Sen. Jim DeMint, making him the first black senator from the South since Reconstruction.

The new Congress members also represent a wide range of religious diversity, including Rep. Tulsi Gubbard (D-Hawaii), the first Hindu to serve in either the House or Senate and Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), the first Buddhist senator.

The class also includes Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), the first openly bisexual congresswoman. She is also the first member of Congress to identify herself as "religiously-unaffiliated," although members have not specified religious affiliations in the past. Wisconsin's Tammy Baldwin is the first openly gay politician elected to the U.S. Senate.

Want to know just how representative the House really is? The infographic below displays the current demographic makeup of the House compared to what it would look like if it were truly representative of the U.S. population. Take a look and tell us what you think.

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