A photo collage of Mississippi House members.

The Mississippi State Legislature is comparatively more male, whiter, and older than the demographics of the people these legislators represent.

One in three state lawmakers are white men aged 55 or older. Compared to the state’s overall demographics, that mirrors just 9 percent of the population, according to U.S. Census data.

The 2019 state Legislature is comprised of 171 lawmakers: 52 Senators and 119 House Representatives (there are three House seats which will be filled in upcoming special elections).

The share of women in the Legislature reveals the largest imbalance: just 14 percent of lawmakers are women, compared to 52 percent of the state.

In terms of race, the Legislature is 71 percent white and 29 percent black compared to the 57-38 percent split of white and black residents in the state overall.

The median age of lawmakers is 56, about 18 years older than the state median.

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Through interviews with lawmakers and scraping of their biographies, Mississippi Today built an interactive tool for constituents to study what their representation looks like.

Alex Rozier

Alex Rozier, a native of New York City, is Mississippi Today’s data reporter. He analyzes data and creates visuals that further inform our reporting. He also reports on the environment, transportation and Mississippi culture and is a member of the engagement team. Alex, whose work has appeared in the Boston Globe and Open Secrets, has a bachelor’s in journalism from Boston University.

Kayleigh Skinner

Kayleigh Skinner joined the Mississippi Today team in January 2017 as an education and legislative reporter and advanced to a senior staff member in her three years with the company. Skinner most recently served as deputy managing editor before assuming the role of managing editor. Kayleigh has a bachelor’s in journalism from the School of Journalism and New Media from the University of Mississippi. Before joining Mississippi Today, Kayleigh worked at The Hechinger Report, Chalkbeat Tennessee, and The Commercial Appeal, and has appeared on MSNBC, NPR, and BBC Newsday Radio to discuss her reporting.