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Top 10 longest-serving US senators

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ROBERT BYRD - (D) of West Virginia - Jan. 3, 1959 to June 28, 2010 - 51 years, 5 months, 25 days: Twice the Senate majority leader and a long-time chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Byrd used his seniority to stick up for his home state, sending billions of federal dollars to West Virginia during his tenure. Byrd is seen here in April 2005 speaking in Washington.

PHOTO: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

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