Cynthia Lummis

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Cynthia Lummis
CynthiaLummis.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Wyoming's At-large district
Incumbent
Assumed office
January 3, 2009
Preceded by Barbara Cubin
Treasurer of Wyoming
In office
January 1999 – January 2007
Governor Jim Geringer
Dave Freudenthal
Preceded by Stan Smith
Succeeded by Joseph Meyer
Personal details
Born (1954-09-10) September 10, 1954 (age 59)
Cheyenne, Wyoming, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Alvin Wiederspahn
Children Annaliese
Alma mater University of Wyoming
Religion Lutheran - LCMS
Website Government website

Cynthia Marie Lummis Wiederspahn (born September 10, 1954) is the U.S. Representative for Wyoming's at-large congressional district, serving since 2009. She is a member of the Republican Party. She previously served as a State Representative (1979–83, 1985–93), State Senator (1993–95), and State Treasurer (1999–2007).[citation needed]

Early life[edit]

Lummis is one of four children born in Cheyenne to Doran Lummis and the former Enid Bennett (1928-2013), a native of Denver, Colorado, who was reared in Cheyenne and was highly active in Cheyenne Frontier Days and the Republican Party. Lummis' maternal grandparents were Clarence "Buck" Bennett, the head mechanic at the Greyhound Bus Lines in Cheyenne, and Eda Erickson Bennett. Her siblings are Christine, Claudia, and Dell and his wife Sally Lummis, all of Cheyenne. In a statement upon her mother's death, Lummis said, "I carry with me so many lessons my mother taught me; chief among them is the quiet grit she displayed in the face of pain and adversity."[1]

Lummis was educated at Trinity Lutheran School and public schools in Cheyenne. She was active in the 4-H Club and raised Hereford calves every year for showing at the annual county fair in August.[citation needed]

After high school, Lummis enrolled in the University of Wyoming in Laramie, the state's only four-year institution of higher learning.[citation needed] She obtained two Bachelor of Science degrees in animal science in 1976 and in biology in 1978.[citation needed] While she was a legislator, she received her Juris Doctor degree in 1985 and also clerked for the Wyoming Supreme Court.[citation needed]

Legislature[edit]

Lummis was a member of the Wyoming House of Representatives from 1979 to 1983 and 1985 to 1993, and then the Wyoming Senate from 1993 to 1995. At twenty-four, she was the youngest woman to have been elected to the Wyoming House. Lummis concentrated on issues of taxation and natural resources.[citation needed]

On leaving the Wyoming Senate, she served as transition director for Republican Governor Jim Geringer and then worked for two years in Geringer's office. In that capacity she spearheaded the Governor’s Open Spaces Initiative and edited Wyoming’s Open Lands Guidebook.[citation needed] She also served on the Board of the Institute for Environmental and Natural Resources at the University of Wyoming.[citation needed] She is a former interim director of the Office of State Lands and Investments.[citation needed] State revenues increased sharply during her tenure, and investment income increased.[citation needed]

State Treasurer[edit]

Lummis was elected state treasurer in 1998 and reelected in 2002 (unopposed).[citation needed] She managed over $8 billion in annual funds and was elected President of the Western State Treasurer's Association.[citation needed] As State Treasurer, she was cited by the Small Business Administration as the "Women in Business Advocate of the Year 2005."[citation needed] The award is given to a public official who promotes women's business ownership.[citation needed] That same year, Lummis was honored by the University of Wyoming (UW) College of Agriculture as one of two "Outstanding Alumni."[citation needed] She was ineligible to seek reelection in 2006 because of Wyoming's term limits law, and was succeeded by fellow Republican Joseph B. Meyer, previously the Wyoming Secretary of State.[citation needed]

On June 14, 2007, Lummis was among thirty-one Wyoming Republicans to file their names with the Republican State Central Committee in Cheyenne for consideration as the successor to U.S. Senator Craig Thomas,[citation needed] who died earlier in the month.[citation needed] She was chosen as one of the three nominees by the committee submitted to Governor Dave Freudenthal for final selection[citation needed] who, under Wyoming law, made the final selection on June 22, 2007, to appoint John Barrasso, an orthopedic surgeon and State Senator from Casper.[citation needed] Lummis had considered challenging Barrasso in the 2008 special election to complete the remaining four years of Thomas's term, but instead announced her candidacy for the open seat that was vacated by Barbara Cubin in the U.S. House of Representatives.[citation needed]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]

Cynthia Lummis is one of three female U.S. Representatives in the 113th Congress who identifies as a "congressman."[2]

Taxes

Lummis is a signer of Americans for Tax Reform’s Taxpayer Protection Pledge.[3]

Elections[edit]

2008

Lummis, who carried the support of pro-life and economic conservative voters in Wyoming, won the November 4, 2008, general election to succeed Barbara Cubin of Casper. In the August primary election, Lummis defeated businessman and rancher Mark Gordon of Buffalo in Johnson County, who outspent her four-to-one, along with other candidates Bill Winney and Michael S. Holland.[citation needed] Gordon is now the Wyoming state treasurer.

In the general election, Lummis faced Democratc Teton County School Board Trustee Gary Trauner of Wilson, who had run against Cubin in 2006 and nearly won. Trauner criticized Lummis because she has supported privatization of Social Security and has also suggested raising the retirement age for receiving such benefits; Trauner has called instead for consideration of imposing the FICA tax on income over $100,000, which is currently exempt.[4] Lummis defeated Trauner by 10 percentage points.[citation needed]

Trauner had nearly toppled Cubin in the 2006 election.[5]

2010

Lummis won re-election with 71% against Democratic challenger David Wendt.[6]

2012
2014

In October 2013, Jason Adam Senteney (born 1978), a resident of Yoder and a corrections officer at the Wyoming Medium Correctional Institution in Torrington, announced that he will challenge Lummis in the 2014 Republican primary. Senteney attended West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas, but did not graduate. He opposed the 2013 government shutdown: "You should never shut down essential programs for people. ... Whether it's a negotiation tactic or not, you shouldn't punish the American people for your own failure to work together in Washington."[7]

No other candidate has yet entered the 2014 congressional primary.

Tenure[edit]

Timothy P. Carney of the Washington Examiner has called Lummis one of Arizona Congressman Jeff Flake's "posse of anti-appropriators" on the Approrpriations Committee.[8] According to Carney, Lummis "is the league leader in bucking the committee leadership."[8] She is a member of the Republican Study Committee.[citation needed]

Legislation supported[edit]

Committee assignments[edit]

Current

United States House Committee on Natural Resources (2009-2011; 2013–present)

Past

Caucus memberships[edit]

Electoral history[edit]

Wyoming state treasurer, 1998 – general election:[13][14]

  • Cynthia Lummis, Republican – 105,322 (62.69%)
  • Charyl "Butch" Loveridge, Democrat – 52,655 (31.34%)
  • James Blomquist, Libertarian – 10,024 (5.97%)

Wyoming state treasurer, 2002 – Republican primary:[15]

  • Cynthia Lummis – 79,557 (100.00%)

Wyoming state treasurer, 2002 – general election:[16]

  • Cynthia Lummis – 152,583 (100.00%)

Wyoming's At-large congressional district, 2008 – Republican primary:[17]

  • Cynthia Lummis – 33,149 (73.90%)
  • Bill Winney – 8,537 (19.03%)
  • Michael S. Holland – 3,171 (7.07%)

Wyoming's at-large congressional district, 2008 – general election:[18]

  • Cynthia Lummis, Republican – 131,244 (52.62%)
  • Gary Trauner, Democrat – 106,758 (42.81%)
  • W. David Herbert, Libertarian – 11,030 (4.42%)
  • Write-in candidates – 363 (0.15%)

Wyoming's at-large congressional district, 2010 – Republican primary:[19]

  • Cynthia Lummis – 84,063 (82.82%)
  • Evan Liam Slafter – 17,148 (16.89%)
  • Write-in candidates – 289 (0.28%)

Wyoming's at-large congressional district, 2010 – general election:[20]

  • Cynthia Lummis, Republican – 131,661 (70.42%)
  • David Wendt, Democrat – 45,768 (24.48%)
  • John V. Love, Libertarian – 9,253 (4.95%)
  • Write-in candidates – 287 (0.15%)

Wyoming's At-Large Congressional District, 2012 - General Election:[21]

  • Cynthia M. Lummis, Republican - 166,452 (68.89%)
  • Chris Henrichsen, Democrat - 57,573 (23.83%)
  • Richard P. Brubaker, Libertarian - 8,442 (3.49%)
  • Don Wills, Country Party - 3,775 (1.56%)
  • Daniel Clyde Cummings, Constitution - 4,963 (2.05%)
  • Write-in Candidates - 416 (0.17%)

Personal life[edit]

Lummis is a lawyer and rancher in Cheyenne.[citation needed] She manages Lummis Livestock, located outside Cheyenne, which began in 1919 when her great-grandfather, the owner of a hardware store, bought the property from a business partner.[citation needed] The ranch has a stone barn built in the latter 19th century.[citation needed] Lummis and Wiederspahn also own ranches in Wheatland and in Lincoln County.[citation needed]

Although she uses her maiden name, she has been married since 1983 to Cheyenne attorney and businessman Alvin Laramie "Al" Wiederspahn (born 1949)[citation needed], himself a Democratic former member of both houses of the Wyoming legislature.[citation needed] The two were House colleagues from 1979 to 1983, when they married.[citation needed] The Wiederspahns have a daughter, Annaliese Wiederspahn.[citation needed] They are members of Trinity Lutheran Church in Cheyenne.[citation needed] Lummis's father-in-law was former Laramie County Coroner Arling Wiederspahn (1916–2007), a Democrat, a funeral home owner, and a leading civic builder of Cheyenne.[citation needed]

Her affiliations include the American Women's Financial Education Foundation[citation needed] , the Center for the Rocky Mountain West Advisory Board[citation needed] , Cheyenne's Vision 2020[citation needed] , the Wyoming Business Alliance[citation needed] , and the Wyoming Stock Growers Agricultural Land Trust.[citation needed] She is the first woman to have served on the popular Cheyenne Frontier Days Rodeo Board.[citation needed] She won the title "Miss Frontier" in 1976.[citation needed] In 2003, Lummis was a fundraiser for the construction of Johnson Lummis Hunkins Plaza in Downtown Laramie in Albany County,[citation needed] where a statue has been erected in honor of Louisa Gardner Swain[citation needed] , the first woman ever to have voted in a general election in the United States.[citation needed]

Lummis appeared on The Colbert Report on March 9, 2009, as part of the show's recurring Better Know a District segment, which often lampoons members of the U.S. Congress. The segment dealt with cougars, or mountain lions, with Colbert asking if Wyoming had a cougar problem, while alluding to the slang use of the term "cougar". Mrs. Lummis is six years younger than her husband.[citation needed]

In 2008, Lummis reported her wealth as ranging from $20 million to $75 million.[citation needed] In 2010, she reported $5.5 million and $24 million each.[citation needed] She ranked in 2010 as the twenty-ninth wealthiest member of Congress.[citation needed] Most of Lummis’ wealth is derived from her family-owned Arp and Hammond Company, Lummis Livestock Company, and Old Horse Pasture Inc.[22]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Rep. Lummis' Statement on the Passing of Her Mother, October 10, 2013". lummis.house.gov. Retrieved October 18, 2013. 
  2. ^ Ostermeier, Eric (June 13, 2013). "Meet the Three House Women Who Go by "Congressman"". Smart Politics. 
  3. ^ "The Taxpayer Protection Pledge Signers 112th Congressional List". Americans for Tax Reform. Retrieved November 30, 2011. 
  4. ^ Joyce, Matt (2008-10-10). "Trauner, Lummis camps debate Social Security". Casper Star-Tribune. 
  5. ^ Wyoming Tribune-Eagle Online
  6. ^ "State Results - Election Center 2010 - Elections & Politics from CNN.com". CNN. 
  7. ^ "Trevor Brown, Yoder man challenging Lummis in 2014 primary: Jason Senteney says Congress isn't working to solve budget issues, October 24, 2013". Wyoming Tribune-Eagle. Retrieved October 25, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b Carney, Timothy (2011-04-03) GOP anti-appropriators break up the spending party, Washington Examiner
  9. ^ a b c Hancock, Laura (5 August 2013). "Lummis-supported bills move forward". Casper Star-Tribune Online. Retrieved 27 January 2014. 
  10. ^ "H.R. 1684 - Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 27 January 2014. 
  11. ^ Kasperowicz, Pete (19 November 2013). "House advances drilling, fracking bills". The Hill. Retrieved 21 November 2013. 
  12. ^ "H.R. 1526 - Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 17 September 2013. 
  13. ^ "Statewide Issues Abstract" (Portable Document Format). Wyoming Elections Division. p. 5. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  14. ^ Foster, Deidre (November 4, 1998). "Lummis trumps Loveridge". Wyoming Tribune-Eagle. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  15. ^ "Statewide Candidates' Abstract -- Official Primary Election Results -- August 20, 2002" (Portable Document Format). Wyoming Elections Division. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  16. ^ "Statewide Candidates' Abstract -- Official General Election Results -- November 5, 2002" (Portable Document Format). Wyoming Elections Division. p. 2. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Republican Statewide Candidates Official Summary: Wyoming Primary Election - August 19, 2008". Wyoming Elections Division. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  18. ^ Miller, Lorraine C. (July 10, 2009). "Statistics of the presidential and congressional election of November 4, 2008" (Portable Document Format). Clerk of the United States House of Representatives. p. 68. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Statewide Candidates Official Summary: Wyoming Primary Election - August 17, 2010" (Portable Document Format). Wyoming Elections Division. p. 1. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  20. ^ Haas, Karen L. (June 3, 2011). "Statistics of the congressional election of November 2, 2010" (Portable Document Format). Clerk of the United States House of Representatives. p. 56. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Office of the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives - Election Information". Karen Haas, Clerk of the United States House of Representatives. 
  22. ^ "Rep. Cynthia Lummis among Richest Members of Congress". wyofile.com. Retrieved January 3, 2012. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Barbara Cubin
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Wyoming's At-large congressional district

2009–present
Incumbent
United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Ben Luján
United States Representatives by seniority
250th
Succeeded by
Tom McClintock