|United States Senator
from South Carolina
January 3, 2005 – January 1, 2013
|Preceded by||Ernest Hollings|
|Succeeded by||Tim Scott|
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 4th district
January 3, 1999 – January 3, 2005
|Preceded by||Bob Inglis|
|Succeeded by||Bob Inglis|
|Born||James Warren DeMint
September 2, 1951
Greenville, South Carolina, U.S.
|Alma mater||University of Tennessee, Knoxville
James Warren "Jim" DeMint (born September 2, 1951) is an American politician who was a United States Senator from South Carolina from 2005 to 2013. He is a member of the Republican Party and a leading member in the Tea Party movement. He previously served as the United States Representative for South Carolina's 4th congressional district from 1999 to 2005. On December 6, 2012, he announced plans to resign from the Senate on New Year's Day of 2013 to become president of The Heritage Foundation.
Early life and education 
DeMint was born in Greenville, South Carolina, one of four children. His parents, Betty W. (née Rawlings) and Thomas Eugene DeMint, divorced when he was five years old. Following the divorce, Betty DeMint operated a dance studio out of the family's home.
DeMint was educated at Christ Church Episcopal School and Wade Hampton High School in Greenville. DeMint played drums for a cover band called Salt & Pepper. He received a bachelor's degree from the University of Tennessee, where he was a part of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity, and received a MBA from Clemson University.
DeMint's wife, the former Debbie Henderson, is one of three children of Greenville advertising entrepreneur James Marvin Henderson, Sr. (1921-1995).
Business career 
After graduating in 1981, DeMint returned to Greenville and joined his father-in-law’s advertising firm, working in the field of market research. In 1983, he founded The DeMint Group, a research firm with businesses, schools, colleges, and hospitals as clients. DeMint’s first involvement in politics began in 1992, when he was hired by Republican Representative Bob Inglis in his campaign for South Carolina’s Fourth Congressional District. Inglis defeated three-term incumbent Democrat Liz J. Patterson, and DeMint performed message-testing and marketing for Inglis through two more successful elections. In 1998, Inglis ran for the U.S. Senate, and DeMint left his firm to run for Inglis’ old seat.
U.S. Representative 
|This section is empty. You can help by adding to it. (February 2011)|
U.S. Senate 
Committee assignments 
- Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs
- Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
- Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security (Ranking Member)
- Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet
- Subcommittee on Competitiveness, Innovation, and Export Promotion
- Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance
- Subcommittee on Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety and Security
- Committee on Foreign Relations
- Joint Economic Committee
- Impeachment Trial Committee on the Articles against Judge G. Thomas Porteous, Jr.
Caucus memberships 
Political positions 
|This section is incomplete. (March 2011)|
||This section is in a list format that may be better presented using prose. (January 2013)|
- DeMint is ranked by The National Journal as one of the most conservative members of the Senate. Salon.com has called him "perhaps the most conservative member of the Senate."
- DeMint opposes spending increases of the federal government. He opposed federal bailouts for banks and automobile corporations.
- DeMint favors a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
- Senator DeMint has been a consistent supporter of organized and led school prayer and has introduced legislation that would allow schools to display banners such as one stating "God Bless America".
- DeMint opposes abortion, including in cases of rape and incest. He approves of abortion only when the mother's life is in danger.
- DeMint favors requiring all illegal immigrants in the United States to either return to their home countries or apply for legal residency. He is in favor of establishing the English language as the country's official language.
- Demint opposed the NATO intervention into Kosovo but supported the U.S. invasion of Iraq. He is an advisor to the Atlantic Bridge.
- DeMint visited Honduras in 2009 and met with de facto president Roberto Micheletti, a meeting that was opposed by US President Barack Obama's administration. The State Department officially viewed ousted president Manuel Zelaya as the legitimately elected president.
- Following an attempted terrorist attack on December 25, 2009, DeMint accused President Barack Obama of lacking focus on terrorism since taking office and of failing to appoint a head of the Transportation Security Administration.
- DeMint opposed President Barack Obama's health reform legislation; he voted against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in December 2009, and he voted against the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010.
Political campaigns 
1998 through 2002 
DeMint served as an informal advisor to Fourth District congressman Bob Inglis from 1993 to 1999. When Inglis kept his promise to serve only three terms and gave up his seat to run for the Senate against Fritz Hollings. DeMint entered the Republican primary for the district, which includes Greenville and Spartanburg. The district is considered the most Republican in the state, and it was understood that whoever won the primary would be heavily favored to be the district's next congressman.
DeMint finished second in the primary behind State Senator and fellow Greenville resident Michael Fair, even though he didn't carry a single county in the district. In the runoff, DeMint defeated Fair by only 2,030 votes. He then defeated Democratic State Senator Glenn Reese with 57 percent of the vote to Reese's 40 percent--to date, the only time since 1992 that a Democrat has crossed the 40 percent mark in this district since Inglis recaptured it for the Republicans in 1992. DeMint faced no major-party opposition in 2000, and defeated an underfunded Democrat in 2002.
DeMint declared his candidacy for the Senate on December 12, 2002, after Hollings announced that he would retire after the 2004 elections. DeMint was supposedly the White House's preferred candidate in the Republican primary.
In the Republican primary on June 8, 2004, DeMint placed a distant second, 18 percentage points behind former governor David Beasley and just barely ahead of Thomas Ravenel. Ravenel endorsed DeMint in the following runoff. DeMint won the runoff handily, however.
DeMint then faced Democratic state education superintendent Inez Tenenbaum in the November general election. DeMint led Tenenbaum through much of the campaign and ultimately defeated her by 9.6 percentage points. DeMint's win meant that South Carolina was represented by two Republican Senators for the first time since Reconstruction, when Thomas J. Robertson and John J. Patterson served together as Senators.
DeMint stirred controversy during debates with Tenenbaum when he stated his belief that openly gay people should not be allowed to teach in public schools. When questioned by reporters, DeMint also stated that single mothers who live with their boyfriends should similarly be excluded from being educators. He later apologized for making the remarks, saying they were "distracting from the main issues of the debate." He also noted that these were opinions based on his personal values, not issues he would or could deal with as a member of Congress. In a 2008 interview, he said that while government does not have the right to restrict homosexuality, it also should not encourage it through legalizing same-sex marriage, due to the "costly secondary consequences" to society from the prevalence of certain diseases among homosexuals.
|Jim DeMint (R) 53.7%|
|Inez Tenenbaum (D) 44.1%|
|Patrick Tyndall (Constitution) 0.8%|
|Rebekah Sutherland (Libertarian) 0.7%|
|Tee Ferguson (United Citizens Party) 0.4%|
|Efia Nwangaza (Green) 0.3%|
DeMint won re-nomination in the Republican Party primary. Democratic Party opponent Alvin Greene won an upset primary victory over Vic Rawl, who was heavily favored. Due to various electoral discrepancies, Greene received scrutiny from Democratic Party officials, with some calling for Greene to withdraw or be replaced. DeMint consistently led Greene by more than 30 points throughout the campaign and won reelection by a landslide.
Prior to the 2010 elections, DeMint founded the Senate Conservatives Fund (SCF), a political action committee that is "dedicated to electing strong conservatives to the United States Senate" and that is associated with the Tea Party movement. As of February 2011, DeMint continued to serve as Chair of SCF, which states that it raised $9.1 million toward the 2010 U.S. Senate elections and which endorsed successful first-time Senate candidates Pat Toomey, Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Ron Johnson, Marco Rubio . DeMint also supported Joe Miller of Alaska through the SCF. Miller was an attorney and former federal magistrate and the Tea Party's candidate opposing Lisa Murkowski the incumbent senator in the Alaska primary. Miller won in a close election, however Murkowski ran as a write in candidate and won the election by 39.1% to Miller's 35.1% and by a popular vote of 101,091 to 90,839 respectively.
On October 1, 2010, DeMint, in comments that echoed what he had said in 2004, told a rally of his supporters that openly homosexual and unmarried sexually active people should not be teachers. In response, the National Organization for Women, the National Education Association, the gay rights group Human Rights Campaign, GOProud, a GOP group, and National Gay and Lesbian Task Force asked for Demint’s apology.
The Heritage Foundation 
On December 6, 2012, he announced he will resign from the Senate before the new 113th Congress begins in early January 2013 to become president of The Heritage Foundation. On December 17, 2012, South Carolina's governor Nikki Haley announced that she would name Congressman Tim Scott to the seat the U.S. Senate from which DeMint resigned. A special election will be held on November 4, 2014 fill the remainder of the term.
- Why We Whisper: Restoring Our Right to Say It's Wrong (co-authored with J. David Woodard, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, December 6, 2007)
- Jim DeMint (2009-07). Saving Freedom: We Can Stop America's Slide Into Socialism. Fidelis. ISBN 978-0-8054-4957-0.
- Jim DeMint (2011-07-04). The Great American Awakening: Two Years that Changed America, Washington, and Me. B&H Books. ISBN 978-1-4336-7279-8.
- Now or Never: Saving America from Economic Collapse (Center Street, 2012)
See also 
- DiStaso, John (November 9, 2011). "Santorum on nuclear Iran: 'There's no negotiating with these radicals, we have to stop them'". The Union Leader (Manchester, N.H). "National conservative leaders, such as Tea Party leader South Carolina U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint, ..."
- "Defining Romney: 'Multiple Choice Mitt' needs to be true to himself". Financial Times (London). November 8, 2011. p. 12. "... Tea Party figures such as Jim DeMint, ..."
- Vets bill held up by Lejeune toxic water issue
- Henninger, Daniel. Sen. Jim DeMint to Head Heritage Foundation, Washington Post, December 6, 2012.
- Jim DeMint | TheMediaBriefing
- JimDemint Tag - Politics Daily - Politics News, Elections Coverage, Political Analysis and Opinion
- How Old Is Jim DeMint?
- "12 in 2012: Senator Jim DeMint " The Special Report Blog". Fox News. November 9, 2010.
- Miller, John J. (February 22, 2010). "Senator Tea Party". Hey Miller.[self-published source?]
- "Legacy of Leadership: James M. Henderson (1921-1995)". knowitall.org. Retrieved June 4, 2012.
- "Sen. Jim DeMint (R)". NationalJournal. Retrieved April 3 2013.
- Jessica Rettig (June 22, 2010). "10 things you didn’t know about Jim DeMint". U.S. News and World Report. Retrieved April 23 2013.
- Dave Weigel (December 6, 2012). "How Jim DeMint Changed the Senate". Slate. Retrieved April 3 2013.
- "Senate Leaders Announce Bipartisan Committee To Investigate Judge G. Thomas Porteous" (Press release). Senate Democratic Caucus. 2010-03-17. Retrieved 2010-04-29.
- "Jim DeMint SC-Senate (R)". 2008 Vote Ratings. National Journal.
- Kornacki, Steve (2011-05-12) Why healthcare may not doom Mitt Romney after all, Salon.com
- Franklin, Charles (March 5, 2007). "National Journal 2006 Liberal/Conservative Scores". Political Arithmetik.[self-published source?]
- "2007 Vote Ratings". National Journal. March 7, 2007. Archived from the original on July 23, 2011.
- Kellman, Laurie, "DeMint steers the tea party bandwagon: Balanced-budget focus shapes debate," Associated Press, The Greenville News, 11 July 2011, p. 7B.
- "Jim DeMint on the Issues". Ontheissues.org. Retrieved 2010-08-29.
- Senator Jim W. DeMint at Project Vote Smart. Retrieved June 25, 2010.
- Jim DeMint on War & Peace
- PEOPLE[dead link]
- Lee, Carol E. (October 2, 2009). "Democrats target Jim DeMint's Honduras trip". Politico.
- Carty, Daniel (December 30, 2009). "DeMint: Obama 'Has Downplayed Terrorism'". CBS News.
- U.S. Senate: Legislation & Records Home > Votes > Roll Call Vote
- "U.S. Senate: Legislation & Records Home > Votes > Roll Call Vote". Senate.gov. Retrieved 2010-08-29.
- Biography on DeMint's House site
- Our Campaigns - SC District 04 - R Primary Race - Jun 09, 1998
- Our Campaigns - SC District 04 - R Primary Run-Off Race - Jun 23, 1998
- Our Campaigns - SC District 4 Race - Nov 03, 1998
- Kinnard, Meg. ["Gay, women’s groups want apology from DeMint"], Associated Press, The State, 7 October 2010.[dead link]
- Radnofsky, Louise; Phillips, Michael M. (November 11, 2010). "The Big Read: As U.S. political split widened, a friendship fell into the rift". Wall Street Journal. p. 16.
- Hoover, Dan. "DeMint apologizes after remarks on gays"[dead link], Greenville News, 6 October 2004.
- Demint, Jim. Remarks to Diane Rehm, The Diane Rehm Show, National Public Radio, 31 January 2008.
- Lach, Eric (June 9, 2010). "SC Dems Asks Alvin Greene To Withdraw From Senate Race". Talking Points Memo.
- Senate Conservatives Fund — About
- McConnell's Repeal Vote Rallies the Base - Chris Good - Politics - The Atlantic
- DeMint to Iowa amid denials of presidential run - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room
- Senate Conservatives Fund
- Shackleford, Lynne P. "DeMint addresses conservative issues at Spartanburg church rally", 2 October 2010.
- Terkel, Amanda. "Teachers Unions Pile on DeMint: 'Ignorance and Hate Go Hand In Hand'", Huffington Post, 7 October 2010.
- Paul Kane & David Fahrenthold (December 6, 2012). "Jim DeMint to head conservative think tank". Washington Post.
- Steinhauer, Jennifer & Jeff Zeleny. Tim Scott to Be Named for Empty South Carolina Senate Seat, Republicans Say, New York Times, December 17, 2012.
- Jim DeMint U.S. Senate website
- DeMint for Senate campaign website
- Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Biography, voting record, and interest group ratings at Project Vote Smart
- Profile at Ballotpedia
- Congressional profile at GovTrack
- Congressional profile at Roll Call
- Congressional profile at OpenCongress
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission
- Financial information (federal office) at OpenSecrets.org
- Staff salaries, trips and personal finance (federal office) at LegiStorm.com
- Issue positions and quotes at On the Issues
- Voting record at The Washington Post
- Appearances on C-SPAN programs
- Appearances at the Internet Movie Database
- Works by or about Jim DeMint in libraries (WorldCat catalog)
- Collected news and commentary at The New York Times
- Collected news and commentary at The Washington Post
- Entry at NNDB
- Profile at SourceWatch
|United States House of Representatives|
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 4th congressional district
|Party political offices|
|Republican nominee for U.S. Senator from South Carolina
|United States Senate|
|U.S. Senator (Class 3) from South Carolina
Served alongside: Lindsey Graham