||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (March 2013)|
|Robert Terry Everett|
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Alabama's 2nd district
January 3, 1993 – January 3, 2009
|Preceded by||Bill Dickinson|
|Succeeded by||Bobby Bright|
February 15, 1937 |
|Spouse(s)||Barbara Pitts Everett|
|Alma mater||Enterprise State Junior College|
|Occupation||Journalist; Real estate executive|
|Service/branch||United States Air Force|
|Years of service||1955-1959|
Robert Terry Everett (born February 15, 1937) is an American politician and a Republican former member of the United States House of Representatives from Alabama's 2nd congressional district. He served from 1993 to 2009.
On September 26, 2007, Everett announced his intention to retire at the end of the 110th Congress after the 2008 elections. He was succeeded by Bobby Bright, the first Democrat to represent the district since William Louis Dickinson won it during the Barry M. Goldwater landslide in Alabama in 1964.
Everett was born in Dothan as the oldest son of a sharecropper and railroad worker. Both of his parents died at an early age, and Everett had to work two jobs to help his two brothers and sister. After graduating from high school, he served four years in the Air Force as an intelligence specialist in Europe, where he learned Russian, and then worked a sports and police beat reporter for the Dothan Eagle. He eventually became owner of a chain of newspapers in the Southeast, as well as a large farm and a real estate development. He sold all but one of his holdings in 1988.
In 1992, Bill Dickinson announced his retirement from Congress, having served the 2nd District since 1964. It was widely expected that the race to succeed him would be between Democratic State Treasurer George Wallace, Jr., the son of the former governor, and Republican State Senator Larry Dixon from Montgomery. However, Everett upset Dixon in the Republican primary, winning by 15 points largely by dominating the area of the district outside Montgomery. In November, Everett defeated Wallace by just under two points (3,500 votes). Everett probably would not have won if not for redistricting changes that moved most of Montgomery's African American residents to the 7th District to create a minority-majority district. Indeed, Dickinson had only won a 14th term in 1990 by only two points. The district reverted to form in the 1994 Republican wave, and Everett was reelected with 73 percent of the vote. He was reelected six more times after that with no substantive opposition.
Like his predecessor Dickinson, Everett was one of the most conservative members of the House. He had the highest lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union of any member of the Alabama delegation. He showed a concern about local issues and demonstrated a real impact on some issues that are vital to his constituency. In 1995, he formed a Peanut Caucus and on the Agriculture Committee held out against the Freedom to Farm Act until he got the peanut program continued (though with a 10 percent cut in the support price). On the 2002 Farm bill, Everett chaired the Speciality Crops and Foreign Agriculture Programs Subcommittee, which placed him in a strong position to advocate the interests of peanut farmers. When the 30 percent peanut subsidy finally lost congressional support, he managed to secure passage of a $3.5 billion program for a fallback government purchase option for peanut farmers.
Everett has also worked on military and veterans' issues (the 2nd District includes Fort Rucker). As a Veterans' Affairs Subcommittee chairman in 1999, he took credit for a $1.7 billion increase for veterans' health care spending and the opening of four new national cemeteries. Everett sought to shift funding priorities "from longer-term efforts to those that will provide more immediate benefit to the war fighter in Iraq", including space-based capabilities.
On December 14, 2005, he voted for the reauthorization of the Patriot Act. On June 29, 2005, he voted for the increase of funds by $25 million for anti-marijuana print and TV ads.
In 2006, he voted against extending the Voting Rights Act of 1965 because of the House's failure to adopt an amendment that would have based the law on current data and extended its coverage to areas beyond the Southeast where voter discrimination is found.
On June 16, 2006, he voted for the continued occupation of Iraq.
In an October 2006 New York Times Op-ed piece, Congressional Quarterly journalist Jeff Stein revealed that despite Everett's being vice-chairperson of the House intelligence subcommittee on technical and tactical intelligence, Everett did not know the ideological and religious differences between Sunni and Shia Muslims. Stein wrote that he posed a question to Everett: “'Do you know the difference between a Sunni and a Shiite?'... Mr. Everett responded with a low chuckle. He thought for a moment: 'One’s in one location, another’s in another location. No, to be honest with you, I don’t know. I thought it was differences in their religion, different families or something.'" After Stein explained some of those differences to the congressman, Everett responded, "“Now that you’ve explained it to me, what occurs to me is that it makes what we’re doing over there extremely difficult, not only in Iraq but that whole area.”
- House Committee on Agriculture (4th of 25)
- Subcommittee on Conservation, Credit, Energy and Research
- Subcommittee on Specialty Crops, Rural Development and Foreign Agriculture Programs
- House Committee on Armed Services (6th of 34)
- Subcommittee on Strategic Forces (Ranking Member)
- Subcommittee on Seapower and Expeditionary Forces
- Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (4th of 12)
- Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations (Ranking Member)
- Subcommittee on Terrorism/HUMINT, Analysis and Counter Intelligence
- Subcommittee on Technical and Tactical Intelligence
2006 General Election
|Terry Everett (R)||124,212||70|
|Chuck James (D)||54,398||30|
|Terry Everett (R) re-elected for 8th term|
2004 General Election
|Terry Everett (R)||177,086||71|
|Chuck James (D)||70,562||28|
|Terry Everett (R) re-elected for 7th term|
2002 General Election
|Terry Everett (R)||129,233||69|
|Charles Woods (D)||55,495||30|
|Terry Everett (R) re-elected for 6th term|
- General Election 2000: Terry Everett (R) — 68%
- General Election 1998: Terry Everett (R) — 69%
- General Election 1996: Terry Everett (R) — 63%
- General Election 1994: Terry Everett (R) — 74%
- General Election 1992: Terry Everett (R) — 49%
Group ratings (2004)
- National Journal
- Economic: 25% Liberal, 74% Conservative
- Social: 0% Liberal, 91% Conservative
- Foreign: 25% Liberal, 68% Conservative
- Americans for Democratic Action: 0
- American Civil Liberties Union: 5
- Chamber of Commerce of the United States: 100
- Christian Coalition: 100
- American Conservative Union: 92
- National Taxpayers Union: 54
- League of Conservation Voters: 9
- Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission
- Financial information (federal office) at OpenSecrets.org
- Issue positions and quotes at On the Issues
- Voting record at The Washington Post
|United States House of Representatives|
William L. Dickinson
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Alabama's 2nd congressional district
January 3, 1993–January 3, 2009