Valarie Hodges

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Valarie Dawn Hope Hodges
Member of the Louisiana House of Representatives
from the 64th district
Incumbent
Assumed office
January 9, 2012
Preceded by Bodi White
Personal details
Born (1955-03-12) March 12, 1955 (age 59)
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Leland Melvin Hodges (married 1972)
Children Michael Leland Hodges

Kellie Nicole Hodges
Joshua Sean Hodges

Residence Denham Springs
Livingston Parish
Louisiana, USA
Alma mater Central (Louisiana) High School
Occupation Businesswoman
Religion Baptist

Valarie Dawn Hope Hodges (born March 12, 1955) is a businesswoman from Denham Springs in Livingston Parish, Louisiana, who is a Republican member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from District 64. In addition to Denham Springs, Hodges represents the communities of Brownsfield, Pride, Watson, Central, Walker, Baker, and a portion of Zachary within Livingston or East Baton Rouge parishes.[1]

Politically allied with U.S. Senator David Vitter,[2] Hodges was elected in 2011 to succeed fellow Republican Representative Bodi White, who instead was elected to the revamped District 6 seat in the Louisiana State Senate to succeed Julie Quinn, who did not seek reelection. Hodges defeated fellow Republican Barry Elkins in the primary election held on October 22, 2011. She received 7,145 votes (69.1 percent) to Elkins' 3,194 (30.9 percent).[3]

Hodges carried the support of the Tea Party movement.[4] She also won the support of Governor Bobby Jindal.[5]

Hodges is one of the eight members of the executive committee of the Republican State Executive Committee. She is a past president of the Livingston Parish Republican Women's Club. She met her husband, Leland M. Hodges, at Central High School, from which they graduated. The couple was wed in 1972 in the Amite Baptist Church in Watson. They have three children, Michael Leland Hodges (born 1974), and Kellie Nicole Hodges (born 1980). The Hodgeses jointly own and operate two small businesses. [2]

For eighteen years, Hodges was a missionary — her husband is a pastor. She recalls that their travels to the Third World have shown "the poverty that accompanies socialistic societies such as Cuba and Mexico. This experience gives me a passionate desire to fight socialism in America by working hard to elect conservatives at every level of government and to implement pro-business and pro-job creation policies. ..."[1]

As of 2012, the Hodgeses had three grandchildren. Hodges' namesake granddaughter (daughter of Michael Hodges) drowned in 2009 at the age of ten in the Amite River behind her house in Port Vincent, Louisiana. The child was reported to have been a very strong swimmer.[6]

Controversy[edit]

Hodges supported Louisiana Republican Governor Bobby Jindal when he pushed for a school voucher program that would allow state funds to be used to pay for religious schools, saying, "I actually support funding for teaching the fundamentals of America’s Founding Fathers’ religion, which is Christianity, in public schools or private schools."

"Unfortunately it will not be limited to the Founders’ religion... We need to insure that it does not open the door to fund radical Islam schools. There are a thousand Muslim schools that have sprung up recently. I do not support using public funds for teaching Islam anywhere here in Louisiana."[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Valarie Hodges to run for state representative". valariehodges.com. Retrieved May 17, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b "Valarie Hodges - Louisiana State Representative". valariehodges.com. Retrieved May 17, 2012. 
  3. ^ "Louisiana primary election returns, October 22, 2011". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved May 16, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Tea Party of Louisiana Endorses Valarie Hodges for State Representative District 64, October 19, 2011". insidelouisiananews.com. Retrieved May 17, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Bobby Jindal endorses Valarie Hodges, October 7, 2011". bobbyjindal.com. Retrieved May 17, 2012. 
  6. ^ "Cheryl Mercedes, "River drowning victim identified." May 10, 2009". wakeworld.com. Retrieved May 17, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Hodges now leery of Jindal reform". 
Louisiana House of Representatives
Preceded by
Bodi White
Louisiana State Representative from District 64 (Livingston and East Baton Rouge parishes)

Valarie Dawn Hope Hodges
2012 –

Succeeded by
Incumbent