Betty Cooper Hearnes

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Betty Cooper Hearnes
Member of the Missouri House of Representatives
In office
First Lady of Missouri
In office
January 11, 1965 – January 8, 1973
Governor Warren E. Hearnes
Preceded by Geraldine Dalton
Succeeded by Carolyn Reid Bond
Personal details
Born Betty Sue Cooper
(1927-07-24)July 24, 1927
Spouse(s) Warren E. Hearnes (m. 1947; wid. 2009)

Betty Cooper Hearnes (born Betty Sue Cooper on July 24, 1927) is a Democratic American politician from Missouri.[1]

She married Warren Hearnes, a recent West Point graduate, in 1947, while he was on leave from the Army, and was his partner throughout his career, including his two terms as Governor of Missouri and the drawn-out vendetta against him by the Nixon White House, until his death in August 2009.[2]

Cooper Hearnes was elected to the Missouri House of Representatives from Charleston in 1979, in a special election. She was re-elected in 1980, 1982, 1984, and 1986.[3]

In 1988 she was the Democratic nominee for governor and lost to John Ashcroft.[4] Ashcroft received 64 percent of the vote in the general election—the largest landslide for Missouri governor since the Civil War.[5]

Hearnes lost bids to return to the state house in 1990, the Missouri State Senate in 1992 and state house in 1998.[6]

In 2005, both Warren and Betty Hearnes were awarded the Edwin P. Hubble Medal of Initiative during the Charleston Dogwood-Azalea Festival. The medal was presented by a delegation of citizens from Marshfield, Missouri. The medal is the city of Marshfield's highest honor and is named for a native son. They both endorsed the campaign of Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008.