Bruce Westerman

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Bruce Westerman
Bruce Westerman, 115th official photo.jpg
Member of the
U.S. House of Representatives
from Arkansas's 4th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2015
Preceded by Tom Cotton
Member of the Arkansas House of Representatives
from the 30th district
In office
January 2011 – January 2013
Preceded by William H. "Bill" Sample
Succeeded by Charles L. Armstrong
Member of the Arkansas House of Representatives
from the 22nd district
In office
January 2013 – January 2015
Preceded by Nate Bell
Succeeded by Mickey Gates
Personal details
Born Bruce Eugene Westerman
(1967-11-18) November 18, 1967 (age 49)
Hot Springs, Arkansas, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Sharon Kay French Westerman
Children 4
Alma mater University of Arkansas
Yale University
Occupation Engineer and forester
Website House website

Bruce Eugene Westerman (born November 18, 1967) is the U.S. Representative for Arkansas's 4th Congressional District. Previously, he served as the Majority Leader of the Arkansas House of Representatives. In 2014, Westerman chose to run for the House to succeed Tom Cotton who ran for the United States Senate. He is a member of the Republican Party.

Westerman grew up in and continues to reside in Hot Springs, Arkansas. He played college football and received a master's degree in forestry from Yale University. He worked as an engineer and forester before running for the Arkansas State House. He won election in 2010 and became the leader of the House Republican Party in 2012. In 2014, he ran and won a seat in the United States House. He took office on January 3, 2015.

Early life and education[edit]

Westerman graduated as valedictorian of Fountain Lake High School in Hot Springs. He attended the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, where he played college football for the Arkansas Razorbacks football team. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science in engineering in 1990 and subsequently received a master's degree in forestry from Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.[1]

Westerman is an engineer and forester, formerly with Mid-South Engineering Company. He served as president of the Arkansas chapter of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineering. He is also a former chair of the Arkansas Academy of Biological and Agricultural Engineers. Westerman also formerly served on the school board of the Fountain Lake School District.

Arkansas House of Representatives[edit]

Elections[edit]

He ran for the Arkansas House of Representatives in 2010 without opposition to succeed fellow Republican Bill Sample, who was instead elected to the Arkansas State Senate.[2][3][4]

With the 2012 election, Westerman was transferred to his current District 22, in which he also ran without opposition in both the Republican primary and the general election. The incumbent District 22 lawmaker, Republican Nate Bell of Polk County was switched to District 20.

Tenure[edit]

Westerman served as the House Minority Leader in 2012 and House Majority Leader in 2013.[5]

In 2013, Representative Westerman co-sponsored the amending of state income tax rates and supported the proposed spending cap on the state budget, but the latter measure failed by a two-vote margin in the House. He joined the majority to override the vetoes of Democratic Governor Mike Beebe to enact legislation to require photo identification for casting a ballot in Arkansas and to ban abortion after twenty weeks of gestation. He was a co-sponsor of both of those measures. Westerman also supported related pro-life legislation to outlaw abortion whenever fetal heartbeat is detected, to forbid the inclusion of abortion in the state insurance exchange, and to make the death of an unborn child a felony in certain cases.[6]

On Second Amendment issues, Westerman co-sponsored allowing officials of universities and religious institutions to engage in the concealed carry of firearms. He voted to reduce the application fee for obtaining a concealed carry permit, but the measure was defeated in the House. Westerman supported the measure which prohibits the governor from regulating firearms during an emergency. He voted for the failed measure to prohibit the closing of schools based on a two-year pupil enrollment analysis. He voted to establish a tiered system of lottery scholarships. He voted against legislation to make the office of prosecuting attorney in Arkansas nonpartisan, which nevertheless passed sixty-three to twenty-four. He voted to establish a tiered system of lottery scholarships. He supported the bill, signed by Governor Beebe, to permit the sale of up to five hundred gallons per month of unpasteurized whole milk directly from the farm to consumers.[6]

In 2011, Westerman voted for dress codes and the establishment of state standards for biblical instruction in public schools. He voted to prohibit cell phone usage in school zones. He voted to require that state driver's license tests be administered only in the English language. He co-sponsored the Capital Gains Reduction Act and the reduction of taxes on manufacturers' utilities. He voted against the 2011 congressional redistricting act.[6]

Committee assignments[edit]

  • Revenue And Taxation Committee
    • Subcommittee on Sales, Use, Miscellaneous Taxes and Exemptions (Chair)
  • State Agencies And Governmental Affairs Committee
  • Insurance and Commerce Committee[5]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]

Westerman's first official Congress photo

2014 election[edit]

Westerman won the Republican congressional primary on May 20, 2014, by defeating Tommy Moll 54%–46%.[7] In November, he defeated Democratic nominee James Lee Witt, a former associate of U.S. President Bill Clinton, 54%-43%.[8]

Committee assignments[edit]

In the 114th Congress, Westerman serves on the:

Electoral history[edit]

Arkansas House of Representatives 30th District Election, 2010
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bruce Westerman n/a 100.00
Arkansas House of Representatives 22nd District Election, 2012
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bruce Westerman n/a 100.00
Arkansas 4th Congressional District Republican Primary Election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bruce Westerman 18,719 54.45
Republican Tommy Moll 15,659 45.55
Arkansas 4th Congressional District Election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bruce Westerman 110,789 53.75
Democratic James Lee Witt 87,742 42.57
Libertarian Ken Hamilton 7,598 3.69
Write-ins Write-ins 2 0.00

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bruce Westerman's Biography". votesmart.org. Retrieved January 12, 2014. 
  2. ^ Westerman plans to run for Sample's seat in House. Hot Springs Village Voice. September 30, 2009
  3. ^ Westerman to resign from Fountain Lake school board. Hot Springs Village Voice. March 24, 2010
  4. ^ "State Representative District 030 – Certified, 2010". sos.arkansas.gov. Retrieved January 10, 2014. 
  5. ^ a b "Arkansas House Of Representatives". Arkanhouse.org. Retrieved January 11, 2015. 
  6. ^ a b c "Bruce Westerman's Voting Records". votesmart.org. Retrieved January 12, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Arkansas Primary Election Results, May 20, 2014". KATV. Retrieved May 21, 2014. 
  8. ^ "RealClearPolitics – Election 2014 – Arkansas 4th District – Westerman vs. Witt". Realclearpolitics.com. Retrieved January 11, 2015. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Bill Sample
Arkansas State Representative from District 30

Bruce Eugene Westerman
2011–2013

Succeeded by
Charles L. Armstrong
Preceded by
Nate Bell (moved to District 20)
Arkansas State Representative from District 22

Bruce Eugene Westerman
2013–2015

Succeeded by
Mickey Gates
Preceded by
Tom Cotton
United States Representative from Arkansas's 4th congressional district

Bruce Eugene Westerman
2015–

Succeeded by
Incumbent
United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Bonnie Watson Coleman
D-New Jersey
United States Representatives by seniority
371st
Succeeded by
David Young
R-Iowa