Herbert H. Bateman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Herbert Harvell Bateman
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 1st district
In office
January 3, 1983 – September 11, 2000
Preceded byPaul Trible
Succeeded byJo Ann Davis
Member of the Virginia Senate
from the 2nd district
In office
January 12, 1972 – December 15, 1982
Preceded byEdward L. Breeden
Henry Howell
Peter K. Babalas
Succeeded byBobby Scott
Member of the Virginia Senate
from the 27th district
In office
January 10, 1968 – January 12, 1972
Preceded byFred Bateman
Succeeded byWilliam A. Truban
Personal details
Herbert Harvell Bateman

(1928-08-07)August 7, 1928
Elizabeth City, North Carolina, U.S.
DiedSeptember 11, 2000(2000-09-11) (aged 72)
Leesburg, Virginia, U.S.
Political partyRepublican (after 1976)
Other political
Democratic (before 1976)
SpouseLaura Bateman
Alma materCollege of William & Mary
Georgetown University
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/serviceUnited States Air Force
Years of service1951–1953
RankFirst lieutenant
Battles/warsKorean War

Herbert Harvell "Herb" Bateman (August 7, 1928 – September 11, 2000) was an American politician in Virginia. He was a nine-term member of the United States House of Representatives, serving as a Republican from 1983 until his death from natural causes in Leesburg, Virginia in 2000.

Early life[edit]

Bateman was born in Elizabeth City, North Carolina on August 7, 1928. However, he lived most of his life in Newport News, Virginia. A graduate of Newport News High School in 1945, Bateman went on to William and Mary to earn a Bachelor's degree. After graduation, he briefly taught at Hampton High School from 1949 to 1951, when he commissioned in the United States Air Force as a first lieutenant during the Korean War. He was a special agent at the U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI or OSI) and served until 1953.[1]

Upon his return home, Bateman enrolled in the Law Center at Georgetown University, where in 1956 he earned his law degree. He served a short time as a clerk for the United States Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C. before practicing law privately in Newport News from 1968 to 1983. During this period he worked to build a political base through community activism and membership in the Virginia Jaycees. Bateman served as president of the Virginia Jaycees and National legal counsel for the United States Junior Chamber of Commerce.

Political career[edit]

Bateman was elected to the Senate of Virginia for 14 years, representing a portion of Newport News. He was originally a Democrat, but became a Republican in 1976.

In 1982, he was elected to succeed Paul S. Trible, Jr. as the representative for the 1st District in the United States House of Representatives. He won his first contest with 55 percent of the vote and was reelected eight times. He would only face another contest anywhere near that close, when Democrat Andrew Fox held him to only 51 percent of the vote. However, after the 1990 Census, most of Bateman's black constituents in Hampton and Newport News were drawn into the new 3rd district, allowing Bateman to consolidate his hold on the seat.

Bateman's voting record was moderate by Southern Republican standards; he had a lifetime rating of 79 from the American Conservative Union. He was a strong supporter of controlling government spending. However, he was particularly active on defense issues. Since Newport News was a center for military work, he strongly supported military spending. He was a member of the Armed Forces and Transportation Infrastructure Committees for nearly all of his career, and chaired the House Armed Forces Subcommittee on Military Readiness and the House Merchant Marine Panel. He also served his constituents as a member of organizations such as the Virginia Jaycees, Peninsula United Way and Red Cross Blood Donor Program.


  • 1982 – Bateman defeated Democrat John McGlennon to win his first term in Congress; he won 55% of the vote
  • 1984 – Re-elected with 59% of the vote over Democrat McGlennon and Independent E. J. Green
  • 1986 – Re-elected with 56% of the vote over Democrat Robert Cortez Scott
  • 1988 – Re-elected with 73% of the vote over Democrat James S. Ellenson
  • 1990 – Re-elected with 51% of the vote over Democrat Andrew H. Fox
  • 1992 – Re-elected with 58% of the vote over Democrat Fox and Independent Donald L. Macleay
  • 1994 – Re-elected with 74% of the vote over Democrat Mary F. Sinclair and Independent Matt B. Voorhees
  • 1996 – Was unopposed for re-election
  • 1998 – Re-elected with 76% of the vote over Independents Josh Billings and Bradford L. Phillips

Health issues[edit]

Health was a major concern for Bateman during the 1990s. In 1990, he was diagnosed with lung and prostate cancer. In 1995, he suffered a heart attack, but was able to recover. He had surgery to remove cancer from his right lung in 1998, and had a partial blockage of a major artery removed in 1999. He was diagnosed with a cancerous lymph node in January 2000, which prompted him to not seek re-election.

Bateman died on September 11, 2000, from natural causes. He was in Leesburg, Virginia, at the time for a golf tournament. He was serving out the remainder of his ninth term at the time of his death. He is buried in Peninsula Memorial Park in Newport News, Virginia.[2][3]

He and his wife, Laura, had two children, a son and daughter. His son, Herbert H. Bateman Jr., presently serves on the Newport News City Council as Vice Mayor and on the Peninsula Airport Commission. Daughter, Laura Margaret Bateman, is the principal of Bateman Consulting, a government and public affairs consulting firm. His papers from his time as a state senator[4] as well as from his time in Congress[5] can be found at the Special Collections Research Center at the College of William & Mary.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Recognition of the 50th Anniversary of the Air Force Office of Special Investigations" (PDF). U.S. Congress. 31 Jul 1998. Retrieved 15 Jan 2019.
  2. ^ NNDB
  3. ^ United States House of Representatives
  4. ^ "Herbert H. Bateman Papers, 1968–1982". Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library, College of William and Mary. Retrieved 6 June 2011.
  5. ^ "Herbert H. Bateman Papers, 1956–2000". Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library, College of William and Mary. Retrieved 6 June 2011.

External links[edit]

Senate of Virginia
Preceded by
Fred Bateman
Virginia Senate, District 2
Succeeded by
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by