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Steve Womack

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Steve Womack
Steve Womack, Official Portrait, 112th Congress - Hi Res.jpg
Chair of the House Budget Committee
Assumed office
January 11, 2018
Preceded by Diane Black
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Arkansas's 3rd district
Assumed office
January 3, 2011
Preceded by John Boozman
Mayor of Rogers
In office
1998–2011
Preceded by John Sampier
Succeeded by Greg Hines
Personal details
Born Stephen Allen Womack
(1957-02-18) February 18, 1957 (age 61)
Russellville, Arkansas, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Terri Williams
Education Arkansas Tech University (BA)
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch  United States Army
Years of service 1979–2009[1]
Rank US-O6 insignia.svg Colonel
Unit Arkansas Army National Guard
Awards Legion of Merit
Meritorious Service Medal
Army Commendation Medal

Stephen Allen Womack[2] /ˈwˌmæk/ (born February 18, 1957) is an American politician who has been the U.S. Representative for Arkansas's 3rd congressional district since 2011. He is a member of the Republican Party. Prior to his election to Congress, Womack was mayor of Rogers, Arkansas.

Early life, education, and business career

Steve Womack as an Army National Guard lieutenant colonel in 2002

Womack was born in Russellville, Arkansas, the son of Elisabeth F. (Canerday) and James Kermit Womack.[3] He spent most of his childhood in Moberly, Missouri but moved back to Russellville at the age of 16 and graduated from Russellville High School in 1975. He graduated from Arkansas Tech University in 1979. Shortly afterward, he enlisted in the Arkansas Army National Guard. He served for 30 years, retiring in 2009 as a colonel. Womack's father founded KURM-AM in 1979, and Womack served as station manager from 1979 to 1990. He then served as executive officer of the Army ROTC program at the University of Arkansas from 1990 to 1996, then joined Merrill Lynch as a financial consultant.

Mayor of Rogers

In 1998, Womack was elected mayor of Rogers, the ninth largest city of Arkansas. He served for twelve years as the city's mayor.[4] During his time as mayor, Womack sought to crack down on illegal immigration by assigning two Immigration and Naturalization Service agents to the Rogers Police Department.[5] As a result, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund filed a class-action suit against the city's police force for racial profiling.[6]

In 2002 and 2006 Womack won re-election unopposed.[7]

U.S. House of Representatives

Elections

2010

In late 2009, Womack jumped into the race for the 3rd District after incumbent Republican John Boozman gave it up to run for the United States Senate. The 3rd is one of the most Republican districts in the South and the nation (Republicans have held it since 1967), and it was generally believed whoever won the Republican primary would be the district's next congressman. He ranked first in the seven-candidate primary with 31% of the vote, failing to reach the 50% threshold.[8] In the June runoff, he defeated State Senator and fellow Rogers resident Cecile Bledsoe 52%-48%.[9]

In the general election, Womack defeated Democratic nominee David Whitaker, 72%-28%.[10]

2012

Womack was originally set to face veteran Ken Aden in his re-election bid. However, on July 8, Aden withdrew from the race after admitting to exaggerating his military record. As it was too late to select a replacement candidate for Aden (under Arkansas law, the Democratic Party could only name a replacement at that late date if the original candidate died, moved out of the district or opted to seek another office), Womack faced no major-party opposition in November.[11] He won re-election to a second term with 76% of the vote.[12]

Tenure

In 2011, Womack filed an amendment to a spending bill in an attempt to defund Barack Obama's teleprompter.[13][better source needed]

On February 14, 2013, Womack sponsored H.R. 684, the Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013, a bill that would allow states to charge and collect sales taxes on internet purchases.[14] Supporters say the bill will create a "level playing field" between online retailers and brick and mortar retailers,[15] while opponents argue that the bill would increase the power of the states, threaten consumer privacy, increase taxes, and hurt small businesses.[16][17][18]

In 2010 Womack signed a pledge sponsored by Americans for Prosperity promising to vote against any global warming legislation that would raise taxes.[19]

In a 2015 episode of his show Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, John Oliver criticized Womack for blocking the enforcement of laws proposed by the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration that would have protected chicken farmers from being threatened or punished by the companies they work for if they spoke out regarding their farming experiences.[20]

In December 2017, Womack voted for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.[21] Womack supports cutting taxes and making the tax filing process easier.[22] He believes that the act will let people "keep more of their paycheck, creates jobs and increases wages by making American businesses competitive again, and simplifies a code that has become riddled with loopholes."[23]

Committee assignments

Caucus memberships

Political positions

Guns

In the wake of the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, Womack tweeted thoughts and prayers for the victims and their families.[25]

Marijuana

Womack has a "D" rating from NORML regarding his voting record on cannabis-related matters. He voted against allowing veterans access to medical marijuana, if legal in their state, per their Veterans Health Administration doctor's recommendation.[26]

Personal life

Womack attends Cross Church Pinnacle Hills, a Southern Baptist church in Rogers, Arkansas.[27]

In 2008, James Phillip Womack was arrested for Driving While Intoxicated (DWI). In 2010, after his father had been elected to Congress, James Womack received special treatment after pleading guilty to a methamphetamine charge, according to the Arkansas Department of Correction. He was sentenced to 105 days in a "boot camp," rather than serving 10 years in prison.[28] He was subsequently arrested for parole violations in 2010 and 2011. In 2012 he received another DWI conviction in Missouri. In 2013, he was convicted for failure to appear and in 2016, for criminal conspiracy for manufacturing, delivery or possession of a controlled substance. In 2018, after he was arrested for possession of methamphetamine, drug use and distribution paraphernalia, possession of a loaded pistol. The congressman stated, "...as an adult, he is accountable for the choices he's made."[29][30]

Electoral history

Year Office District Democratic Republican Other
2010 U.S. House of Representatives Arkansas's 3rd district David Whitaker 27.56% Steve Womack 72.44%
2012 U.S. House of Representatives Arkansas's 3rd district Steve Womack 75.9% Rebekah Kennedy (G) 16.01%
2014 U.S. House of Representatives Arkansas's 3rd district Steve Womack 79.41% Grant Brand (L) 20.59%
2016 U.S. House of Representatives Arkansas's 3rd district Steve Womack 77.31% Steve Isaacson (L) 22.69%
2018 U.S. House of Representatives Arkansas's 3rd district Joshua Mahony Steve Womack

References

  1. ^ "Once a Soldier... Always a Soldier" (PDF). Legislative Agenda. Association of the United States Army. 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 October 2013. Retrieved 28 January 2013.
  2. ^ Representative Stephen Allen Womack (Steve) (R-Arkansas, 3rd) – Biography from. LegiStorm. Retrieved on 2011-06-24.
  3. ^ "Ancestry® | Genealogy, Family Trees & Family History Records". freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com. Retrieved 2018-07-11.
  4. ^ "Steve Womack (R)". Election 2012. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 28 October 2016.
  5. ^ "Arkansas Congressman Criticizes Constituent For Wearing Mexican Flag Shirt". Fox News Latino. September 10, 2013. Retrieved 28 October 2016.
  6. ^ A Town's Two Faces. Newsweek (2001-06-04). Retrieved on 2011-06-24.
  7. ^ Bio at Rogers city site. Rogersarkansas.com. Retrieved on 2011-06-24.
  8. ^ "Our Campaigns - AR District 03 - R Primary Race - May 18, 2010". www.ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved 2018-07-11.
  9. ^ "Our Campaigns - AR District 03 - R Runoff Race - Jun 08, 2010". www.ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved 2018-07-11.
  10. ^ "Our Campaigns - AR - District 03 Race - Nov 02, 2010". www.ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved 2018-07-11.
  11. ^ Brantley, Max (July 9, 2012). "Ken Aden dropping out of 3rd District congressional race". Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Retrieved August 15, 2012.
  12. ^ "Our Campaigns - AR - District 03 Race - Nov 06, 2012". www.ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved 2018-07-11.
  13. ^ Newell, Jim. "Republican Tries to Defund Obama's Teleprompter". Gawker. Retrieved 2018-07-11.
  14. ^ "H.R. 684 - Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
  15. ^ "Bill Before U.S. Senate Will End Special Treatment of Online-Only Retailers". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
  16. ^ Melugin, Jessica. "Facts on the Marketplace Fairness Act (S. 743, formerly S. 336)". Competitive Enterprise Institute. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
  17. ^ "NTU urges all Senators to vote "NO" on S. 743, the "Marketplace Fairness Act (MFA) of 2013."". National Taxpayers Union. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
  18. ^ "WE R HERE: Opposition to Senate Internet Tax Act Grows". Yahoo!Finance. Archived from the original on 18 May 2013. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
  19. ^ http://americansforprosperity.org/noclimatetax//wp-content/uploads/2010/04/womack.pdf
  20. ^ Haas, Nathaniel (1 June 2015). "John Oliver vs. chicken". Politico. Retrieved 29 March 2016.
  21. ^ Almukhtar, Sarah (19 December 2017). "How Each House Member Voted on the Tax Bill". The New York Times. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  22. ^ Kamper, Deni (21 December 2017). "What You Should Know About the New Tax Plan". NWAHOMEPAGE. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  23. ^ "Senate OKs tax bill; House revote set". Northwest Arkansas Democratic Gazette. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  24. ^ "Our Members". U.S. House of Representatives International Conservation Caucus. Retrieved 5 August 2018.
  25. ^ Berkowitz, Bonnie; Cai, Weiyi; Lu, Denise; Gamio, Lazaro. "Everything lawmakers said (and didn't say) after the Orlando mass shooting". Washington Post. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
  26. ^ "Arkansas Scorecard - NORML.org - Working to Reform Marijuana Laws". norml.org. Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  27. ^ Staff (5 January 2011). "Ten Southern Baptists sworn in as new reps". Baptist Press. Archived from the original on 26 December 2014. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  28. ^ High-Profile Case: State's Extraction in Question: Authorities; Womack a 'High risk,' gets rush treatment, Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette, Bob Caudle, December 9, 2010. Retrieved September 29, 2018.
  29. ^ Update: New Details Released in Arrest of Congressman Womack's Son, Fox 24, Hicham Raache & Katelynn Zoellner, September 28, 2018. Retrieved September 29, 2018.
  30. ^ Republican Congressman's Son Arrested on Methamphetamine and Gun Charges, Newsweek, Tom Porter, September 29, 2018. Retrieved September 29, 2018.

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
John Boozman
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Arkansas's 3rd congressional district

2011–present
Incumbent
Preceded by
Diane Black
Chair of the House Budget Committee
2018–present
New office Chair of the Joint Budget and Appropriations Reform Committee
2018–present
Current U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Frederica Wilson
United States Representatives by seniority
236th
Succeeded by
Rob Woodall