Vicky Hartzler

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Vicky Hartzler
Vicky Hartzler official photo, 114th Congress.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Missouri's 4th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2011
Preceded by Ike Skelton
Member of the Missouri House of Representatives
from the 124th district
In office
Preceded by Gene Olson
Succeeded by Rex Rector
Personal details
Born (1960-10-13) October 13, 1960 (age 56)
Archie, Missouri, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Lowell Hartzler
Alma mater University of Missouri, Columbia (BS)
University of Central Missouri (MS)

Vicky Jo Hartzler[1] (née Zellmer; October 13, 1960) is an American politician who has served as the U.S. Representative for Missouri's 4th congressional district since 2011. The district comprises a large swath of the western-central part of the state, anchored in Columbia to the eastern and southern Kansas City suburbs, including a small portion of Kansas City itself. The district also includes the cities of Sedalia, Warrensburg, Moberly, and Lebanon. The district takes in Ft. Leonard Wood in Pulaski County, Whiteman Air Force Base in Knob Noster, and the University of Missouri (Mizzou).

Prior to her election to Congress, Hartzler represented District 124 in the Missouri House of Representatives from 1995 to 2000.[2]

Early life[edit]

Hartzler was raised on a farm near Archie, a rural community south of Kansas City. She attended the University of Missouri where she graduated summa cum laude with a B.S. in Education, and attended University of Central Missouri where she graduated with an M.S. in Education.[1]

Missouri Legislature[edit]

Before running for State Representative in 1994, Hartzler taught high school home economics (now commonly referred to as family and consumer sciences) for 11 years.[3] Her accomplishments included leadership on legislation facilitating the adoption process. Hartzler left the Missouri House of Representatives in 2000 after adopting a baby daughter.

In 2004, after she had left the Missouri General Assembly, Hartzler served as state spokeswoman for the Coalition to Protect Marriage,[4] which supported banning same-sex marriages in Missouri. Despite Hartzler's fierce opposition to the Missouri Assembly's ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment[5] ("I don't want women used to pass a liberal agenda"), Republican Governor Matt Blunt appointed Hartzler Chair of the Missouri Women's Council in 2005, where she served for two years.[6]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]


After almost a decade out of politics, Hartzler entered the Republican primary for Missouri's 4th congressional district, which at the time was held by 17-term Democratic incumbent Ike Skelton. She won a crowded seven-way primary with 40 percent of the vote.

In the November 2, 2010 general election, Hartzler won with 50.43% of the vote. She is the first Republican to represent this district since 1955, and only the second since the Great Depression. She was also the second Republican woman elected to Congress from Missouri, after Jo Ann Emerson, with whom she served from 2011 to 2013. However, she is the first who was not elected as a stand-in for her husband; Emerson was originally elected to serve out the final term of her late husband, Bill Emerson. Republicans had been making gains in the district for some time; it gave John McCain 62 percent of the vote in 2008 while simultaneously reelecting Skelton, and Republicans hold most of the district's seats in the state legislature. She won primarily by running up her totals in the more rural areas of the sprawling district.

She ran on a conservative platform, voicing support for tax cuts and spending cuts. She opposes abortion and same-sex marriage.

2010 Election for U.S. Representative of Missouri's 4th Congressional District
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Vicky Hartzler 113,489 50.43
Democratic Ike Skelton* 101,532 45.11
Libertarian Jason Michael Braun 6,123 2.72
Constitution Greg Cowan 3,912 1.74


Redistricting after the 2010 U.S. Census removed Cole, Lafayette, Ray and Saline counties—including Skelton's home. The district also lost its shares of Jackson and Webster counties. In its place, the district picked up all of Boone, Cooper, Howard, and Randolph counties, part of Audrain County, and the remainder of Cass County. The district now includes the Cass County portion of Kansas City. The new map also pushed the district further into Camden County.

In her first contest in the newly drawn district, Hartzler easily won the Republican primary with 84% against Bernie Mowinski and went on to comfortably win the general election with 60.3% against Democratic Cass County Prosecuting Attorney Teresa Hensley.

2012 Election for U.S. Representative of Missouri's 4th Congressional District
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Vicky Hartzler 192,237 60.32
Democratic Teresa Hensley 113,120 35.49
Libertarian Thomas Holbrook 10,407 3.27
Constitution Greg Cowan 2,959 0.93


Hartzler won nearly 75% of the party vote in the Republican congressional primary with John Webb, then went on to easily win the general election with a more than two-to-one margin.

2014 Election for U.S. Representative of Missouri's 4th Congressional District
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Vicky Hartzler 120,014 68.08
Democratic Nate Irvin 46,464 26.36
Libertarian Herschel L. Young 9,793 5.56
Write-in Greg Cowan 15 0.01


Hartzler won 72% of the party vote in the Republican congressional primary with John Webb, then won the general election with a more than two-to-one margin.

Missouri’s 4th congressional district election, 2016>
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Vicky Hartzler 225,348 67.83
Democratic Gordon Christensen 92,510 27.85
Libertarian Gary L. Koniz 14,376 4.33

Committee assignments[edit]

In October 2015, Hartzler was named to serve on the Select Investigative Panel on Planned Parenthood.[7]



Abortion: Hartzler is an outspoken opponent of abortion.[8] Her official statement reads, "They had their futures ahead of them—birthdays, graduations, weddings, kids of their own—rights endowed to them by their Creator—that were snuffed out due to fear, ignorance, coercion, or for the sake of convenience. We must protect life."[9]

Family: Hartzler is a proponent of "policies that promote life and family"[10] when the family consists of one man and one woman.[11] She states that "Missourians have overwhelmingly voted to define marriage as the union between a man and a woman." The latest Missouri polls on the issue of gay marriage show that Missourians oppose gay marriage 47% to 41% with a margin of error of 3.6.[12]

Violence Against Women: Hartzler voted NO on the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.[13]

Barack Obama's citizenship: At a town hall meeting in Missouri on April 5, 2012, Hartzler expressed doubts regarding President Barack Obama's birth certificate.[14]

Healthcare: Hartzler is a staunch opponent of the Affordable Care Act.[15] On May 4, 2017, she voted for a healthcare bill that would prevent 24 million Americans from having health insurance.[16]

Welfare: In September 2013, Hartzler voted in favor of a $39 billion reduction in SNAP Benefits (aka "food stamps"). This bill was separate from farm subsidies for the first time in over three decades, which were increased.[17] Hartzler is a direct recipient of farm subsidies, and has received over $800,000 to date.[18]

The environment: On November 18, 2014, during the worst early season cold snap in the U.S. since 1976, Hartzler made a joke about climate change on Twitter. "Global warming strikes America! Brrrr!"[19] Her humorous quip was taken seriously and rebutted in detail by The Washington Post, which showed that her district in Missouri is an area among the most severely impacted by climate change in the USA.[20]

Hartzler has voted against protecting lakes[21] and streams.[22] Missouri has 586 lakes.[23]

She voted to approve the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline on the federally protected lands of Indigenous people.[24]

Immigration and refugees: In January 2017, Hartzler made a statement supporting President Donald J Trump's ban on immigrants from seven Muslim countries and halting the U.S. Refugee program for 120 days.[25] In her statement, Hartzler drew equivalency[26] between Trump's executive order and Obama's 2011 policy that slowed immigration from Iraq by saying they were "similar." Hartzler also expressed her preference for American lives, having previously stated that "all lives matter."[27]

Wall Street: In February 2017, Hartzler supported President Donald J Trump's rollback of the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.[28]

Personal life[edit]

Hartzler lives on a farm near Harrisonville with her husband Lowell and their daughter.


  • Vicky Hartzler, Running God's Way, Pleasant Word (a division of WinePress Publishing; December 13, 2007); ISBN 978-1-4141-1124-7

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Representative Vicky Jo Hartzler (Vicky) (R-Missouri, 4th) - Biography from LegiStorm". Retrieved 25 March 2016. 
  2. ^ Former GOP lawmaker Hartzler wins 9-way contest, Associated Press (August 3, 2010)
  3. ^ Purging the pain from political campaigns Murphree, Randall. April 2008; accessed January 3, 2009
  4. ^ Missouri Begins Vote on Same-sex 'Marriage' Ban Phan, Katherine. The Christian Post. August 03, 2004. Accessed January 3, 2009
  5. ^ Lutz, Jennifer. "ERA supporters, opponents speak out". Missouri Digital News. Retrieved 23 February 2000.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  6. ^ Former State Rep makes pitch to replace Ike Skelton in Congress September 2, 2009; accessed January 3, 2010
  7. ^ Paul Kane (October 23, 2015). "Boehner's next select committee, focusing on Planned Parenthood, to be led by Marsha Blackburn". Washington Post. Retrieved October 23, 2015. 
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  14. ^ Celock, John (April 6, 2012). "Obama Birth Certificate: Missouri Congresswoman Vicki Hartzler Expresses Doubt". Huffington Post. Retrieved April 6, 2012. 
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  17. ^ "How Republicans Justify Cutting Food Stamps While Boosting Farm Subsidies". Bloomberg. Retrieved September 29, 2013. 
  18. ^ "Hartzler Farms received federal subsidies last year". Springfield News-Leader. Retrieved September 29, 2013. 
  19. ^ "Global warming strikes America! Brrrr!". Twitter. Retrieved November 18, 2014. 
  20. ^ "Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler wonders why it's so cold if global warming exists. Here's the answer.". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 19, 2014. 
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External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Ike Skelton
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Missouri's 4th congressional district

United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Andy Harris
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Jaime Herrera Beutler