Posted By RichC on February 2, 2006
U.S. Rep. John Boehner of Ohio, the underdog to acting leader Rep. Roy Blunt becomes the new majority leader today in a 122 to 109 vote. He will replace the Texan Tom DeLay in hopes to clean up the scandal-rocked house.
Blunt will remain in the House Republican leadership, holding onto his job as majority whip, the person responsible for making sure Republican-backed bills pass the House. Blunt became acting majority leader in September after DeLay was forced under House Republican rules to step down when he was indicted in Texas on campaign-related felony charges.
In January, DeLay, under pressure from members, announced he would not seek to reclaim the job after lobbyist Jack Abramoff, a close associate, pleaded guilty in a mushrooming influence-peddling investigation that threatens the Republicans hold on Congress.
Additional info added — Feb. 3, 2005
Boehner was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, attended Moeller High School and received a bachelorâ€™s degree in business from Xavier University in Cincinnati in 1977 and worked as a businessman.
In 1981 Boehner served on the board of trustees of Union Township, Butler County, Ohio. In 1984, he served as president of the township board of trustees.
He is a Roman Catholic and lives in the Wetherington section of West Chester Township, Butler County, Ohio. He has a wife Debbie and two daughters, Lindsay and Tricia.
Boehner served as an Ohio state representative from 1985 to 1990. In 1990, when U.S. Rep. Donald “Buz” Lukens (R-Ohio) was caught in a sex scandal involving a minor, Boehner challenged Lukens in the Republican primary and defeated the incumbent, while also upsetting the district’s former representative, Tom Kindness. Boehner went on to victory in the 1990 general election and began serving in the U.S. House of Representatives the 102nd Congress. He was a member of the Gang of Seven, comprised of young, idealistic conservatives with a mission to clean up congressional corruption, many of whom, including, Boehner, have been criticized for their ties to Jack Abramoff.
From 1995 to 1999, Boehner served as the Republican Conference Chairman in the U.S. House of Representatives. He is now entering his final term as the Chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce.
Boehner is widely credited with championing the Contract With America, the 1996 Freedom to Farm Act, and the passage of “No Child Left Behind Act.” He was also one of the key figures in the failed 1998 coup to replace House Speaker Newt Gingrich with Buffalo, New York congressman Bill Paxon. In 1995, Boehner raised eyebrows by distributing campaign checks from tobacco industry lobbyists on the House floor. His PAC has raised $31,500 from four Indian tribes associated with lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who is currently the central figure in an unfolding lobbying scandal.
Boehner was elected House Majority Leader on February 2, 2006, after previous leader Tom DeLay stepped down after being indicted of criminal charges of conspiracy to violate election laws. Boehner campaigned as a reform candidate who could help the House Republicans cleanse and recover from the political damage caused by charges of ethics violations, corruption and money laundering leveled against prominent conservatives such as DeLay and disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff, in spite of his own ties to Abramoff. He bested fellow candidates Rep. Roy Blunt of Missouri and Rep. John Shadegg of Arizona, even though he was considered the underdog candidate. It was the most contested election among House Republicans since 1998. Boehner received 122 votes compared to 109 by Blunt in a run-off vote. Rep. Shadegg dropped out of the race after a loss in the first round of voting. Blunt was re-elected to his previous position as Majority Whip, the No. 3 leadership position in the House.
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