|U.S. Senate, Montana|
|January 3, 2015 - Present|
|January 3, 2021|
|Years in position||0|
|Predecessor||John Walsh (D)|
|Elections and appointments|
|Last election||November 4, 2014|
|First elected||November 4, 2014|
|Next general||November 3, 2020|
|U.S. House, Montana's At-Large District|
|High school||Bozeman High School|
|Bachelor's||Montana State University|
|Date of birth||August 20, 1962|
|Place of birth||Van Nuys, California|
|Net worth||(2012) $24,400,006|
- 1 Biography
- 2 Career
- 3 Committee assignments
- 4 Key votes
- 4.1 113th Congress
- 4.2 National security
- 4.3 Economy
- 4.4 Immigration
- 4.5 Healthcare
- 4.6 Social issues
- 4.7 Government affairs
- 5 Issues
- 6 Elections
- 7 Campaign donors
- 8 Personal Gain Index
- 9 Analysis
- 10 Personal
- 11 Recent news
- 12 See also
- 13 External links
- 14 References
The Senate seat was formerly considered an open seat in the 2014 elections as incumbent Max Baucus announced he would not seek re-election in 2014. However, Baucus was appointed Ambassador to China in February 2014, vacating his seat before the November general election. Montana Governor Steve Bullock then appointed John Walsh to fill Baucus' seat. Walsh held the seat through the end of Baucus' term in January 2015. He sought re-election, but dropped out amid a plagiarism scandal, leaving the Democratic Party to nominate a new challenger. On August 16, 2014, the Democratic Party chose Amanda Curtis to run against Daines in the November general election.
Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Daines is an average Republican member of Congress, meaning he will vote with the Republican Party on the majority of bills.
Daines was born in Van Nuys, California, and his family moved to Bozeman, Montana, when he was a child. Daines graduated from Bozeman High School and went on to earn a B.S. in chemical engineering from Montana State University. He worked for Procter & Gamble for 13 years, both in the United States and abroad. In 1997, he and his family returned to Bozeman, where Daines joined RightNow Technologies, a start-up business that went public in 2004. In 2007, Daines served as former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee's Montana campaign chairman. He was also the 2008 Republican nominee for Lieutenant Governor.
Below is an abbreviated outline of Daines' academic, professional and political career:
- 2015-Present: U.S. Senator from Montana
- 2013-2015: U.S. Representative for Montana's At-Large Congressional District
- 1984: Delegate for the Republican National Convention
- 1984: Earned a B.S. from Montana State University in Bozeman, MT
Daines serves on the following committees:
- Appropriations Committee
- Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee
- Energy and Natural Resources Committee
- Indian Affairs Committee
Daines served on the following committees:
- United States House Committee on Homeland Security
- Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies
- Subcommittee on Oversight and Management Efficiency Vice Chairman
- Subcommittee on Indian and Alaska Native Affairs
- Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources
- Subcommittee on Public Lands and Environmental Regulation
- United States House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
- Subcommittee on Aviation
- Subcommittee on Highways and Transit
- Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment
The second session of the 113th Congress enacted into law 114 out of the 3,036 introduced bills (3.8 percent). Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 4.2 percent of introduced bills enacted into law in the second session. For more information pertaining to Daines's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.
American intervention in Syria
- See also: United States involvement in Syria
Daines signed a letter asking President Obama to "consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering the use of U.S. military force in Syria." The letter was sent August 28, 2013.
Daines supported of HR 1960 - the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014. The bill passed the House on June 14, 2013, with a vote of 315 - 108. Both parties were somewhat divided on the vote.
Daines supported HR 2217 - the DHS Appropriations Act of 2014. The bill passed the House on June 6, 2013, with a vote of 245 - 182 and was largely along party lines.
Keystone Pipeline Amendment
Daines opposed House Amendment 69, which would have amended HR 3 to "require that the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, in consultation with the Department of Homeland Security, conduct a study of the vulnerabilities of the Keystone XL pipeline to a terrorist attack and certify that necessary protections have been put in place." The amendment failed on May 22, 2013, with a vote of 176 - 239 and was largely along party lines.
Daines supported HR 624 - the CISPA (2013). The bill passed the House on April 18, 2013, with a vote of 288 - 127. The bill permitted federal intelligence agencies to share cybersecurity intelligence and information with private entities and utilities. The bill was largely supported by Republicans, but divided the Democratic Party.
- See also: United States budget debate, 2013
On September 30, 2013, the House passed a final stopgap spending bill before the shutdown went into effect. The bill included a one-year delay of the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate and would have also stripped the bill of federal subsidies for congressional members and staff. It passed through the House with a vote of 228-201. At 1 a.m. on October 1, 2013, one hour after the shutdown officially began, the House voted to move forward with going to a conference. In short order, Sen. Harry Reid rejected the call to conference. Daines voted to approve the stopgap spending bill that would have delayed the individual mandate.
The shutdown ended on October 16, 2013, when the House took a vote on HR 2775 after it was approved by the Senate. The bill to reopen the government lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funded the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies. The House passed the legislation shortly after the Senate, by a vote of 285-144, with all 144 votes against the legislation coming from Republican members. Daines voted for HR 2775.
Daines will donate his salary during the shutdown to the Big Sky Honor Flight
- See also: United States Farm Bill 2013
Morton Memos Prohibition
Daines supported House Amendment 136 - Prohibits the Enforcement of the Immigration Executive Order. The amendment was adopted by the House on June 6, 2013, with a vote of 224 - 201. The purpose of the amendment as stated on the official text is to "prohibit the use of funds to finalize, implement, administer, or enforce the Morton Memos." These memos would have granted administrative amnesty to certain illegal aliens residing in the United States. The vote largely followed party lines.
Daines supported repealing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and Healthcare-Related Provisions in the Healthcare and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010.
Daines supported HR 1797 - Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. The resolution passed the House on June 18, 2013, with a vote of 228 - 196. The purpose of the bill was to ban abortions that would take place 20 or more weeks after fertilization.
On July 30, 2014, the U.S. House approved a resolution 225 to 201 to sue President Barack Obama for exceeding his constitutional authority. Five Republicans—Thomas Massie of Kentucky, Paul Broun of Georgia, Scott Garrett of New Jersey, Walter Jones of North Carolina and Steve Stockman of Texas—voted with Democrats against the lawsuit. Daines joined the other 224 Republicans in favor of the lawsuit. All Democrats voted against the resolution.
On The Issues Vote Match
- See also: On The Issues Vote Match
On The Issues conducts a VoteMatch analysis of elected officials based on 20 issue areas. Rather than relying on incumbents to complete the quiz themselves, the VoteMatch analysis is conducted using voting records, statements to the media, debate transcripts or citations from books authored by or about the candidate. Based on the results of the quiz, Daines is a Libertarian Conservative. Daines received a score of 47 percent on social issues and 75 percent on economic issues.
The table below contains the results of analysis compiled by staff at On The Issues.
|On The Issues Vote Quiz|
|Economic Issues||Social Issues|
|Legally require hiring women & minorities||Favors||Abortion is a woman's unrestricted right||Strongly Opposes|
|Expand ObamaCare||Strongly Opposes||Comfortable with same-sex marriage||Strongly Opposes|
|Vouchers for school choice||Favors||Keep God in the public sphere||Favors|
|Absolute right to gun ownership||Strongly Favors||Human needs over animal rights||Strongly Favors|
|Higher taxes on the wealthy||Strongly Opposes||Stricter punishment reduces crime||Unknown|
|Support & expand free trade||Unknown||Pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens||Unknown|
|Stricter limits on political campaign funds||Unknown||Maintain US sovereignty from UN||Strongly Favors|
|Prioritize green energy||Strongly Opposes||Expand the military||Strongly Opposes|
|Stimulus better than market-led recovery||Neutral||Stay out of Iran||Opposes|
|Privatize Social Security||Unknown||Never legalize marijuana||Opposes|
|Note: Information last updated: 2014. If you notice the rating has changed, email us.|
Letter to Iran
On March 9, 2015, Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) wrote a letter to Iran's leadership, warning them that signing a nuclear deal with the Obama administration without congressional approval was merely an "executive agreement." The letter also stated that "The next president could revoke such an executive agreement with the stroke of a pen and future Congresses could modify the terms of the agreement at any time." The letter was signed by 47 Republican members of the Senate. Daines was one of the 47 who signed the letter. No Democrats signed it.
The letter caused intense backlash from both the Obama administration and the public. Vice President Joe Biden said of the letter, "In thirty-six years in the United States Senate, I cannot recall another instance in which senators wrote directly to advise another country — much less a longtime foreign adversary — that the president does not have the constitutional authority to reach a meaningful understanding with them." On Twitter, the hashtag "47Traitors" became the top trending topic in the world, and a debate raged as to whether the 47 who signed the letter were traitors or patriots.
In 2014, Daines won election to the U.S. Senate, representing Montana. Daines won the Republican nomination in the primary on June 3, 2014. He defeated Amanda Curtis (D) and Roger Roots (L) in the general election on November 4, 2014.
|U.S. Senate, Montana General Election, 2014|
|Source: Montana Secretary of State|
|U.S. Senate, Montana Republican Primary, 2014|
|Source: Montana Secretary of State - Official Primary Results|
A poll released in November 2013 by Public Policy Polling showed that regardless of the candidate, Daines was likely to win the seat in 2014. In a match-up against Democrat John Walsh, Daines led 52 percent to 35 percent. In a match-up against Democrat John Bohlinger, Daines led 51 percent to 36 percent.
Daines was born in California, but moved to Montana when he was only a year old. His family had lived in Montana for generations, but his parents moved to California for a job during Daines' mother's pregnancy. Because Daines was born out of the state, the Montana Democratic Party (MDP) complained that Daines was being dishonest when he referred to himself as a "third-generation Montanan" in an interview. The MDP also explained that Daines later contradicted his statement by calling himself a "fifth-generation Montanan" in a campaign ad. On February 26, 2014, the Montana Democratic Party asked that Daines release his birth certificate in order to “clear up confusion about his roots.”
In a press release, the MDP stated, “The Congressman is so desperate for ties to Montana that he’s confused the facts and himself.” A spokeswoman for Daines' campaign responded, “[Democrats] may be able to dictate the way Montanans live their lives, but unless Montana Democrats want to move Steve’s great-great-grandmother’s grave, they can’t change Steve’s strong heritage as a fifth-generation Montanan."
- In November 2013, Daines began airing his first campaign ads for the 2014 election cycle. In these ads, he mentioned veterans and the sacrifices they made for the country. He said in the ads, "Our veterans made enormous sacrifices to protect our country and defend our freedoms. We can never repay that debt. But we can honor their sacrifice. That's why I’m working across the aisle to protect our veterans’ hard-earned benefits and ensure that we are meeting their healthcare needs. Our Veterans medical centers too often fall short, and that is simply unacceptable. We must do more to help our younger veterans transition into the workforce after their service is complete. They have important skills, but too often go without work."
|U.S. House, Montana, At-Large District General Election, 2012|
|Source: Montana Secretary of State "2012 Election Center"|
|Montana's At-Large District Republican Primary, 2012|
The below chart from Find The Best tracks the fundraising events Daines attends.
Source: This graphic was generated by Find The Best.
Comprehensive donor history
Comprehensive donor information for Daines is available dating back to 2012. Based on available campaign finance records, Daines raised a total of $1,830,491 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 16, 2013.
|Steve Daines's Campaign Contribution History|
|2012||U.S. House, Montana||$1,830,491|
|Grand Total Raised||$1,830,491|
|Steve Daines (2014) Campaign Finance Reports|
|Report||Date Filed||Beginning Balance||Total Contributions|
for Reporting Period
|Expenditures||Cash on Hand|
|April Quarterly||April 12, 2013||$15,407.18||$252,869.34||$(77,952.52)||$190,324.00|
|July Quarterly||July 15, 2013||$190,324.00||$430,922.42||$(60,392.38)||$560,854.04|
|October Quarterly||October 15, 2013||$560,854.04||$642,537.15||$(64,600.10)||$1,138,791.09|
|Year-End Quarterly||December 31, 2013||$1,138,791||$827,134||$(271,846)||$1,897,935|
|April Quarterly||April 15, 2014||$1,897,935.17||$1,215,460.20||$(901,798.02)||$2,211,597.35|
|Pre-Primary||May 19, 2014||$2,211,597.35||$512,327.71||$(842,191.50)||$1,881,733.56|
|July Quarterly||July 15, 2014||$1,881,733.56||$911,538.12||$(1,065,472.52)||$1,727,797.16|
|October Quarterly||October 15, 2014||$1,727,797.16||$1,853,201.41||$(1,961,632.23)||$1,619,366.34|
|Pre-General||October 20, 2014||$1,619,366.34||$307,857.50||$(676,673.59)||$1,250,550.25|
Cost per vote
Daines spent $7.92 per vote received in 2012.
|U.S. House, Montana's At-Large District, 2012 - Steve Daines Campaign Contributions|
|Total Raised by Election Runner-up||$992,911|
|Total Spent by Election Runner-up||$991,016|
|Top contributors to Steve Daines's campaign committee|
|Langlas & Assoc||$14,500|
|Top 5 industries that contributed to campaign committee|
|Oil & Gas||$108,270|
To view the breakdown of campaign funding by type click [show] to expand the section.
Personal Gain Index
- See also: Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress)
- See also: Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress)
The Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress) is a two-part measurement that illustrates the extent to which members of the U.S. Congress have prospered during their tenure as public servants.
It consists of two different metrics:
PGI: Change in net worth
Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by OpenSecrets.org, Daines' net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $9,250,012 and $39,550,000. That averages to $24,400,006, which is higher than the average net worth of Republican representatives in 2012 of $7,614,097.96. Daines ranked as the 26th most wealthy representative in 2012. Between 2011 and 2012, Daines' calculated net worth increased by an average of 76 percent per year. Between 2004 and 2014, the average annual percentage increase for a member of Congress was 15.4 percent.
|Steve Daines Yearly Net Worth|
|Year||Average Net Worth|
|Growth from 2011 to 2012:||76%|
|Average annual growth:||76%|
|Comparatively, the American citizen experienced a median yearly decline in net worth of -0.94%.|
PGI: Donation Concentration Metric
Filings required by the Federal Election Commission report on the industries that give to each candidate. Using campaign filings and information calculated by OpenSecrets.org, Ballotpedia calculated the percentage of donations by industry received by each incumbent over the course of his or her career (or 1989 and later, if elected prior to 1988). Daines received the most donations from individuals and PACs employed by the Retired industry.
From 2009-2014, 27.78 percent of Daines' career contributions came from the top five industries as listed below.
|Steve Daines Campaign Contributions|
|Top five industries that contributed to campaign committee|
|Oil & Gas||$426,182|
|Securities & Investment||$423,075|
|% total in top industry||8.17%|
|% total in top two industries||14.2%|
|% total in top five industries||27.78%|
Ideology and leadership
The website OpenCongress tracks the voting records of each member to determine with whom he or she votes most and least often. The results include a member from each party.
Daines most often voted with:
Daines least often voted with:
Lifetime voting record
According to the website GovTrack, Daines missed 10 of 1,097 roll call votes from January 2013 to July 2014. This amounts to 0.9 percent, which is better than the median of 2.5 percent among current congressional representatives as of July 2014.
National Journal vote ratings
- See also: National Journal vote ratings
Each year National Journal publishes an analysis of how liberally or conservatively each member of Congress voted in the previous year. Click the link above for the full ratings of all members of Congress.
Daines ranked 105th in the conservative rankings in 2013.
Voting with party
The website OpenCongress tracks how often members of Congress vote with the majority of the chamber caucus.
Daines voted with the Republican Party 94.5 percent of the time, which ranked 108th among the 234 House Republican members as of July 2014.
Daines voted with the Republican Party 96.7 percent of the time, which ranked 92nd among the 234 House Republican members as of June 2013.
Daines has been married to his wife, Cindy, for over 25 years. Daines proposed to his wife on top of a mountain, Hyalite Peak, in Montana. They have four children and live in Bozeman, Montana. Daines and his wife are members of the Springhill Presbyterian Church.
This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term Steve + Daines + Montana + House
- All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.
- United States House of Representatives
- Montana's At-Large Congressional District
- United States Senate
- United States Senate elections in Montana, 2014
- Social media:
- Political profiles:
- Financial (federal level):
- Financial (state level):
- Interest group ratings:
- Issue positions:
- Public statements:
- Voting record:
- Media appearances:
- Media coverage:
- Collected news and commentary about Steve Daines at the Billings Gazette
- Steve Daines Business Blog
- Politico, "2014 Montana Senate Election Results," accessed November 8, 2014
- Politico, "Democrat Walsh files for Senate in Montana," accessed October 9, 2013
- The Washington Post, "John Walsh just dropped out of Montana’s Senate race. Now what?," accessed August 7, 2014
- Missoulian, "Amanda Curtis wins Montana Democratic nomination to U.S. Senate," accessed August 18, 2014
- Politico, "2012 Election Map, Montana," accessed November 7, 2012
- Steve Daines for U.S. Senate, "About Steve," accessed April 18, 2012
- Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, "DAINES, Steve, (1962 - )," accessed October 13, 2014
- Media Trackers, "Montana Democrats Adopt “Birther” Tactics Against Steve Daines," accessed October 9, 2014
- [y Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, "Steve Daines," accessed January 28, 2015]
- United States Senate, "Committee Assignments of the 114th Congress," accessed February 17, 2015
- CQ.com, "House Committee Rosters for the 113th Congress," accessed March 15, 2013
- Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
- Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
- Project Vote Smart, "Daines' Political Summary," accessed September 16, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "Representative Steve Daines' Voting Records on National Security," accessed September 27, 2013
- The Library of Congress, "Bill Summary & Status - 113th Congress (2013 - 2014) - H.R.624," accessed August 27, 2013
- Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
- Buzzfeed, "Government Shutdown: How We Got Here," accessed October 1, 2013
- The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
- U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 550," accessed October 31, 2013
- Washington Post, "Which lawmakers will refuse their pay during the shutdown?," accessed October 2, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "Daines on agriculture," accessed September 27, 2013
- New York Times, "House Republicans Push Through Farm Bill, Without Food Stamps," accessed September 17, 2013
- The Library of Congress, "H.AMDT.136," accessed August 28, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "Representative Steve Daines' Voting Records on Immigration," accessed September 27, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "Daines on abortion," accessed September 27, 2013
- U.S. House, "House Resolution 676," accessed July 30, 2014
- Yahoo News, "Suing Obama: GOP-led House gives the go-ahead," accessed July 30, 2014
- Washington Post, "House clears way for lawsuit against Obama," accessed July 30, 2014
- On The Issues, "Steve Daines Vote Match," accessed June 18, 2014
- The questions in the quiz are broken down into two sections -- social and economic. In social questions, liberals and libertarians agree in choosing the less-government answers, while conservatives and populists agree in choosing the more restrictive answers. For the economic questions, conservatives and libertarians agree in choosing the less-government answers, while liberals and populists agree in choosing the more restrictive answers.
- The Wall Street Journal, "Text of GOP Senators’ Letter to Iran’s Leaders on Nuclear Talks," March 9, 2015
- Fox News, "Firestorm erupts over GOP letter challenging Obama's power to approve Iran nuclear deal," March 10, 2015
- Ut San Diego, "Traitors or patriots? Senator's letter to Iran creates firestorm," March 11, 2015
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- Politico, "Montana Senate race 2014 poll: Steve Daines in driver’s seat," accessed November 21, 2013
- Wall Street Journal, "Montana Democrats Attack Daines Over Birthplace," accessed March 19, 2014
- Montana Democratic Party, "Steve Daines Makes Contradicting Claims About Montana Roots," accessed March 19, 2014
- The Hill, "Daines targets vets with first Senate campaign ad," accessed November 12, 2013
- KXLF, "Bozeman's Steve Daines comments on switching from Senate to House race," accessed February 4, 2012
- Montana Secretary of State, "2012 Primary Results," accessed July 23, 2012
- Open Secrets, "Steven Daines," accessed May 16, 2013
- Federal Election Commission, "Daines 2014 Summary reports," accessed July 18, 2014
- FEC, "April Quarterly," accessed July 18, 2013
- FEC, "July Quarterly," accessed July 18, 2013
- FEC, "October Quarterly," accessed October 24, 2013
- FEC, "Year-End Quarterly," accessed February 12, 2014
- FEC, "April Quarterly," accessed May 16, 2014
- FEC, "Pre-Primary," accessed October 22, 2014
- FEC, "July Quarterly," accessed October 22, 2014
- FEC, "October Quarterly," accessed October 31, 2014
- FEC, "Pre-General," accessed October 31, 2014
- Open Secrets, "2012 Election Cycle," accessed June 17, 2013
- Open Secrets, "Steve Daines (R-MT), 2012," accessed February 18, 2014
- This figure represents the average annual percentage growth from either 2004 (if the member entered office in 2004 or earlier) or their first year in office (as noted in the chart below) to 2012, divided by the number of years calculated.
- This number was found by dividing each member's total net worth growth percentage by the number of years included in the calculation.
- This figure represents the total percentage growth divided by the number of years for which there are net worth figures for each member.
- This figure was calculated using median asset data from the Census Bureau. Please see the Congressional Net Worth data for Ballotpedia spreadsheet for more information on this calculation.
- OpenSecrets.org, "Rep. Steven Daines," accessed September 23, 2014
- GovTrack, "Steve Daines," accessed July 29, 2014
- OpenCongress, "Steve Daines," accessed July 29, 2014
- National Journal, "2013 Congressional Vote Ratings," accessed July 29, 2014
- OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
- OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
- Roll Call, "Take Five: Rep. Steve Daines," accessed November 4, 2013
- Steve Daines for U.S. Senate, "About Steve," accessed October 9, 2014
John Walsh (D)
|U.S. Senate - Montana
| Succeeded by|
Denny Rehberg (R)
|U.S. House of Representatives - Montana At-Large District
| Succeeded by|
Ryan Zinke (R)