Robert Cowles

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Robert Cowles
Cowles robert.jpg
Wisconsin State Senate District 2
Incumbent
In office
1987 - Present
Term ends
January 2, 2017
Years in position 27
PartyRepublican
Compensation
Base salary$49,943/year
Per diem$88/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First elected2010
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Assembly Member, Wisconsin State Assembly
1983 - 1987
Education
Bachelor'sUniversity of Wisconsin, Green Bay, 1975
Personal
Birthday07/31/1950
Place of birthGreen Bay, WI
ReligionEpiscopalian
Websites
Office website
CandidateVerification
Robert L. Cowles (b. July 31, 1950) is a Republican member of the Wisconsin State Senate, representing District 2. He was first elected to the chamber in 1987.

Cowles served in the Wisconsin State Assembly, representing District 2 from 1982 to 1987, when he won the special election to the Senate.

Biography

Cowles graduated from the University of Green Bay in 1975. He then worked for a communications construction company as the director of the company's alternative energy division.

Cowles is part of the Investment Committee for DaneVest Tech Fund Advisors, LLC.[1][2][3]

Cowles survived a recall election in 2011.

Committee assignments

2013-2014

At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Cowles served on the following committees:

Wisconsin Committee Assignments, 2013
Energy, Consumer Protection, and Government Reform, Chair
State and Federal Relations, Vice Chair
Transportation, Public Safety, and Veterans and Military Affairs
Information Policy and Technology
Joint Legislative Audit, Co-chair

2011-2012

In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Cowles served on the following committees:

2009-2010

In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Cowles served on the following committees:

Issues

Notable proposed legislation

Cowles has authored and sponsored multiple bills, the most recent of which involve budget process reform, the prohibition of text-messaging while driving, access of employment records for law enforcement candidates, and state budget transparency.

Elections

2012

Cowles ran unopposed for re-election in the 2012 election for Wisconsin State Senate, District 2. Cowles was unopposed in the August 14th primary election and the general election which took place on November 6, 2012.[4][5]

Wisconsin State Senate, District 2, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngRobert Cowles Incumbent 98.5% 64,192
     - Scattering 1.5% 951
Total Votes 65,143

2011 recall

Seal of Wisconsin.svg.png
2011 Wisconsin Senate Recalls

Senators Facing Recall
Robert CowlesAlberta DarlingSheila HarsdorfDave HansenJim HolperinRandy HopperDan KapankeLuther OlsenRobert Wirch

Other Recall Information
Recalls by YearRecall Law in WisconsinRecall laws in other statesRecalls in Wisconsin2011 Scott Walker Budget Repair BillProtests over Budget Repair BillWisconsin Government Accountability BoardRecall timelineElection Results
See also: Recall of Wisconsin State Senators (2011) and Robert Cowles recall, Wisconsin State Senate (2011)

A 2011 recall attempt against Cowles failed, with Cowles defeating Nancy Nusbaum (D) on August 9.

The Democratic Party of Wisconsin began a recall campaign targeting Cowles and 7 of his Republican colleagues in the Wisconsin State Senate in March 2011.

About 26,000 signatures to recall Cowles were filed on April 28, 2011. This was the ninth set of signatures filed in the sixteen different state senate recalls that were attempted in Wisconsin. Challenges to the petition were reviewed by the board on May 31.[6] At the meeting the GAB rejected most of the challenges, giving the go ahead for a recall election.[7] The Board officially certified the recall against Cowles on June 3, effectively setting the election for July 12. Since there was more than one opposing candidate a primary occurred on July 12, with the recall on August 9.

Opponents

Former Brown County board member Rich Langan announced on May 10 that he would run against Cowles in a recall election. However, Langan dropped out days later. Nancy Nusbaum replaced Langan, officially announcing her campaign on May 16. She was also a former member of the Brown County Board. Nusbaum defeated Otto Junkermann in the Democratic primary on July 12. Junkermann was the "protest candidate." Junkermann, when asked if he was a "spoiler candidate," replied, “I don’t know how I could avoid being considered that.” Nusbaum called the move "a mockery of the democratic process," and "a sign of desperation."

July 12 Democratic primary[8]
Candidates Votes Percent
Nancy Nusbaum Approveda 14,197 65.04%
Otto Junkermann 7,578 34.72%
Scattering 54 0.25%
  • Mert Summers Note: Summers filed nomination papers with sufficient signatures but did not file final papers to be on the ballot.[9]

Cowles defeated Nusbaum in the August 9 recall.

August 9 Recall - District 2[10]
Candidates Votes Percent
Robert Cowles (R) Green check mark transparent.png 27,037 57.44%
Nancy Nusbaum (D) 19,974 42.43%
Scattering 62 .13%

2008

On November 4, 2008, Robert Cowles won re-election to the Wisconsin State Senate, District 2. He ran unopposed.[11]

Robert Cowles raised $14,234 for his campaign.[12]

Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 (2008)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Robert Cowles (R) 60,507

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Cowles is available dating back to 2000. Based on available campaign finance records, Cowles raised a total of $334,868 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 31, 2013.[13]

Robert Cowles's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 Won $112,032
2011 Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 Won $179,151
2010 Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 Not up for election $400
2008 Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 Won $14,234
2006 Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 Not up for election $675
2004 Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 Won $6,293
2002 Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 Not up for election $300
2000 Wisconsin State Senate, District 2 Won $21,783
Grand Total Raised $334,868

2012

Cowles won re-election to the Wisconsin State Senate in 2012. During that election cycle, Cowles raised a total of $112,032.
Wisconsin State Senate 2012 election - Campaign Contributions
Top contributors to Robert Cowles's campaign in 2012
Cmte to Elect a Republican Senate of Wisconsin$23,169
Kress, Donald F$2,000
Republican Party of Brown County$1,995
Kuehne, Carl W$1,250
Einhorn, Nancy$1,250
Total Raised in 2012$112,032
Source:Follow the Money

2011

Cowles won re-election to the Wisconsin State Senate in 2011. During that election cycle, Cowles raised a total of $179,151.

2010

Cowles was not up for election to the Wisconsin State Senate in 2010. During that election cycle, Cowles raised a total of $400.

2008

Cowles won re-election to the Wisconsin State Senate in 2008. During that election cycle, Cowles raised a total of $14,234.

2006

Cowles was not up for election to the Wisconsin State Senate in 2006. During that election cycle, Cowles raised a total of $675.

2004

Cowles won re-election to the Wisconsin State Senate in 2004. During that election cycle, Cowles raised a total of $6,293.

2002

Cowles was not up for election to the Wisconsin State Senate in 2002. During that election cycle, Cowles raised a total of $300.

2000

Cowles won re-election to the Wisconsin State Senate in 2000. During that election cycle, Cowles raised a total of $21,783.

Personal

Cowles currently lives in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Scorecards

See also: State legislative scorecards and State legislative scorecards in Wisconsin

Legislative scorecards are used to evaluate elected public officials based on voting record. Some scorecards are created by political advocacy groups with a focus on specific issues, while others are developed by newspapers and are broad in scope. Scorecards are meant to be used as a tool for voters to have a quick picture of whether their views align with a particular legislator's record.

Because scorecards can be specific to particular issues or general to a state’s legislative term, for example, each report should be considered on its own merits. Each entity that publishes these reports uses different methodologies and definitions for the terms used.

An overview for scorecards in all 50 states can be found on this page. To contribute to the list of Wisconsin scorecards, email suggestions to scorecards@ballotpedia.org.

Please see our writing guidelines if you would like to add results from an individual scorecard to this legislator's profile.

2014

In 2014, the Wisconsin State Legislature was in session from January 14 through June 4.

Legislators are scored on their stances on voting, money in politics and democracy reform legislation.
Legislators are scored on "how well [their votes] represented the priorities of the MMAC."
Legislators are scored on whether they voted for or against NPCW's position.
Legislators are scored on whether they voted for or against the Wisconsin AFL-CIO's position.
Legislators are scored on their stances on conservation issues.
Legislators are scored on their votes on legislation WMC deemed as "most important issues for the business community."
Legislators are scored on their votes on legislation that "impact Wisconsin's law enforcement community."
Legislators are scored on their votes on environmental bills.

2012

In 2012, the Wisconsin State Legislature was in session from January 10 through March 16.

Legislators are scored on "how well [their votes] represented the priorities of the MMAC."
Legislators are scored on whether they voted for or against the Wisconsin AFL-CIO's position.
Legislators are scored on their stances on conservation issues.
Legislators are scored on their votes on legislation WMC deemed as "most important issues for the business community."
Legislators are scored on their votes on legislation that "impact Wisconsin's law enforcement community."
Legislators are scored on their votes on environmental bills.

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References

Political offices
Preceded by
'
Wisconsin State Senate District 2
1987–present
Succeeded by
NA