Debbie Stabenow

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Debbie Stabenow
Debbie Stabenow.jpg
U.S. Senate, Michigan
In office
January 3, 2001-Present
Term ends
January 3, 2019
Years in position 14
PredecessorSpencer Abraham (R)
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First electedNovember 7, 2000
Next generalNovember 2018
Campaign $$22,665,612
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
U.S. House of Representatives
Michigan State Senate
Michigan State House of Representatives
High schoolClare High School
Bachelor'sMichigan State University
Master'sMichigan State University
Date of birthApril 29, 1950
Place of birthGladwin, MI
ProfessionSocial Worker
Office website
Campaign website
Deborah Ann Greer "Debbie" Stabenow (b. April 29, 1950 in Gladwin, Michigan) is a Democratic member of the U.S. Senate from the state of Michigan. Stabenow was first elected to the Senate in 2000.

Stabenow most recently won re-election to the Senate in 2012. She ran unopposed in the August 7 Democratic primary. She defeated Pete Hoekstra (R), Scotty Boman (L), Harley Mikkelson (G), Richard Matkin (UST), and John Litle (NLP) in the general election on November 6, 2012.

Stabenow began her political career in the Michigan House of Representatives, where she served from 1979 until her election to the State Senate in 1990. She served in the Senate until 1994 and was later elected to the U.S. House in 1996. Stabenow served in that position until her election to the U.S. Senate in 2000.

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Stabenow is an average Democratic member of Congress, meaning she will vote with the Democratic Party on the majority of bills.


Stabenow was born in 1950 in Gladwin, MI, and attended high school in Clare, MI. She earned both her B.A. and her M.S.W. from Michigan State University in 1972 and 1975, respectively. Stabenow has also worked as a social worker.[1]


Below is an abbreviated outline of Stabenow's political career[1]:

  • Michigan State House of Representatives, 1979-1990
  • Michigan State Senate, 1991-1994
  • U.S. House of Representatives, 1997-2001
  • U.S. Senate, 2001-Present

Committee assignments

U.S. Senate


Stabenow serves on the following Senate committees[2]:

  • Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee Chairwoman
    • Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, Poultry, Marketing and Agriculture Security
    • Subcommittee on Nutrition, Specialty Crops, Food and Agricultural Research
    • Subcommittee on Conservation, Forestry and Natural Resources
    • Subcommittee on Jobs, Rural Economic Growth and Energy Innovation
    • Subcommittee on Commodities, Markets, Trade and Risk Management
  • Budget Committee
  • Energy and Natural Resources Committee
    • Subcommittee on Water and Power
    • Subcommittee on National Parks
    • Subcommittee on Energy
  • Finance Committee
    • The Subcommittee on International Energy, Natural Resources, and Infrastructure Chair
    • The Subcommittee on International Trade, Customs, and Global Competitiveness
    • The Subcommittee on Healthcare


Stabenow served on the following Senate committees[3]:


Fiscal Cliff

Voted "Yes" Stabenow voted for the fiscal cliff compromise bill, which made permanent most of the Bush tax cuts originally passed in 2001 and 2003 while also raising tax rates on the highest income levels. The bill was passed in the Senate by a 89/8 vote on January 1, 2013.[4]



See also: United States Senate elections in Michigan, 2012

Stabenow won re-election to the U.S. Senate in 2012.[5] She ran unopposed in the August 7 Democratic primary. She defeated Pete Hoekstra (R), Scotty Boman (L), Harley Mikkelson (G), Richard Matkin (UST), and John Litle (NLP) in the general election on November 6, 2012.[6]


Debbie Stabenow vs. Pete Hoekstra
Poll Debbie Stabenow Pete HoekstraNeitherDon't knowMargin of ErrorSample Size
(September 20, 2012)
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Stabenow is available dating back to 2000. Based on available campaign finance records, Stabenow raised a total of $35,027,401 during that time period. This information was last updated on April 24, 2013.[9]

Debbie Stabenow's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 U.S. Senate (Michigan) Won $14,376,142
2006 U.S. Senate (Michigan) Won $12,361,789
2000 U.S. Senate (Michigan) Won $8,289,470
Grand Total Raised $35,027,401


Breakdown of funds according to source.

Stabenow won re-election to the U.S. Senate in 2012. During that re-election cycle, Stabenow's campaign committee raised a total of $14,376,099 and spent $13,434,824.[10]

Out-of-state donations

According to an Open Secrets report, Stabenow ranked among the top ten senate candidates receiving out-of-state donations during the 2012 election cycle. She received $3,399,022, or 54.8%, of her donations from outside of Michigan. [11]


Breakdown of the source of Stabenow's campaign funds before the 2006 election.

Stabenow won re-election to the U.S. Senate in 2006. During that re-election cycle, Stabenow's campaign committee raised a total of $12,361,789 and spent $12,426,541.[12]


Ideology and leadership

See also: GovTrack's Political Spectrum & Legislative Leadership ranking

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Stabenow is a "rank-and-file Democrat" as of June 2013.[13]

Lifetime voting record

See also: Lifetime voting records of United States Senators and Representatives

According to the website GovTrack, Stabenow missed 32 of 3,888 roll call votes from Jan 2001 to Apr 2013, which is 0.8% of votes during that period. This is better than the median of 1.7% among the lifetime records of senators currently serving.[14]

Congressional staff salaries

See also: Staff salaries of United States Senators and Representatives

The website Legistorm compiles staff salary information for members of Congress. Stabenow paid her congressional staff a total of $3,016,045 in 2011. She ranked 11th on the list of the highest paid Democratic Senatorial Staff Salaries and she ranked 13th overall of the highest paid Senatorial Staff Salaries in 2011. Overall, Michigan ranked 6th in average salary for senatorial staff. The average U.S. Senate congressional staff was paid $2,529,141.70 in fiscal year 2011.[15]

Net worth

See also: Net Worth of United States Senators and Representatives


Insufficient information has been released by Stabenow to fully calculate her net worth. More information later.


Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by - The Center for Responsive Politics, Stabenow's net worth as of 2010 was estimated between $-50,000 and $-15,001. That averages to $-32,500, which is lower than the average net worth of Democratic Senators in 2010 of $19,383,524.[16]

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, as compared to other members, in the previous year. More information about the analysis process can be found on the vote ratings page.


According to the data released in 2013, Stabenow was ranked the 22nd most liberal senator during 2012.[17]


According to the data released in 2012, Debbie Stabenow was ranked the 22nd most liberal senator during 2011.[18]

Voting with party


Stabenow voted with the Democratic Party 97.5% of the time, which ranked 8th among the 52 Senate Democratic members as of June 2013.[19]


Stabenow lives in Lansing, MI. She has two children and two grandchildren.[20]

Recent news

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External links


Political offices
Preceded by
Spencer Abraham
U.S. Senate - Michigan
Succeeded by