Jeff Fortenberry

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Jeffrey Fortenberry
Jeff Fortenberry.jpg
U.S. House, Nebraska, District 1
In office
January 3, 2005-Present
Term ends
January 3, 2015
Years in position 10
PredecessorDoug Bereuter (R)
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
Cost per vote$2.19 in 2012
First electedNovember 2, 2004
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Campaign $$4,350,582
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Lincoln City Council
Bachelor'sLouisiana State University
Master'sGeorgetown University, Franciscan University of Steubenville
Date of birthDecember 27, 1960
Place of birthBaton Rouge, Louisiana
ProfessionRancher, Publishing executive
Net worth$249,502.50
ReligionRoman Catholic
Office website
Campaign website
Jeffrey Lane "Jeff" Fortenberry (b. December 27, 1960, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana) is a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives from Nebraska. He was elected by voters from Nebraska's 1st Congressional District.

Fortenberry ran successfully for re-election in 2012.[1] He defeated his primary opponents Jessica L. Turek and Dennis Parker in the May 15, 2012, Republican primary. He faced Democrat Korey L. Reiman in the November general election.[2][3]

He is set to run for re-election to the U.S. House in 2014. If he runs, he will seek the Republican nomination in the primary election. The general election took place November 4, 2014. He is also rumored to be contemplating a run for the U.S. Senate.

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Fortenberry is an average Republican member of Congress, meaning he will vote with the Republican Party on the majority of bills.


Fortenberry was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He earned a B.A. in economics from Louisiana State University in 1982, a Masters of Public Policy in 1986 from Georgetown University, in addition to a Master's of Theology from the Franciscan University of Steubenville in 1996.[4]


In the private sector, Fortenberry was an executive in the publishing industry.

Committee assignments

U.S. House


Fortenberry serves on the following committees:[5]

  • Committee on Appropriations
    • Subcommittee on Agriculture and Rural Development
    • Subcommittee on Legislative Branch
    • Subcommittee on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs


Fortenberry served on the following committees:[6]


Legislative actions

113th Congress


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.[7] For more information pertaining to Fortenberry's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[8]

National security


Voted "Yes" Fortenberry supported 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.[9]

DHS Appropriations

Voted "Yes" Fortenberry supported HR 2217 - the Department of Homeland Security 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.[9]

Keystone Pipeline Amendment

Voted "No" Fortenberry supported 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.[9]

CISPA (2013)

Voted "Yes" Fortenberry supported HR 624 - the CISPA (2013). The bill passed the House on April 18, 2013, with a vote of 288 - 127. The bill would allow federal intelligence agencies to share cybersecurity intelligence and information with private entities and utilities.[10] The bill was largely supported by Republicans, but divided the Democratic Party.[9]


Farm Bill
See also: United States Farm Bill 2013

Voted "Yes" Fortenberry supported the Farm Bill on July 11, 2013. The bill passed in a 216-208 vote.[11] The bill passed included farm policy, but did not include food stamps.[12]

Government shutdown
See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Voted "Yes" 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.[13] 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.[14] Fortenberry voted to approve the stopgap spending bill that would have delayed the individual mandate.[13]

Voted "Yes" The shutdown finally 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.[15] 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. Fortenberry voted for HR 2775.[16]


Morton Memos Prohibition

Voted "Yes" Fortenberry 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.[17] The vote largely followed party lines.[18]



Voted "Yes" Fortenberry supported repealing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and Healthcare-Related Provisions in the Healthcare and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010.[19]

Social issues


Voted "Yes" Fortenberry 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 is to ban abortions that would take place 20 or more weeks after fertilization.[20]

Previous congressional sessions

Fiscal Cliff

Voted "Yes" Fortenberry 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. He was 1 of 85 Republicans that voted in favor of the bill. The bill was passed in the House by a 257-167 vote on January 1, 2013.[21]



See also: United States Senate elections in Nebraska, 2014

Fortenberry is reportedly considering a bid to succeed outgoing freshman U.S. Senator Mike Johanns in the 2014 elections.[22]


See also: Nebraska's 1st Congressional District elections, 2012

Fortenberry sought re-election in 2012. He defeated his primary opponents Jessica L. Turek and Dennis Parker in the May 15, 2012 Republican primary.[23] He faced Korey L. Reiman (D) in the November general election.[24]

U.S. House, Nebraska District 1 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Korey L. Reiman 31.7% 81,206
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngJeff Fortenberry Incumbent 68.3% 174,889
Total Votes 256,095
Source: Nebraska Secretary of State "Official Election Results, 2012 General Election"
U.S. House, Nebraska District 1 Republican Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngJeff Fortenberry Incumbent 86.4% 55,658
Jessica L. Turek 8.2% 5,255
Dennis Parker 5.4% 3,511
Total Votes 64,424

Full history

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Fortenberry is available dating back to 2004. Based on available campaign finance records, Fortenberry raised a total of $4,350,582 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 16, 2013.[29]

Jeff Fortenberry's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 U.S. House (Nebraska, District 1) Won $698,413
2010 U.S. House (Nebraska, District 1) Won $568,390
2008 U.S. House (Nebraska, District 1) Won $725,529
2006 U.S. House (Nebraska, District 1) Won $1,144,271
2004 U.S. House (Nebraska, District 1) Won $1,213,979
Grand Total Raised $4,350,582


Candidates for Congress were required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Fortenberry's reports.[30]


Breakdown of the source of Fortenberry's campaign funds before the 2012 election.

Fortenberry won election to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2012. During that election cycle, Fortenberry's campaign committee raised a total of $698,414 and spent $381,322.[39]

Cost per vote

Fortenberry spent $2.19 per vote received in 2012.


Breakdown of the source of Fortenberry's campaign funds before the 2010 election.
Fortenberry was re-elected to the U.S. House in 2010 for a fourth term. His campaign committee raised a total of $568,390 and spent $513,943.[40]


Like-minded colleagues

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.[41]

Fortenberry most often votes with:

Fortenberry least often votes with:

Ideology and leadership

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

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Fortenberry is a "rank-and-file Republican," as of June 18, 2013.[42]

Lifetime voting record

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

According to the website GovTrack, Fortenberry missed 204 of 6,443 roll call votes from Jan 2005 to Apr 2013, which is 3.2% of votes during that period. This is worse than the median of 2.2% among the lifetime records of representatives currently serving.[42]

Congressional staff salaries

See also: Staff salaries of United States Senators and Representatives

The website Legistorm compiles staff salary information for members of Congress. Fortenberry paid his congressional staff a total of $975,289 in 2011. Overall, Nebraska ranked 20th in average salary for representative staff. The average U.S. House of Representatives congressional staff was paid $954,912.20 in fiscal year 2011.[43]

Net worth

See also: Net worth of United States Senators and Representatives

Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by, Fortenberry's net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $104,006 and $394,999. That averages to $249,502.50, which is lower than the average net worth of Democratic representatives in 2012 of $5,700,168.36. Fortenberry ranked as the 332nd most wealthy representative in 2012.[44]

Jeff Fortenberry Yearly Net Worth
YearAverage Net Worth
The data used to calculate changes in net worth may include changes resulting from assets gained through marriage, inheritance, changes in family estates and/or trusts, changes in family business ownership and many other variables unrelated to a member's behavior in Congress.

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, Fortenberry was ranked the 207th most conservative representative during 2012.[45]


According to the data released in 2012, Fortenberry was ranked the 202nd most liberal representative during 2011. This is the most liberal ranking held by one of Nebraska's representatives.[46]

Voting with party


Fortenberry voted with the Republican Party 96.6% of the time, which ranked 96th among the 234 House Republican members as of June 2013.[47]


Jeff and his wife Celeste live in Lincoln, where they raise five young daughters.[48]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term Jeff + Fortenberry + Nebraska + House

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

Jeff Fortenberry News Feed

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See also

External links


  1. Nebraska Secretary of State, "2012 Primary Candidates List," accessed March 3, 2012
  2. Nebraska Secretary of State, "Election Results," accessed May 15, 2012
  3. Politico, "2012 House Race Results," accessed November 6, 2012
  4. Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, "FORTENBERRY, Jeff, (1960 - )"
  5., "House Committee Rosters for the 113th Congress"
  6. Congressman Jeff Fortenberry, Proudly Serving the 1st Congressional District of Nebraska, "Committee Information"
  7. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
  8. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 Project Vote Smart, "Representative Jeff Fortenberry's Voting Records on National Security," accessed September 27, 2013
  10. The Library of Congress, "H.R.624 CISPA (2013) (Referred in Senate - RFS)," accessed August 27, 2013
  11. Project Vote Smart, "Fortenberry on agriculture," accessed September 27, 2013
  12. New York Times, "House Republicans Push Through Farm Bill, Without Food Stamps," accessed September 17, 2013
  13. 13.0 13.1 Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
  14. Buzzfeed, "Government Shutdown: How We Got Here," accessed October 1, 2013
  15. The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
  16. U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 550," accessed October 31, 2013
  17. The Library of Congress, "H.AMDT.136," accessed August 28, 2013
  18. Project Vote Smart, "Representative Jeff Fortenberry's Voting Records on Immigration," accessed September 27, 2013
  19. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named vote
  20. Project Vote Smart, "Fortenberry on abortion," accessed September 27, 2013
  21. U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote on the Fiscal Cliff," accessed January 4, 2013
  22. Roll Call, "Heineman, Fortenberry Considering Senate Run in Nebraska," accessed February 18, 2013
  23. The Board of State Canvassers of the State of Nebraska, "Primary Election, May 15, 2012"
  24. Nebraska Secretary of State, "Election Results," accessed May 15, 2012
  25. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed March 28, 2013
  26. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008," accessed March 28, 2013
  27. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 7, 2006," accessed March 28, 2013
  28. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2004," accessed March 28, 2013
  29. Open Secrets, "Jeff Forenberry," accessed May 16, 2013
  30. Federal Election Commission, "Fortenberry 2014 Summary reports," accessed July 18, 2014
  31. FEC, "April Quarterly," accessed July 18, 2013
  32. FEC, "July Quarterly," accessed July 18, 2013
  33. FEC, "October Quarterly," accessed October 25, 2013
  34. FEC, "Year-End Quarterly," accessed February 12, 2014
  35. FEC, "April Quarterly," accessed May 13, 2014
  36. FEC, "Pre-Primary," accessed October 22, 2014
  37. FEC, "July Quarterly," accessed October 22, 2014
  38. FEC, "October Quarterly," accessed October 22, 2014
  39. Open Secrets, "2012 Re-Election Cycle," accessed June 18, 2013
  40. Open Secrets, "Denny Rehberg 2010 Election Data," accessed November 12, 2011
  41. OpenCongress, "Jeff Fortenberry," accessed August 6, 2013
  42. 42.0 42.1 GovTrack, "Jeff Fortenberry," accessed June 18, 2013
  43. LegiStorm, "Jeff Fortenberry," accessed October 8, 2012
  44. Open Secrets, "Jeff Fortenberry (D-NE), 2012," accessed February 18, 2014
  45. National Journal, "TABLE: House Liberal Scores by Issue Area," accessed February 26, 2013
  46. National Journal, "Searchable Vote Ratings Tables: House," accessed February 23, 2012
  47. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
  48. Jeff Fortenberry, United States Congress, "About Jeff"
Political offices
Preceded by
Doug Bereuter
U.S. House of Representatives - Nebraska, District 1
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Lincoln City Council
Succeeded by