|U.S. Senate, Texas|
|January 3, 2015|
|Years in position||11|
|Predecessor||Phil Gramm (R)|
|Senate Minority Whip|
|January 3, 2013 - Present|
|Elections and appointments|
|Last election||November 4, 2008|
|First elected||December 2, 2002|
|Next general||November 4, 2014|
|Texas state attorney general|
|Texas supreme court|
|Bexar County district court judge|
|J.D.||St. Mary’s School of Law|
|Other||LL.M., University of Virginia|
|Birthday||February 2, 1952|
|Place of birth||Houston, Texas|
- 1 Biography
- 2 Career
- 3 Committee assignments
- 4 Issues
- 5 Elections
- 6 Campaign donors
- 7 Analysis
- 8 Personal
- 9 Recent news
- 10 External links
- 11 References
Cornyn most recently won re-election in 2008. He defeated Richard Noriega (D) and Yvonne Adams Schick (L) in the general election.
Cornyn served as a Bexar County district court judge from 1984 to 1990. He went on to serve on the Texas Supreme Court from 1990 to 1997. Cornyn then served as Texas Attorney General from 1999 until his election to the U.S. Senate in 2002.
Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Cornyn is an average Republican member of Congress, meaning he will vote with the Republican Party on the majority of bills.
Cornyn is seeking re-election in 2014.
After earning his J.D. from St. Mary’s School of Law, Cornyn became an attorney. He went on to become district court judge for Bexar County, TX, and then Texas Supreme Court justice, before running for the U.S. Senate.
- 1984-1990: Bexar County district court judge
- 1990-1997: Texas supreme court
- 1999-2002: Texas state attorney general
- 2002-present: U.S. Senate
Cornyn serves on the following Senate committees:
- Committee on Finance
- The Subcommittee on Taxation and IRS Oversight
- The Subcommittee on Healthcare
- Committee on the Judiciary
- Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security Ranking Member
- Subcommittee on Privacy, Technology and the Law
- Subcommittee on The Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights
Cornyn was a member of the following Senate committees:
- Armed Services Committee
- Committee on Finance
- Subcommittee on Energy, Natural Resources, and Infrastructure
- Subcommittee on Health Care
- Subcommittee on Taxation, IRS Oversight, and Long-Term Growth
- Committee on the Budget
- Committee on the Judiciary
- Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights
- Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security Ranking Member
- Subcommittee on Terrorism and Homeland Security
- Subcommittee on the Constitution
Senate Judiciary Committee
Cornyn was first appointed to Senate Judiciary Committee shortly after he was sworn in in January of 2003..
Cornyn participated in the confirmation hearings to the Supreme Court of the United States for Chief Justice John Roberts in 2005 and Associate Justices Samuel Alito in 2006 and Sonia Sotomayor in 2009.
Senator Cornyn has been noted as one of the leading advocates in the Senate Judiciary Committee on the issue of Judicial Activism. Cornyn has expressed serious concern on the issue over cases involving gun rights and the Second Amendment, the Fifth Amendment, and the Takings clause in the Constitution involving property rights. Cornyn has also said that judges should not move the law into one direction or the other towards their preferences. This was key in addressing the issue of Sonia Sotomayor's nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States in 2009. Cornyn voted against the confirmation of Sotomayor, but took the committee to task about the proper role of how judge should rule fairly and impartially. Cornyn is the only member on the committee with appellate level judicial experience.
Cornyn spoke on the issue of judicial activism in front of The Federalist Society during a talk with the Dallas Area Lawyers Chapter on October 14, 2009. During his speech, the Senator criticized the Obama Administration for nominating judges and key legal advisers for embracing judicial activism. Cornyn cited nominations including the one of Harold Koh for embracing activism, including Koh's belief that the American court system should be trans-national.
Cornyn 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.
On March 6, 2013, Senator Rand Paul (R) led a 13-hour filibuster of President Obama's CIA Director nominee, John Brennan. Paul started the filibuster in order to highlight his concerns about the administration's drone policies. In particular, Paul said he was concerned about whether a drone could be used to kill an American citizen within the United States border, without any due process involved. Paul and other civil liberties activists have been critical that President Obama did not offer a clear response to the question. A total of 14 senators joined Paul in the filibuster -- 13 Republicans and one Democrat.
The day after the filibuster, Attorney General Eric Holder sent a letter to Paul, responding to the filibuster. Holder wrote, "Does the president have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on U.S. soil? The answer to that is no."
Cornyn hired a campaign manager with ties to fellow senator Ted Cruz, in an attempt to appeal to a broader Republican base in 2014. The goal of this move is to avoid a potential primary challenge in 2014.
Texas tea-party activists are hoping to find a primary challenger for Cornyn in his 2014 Senate bid. This comes after Cornyn withdrew his support from Senator Mike Lee's efforts to defund the Affordable Care Act.
|U.S. Senate, Texas General Election, 2008|
|Republican||John Cornyn incumbent||54.8%||4,337,469|
|Libertarian||Yvonne Adams Schick||2.3%||185,241|
To view the full congressional electoral history for John Cornyn, click [show] to expand the section.
Comprehensive donor information for Cornyn is available dating back to 2002. Based on available campaign finance records, Cornyn raised a total of $29,108,909 during that time period. This information was last updated on March 25, 2013.
|John Cornyn's Campaign Contribution History|
|2008||US Senate (Texas)||$19,326,337|
|2002||US Senate (Texas)||$9,782,572|
|Grand Total Raised||$29,108,909|
|John Cornyn (2014) Campaign Finance Reports|
|Report||Date Filed||Beginning Balance||Total Contributions|
for Reporting Period
|Expenditures||Cash on Hand|
|April Quarterly||April 15, 2013||$2,671,655.28||$1,854,913.27||$(347,519.79)||$4,179,048.76|
|July Quarterly||July 15, 2013||$4,179,048.76||$2,329,648.14||$(521,702.95)||$5,986,993.95|
Top recipients of lobbyist contributions
On a list of Top 10 Recipients of Contributions from Lobbyists in 2013 from Open Secrets, Cornyn ranked 10th on the list with $51,700 in lobbyist contributions.
Cornyn won re-election to the U.S. Senate in 2008. During that re-election cycle, Cornyn's campaign committee raised a total of $19,326,337 and spent $18,994,698.
|U.S. Senate, Texas, 2008 - John Cornyn Campaign Contributions|
|Total Raised by General Election Opponent||$4,116,286|
|Total Spent by General Election Opponent||$4,106,420|
|Top contributors to John Cornyn's campaign committee|
|JPMorgan Chase & Co||$62,847|
|Bass Brothers Enterprises||$47,200|
|Haynes & Boone||$40,915|
|Top 5 industries that contributed to campaign committee|
|Oil & Gas||$980,200|
Ideology and leadership
The website Open Congress, tracks whom from each party each member of Congress votes most and least often with.
Cornyn most often votes with:
Cornyn least often votes with:
Lifetime voting record
According to the website GovTrack, Cornyn missed 61 of 3,251 roll call votes from January 2003 to March 2013. This amounts to 1.9%, which is worse than the median of 1.7% among current senators as of March 2013.
Congressional staff salaries
The website Legistorm compiles staff salary information for members of Congress. Cornyn paid his congressional staff a total of $3,342,783 in 2011. He ranked 2nd on the list of the highest paid Republican Senatorial Staff Salaries and he ranked 6th overall of the highest paid Senatorial Staff Salaries in 2011. Overall, Texas ranked 3rd in average salary for senatorial staff. The average U.S. Senate congressional staff was paid $2,529,141.70 in fiscal year 2011.
Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by OpenSecrets.org - The Center for Responsive Politics, Cornyn's net worth as of 2011 was estimated between $146,021 to $700,999. That averages to $423,510, which is lower than the average net worth of Republican Senators in 2011 of $6,358,668. His average net worth increased by 7.90% from 2010.
Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by OpenSecrets.org - The Center for Responsive Politics, Cornyn's net worth as of 2010 was estimated between $153,014 and $631,999. That averages to $392,506.50, which is lower than the average net worth of Republican Senators in 2010 of $7,054,258.
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. Cornyn ranked 2nd in the conservative rankings among members of the U.S. Senate.
Each year National Journal publishes an analysis of how liberally or conservatively each member of Congress voted in the previous year. Cornyn ranked 14th in the conservative rankings among U.S. Senators.
Voting with party
The website OpenCongress tracks how often members of Congress vote with the majority of the chamber caucus. According to the website, Cornyn has voted with the Republican Party 87.8% of the time, which ranked 27th among the 45 Senate Republican members as of June 2013.
Cornyn and his wife, Sandy, have two children.
This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term John + Cornyn + Texas + Senate
- All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.
- Social media:
- Political profiles:
- Financial (federal level):
- Financial (state level):
- Interest group ratings:
- Issue positions:
- Public statements:
- Voting record:
- Works by or about:
- Media appearances:
- Media coverage:
- Biographical Directory of the United States Congress "John Cornyn," Accessed November 23, 2011
- Congressional Quarterly "Senate Committee List" Accessed January 22, 2013
- Official Senate website "Committee Assignments," Accessed November 23, 2011
- "Senate Judiciary" List of previous members
- "Senator John Cornyn" Sen. Cornyn Statement In Advance Of The Judiciary Committee’s Vote On Judge Sotomayor, July 28, 2009
- "YouTube" Speech of Senator Cornyn to Dallas Federalist Society, October 14, 2009
- U.S. Senate "Roll Call Vote on the Fiscal Cliff" Accessed January 4, 2013.
- CNN "Rand Paul says he's heard from White House after filibuster," March 7, 2013
- USA Today "Rand Paul filibuster ranks among Senate's longest," March 7, 2013
- ABC News "Rand Paul Wins Applause From GOP and Liberals," March 7, 2013
- The Blaze, "Here Are All the GOP Senators That Participated in Rand Paul’s 12+ Hour Filibuster… and the Ones Who Didn’t," March 7, 2013
- Los Angeles Times, "Sen. Rand Paul ends marathon filibuster of John Brennan," March 7, 2013
- Breitbart "AWOL: Meet The GOP Senators Who Refused to Stand With Rand," March 7, 2013
- Politico "Rand Paul filibuster blasted by Sens. John McCain, Lindsey Graham," March 7, 2013
- Washington Post "Eric Holder responds to Rand Paul with ‘no’," March 7, 2013
- Politico, "John Cornyn hires campaign aide with Ted Cruz ties," July 11, 2013
- news-journal.com, " Red State calls Cornyn 'a sad joke'," July 29, 2013
- National Review Online, "Texas Tea Partiers Gunning For Gohmert to Primary Cornyn," August 7, 2013
- U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008," accessed March 28, 2013
- U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 5, 2002," accessed March 28, 2013
- Open Secrets "Career Fundraising for John Cornyn," Accessed March 25, 2013
- Federal Election Commission "John Cornyn Summary Report," Accessed July 22, 2013
- 'Federal Election Commission "John Cornyn April Quarterly," Accessed July 22, 2013
- 'Federal Election Commission "John Cornyn July Quarterly," Accessed July 22, 2013
- Open Secrets "Top Recipients of Lobbyists Cash in 2013" Accessed July 3, 2013
- Open Secrets "John Cornyn 2008 Election Cycle," Accessed November 23, 2011
- Gov Track "John Cornyn," Accessed June 7, 2013
- OpenCongress, "John Cornyn," Accessed July 30, 2013
- GovTrack, "John Cornyn," Accessed April 2, 2013
- LegiStorm "John Cornyn"
- OpenSecrets.org "John Cornyn (R-Texas), 2011," accessed February 22, 2013
- OpenSecrets.org, "Cornyn, (R-TX), 2010"
- National Journal, "2012 Congressional Vote Ratings," March 11, 2013
- National Journal, "Searchable Vote Ratings Tables: House," February 23, 2012
- OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed June 6, 2013
- Official House website "Biography," Accessed November 23, 2011
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