| United States Senator |
January 3, 1999 –January 3, 2011
|Preceded by||Dale Bumpers|
|Succeeded by||John Boozman|
|Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee|
September 9, 2009 –January 3, 2011
|Preceded by||Tom Harkin|
|Succeeded by||Debbie Stabenow|
|Member of the U.S.HouseofRepresentatives |
from Arkansas's 1st district
January 3, 1993 –January 3, 1997
|Preceded by||William Alexander|
|Succeeded by||Robert Berry|
Blanche Meyers Lambert
September 30, 1960
Helena, Arkansas, U.S.
|Education|| University of Arkansas, Fayetteville |
Randolph College (BS)
Blanche Meyers Lambert Lincoln (born September 30, 1960) is an American politician and lawyer who served as a U.S. Senator from Arkansas from 1999 to 2011. A member of the Democratic Party, Lincoln was first elected to the Senate in 1998; she was the first woman elected to the Senate from Arkansas since Hattie Caraway in 1932 and, at age 38, was the youngest woman ever elected to the Senate. Arkansas's 1st congressional district from 1993 to 1997.She previously served in the U.S. House of Representatives, representing
The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D.C.
Arkansas is a state in the southern region of the United States, home to over 3 million people as of 2018. Its name is of Siouan derivation from the language of the Osage denoting their related kin, the Quapaw Indians. The state's diverse geography ranges from the mountainous regions of the Ozark and the Ouachita Mountains, which make up the U.S. Interior Highlands, to the densely forested land in the south known as the Arkansas Timberlands, to the eastern lowlands along the Mississippi River and the Arkansas Delta.
The Democratic Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Republican Party. Tracing its heritage back to Thomas Jefferson and James Madison's Democratic-Republican Party, the modern-day Democratic Party was founded around 1828 by supporters of Andrew Jackson, making it the world's oldest active political party.
Lincoln was the first woman and the first Arkansan to serve as chair of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry.She also served as the Chair of Rural Outreach for the Senate Democratic Caucus. In 2010, she ran for a third term, but lost by a 58%–37% margin to Rep. John Boozman, whose brother, Fay Boozman, she defeated in 1998.
The Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry is a committee of the United States Senate empowered with legislative oversight of all matters relating to the nation's agriculture industry, farming programs, forestry and logging, and legislation relating to nutrition and health.
The Chair of Rural Outreach was a post in the Democratic party leadership of the United States Senate responsible for "guiding rural outreach for the Caucus", and overseeing engagement with "rural, suburban, and exurban American communities". The position was created in the 109th Congress, and was held by Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas. As of the 112th Congress the position no longer exists.
The Democratic Caucus of the United States Senate, sometimes referred to as the Democratic Conference, is the formal organization of all senators who are part of the Democratic Party in the United States Senate. For the makeup of the 116th Congress, the conference additionally includes two independent senators who formally caucus with the Democrats for the purpose of committee assignments and structural organization, bringing the current total to 47 members. The central organizational front for Democrats in the senate, its primary function is communicating the party's message to all of its members under a single banner.
Today, she is the Founder and a Principal of Lincoln Policy Group, a consulting firm that assist its clients in successfully navigating the legislative and regulatory bureaucracies of the federal government.
A seventh-generation Arkansan, Blanche Lambert was born in Helena, Phillips County, the daughter of Martha (née Kelly) and Jordan Bennett Lambert.Her father was a rice and cotton farmer. Her older sister, Mary Lambert, is a film director. She received her early education at the local public schools in Helena, and was the student council president at Central High School from 1977 to 1978.
Helena is the eastern portion of Helena-West Helena, Arkansas, a city in Phillips County, Arkansas. As of the 2000 census, this portion of the city population was 6,323. Helena was the county seat of Phillips County until January 1, 2006, when it merged its government and city limits with neighboring West Helena.
Phillips County is a county located in the eastern part of the U.S. state of Arkansas, in what is known as the Arkansas Delta along the Mississippi River. As of the 2010 census, the population was 21,757. The county seat is Helena-West Helena. Phillips County is Arkansas's seventh county, formed on May 1, 1820, and named for Sylvanus Phillips, the area's first-known white settler and representative to the first Territorial Legislature of the Arkansas Territory. This lowland area was developed for cotton plantations in the antebellum area and is still largely rural.
Mary Lambert is an American director. She has directed music videos, television episodes and feature films, mainly in the horror genre.
Lincoln attended the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville, where she was a member of the Chi Omega sorority.She graduated from Randolph-Macon Woman's College (now known as Randolph College) in Lynchburg, Virginia, in 1982, earning a Bachelor's degree in biology. She originally sought to go into nursing.
The University of Arkansas is a public land-grant, research university in Fayetteville, Arkansas. It is the flagship campus of the University of Arkansas System and the largest, best-known university in the state. Founded as Arkansas Industrial University in 1871, its present name was adopted in 1899 and classes were first held on January 22, 1872. It is noted for its strong architecture, agriculture, business, communication disorders, creative writing, history, law, and Middle Eastern studies programs.
Fayetteville is the third-largest city in Arkansas and county seat of Washington County. The city is centrally located within the county and has been home of the University of Arkansas since the institution's founding in 1871. Fayetteville is on the outskirts of the Boston Mountains, deep within the Ozarks. Known as Washington until 1829, the city was named after Fayetteville, Tennessee, from which many of the settlers had come. It was incorporated on November 3, 1836 and was rechartered in 1867. The four-county Northwest Arkansas Metropolitan Statistical Area is ranked 105th in terms of population in the United States with 463,204 in 2010 according to the United States Census Bureau. The city had a population of 73,580 at the 2010 Census.
Chi Omega (ΧΩ) is a women's fraternity and a member of the National Panhellenic Conference, the umbrella organization of 26 women's fraternities.
After graduating from college, Lincoln served as a staff assistant for U.S. Representative Bill Alexander, a Democrat from Arkansas's 1st congressional district . She remained in Alexander's office until 1984.
The United States House of Representatives is the lower chamber of the United States Congress, the Senate being the upper chamber. Together they comprise the legislature of the United States.
Arkansas's 1st congressional district is a U.S. congressional district in eastern Arkansas that elects a representative to the United States House of Representatives.
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In 1992, Lincoln defeated Alexander in the Democratic primary, by a margin of 61 to 39 percent. She subsequently won the general election, beating Republican Terry Hayes with 70% of the vote. Her election to the House coincided with the election of fellow Arkansan Bill Clinton as President of the United States.
She called herself a centrist Democrat[ citation needed ] and was among the minority of Democrats to support CAFTA. While in the House, she was one of only 17 Democrats to vote for the Teamwork for Employees and Managers Act of 1995 which sought to change federal employment laws. The law was vetoed by President Bill Clinton. She has voted in favor restricting class action lawsuits and tightening rules on personal bankruptcy. Lincoln was also one of the few Democrats in Congress to vote in favor of Bush administration's tax cuts and she supports the permanent elimination of the estate tax.
On April 5, 1995 she was one of only 27 Democrats in the House to vote in favor of the Contract With America Tax Relief Act, which was approved by the House. Lincoln also co-sponsored and supported legislation to amend the constitution to require a balanced-budget amendment. In 1996 she championed the Freedom to Farm Act.
She was reelected to a second term under her married name, Blanche Lincoln, and served in the House of Representatives until 1997. Lincoln chose not to run for reelection in 1996; she was pregnant at that time.
In 1998, Lincoln returned to politics and ran for the Senate seat being vacated by incumbent Senator Dale Bumpers. She defeated her Republican opponent, Fay Boozman (1946–2005), a state senator and the brother of future U.S. Representative John Boozman, 385,878 (55.1 percent) to 295,870 (42.2 percent).[ citation needed ]
Lincoln concentrated primarily on issues involving farmers and rural issues. She was one of the primary advocates of the Delta Regional Authority, which is designed to spur development in the lower Mississippi Delta region.
Lincoln became Arkansas's Senior Senator in January 2003, serving with Democrat Mark Pryor, who defeated incumbent Senator Tim Hutchinson in November 2002.
In 2004, Lincoln was re-elected, defeating Republican state Senator Jim Holt (R-Springdale) by 56%-to-44%, even as President Bush carried the state with 54% of the vote. Shereceived more than half a million votes, the highest total cast for any senatorial candidate in state history.
In March 2007, Lincoln called for the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, claiming that the firing of eight federal prosecutors created a "serious breach between the Justice Department and Congress, a breach that I'm not sure can be repaired with Mr. Gonzales at the helm."She and Senator Pryor were particularly upset that Gonzales reneged on a promise to have a replacement for Bud Cummins, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, go through a Senate confirmation. Gonzales resigned in August 2007.
In 2007, Lincoln played a key role in brokering the compromise that led to passage of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008. Also known as the “farm bill,” this legislation provides resources for nutrition, conservation, rural development, and renewable energy. Lincoln led the charge against defeating an amendment to the pending Farm Bill which would have capped government Agricultural subsidy payments at $250,000 per year, per farm. According to Lincoln, it was unfair to some farmers in her state, notably cotton growers. Even though the amendment passed (56–43), Lincoln threatened a filibuster if any amendment did not get a 60-vote majority, so the amendment was withdrawn after passage.
Lincoln was in the 2007 documentary 14 Women , directed by her older sister, Mary Lambert.
In September 2009, Lincoln pledged to filibuster any legislation containing a Public health insurance option, such as the Affordable Health Care for America Act (the Democratic-controlled, House of Representatives' preferred health care reform bill).This move came as a surprise to liberal Democrats, who largely interpreted the move as a betrayal of traditional Democratic values. Lincoln voted in favor of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the Senate bill that eventually became the Barack Obama administration's health care reform law. However, she voted against the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, a package of amendments to the Affordable Care Act—passed via reconciliation process, to circumvent united Republican attempts to block the bill's passage—in the Senate.
Lincoln's votes on health care appeared to be positioning her as a high-profile, "conservative Democrat", to avoid being perceived as a "liberal" by an Arkansas voting public that had turned increasingly Republican. In 2009 she spoke out in opposition to the pro-labor union bill known as the Employee Free Choice Act; this garnering her the praise of conservative interest groups like Americans for Tax Reform, but also bitter criticisms from labor unions, who publicly threatened to discourage Arkansas' remaining Democratic-leaning voters from voting for her.
In November 2009, Lincoln voted against bringing Guantanamo Bay prisoners to the United States for trial.
On December 9, 2010, Lincoln missed, by three minutes, a critical vote to repeal Don't ask, don't tell after a dental appointment. A supporter of the bill, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT), told reporters: "She was very frustrated and apologized to both of us." She said she would have voted for repeal had she made the vote.
With the Obama Administration having become hugely unpopular in her home state, Lincoln's re-election strategy in 2010 was to depict herself to Arkansas voters as 'independent' of the Democrats. After first narrowly surviving a primary challenge by the state's then-Lieutenant Governor Bill Halter, Lincoln lost in November 2010 to Republican Congressman John Boozman by a landslide, 58%-to-37%.
In 2004, Lincoln co-founded the Senate Hunger Caucus. The caucus was established to provide a bi-partisan forum for Senators and staff to discuss, advance and engage the Senate's work on national and international hunger and food insecurity issues.
Lincoln also helped form the Moderate Dems Working Group, a coalition of moderate Senate Democrats whose stated goal is to work with Senate leadership and the administration toward finding bipartisan solutions to controversial political issues. In addition, she co-founded and currently co-chairs Third Way, a moderate think-tank whose self-described goals are "an economic agenda that is focused on growth and middle class success; a culture of shared values; a national security approach that is both tough and smart; and a clean energy revolution."
Lincoln served on the Senate Finance Committee; Special Committee on Aging; Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources; Senate Social Security Task Force; Rural Health Caucus; Senate New Democrat Coalition and chair of the Rural Outreach for the Senate Democratic Caucus.
On September 9, 2009, she became Chairman of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee. In the Committee’s 184-year history, she was the first Arkansan and the first woman to serve as Chairman.
Lincoln remained in Washington after her re-election loss in November 2010, working as Special Policy Advisor at the firm of Alston & Bird.
In 2011 Lincoln became chair of Small Business for Sensible Regulations,a project of the National Federation of Independent Business.
In July 2013, Blanche Lincoln has founded her own political consulting firm called Lincoln Policy Group. Her company's website is http://www.lincolnpolicygroup.com/
|Democratic||Bill Alexander (Incumbent)||55,623||39.50%|
|Democratic||Blanche Lambert Lincoln||145,009||45.49%|
|Democratic||Blanche Lambert Lincoln||134,203||62.39%|
|Democratic||Blanche Lambert Lincoln||385,878||53.40%|
|Independent||Charley E. Heffley||18,896||2.70%|
|Democratic||Blanche Lambert Lincoln(Incumbent)||580,973||55.90%|
|Democratic||Blanche Lambert Lincoln(Incumbent)||146,579||44.50%|
|Democratic||Blanche Lambert Lincoln(Incumbent)||134,756||52.00%|
|Democratic||Blanche Lambert Lincoln (Incumbent)||288,156||36.95%|
|Green||John Laney Gray, III||14,430||1.85%|
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|U.S. House of Representatives|
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives |
from Arkansas's 1st congressional district
|Party political offices|
| Democratic nominee for U.S. Senator from Arkansas |
1998, 2004, 2010
| U.S. Senator (Class 3) from Arkansas |
Served alongside: Tim Hutchinson, Mark Pryor
| Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee |