John Barrasso: Wikis


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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

John Barrasso

Assumed office 
June 25, 2007
Serving with Mike Enzi
Preceded by Craig Thomas

In office
2002 – 2007

Born July 21, 1952 (1952-07-21) (age 57)
Reading, Pennsylvania
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Linda Nix (divorced)
Bobbi Brown
Children Peter Barrasso
Emma Barrasso
Hadley Barrasso
Residence Casper, Wyoming
Alma mater Georgetown University
Profession Orthopedic surgeon
Religion Presbyterian
Website U.S. Senator John Barrasso

John Anthony Barrasso (born July 21, 1952) is the junior U.S. Senator from Wyoming. A Republican, he was appointed by Democratic Governor Dave Freudenthal to succeed the late Craig L. Thomas, taking office on June 25, 2007. He won a special election in 2008 to fill the remaining four years of Thomas's term.


Early life and family

Barrasso was born in Reading, Pennsylvania in 1952. He is a 1970 graduate of Central Catholic High School in Reading, PA. He began his college career at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (where he became a member of Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity) and transferred to Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., graduating with a bachelor of science degree in 1974. He also received his M.D. degree from Georgetown University School of Medicine in 1978. He conducted his residency at Yale Medical School in New Haven, Connecticut.

Barrasso has three children — Peter, a senior at Georgetown University; Emma, a junior at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology; and Hadley, a junior in high school[1]. He is divorced from Linda Nix. On January 1, 2008, he married Bobbi Brown of Casper, Wyoming.

Political career

Barrasso previously ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate in 1996 for the seat vacated by Alan K. Simpson, the moderate Republican from Cody. In 1996, Barrasso lost the primary election to Mike Enzi, who now serves alongside Barrasso in the U.S. Senate. Enzi defeated Barrasso 33-32 percent in a seven-way primary.

Barrasso was elected to the Wyoming Senate in 2002 and reelected in 2006. While in the Wyoming Senate, he was the Chairman of the Transportation and Highways Committee. He is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon in private practice in Casper.

Barrasso was chosen on June 22, 2007, by Democratic Governor Dave Freudenthal to replace the late U.S. Craig L. Thomas. Freudenthal was, as required under Wyoming state law, able to consider only three individuals whose names were submitted to him by the Republican State Central Committee because the seat was vacated by a Republican. The rejected choices were former State Treasurer Cynthia Lummis of Cheyenne and former Republican State Chairman and lobbyist Tom Sansonetti, a former aide to Thomas. Matt Mead, grandson of former Senator Clifford P. Hansen, had also sought the nomination but was eliminated by the central committee in fourth place. When he was appointed, Barrasso indicated that he would also run in the November 2008 special election to fill the remainder of Thomas's term. Barrasso eventually won that special election with more than 73 percent of the vote.


Committee assignments

2008 U.S. Senate Special Election

Barrasso announced on May 19, 2008, that he would run in the general election in 2008 to serve the remainder of Thomas's term (though he had already stated that intention before his appointment). Tom Sansonetti, one of the three GOP nominees for Thomas's seat, said he would not challenge Barrasso for the seat in the 2008 primary. The other nominee, Cynthia Lummis, was a candidate for the Republican nomination to replace retiring U.S. Representative Barbara Cubin for the state's at-large seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. The filing deadline in Wyoming was May 30, 2008, and as of that date Barrasso had not drawn a primary opponent. The Democratic nominee was Nick Carter, a lawyer from Gillette. Pundits unanimously rated the race "Safe Republican." As expected, Barrasso won the general election in a landslide, garnering 73% of the vote.

Medical career

In addition to his private orthopedic practice, Barrasso is Chief of Staff of the Wyoming Medical Center, State President of the Wyoming Medical Society, President of the National Association of Physician Broadcasters, and a member of the American Medical Association Council of Ethics and Judicial Affairs.

Barrasso is also a rodeo physician for the Professional Rodeo Cowboy's Association (and a member of the "Cowboy Joe Club") and volunteers as a team physician for Casper College as well as several local high schools. He has also been awarded the "Wyoming Physician of the Year." He has been awarded the "Medal of Excellence" by the Wyoming National Guard for his services to the National Guard as well. Barrasso also received the "Legislative Service Award" from the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) for his support of Wyoming's veterans.

Other activities

Barrasso is also a member of the Board of Directors of Presidential Classroom, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that brings young people to Washington, D.C. to learn about government. Barrasso is a member of the Casper Chamber of Commerce and the Casper Rotary Club.

Barrasso is a perennial local host for the Jerry Lewis Telethon (with more than 20 years of service) and a frequent guest on Utah Public Television and the Casper ABC affiliate, KTWO-TV, where he offers commentary on a wide range of medical topics. He is author of a regular newspaper column, "Keeping Wyoming Healthy," and is particularly known for his senior and elder care including, among other things, writing a series of monthly articles on senior fitness, care, and prevention entitled, "Caring for Wyoming's Seniors."

Marriage to Bobbi Brown

On August 11, 2007, during Cheyenne's annual Race for the Cure, Barrasso and Bobbi Brown, herself a breast cancer survivor and the state director for Barrasso's Senate office, announced that they would marry. Once the two were engaged, Brown resigned her position in Barrasso's Senate office.[2]

The two have known each other for 25 years and have been dating for five years. They had discussed marriage before, but Barrasso's recent appointment to the U.S. Senate underscored the need to tie the knot. They were married on January 1, 2008, with their children in attendance in Thermopolis.[3]

Brown has a 16-year old daughter from a previous marriage, while Barrasso has two children from his previous marriage to Linda Nix.[4]

Political views

Barrasso is considered a conservative, though in 1996 he ran for the Wyoming Senate as a pro-choice, social moderate.[5] During his career in the Wyoming Legislature, he moved to the right on abortion issues and sponsored legislation designed to provide restrictions on receiving the procedure. He has received an "A" rating from the National Rifle Association. According to a Washington Post survey, he has voted with Republicans 94 percent of the time.[6]

Barrasso was quoted as saying, “I believe in limited government, lower taxes, less spending, traditional family values, local control and a strong national defense,” and said he has “voted for prayer in schools, against gay marriage and [has] sponsored legislation to protect the sanctity of life”.[7]

Barasso joined Wyoming colleague Mike Enzi in endorsing the nomination of Richard Honaker of Rock Springs to the U.S. District Court in Cheyenne. The selection has been pending in the Senate Judiciary Committee since 2007.

Election History

Wyoming U.S. Senate Election – 2008
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican John Barrasso 183,063 73.35%
Democratic Nick Carter 66,202 26.53%



External links

Media coverage
United States Senate
Preceded by
Craig L. Thomas
United States Senator (Class 1) from Wyoming
June 25, 2007 – present
Served alongside: Mike Enzi
Party political offices
Preceded by
Craig L. Thomas
Republican nominee for United States Senator from Wyoming
(Class 1)

Succeeded by
Current nominee
United States order of precedence
Preceded by
Jon Tester
United States Senators by seniority
Succeeded by
Roger Wicker


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