John Salazar: Wikis


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John Salazar

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Colorado's 3rd district
Assumed office 
January 3, 2005
Preceded by Scott McInnis

Born July 21, 1953 (1953-07-21) (age 56)
Alamosa, Colorado
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Mary Lou Salazar[1]
Children Esteban Salazar
Miguel Salazar
Jesus Salazar[1]
Residence Manassa, Colorado
Alma mater United States Military Academy
Adams State College
Occupation rancher
Religion Roman Catholic
Military service
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service 1973-1976[1]

John Tony Salazar (born July 21, 1953) is a three-term Democratic Congressman from Colorado. He was first elected in 2004 and has represented Colorado's 3rd congressional district since then.



He was born in Alamosa, Colorado, but calls Manassa, Colorado his home. He is married to Mary Lou Salazar and has three children: Esteban, Miguel and Jesus. His younger brother, Ken Salazar, is a former United States Senator from Colorado and the current Secretary of the Interior.

Salazar served in the U.S. Army from 1973 to 1976, and is a farmer and rancher, raising cattle and potatoes.[1] He has a college degree from Adams State College. Salazar was the owner of an internet company,, which marketed potatoes, as well as serving as a director of Monte Vista Production Credit Union and Agro Engineering, Inc.[2]

Salazar served on several Colorado public bodies including the Governor's Economic Development Advisory Board, the Rio Grande Water Conservation District and the Colorado Agricultural Leadership Forum.[2] He also served on the Colorado Agricultural Commission from 1999 to 2002 before being elected to the Colorado House of Representatives from 2003 until 2004.

Political positions

Salazar, who grew up on his parents' farm and ranch, is concerned with water rights in particular.[3] He has said his top priority on Capitol Hill will be ensuring that water derived from the snow melt of Colorado's Western Slope will stay in his district instead of being sent to California or Nevada.

Though a Democrat, he has conservative leanings — he opposes expanding gun control and supports permanent repeal of the inheritance tax and lower taxes.[3] He also supports allowing Americans to buy cheaper prescription drugs from Canada. He belongs to the Blue Dog Democrats,[4] leading him to oppose measures such as the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 and the American Clean Energy and Security Act in 2009.[5][6]

As a veteran, a son of a veteran, and father of a child serving in the Colorado National Guard as of 2004, Salazar has also been vocal against cuts to veterans' benefits. Salazar introduced the Stolen Valor Act of 2005, designed to protect the integrity of medals, to the House of Representatives, which he has cited as his best achievement in politics.[1]

Salazar was considered for the post of Secretary of Agriculture by Barack Obama but Tom Vilsack was chosen instead.[7][8]

Electoral history

Salazar was first elected to the United States House of Representatives in 2004.[2] His election to succeed retiring Republican Scott McInnis was one of the most contested House elections of the year.[2] Salazar defeated Greg Walcher who had attacked Salazar as being soft on illegal immigration,[2][9] while Salazar criticised Walcher for his previous support of a failed 2003 referendum which he said would have diverted water from the district, an important issue in western Colorado.[9][10] In a year when Republicans made gains, John Salazar was only one of three Democratic pick-up seats in the House of Representatives.[11]

John Salazar was re-elected in 2006 after his first term in Congress defeating Republican Soctt Tipton.[12] John Salazar raised almost three times as much money as Tipton and won over 60% of the vote, including more Republican areas of the district.[13] Salazar had campaigned as a moderate, middle of the road candidate, with the opinion polls having showed him ahead in the election.[13]

Salazar won in 2008 with a similar margin as 2006 defeating rancher and county commissioner Wayne Wolf.[14] Salazar had a massive fundraising advantage over Wolf who only had about $16,000 for the campaign.[14]

Committee assignments

Election results

Colorado's 3rd congressional district: Results 2004–2008[15][16]
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct
2004 John Salazar 153,500 50.9% Greg Walcher 141,376 46.9% Jim Krug Independent 6,770 2.2% *
2006 John Salazar 146,488 61.6% Scott Tipton 86,930 36.5% Bert Sargent Libertarian 4,417 1.9% Bruce Lohmiller Green (Write-in) 23 0.01%
2008 John Salazar 196,214 61.4% Wayne Wolf 123,346 38.6%

See also

List of Hispanic Americans in the United States Congress


  1. ^ a b c d e "John Salazar says he'll fight for water, agriculture, vets". Rocky Mountain News. 2008-10-08. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  2. ^ a b c d e "Salazar wins tussle for open Colorado seat". The New York Times. 2004-11-03. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  3. ^ a b "There's electoral gold in those hills". The Economist. 2006-10-26. Retrieved 2007-08-05.  
  4. ^ "Salazar says he's content with committee appointment". Rocky Mountain News. 2008-12-11. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  5. ^ "Udall, Salazar support stimulus". Steamboat Pilot & Today. 2008-10-22. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  6. ^ "Salazar decision ruffles political feathers". Glenwood Springs Post Independent. 2009-07-05. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  7. ^ "John Salazar says he may be considered for agriculture secretary". Rocky Mountain News. 2008-12-03. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  8. ^ "Obama to name LaHood, Schapiro to top posts". Los Angeles Times. 2008-12-18.,1,6558305.story. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  9. ^ a b "Colorado: Tough Race Too Close To Call". Fox News Channel. 2004-11-03.,2933,137403,00.html. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  10. ^ "Water Tempts Thirsty Voters in Colorado's 3rd District". Fox News Channel. 2004-10-11.,2933,135001,00.html. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  11. ^ "GOP builds on House majority". CNN. 2004-11-04. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  12. ^ "Democrats make gains in Colorado". USA Today. 2006-11-08. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  13. ^ a b "Salazar having no problems, even in GOP strongholds". Rocky Mountain News. 2006-11-08.,2808,DRMN_24736_5126413,00.html. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  14. ^ a b "3RD DISTRICT: John Salazar on way to victory". The Denver Post. 2008-11-05. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  15. ^ "Election Statistics". Office of the Clerk: U.S. House of Representatives. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  
  16. ^ "House of Representatives Map". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-05.  

External links

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Scott McInnis
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Colorado's 3rd congressional district

2005 – present


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