Lamar S. Smith: Wikis


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Lamar Seeligson Smith

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Texas's 21st district
Assumed office 
Preceded by Tom Loeffler

Chairman of the House Ethics Committee
In office
1999 – 2001
Preceded by James V. Hansen
Succeeded by Joel Hefley

In office
1982 – 1985

In office
1981 – 1982

Born November 19, 1947 (1947-11-19) (age 62)
San Antonio, Texas
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Elizabeth Lynn Schaefer
Residence San Antonio, Texas
Alma mater Southern Methodist University, Yale University
Occupation attorney
Religion Christian Science

Lamar Seeligson Smith (born November 19, 1947) is an attorney from the state of Texas, currently representing the state's 21st congressional district (map) in the United States House of Representatives as a Republican.



Smith was born in San Antonio, Texas. He graduated from T.M.I.: The Episcopal School of Texas, Yale University and Southern Methodist University Law School. He briefly practiced law as an attorney before entering politics. Smith is a Christian Scientist. His wife, Elizabeth Lynn Schaefer, is a Christian Science practitioner and teacher and currently serves as Second Reader at The First Church of Christ, Scientist or "The Mother Church" in Boston, Massachusetts.

Political offices in Texas

Smith was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1980. He served as Bexar County, Texas commissioner from 1982 to 1985.

U.S. House of Representatives


Smith was elected to the House of Representatives in 1986.

In 2002, Smith received 73 percent of the vote against college administrator John Courage. Smith got 62 percent in 2004 to defeat then-Democrat Rhett Smith, a consultant who ran for governor as a Republican in 2006.

House district boundaries were changed in 2001, in 2003, and again in 2006. In November 2006 the Texas Legislative Council [1] found that nearly two-thirds of voters in District 21 cast ballots for statewide Republican candidates in 2004. In the November 2006 open election, Smith faced six candidates: college administrator and veteran John Courage, a Democrat; retired Air Force officer Gene Kelly, 80, also a Democrat, who is a frequent candidate; three independents: Tommy Calvert Jr., 25, a San Antonio consultant and community activist, James Lyle Peterson, 57, a computer programmer in Austin, and Mark Rossano, 57, service manager for an Austin automobile dealership; and Libertarian James Arthur Strohm, a technical writer living in Austin.[2] Smith won reelection, taking 60% of the vote.[1]

Political positions

Digital Millennium Copyright Act

On April 23, 2006 CNet reported that Smith was introducing a bill that "would expand the DMCA's restrictions on software that can bypass copy protections and grant federal police more wiretapping and enforcement powers."[3] The controversial move sparked a negative response among technology enthusiasts in opposition to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Opposition to U.S. servicemembers accessing U.S. Supreme Court

On September 27, 2008 Smith in a House floor debate on the Equal Justice for Our Military Act of 2007, HR 3174 opposed granting equal access to the Supreme Court of the United States to members of the U.S. Armed Forces.[4] Smith had argued, among other things, that there had been no hearings in the House Judiciary Committee on the subject and for this and other reasons he opposed the legislation being considered on the House suspension calendar.[4] However the next day, on September 28, 2008 U.S. Navy veteran Norbert Basil MacLean III publicly retorted that Smith himself had an opportunity to hold such hearings but did not. "In the last Congress, Rep. Smith as chairman of the Subcommittee on Courts, Internet & Intellectual Property of the Judiciary Committee outright refused to permit hearings on this subject. The previous Equal Justice for Our Military Act, HR 1364 (109th Congress) sat in his committee for 1 year and 9 months with absolutely no action." [5] Smith also cited a February 6, 2006 letter of former Department of Defense General Counsel William J. Haynes, II, who also opposed equal access of servicemembers to the Supreme Court, in his floor debate. Despite Smith's floor statement in opposition to HR 3174, it nevertheless passed the House by a two-thirds super majority voice vote.[4]

Position on abortion

Smith is a consistent supporter of pro-life bills. In 2009, Smith voted to prohibit federally funded abortions [6]. In 2006, Smith voted for the Abortion Pain Bill, which would “ensure that women seeking an abortion are fully informed regarding the pain experienced by their unborn child,” [7] and the Child Interstate Abortion Notification Act, which would “prohibit taking minors across State lines in circumvention of laws requiring the involvement of parents in abortion decisions.” [8] In 2008, the National Right to Life Committee, a strong advocate against abortion,[9] gave Representative Smith a rating of 100 on a point system in which points were assigned for actions in support of pro-life legislature.[10]

Committee assignments


  1. ^ Gary Martin, "Courage, other veterans speak out against Bush", San Antonio Express-News, February 8, 2006.
  2. ^ Greg Jefferson, "Remap is looking good for incumbent Smith", San Antonio Express-News, September 3, 2006.
  3. ^ Declan McCullagh , "Congress readies broad new digital copyright bill", CNet, April 24, 2006.
  4. ^ a b c U.S. Congress. House (2008) Equal Justice for Our Military Act of 2007 Congressional Record - House H10623-24 (September 27, 2008)
  5. ^ BIG news: House of Representatives passes bill to expand servicemembers' access to SCOTUS, September 28, 2008 (retrieved on October 12, 2008)
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^

External links

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Tom Loeffler
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Texas's 21st congressional district

1987 – present
Political offices
Preceded by
James V. Hansen
Chairman of House Ethics Committee
Succeeded by
Joel Hefley

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