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Pat Roberts

Assumed office 
January 3, 1997
Serving with Sam Brownback
Preceded by Nancy Kassebaum Baker

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kansas's 1st district
In office
January 3, 1981 – January 3, 1997
Preceded by Keith Sebelius
Succeeded by Jerry Moran

In office
January 3, 1999 – January 3, 2001
Preceded by Robert C. Smith
Succeeded by Harry Reid
In office
January 20 – June 6, 2001
Preceded by Harry Reid
Succeeded by Harry Reid

In office
January 3, 2003 – January 3, 2007
Preceded by Bob Graham
Succeeded by Jay Rockefeller

In office
January 3, 1995 – January 3, 1997
Preceded by Kika de la Garza
Succeeded by Robert F. Smith

Born April 20, 1936 (1936-04-20) (age 73)
Topeka, Kansas
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Franki Roberts
Children David Roberts
Ashleigh Roberts
Anne Wesley Roberts
Residence Dodge City, Kansas
Alma mater Kansas State University
Occupation newspaper publisher
Religion Methodist

Charles Patrick "Pat" Roberts (born April 20, 1936) is the junior United States Senator from Kansas. A member of the Republican Party, he was formerly the Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee.


Early life, family, and career

Roberts was born in Topeka, Kansas, to Ruth B. Patrick and C. Wesley Roberts.[1] His father served for four months as Chairman of the Republican National Committee under Dwight D. Eisenhower. Roberts's great-grandfather, J.W. Roberts, was the founder of the Oskaloosa Independent, which claims to be the second-oldest newspaper in Kansas.

Roberts graduated in 1954 from high school in Holton, Kansas. He went on to earn a B.A. in Journalism from Kansas State University in 1958, where he was a member of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity. From 1958 to 1962, he served as a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps. Roberts was a reporter and editor for several Arizona newspapers before joining the staff of Republican Kansas Senator Frank Carlson in 1967. In 1969, he became administrative assistant to Kansas's 1st District Congressman Keith Sebelius.

Roberts married Franki Fann in 1969. The couple has three adult children: David, Ashleigh, and Anne-Wesley.[2] They currently reside in Hollin Hills, a suburb of Alexandria, Virginia,[3][4] where Franki serves as the President of the Mount Vernon District Civic Association. [5]

House of Representatives (1981–1997)

After Keith Sebelius announced his retirement, Roberts easily won the Republican primary, which was tantamount to election in the heavily Republican 1st District. He was reelected seven times without serious difficulty, never receiving less than 60 percent of the vote; in 1988, he ran unopposed.

Roberts served as the chairman of the House Agriculture Committee from 1995 to 1997.

U.S. Senator (1997–)

Following the retirement of Senator Nancy Kassebaum, Roberts easily won the Republican primary. In the general election, he defeated Democratic State Treasurer Sally Thompson with 62 percent of the vote, almost certainly helped by the presence of Bob Dole atop the ticket as the Republican presidential candidate. No Democratic candidate opposed Roberts in 2002, allowing him to win re-election to a second term with 82.5% of the vote. Roberts won a third term in 2008, taking 60% of the vote against former Congressman Jim Slattery.

Although Roberts is the dean of the Kansas congressional delegation, he is the state's junior Senator, since Sam Brownback was sworn in on the night of the election in 1996 for the balance of Dole's Senate term. Roberts is to become Kansas's senior senator in the 112th Congress, as Brownback is retiring from the Senate to run for Governor.

Roberts was a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, chairing the Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities. This subcommittee oversaw the military's work in the area of homeland security and the efforts to prevent proliferation of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons.

As of August 31, 2009, Roberts has an approval rating of 58%, with 34% disapproving.[6]


Committee assignments

Issues and ideology

Roberts's voting record is conservative. Among other issues, he is pro-life, opposes same-sex marriage and supports the Patriot Act, and loosening restrictions on NSA wiretapping.[7]

Investigation into pre-war intelligence on Iraq

As chairman of the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Roberts was responsible for the committee's investigation into the intelligence failures prior to the 2003 invasion of Iraq. The first half of the Senate Report of Pre-war Intelligence on Iraq was released on July 9, 2004. The second half, according to language voted on by the full Committee, consists of five parts including: whether public statements and reports and testimony regarding Iraq by U.S. Government officials made between the Gulf War period and the commencement of Operation Iraqi Freedom were substantiated by intelligence information; the postwar findings about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction and weapons programs and links to terrorism and how they compare with prewar assessments; prewar intelligence assessments about postwar Iraq; any intelligence activities relating to Iraq conducted by the Policy Counterterrorism Evaluation Group (PCTEG) and the Office of Special Plans within the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy; and the use by the Intelligence Community of information provided by the Iraqi National Congress (INC).

On November 1, 2005, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid called the Senate into a rare closed session. The move was "an attempt to get around the perceived stalling by Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Pat Roberts (R-KS). Roberts had promised in July 2004 to investigate the Bush administration's misuse of intelligence before the Iraq War, but to date has not released any findings of such an investigation."

Almost two years after finishing of Phase I investigation, Roberts released the Committee's schedule for completion of Phase II on March 14, 2006[8], saying, “Today members of the Committee were provided three draft reports of the Phase II inquiry including: postwar findings about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction programs and links to terrorism and how they compare with prewar assessments, the use by the Intelligence Community of information provided by the Iraqi National Congress (INC), and prewar intelligence assessments about postwar Iraq.

“The Committee’s efforts on Phase II must be completed in a timely manner,” Roberts said. “I intend to complete this inquiry within the agreed upon Phase II parameters and turn the Committee’s attention to other pressing national security matters.

“Two of the drafts given to members today are complete or close to completion. The third is still being revised. Members were briefed by Committee staff, in detail, about each draft. Staff continues to work on a draft of the fourth report on public statements. The Committee will receive this draft when it is ready.

“It is my intention to complete work on the drafts presented to members today following the Easter recess. During the recess, staff will receive and incorporate member input where appropriate in order to complete the three drafts. They will begin drafting conclusions for member consideration.

“In order to expedite the declassification process so that the American people can review the information, the drafts of the factual findings of the report will be sent to the Intelligence Community for fact checking and declassification with the understanding that they are not final until approved by the Committee.

“Following the recess, the Committee will engage in a series of closed business meetings to move forward on Phase II which will include Committee approval of factual findings and conclusions.”

On August 3, 2006, Chairman Roberts publicly released the findings of fact and conclusions of the first two of the Phase II reports.

On February 16, 2006, the Committee voted to create a seven member subcommittee to conduct enhanced oversight of the National Security Agency's Terrorist Surveillance Program, instead of a vote called by committee Democrats to investigate the misconduct by administration because the program is claimed by many scholars as breaking the 1978 law of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. A New York Times editorial accused Roberts of "trying to give legal cover to the president's trampling on the law and the Constitution."[9]

Torture and the suspension of habeas corpus

Roberts was one of nine Senators to vote against the Detainee Treatment Act of 2005 on October 5, 2005.

On September 28, 2006, Roberts voted with a largely Republican majority to suspend habeas corpus provisions for anyone deemed by the Executive Branch an "unlawful combatant," barring them from challenging their detentions in court. Roberts's vote gave a retroactive, nine-year immunity to U.S. officials who authorized, ordered, or committed acts of torture and abuse, permitting the use of statements obtained through torture to be used in military tribunals so long as the abuse took place by December 30, 2005.[10] Roberts's vote authorized the President to establish permissible interrogation techniques and to "interpret the meaning and application" of international Geneva Convention standards, so long as the coercion fell short of "serious" bodily or psychological injury.[11][12] The bill became law on October 17, 2006.

Environmental record

Roberts worked to secure $15 million for research on carbon sequestration.[13]

The nonpartisan League of Conservation Voters has given Roberts a score of zero on environmental issues for 2006.[14] In that year, the senator voted to increase offshore oil drilling,[15] to include provisions for drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in the House Budget Amendment,[16] to deny funding for low-income energy assistance[17] and for environmental stewardship,[18] and effectively to exempt Army Corps of Engineers project analyses from independent review.[19][20] Roberts voted to confirm Gale Norton as Secretary of the Interior, to exclude oil and gas smokestacks from mercury regulations, and to reclassify the United States Environmental Protection Agency‎ (EPA) as a Cabinet department — moves widely seen as pro-business and anti-environment.[21]

Electoral history

2008 Kansas United States Senate Election

Pat Roberts (R) (inc.) 60%
Jim Slattery (D) 36%

2002 Kansas United States Senate Election

Pat Roberts (R) (inc.) 82.5%
Steven Rosile (Lib.) 9.1%
George Cook (Reform) 8.4%

1996 Kansas United States Senate Election

Pat Roberts (R) 62%
Sally Thompson (D) 34.4%
Mark S. Marney (Reform) 2.3%
Steven Rosile (Lib.) 1.2%

1994 Kansas 1st District United States Congressional Election

Pat Roberts (R) (inc.) 77%
Terry L. Nichols (D) 23%

1986 Kansas 1st District United States Congressional Election

Pat Roberts (R) (inc.) 76.5%
Dale Lyon (D) 23.5%

1980 Kansas 1st District United States Congressional Election

Pat Roberts (R) 62%
Phil Martin (D) 38%


  1. ^ 1
  2. ^ "Patrick 'Pat' ROBERTS". The Needham Family. Retrieved 2009-12-14.
  3. ^ "Roberts grows beard while recovering from surgery". Retrieved 2009-06-06.  
  4. ^ "AP: Kansas Senator Pat Roberts grows beard while recovering from surgery". Retrieved 2009-06-06.  
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Pat Roberts on the Issues". OnTheIssues. Retrieved 2009-12-14.
  8. ^ "Chairman Roberts Releases Outline for Intelligence Committee’s Phase II Completion". Pat Roberts's U.S. Senate website. Retrieved 2009-12-14.
  9. ^ "Time for Facts, Not Resolutions". New York Times editorial. 2006-03-17. Retrieved 2009-12-12.
  10. ^ William Neikirk, Andrew Zajac, Mark Silva (2006-09-29]]). "Tribunal bill OKd by Senate". Chicago Tribute.,1,1387725.story. Retrieved 2006-09-29.  
  11. ^ "Senate Passes Broad New Detainee Rules". New York Times. 2006-09-28. Retrieved 2006-09-28.  
  12. ^ Anne Plummer Flaherty (2006-09-28). "Senate OKs detainee interrogation bill". Associated Press. Retrieved 2006-09-29.  
  13. ^ CJ Online | Kansas News | Jim Suber: Roberts's study of carbon sequestration is in search of 'win-win' situation 10/29/00
  14. ^ League of Conservation Voters
  15. ^ Senate roll call votes 218 and 219
  16. ^ Senate roll call vote 74
  17. ^ Senate amendment 2913
  18. ^ Senate amendment 3103
  19. ^ Senate amendment 4682
  20. ^ LCV Scorecard
  21. ^

External links

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Keith Sebelius
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kansas's 1st congressional district

1981 – 1997
Succeeded by
Jerry Moran
United States Senate
Preceded by
Nancy Landon Kassebaum
United States Senator (Class 2) from Kansas
1997 – present
Served alongside: Sam Brownback
Political offices
Preceded by
Kika de la Garza
Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee
1995 – 1997
Succeeded by
Robert F. Smith
Preceded by
Robert C. Smith
Chairman of the Senate Ethics Committee
1999 – 2001
Succeeded by
Harry Reid
Preceded by
Bob Graham
Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee
2003 – 2007
Succeeded by
Jay Rockefeller
United States order of precedence
Preceded by
Sam Brownback
United States Senators by seniority
Succeeded by
Dick Durbin


Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Charles Patrick Roberts (born 1936-04-20) is a United States Senator from Kansas. A member of the Republican Party, he is currently chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee.


External links

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Simple English

Pat Roberts (born 1936) is a senator from Kansas. Before Roberts was a senator, he was a U.S. House of Representatives member and the chairman for the United States House Committee on Agriculture.


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