Russ Carnahan: Wikis


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Russ Carnahan

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Missouri's 3rd district
Assumed office 
January 3, 2005
Preceded by Dick Gephardt

Member of the Missouri House of Representatives
from the 59th district
In office
January 2001 – January 2005
Succeeded by Jeanette Mott Oxford

Born July 10, 1958 (1958-07-10) (age 51)
Columbia, Missouri
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Debra Carnahan
Residence St. Louis, Missouri
Alma mater University of Missouri
Occupation Attorney
Religion Methodist

John Russell "Russ" Carnahan (born July 10, 1958) is an American politician from the U.S. State of Missouri currently serving his third term in the U.S. House of Representatives. A Democrat, he represents Missouri's 3rd congressional district (map), which includes the southern third of the city of St. Louis (known as South City) and most of the southern St. Louis suburbs including most of Jefferson County and all of Ste. Genevieve County. Some cities located in the district include: Webster Groves, Mehlville, Affton, and Oakville (as part of South St. Louis City), and the southern suburbs of Arnold, Herculaneum, Pevely, Crystal City, Barnhart, Imperial, and Festus, as well as Ste. Genevieve in the neighboring Ste. Genevieve County.



John Russell Carnahan was born on July 10, 1958 in Columbia, Missouri.[1] and raised in Rolla, Missouri[2] He is the son of the late Mel Carnahan, the former Governor of Missouri and posthumous U.S. Senator-elect, and Jean Carnahan who was appointed to the U.S. Senate to fill the seat to which her husband was posthumously elected. Russ Carnahan is a recipient of the Eagle Scout Award. His sister Robin Carnahan was elected to the office of Secretary of State in 2004 and again in 2008 in which she received more votes cast for a single candidate in the state's history. His brother Randy was killed in the same plane crash that took the life of his father. Russ Carnahan received a bachelor's degree and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Missouri. He worked as a private practice attorney prior to entering politics.

Carnahan is a member of the New Democrat Coalition.

Election history

Carnahan's first run for political office was in 1990 when he ran an unsuccessful campaign for Congress in the 8th Congressional District against Republican U.S. Representative Bill Emerson and lost by a margin of 57-43 percent. He then moved to St. Louis, where in 2000 he was elected to the Missouri House of Representatives. He narrowly defeated political activist Jeanette Mott Oxford in the Democratic primary election[3] by a scant 64 votes but went on to win the general election by a wide margin.[4] He was reelected to the Missouri House of Representatives in 2002.

In 2004, Carnahan ran for the 3rd Congressional District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives which was vacated by retiring U.S. Representative and former House Minority Leader and co-founder of the New Democratic Coalition Dick Gephardt. Carnahan narrowly won a crowded primary field of ten Democratic candidates in 2004 with 22.9 percent of the vote, finishing with less than 1,800 votes ahead of his nearest rival, political activist Jeff Smith, who garnered 21.3 percent. In the general election Carnahan faced Republican candidate William J. Federer, an author and Religious Right activist who had previously run against Gephardt on several occasions. The election was somewhat closer than expected. However, St. Louis's strong Democratic tilt (a Republican has not represented this district or its predecessors since 1949) helped Carnahan win with 53 percent of the vote. The district reverted to form in 2006 and Carnahan was easily reelected with 65 percent of the vote.

Missouri's 8th congressional district results: 1990[5]
Year Republican Votes Pct Democrat Votes Pct
1990 Bill Emerson 81,452 57.3% Russ Carnahan 60,751 42.7%
Missouri's 3rd congressional district results: 2004–2006[6]
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct
2004 Russ Carnahan 146,894 52.9% Bill Federer 125,422 45.1% Kevin C. Babcock Libertarian 4,367 1.6% William J. Renaud Constitution 1,222 0.4% *
2006 Russ Carnahan 145,219 65.6% David Bertelsen 70,189 31.7% R. Christophel Libertarian 4,213 1.7% David Sladky Progressive 1,827 0.8%
2008 Russ Carnahan 202,470 66,37% Chris Sander 92,759 30,41% Kevin C. Babcock Libertarian 5,518 1.81% Cynthia L. Redburn Constitution Party 4,324 1.42%
*Write-in and minor candidate notes: In 2004, Joseph L. Badaracco received 11 votes.

Congressional record

Carnahan introduced a law designed to force oil companies to pay more taxes in 2006 and co-authored a bill that would combat methamphetamine use through education research and proactive prevention.

Political positions

Crime: In the 2008 Missouri Congressional Political Courage Test, Carnahan supported the use of the death penalty in federal crimes.[7] He also supported strict penalties for internet crime, such as hacking identity theft.[7] However, he also supported programs to provide inmates with job-related skills and job-placement assistance when released.[7] In addition, Carnahan supported programs to provide prison inmates with drug and alcohol addiction treatment.[7] He supported the requirement that crimes based on sexual orientation should be prosecuted as federal hate crimes.[7]

Economy & Jobs: Russ Carnahan voted in favor of H.R. 1: American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 also known as the Stimulus Bill[8]

Environment & Energy: Carnahan supported the regulation and enforcements of both the Clean Air and Clean Water Act.[7] He supported further development and use of alternative fuels as well as the development of traditional energy resources, such as coal and natural gas.[7] Carnahan also wanted to strengthen emission controls on all gasoline and diesel-powered engines, including cars, trucks, and SUVs.[7] He has supported tax credits to consumers and manufacturers of hybrid vehicles.[9] In addition, he supported international voluntary and mandatory emission targets to limit global warming.[7] Carnahan has supported the interests of groups trying to protect the environment, such as the Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund.[10] Russ Carnahan voted in favor of H.R. 2454: American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 also known as the Cap and Trade bill or Waxman/Markey act.[11]

Health: Recently, Carnahan voted against a Health Care and Insurance Law amendment that would prohibit federal funding of abortion services.[12] He supports the interests of pro-choice groups such as Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America.[13] Carnahan wants tax credits to be offered to individuals and small businesses to offset the cost of insurance.[7] He also supports the importation of prescription drugs to the U.S., and wants to expand prescription drug coverage under Medicare so that more people can be covered.[7] Carnahan would also like child healthcare programs to be expanded so that more children can be covered.[7] Carnahan voted in favor of H.R. 3962: Affordable Health Care for America Act in 2009,[14]

Committee assignments


  1. ^ "Carnahan, Russ - Biographical Information". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. U.S. House of Representatives. 
  2. ^ "Biography". Congressman Russ Carnahan Congressional website. Retrieved 2008-08-31. 
  3. ^ "State of Missouri Primary Election — Tuesday, August 08, 2000". Election Night Reporting. State of Missouri. 
  4. ^ "Official Election Returns, State of Missouri General Election, Tuesday, November 07, 2000". Election Night Reporting. State of Missouri. 
  5. ^ Michael Barone and Grant Ujifusa (1993). The Almanac of American Politics 1994. Washington, D.C.: National Journal. pp. 750. ISBN 0-89234-057-6. 
  6. ^ "Election Statistics". Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives. Retrieved 2008-03-17. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Project Vote-Smart". 
  8. ^ "House Vote On Passage: H.R. 1: American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009". 
  9. ^ "Russ Carnahan". 
  10. ^ "Interest Group Ratings- Project Vote-Smart". 
  11. ^ "H.R. 2454: American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009". 
  12. ^ "Key Votes". 
  13. ^ "Interest Group Ratings". 
  14. ^ "House Vote On Passage: H.R. 3962: Affordable Health Care for America Act". 

External links

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Dick Gephardt
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Missouri's 3rd congressional district


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