Spencer Abraham: Wikis


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Spencer Abraham

In office
January 20, 2001 – February 1, 2005
President George W. Bush
Preceded by Bill Richardson
Succeeded by Samuel Bodman

In office
January 4, 1995 – January 3, 2001
Preceded by Donald W. Riegle, Jr.
Succeeded by Debbie Stabenow

Born June 12, 1952 (1952-06-12) (age 57)
East Lansing, Michigan
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Jane Abraham
Alma mater Harvard University
Michigan State University
Religion Eastern Orthodox

Edward Spencer Abraham (born June 12, 1952) is a former United States Senator from Michigan. He served as the tenth United States Secretary of Energy, serving under President George W. Bush. Abraham is one of the founders of the Federalist Society.


Education and family

Abraham was born in East Lansing, Michigan and a graduate of East Lansing High School. Of Lebanese descent, Abraham is married to Jane Abraham (current co-chairwoman of the Michigan Republican Party) and has three children: a son and twin girls, Betsy and Julie. He holds a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from Harvard University, and is a 1974 Honors College graduate of Michigan State University. In 1978, while at Harvard Law School, Abraham helped found the Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy.[1] It became one of the official journals of the Federalist Society, which was founded in 1982.

Political career and background

Before his election to the Senate, Abraham was a law professor at Thomas M. Cooley Law School.


Republican Party service

He was elected chairman of the Michigan Republican Party from 1983 to 1990. He was deputy chief of staff for Vice President Dan Quayle from 1990 to 1991. He later served as co-chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) from 1991 to 1993.

United States Senate

Abraham was elected to represent Michigan in the United States Senate in 1994, and he served until 2001 when he was defeated for reelection to the Senate in 2000 for a second term by Debbie Stabenow. He was the only Arab American in that chamber. According to the New York Times, State Republicans attributed his loss to "scathing advertisements by a wide range of special interest groups, including advertisements that criticized Mr. Abraham's support for a relaxation of some immigration restrictions".[2] During the campaign the Federation for American Immigration Reform ran ads asking: "Why is Senator Spencer Abraham trying to make it easier for terrorists like Osama bin Laden to export their war of terror to any city street in America?"[3][4][5] The media denounced these commercials as "vengeful".[6] Abraham was a consistent advocate of large-scale immigration and worked relentlessly to lessen immigration controls and regulations. In 1997 he received the "Defender of the Melting Pot" award from the National Council of La Raza.[7]

Committee service and legislation

He served on the Budget, Commerce, Science and Transportation, Judiciary, and Small Business Committees. He also chaired two subcommittees: Manufacturing and Competitiveness, and Immigration. Abraham authored the "H1B Visa in Global and National Commerce Act", establishing a federal framework for on-line contracts and signatures; the "Government Paperwork Elimination Act", and the "Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act", which protects Internet domain names for businesses and persons against copyright and trademark infringements. In 1999, Abraham co-sponsored S.896, a bill to abolish the U.S. Department of Energy, which would have transferred control of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in large part to the Defense Department.[8]

U.S. Energy Secretary

Abraham was appointed Secretary of Energy by the incoming Bush administration, a post he maintained throughout George W. Bush's first term. On November 15, 2004, Abraham announced that he would resign from the position of Secretary of Energy, which took effect with the swearing in of his successor Samuel W. Bodman on February 1, 2005.

In 2004, Lebanese Ambassador Farid Abboud awarded Abraham the National Order of the Cedar.[9]

Hoover Institution

Abraham was a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution, an influential conservative think tank based at Stanford University from 2005 through 2007. After leaving office, Abraham opened The Abraham Group, a Washington DC based international strategic consulting firm. In 2006, Spencer Abraham has accepted the appointment as Chairman of the Board of Areva Inc., the US subsidiary of the French nuclear energy company.[10]

Thompson for President

On July 24, 2007, Abraham was announced as an "ambassador to official Washington" in the Fred Thompson presidential campaign.[11]

Electoral history

Michigan U.S. Senate Election 2000
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Debbie Stabenow 2,061,952 49.5
Republican Spencer Abraham (Incumbent) 1,994,693 47.9
Michigan U.S. Senate Election 1994
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Spencer Abraham 1,577,865 52
Democratic Bob Carr 1,298,726 43
Libertarian Jon Coon 127,783 4


External links

Party political offices
Preceded by
Melvin L. Larson
Chairman of the Michigan Republican Party
Succeeded by
David J. Doyle
United States Senate
Preceded by
Donald W. Riegle, Jr.
United States Senator (Class 1) from Michigan
Served alongside: Carl Levin
Succeeded by
Debbie Stabenow
Political offices
Preceded by
Bill Richardson
United States Secretary of Energy
Succeeded by
Samuel W. Bodman


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