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Olympia Snowe

Olympia Snowe
Olympia Snowe Spouse Residence Alma mater Occupation Religion (1) Peter Snowe (deceased) (2) John R. McKernan, Jr. Auburn, Maine University of Maine Senator Greek Orthodox

United States Senator from Maine Incumbent Assumed office January 4, 1995 Serving with Susan Collins Preceded by George J. Mitchell

First Lady of Maine In office February 24, 1989 – January 9, 1995 Preceded by Succeeded by Constance Brennan Mary King

Olympia Jean Snowe (née Bouchles, born February 21, 1947) is the senior United States Senator from Maine. She is a Republican and a leading moderate within the party. Snowe has become widely known for her ability to influence the outcome of close votes and Senatorial filibusters.[1] In 2006, she was named one of "America’s Top Ten Senators" by Time Magazine.[2] Congressional Quarterly noted that her presence at the negotiating table in the 107th Congress was "nearly a necessity." Her political popularity in her home state is the highest of any current U.S. Senator; as of November 22, 2006, she enjoyed a 79 percent approval rating in her home state of Maine.[3]

Early life
Snowe was born Olympia Jean Bouchles in Augusta, Maine, the daughter of Georgia Goranites and George John Bouchles. Her father immigrated to the United States from Sparta, Greece.[4] She is a member of the Greek Orthodox Church.[5][6] Snowe’s early life contained much tragedy; her mother died of breast cancer when she was eight, and her father died of heart disease barely a year later. Orphaned, she was moved to Auburn, Maine, to be raised by her aunt and uncle, a barber and a textile mill worker respectively, along with their five other children. Her brother John was raised separately, by other family members. Within a few years, illness would also claim her uncle’s life. Following her mother’s death, Snowe was sent to St. Basil’s Academy in Garrison, New York, where she remained from the third grade to the ninth, and she was taught by

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Maine’s 2nd district In office January 3, 1979 – January 3, 1995 Preceded by Succeeded by William Cohen John Baldacci

Chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship In office January 3, 2003 – January 3, 2007 Preceded by Succeeded by Born John Kerry John Kerry February 21, 1947 (1947-02-21) Augusta, Maine Republican

Political party


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Athena Hatziemmanuel. Returning to Auburn, she attended Edward Little High School, before entering the University of Maine in Orono, Maine in 1969, where she earned a degree in political science. Shortly after graduation, Bouchles married her fiancé, Republican state legislator Peter Snowe. She later received an honorary degree from Bates College in 1998, and another from the University of Delaware in 2008.

Olympia Snowe
Snowe was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1978, and represented Maine’s 2nd Congressional District from 1979 to 1995. The district takes in most of the northern two-thirds of the state, including Bangor and her hometown of Auburn. She served as a member of the Budget and International Relations Committees. Snowe married John "Jock" McKernan, then-Governor of Maine, in February 1989. Snowe and McKernan had served together in the United States House of Representatives from 1983 to 1986, when McKernan represented the 1st District. Snowe was First Lady of Maine from 1989 to 1995, while also a U.S. Representative.

Career in politics

Senate career
In 1994, when Senate Majority Leader George J. Mitchell declined to run for re-election, Snowe immediately declared her candidacy for the seat. The Democratic nominee was her House colleague, 1st District Congressman Tom Andrews. Snowe defeated Andrews 60–36%, carrying every county in the state. Snowe was part of the Republican sweeping elections of 1994, where the Republican party would capture the House and Senate for the first time since 1954. Snowe was easily reelected in 2000 over State Senate President Stephen Krause, increasing her winning margin to 69%-31%. Snowe was an important voice during the Senate’s 1999 impeachment trial of thenPresident Bill Clinton. She and fellow Maine Senator Susan Collins sponsored a motion that would have allowed the Senate to vote separately on the charges and the remedy — a "finding of fact" resolution. When the motion failed, Snowe and Collins voted to acquit, arguing that Clinton’s perjury did not warrant his removal from office. Her occasional breaks with the Bush administration drew attacks from other conservative Republicans; the Club for Growth and Concerned Women for America label her a "Republican In Name Only" (RINO). In February 2006, named Olympia Snowe one of its "8 in ’08", a group of eight female politicians who could possibly run and/or be elected president in 2008.[7] In April 2006, Snowe was selected by Time as one of "America’s 10 Best Senators."[8] She was the only woman so

Snowe in the Maine Senate, 1977 Snowe entered politics and rose quickly, winning a seat on the Board of Voter Registration and working for Congressman (later U.S. Senator and U.S. Secretary of Defense) William Cohen. Tragedy struck Snowe again in 1973, when her husband was killed in an automobile accident. At the urging of family, friends, neighbors and local leaders, Snowe ran for her husband’s Auburn-based seat in the Maine House of Representatives at the age of 26 and won. She was re-elected to the House in 1974, and, in 1976, won election to the Maine Senate, representing Androscoggin County. That same year, she was a delegate to both the state and national Republican conventions.


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recognized. Time praised Snowe for her sensitivity to her constituents, also noting that: "Because of her centrist views and eagerness to get beyond partisan point scoring, Maine Republican Olympia Snowe is in the center of every policy debate in Washington." Snowe did not miss any of the 657 votes on the Senate floor during the 110th Congress from 2007 to 2009.[9] She was one of eight senators to not miss any votes.[9]

Olympia Snowe
(who were filibustering several judicial nominees deemed unacceptable) and the Senate Republican leadership (who wanted to use the nominations as a flashpoint to eliminate filibusters on nominees through the so-called nuclear option). The Gang-brokered compromise precluded further filibusters and the implementation of the nuclear option for the remainder of the 109th Congress; under its terms, the Democrats retained the power to filibuster a Bush judicial nominee in an "extraordinary circumstance," and nominees (Janice Rogers Brown, Priscilla Owen and William Pryor) received a simple majority vote by the full Senate. The Gang later played an important role in the confirmation of Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justice Samuel Alito, as they asserted that neither met the "extraordinary circumstances" provision outlined in their agreement. Snowe ultimately voted for both Roberts and Alito.

A woman of firsts
Snowe is the fourth woman to serve on the Senate Armed Services Committee and the first to chair its seapower subcommittee, which oversees the Navy and Marine Corps. In 2001, Snowe became the first Republican woman to secure a full-term seat on the Senate Finance Committee. Snowe was the youngest Republican woman ever elected to the United States House of Representatives; she is also the first woman to have served in both houses of a state legislature and both houses of the U.S. Congress. Additionally, she is the first GreekAmerican congresswoman. With her 1989 marriage to McKernan, she became the first person to simultaneously be a member of Congress and First Lady of a state. She has never lost an election in 35 years as an elected official, and in the 2006 midterm senatorial elections, Snowe won with a reported 73.99% of votes. Seven months ahead of the election, she had already raised $2.1 million.[10]

Committee assignments
• • Subcommittee on Aviation Operations, Safety, and Security • Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet • Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, and Insurance • Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard (Ranking Member) • Subcommittee on Science and Space • Subcommittee on Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety, and Security • • Subcommittee on Health Care • Subcommittee on Taxation, IRS Oversight, and Long-term Growth • Subcommittee on International Trade and Global Competitiveness • (Ranking Member) •

Gang of 14

2006 re-election campaign
Snowe was re-elected to a third term in 2006. In the November 2006 election, Senator Snowe was faced by Democratic candidate Jean Hay Bright, and Independent candidate Bill Slavick. In August 2006 she was polling at 68% vs 20% for Bright;[11] in the election she won by an even wider margin. Snowe, garnering 74% of the votes, won by the second-largest margin (after Richard Lugar

Snowe meets with U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Samuel Alito. On May 23, 2005, Snowe was one of fourteen senators dubbed the Gang of 14, who defused a confrontation between Senate Democrats


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of Indiana, who didn’t have a Democratic opponent) of any U.S. Senate candidate in the country.

Olympia Snowe
strong gun control measures following the Columbine High School shooting in 1999. Snowe lists her top legislative priorities as assisting the growth of small businesses, prescription drug coverage, and student loan and child care funding. In the 110th Congress, Snowe worked to ensure passage of a genetic non-discrimination act, which she had previously worked to pass for nearly eight years; opposed cutting loans through the Small Business Administration; offered legislation aimed at reducing the price of prescription drugs and insurance costs for small businesses; and became a leading voice among Congressional Republicans expressing concerns over President Bush’s plans for the privatization of Social Security.

Political views

Snowe meets with sailors returning from Iraq, at Maine’s Naval Air Station Brunswick. Snowe is a moderate Republican[12] as has long been typical for Republicans from New England. She is fairly liberal on social issues, for instance supporting legalized abortion and gay rights. However, she supports the death penalty. She is also a strong supporter of the war on drugs and the embargo on Cuba. In fiscal matters and on defense particularly, Snowe is generally conservative. She has been long-regarded as a hawk on foreign affairs, supporting both President Clinton’s involvement in Kosovo and President George W. Bush’s invasions in Afghanistan and Iraq. On fiscal matters, she has voiced support for cutting taxes as economic stimulus, although she joined fellow Republicans Sen. Lincoln Chafee and Sen. John McCain in voting against the Bush tax cuts in 2003. In 1992 she was the only Republican in Congress to vote for the Tax Fairness and Economic Growth Act, which provided some tax refunds to select taxpayers while also increasing noncorporate capital gains tax rates (among other provisions). It was vetoed by President George H.W. Bush. Snowe voted against the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), and most free trade measures. She is a strong supporter of environmental protections. Both Snowe and fellow Maine Senator Susan Collins have embraced

With fellow Maine Senator Susan Collins Snowe is a member of The Republican Main Street Partnership and supports stem cell research. She is also a member of Republicans for Environmental Protection, the Republican Majority for Choice, Republicans for Choice and The Wish List (Women In the Senate and House), a group of pro-choice Republican women. In 2008, Snowe endorsed Republican candidate John McCain for president of the United States.[13] In the 111th Congress Snowe has been supportive of the Obama administration, notably backing him on the release of additional TARP funds and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Whilst she opposed Obama’s budget resolution, she has nonetheless pledged to work in a bipartisan manner on the issues of healthcare and energy. [14]

Electoral history

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
U.S. Senate (General Election) Year Candidate 1994 Olympia Snowe 2000 Olympia Snowe (inc.) 2006 Olympia Snowe (inc.)

Olympia Snowe



Pct Change Opponent Tom Andrews Mark W. Lawrence Jean Hay Bright




Republican 308,244 60% +41%1 Republican 437,689 69% +9% Republican 390,056 74% +5%

Democrat 186,042 36% Democrat 197,183 31% Democrat 107,961 21%

Change from 1988 Republican candidate Jasper S. Wyman, who was challenging George Mitchell

See also
• Women in the United States Senate • Rockefeller Republican

[1] "The Centrists", National Journal, 2007-03-03, pp. 33, pdf/06centrists.pdf, retrieved on 2007-04-06. [2] "Olympia J. Snowe: The Caretaker", Time, 2006-04-14, time/nation/article/ 0,8599,1183967,00.html, retrieved on 2007-04-07. [3] "Approval Ratings for all 100 U.S. Senators", Survey USA, 2006-11-22, Net100USSenatorApproval061122.htm, retrieved on 2007-04-07. [4] Battle, Robert, "Ancestries of United States Senators: Olympia Snowe", selfpublished, ~battle/senators/snowe.htm, retrieved on 2007-04-07. [5] Broder, David S. (1997-06-08), "A Real Woman’s Issue", Washington Post, 1P2-725599.html, retrieved on 2007-04-07. [6] "Archbishop Demetrios and Other Religious Leaders Testify on Capitol Hill", Hellenic News, 2005-03-16, readnews.html?newsid=3239&lang=US, retrieved on 2007-04-07. [7] The White House Project (2006-02-16). 8 for ’08. Press release. newsroom/releases/2006/ PressRelease021606.php. Retrieved on 2007-04-07. [8] Calabresi, Massimo; Perry Bacon Jr. (2006-04-16), "America’s 10 Best Senators", Time, time/magazine/article/ 0,9171,1184052,00.html, retrieved on 2007-04-07. [9] ^ "Senate members who missed votes: 100th Congress", Washington Post, 2009, congress/110/senate/vote-missers/, retrieved on February 4, 2009. [10] Bell, Tom (2006-04-14), "Snowe aims for GOP road less taken", Portland Press Herald, pp. B1, nl-search/we/ Archives?p_product=ME&p_theme=me&p_action=se retrieved on 2007-04-07. [11] "Maine Senate: Snowe Holding On to Massive Lead", opinion poll (Rasmussen Reports), 2006-08-21, State%20Polls/August%202006/ MaineSenate.htm, retrieved on 2007-04-07. [12] Madden, Mike (2009-04-29), "The Specter of a shrinking GOP",, 2009/04/28/arlen_specter/. [13] "Endorsement of John McCain", Youtube, 2007-02-02, watch?v=45YN1I89vx0, retrieved on 2007-04-06. [14] "Snowe Responds to President’s Outline on the State of the American Economy", Senate Office of Olympia Snowe, 2009-14-04, public/ index.cfm?FuseAction=PressRoom.PressReleases&C e860673e3982, retrieved on 2009-04-14.


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
United States House of Representatives Preceded by William Cohen

Olympia Snowe

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives Succeeded by John Baldacci from Maine’s 2nd congressional district 1979 – 1995 Incumbent

United States Senate Preceded by United States Senator (Class 1) from Maine George J. Mitchell 1995 – present
Served alongside: William Cohen, Susan Collins

Political offices Preceded by John Kerry Chairman of the Senate Small Business Com- Succeeded by John Kerry mittee 2003 – 2007 • Issue positions and quotes at On The Issues • U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe campaign finance reports and data at Federal Election Commission. • U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe collected news and commentary at New York Times site. • U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe voting record at "On the Issues". • U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe profile at SourceWatch Congresspedia. • U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe video clips from the Senate Republican Conference. • U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe audio clips from the Senate Republican Conference. • U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe Official Campaign Site. • "The Anguished Moderate," The Washington Post, July 15, 2007.

Further reading
• Nine & Counting: The Women of the Senate, Boxer, Collins, Snowe et al., ISBN 0-06-095706-9.

External links
• U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe page at United States Senate Official Web Site. • Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress • Voting record maintained by The Washington Post • Campaign finance reports and data at the Federal Election Commission • Campaign contributions at • Biography, voting record, and interest group ratings at Project Vote Smart

Retrieved from "" Categories: Living people, 1947 births, Spouses of members of the United States House of Representatives, American Eastern Orthodox Christians, Greek Orthodox Christians, Greek American politicians, Maine State Senators, Republican Party (United States) politicians, Members of the Maine House of Representatives, Members of the United States House of Representatives from Maine, People from Augusta, Maine, People from Falmouth, Maine, Spouses of United States state governors, United States Senators from Maine, Female United States Senators, University of Maine alumni, Bates College alumni, Female members of the United States House of Representatives, Maine Republicans, Women state legislators in Maine, Women in Maine politics This page was last modified on 22 May 2009, at 00:37 (UTC). All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.) Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a U.S. registered 501(c)(3) taxdeductible nonprofit charity. Privacy policy About Wikipedia Disclaimers


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