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Republican

Rep. Tom Petri (R)

Tom Petri Contact
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Email: n/a
DC Contact Information

Phone: 202-225-2476

Address: 2462 RHOB, DC 20515

Websites: petri.house.gov
State Office Contact Information

Phone: (920) 922-1180

Address: 490 West Rolling Meadows Drive, Fond du Lac WI 54937-8609

Oshkosh WI

Phone: (920) 231-6333

Fax: (920) 231-0464

Address: 2390 State Road 44, Oshkosh WI 54904-6438

Tom Petri Staff
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Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Brooks, Lee
Press Secretary
Christus, Nicole
Scheduler; Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Gebhardt, Debra
Chief of Staff; Legislative Director
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Christus, Nicole
Scheduler; Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Christus, Nicole
Scheduler; Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Christus, Nicole
Scheduler; Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Gebhardt, Debra
Chief of Staff; Legislative Director
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Brooks, Lee
Press Secretary
Christus, Nicole
Scheduler; Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Gebhardt, Debra
Chief of Staff; Legislative Director
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Brooks, Lee
Press Secretary
Christus, Nicole
Scheduler; Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Gebhardt, Debra
Chief of Staff; Legislative Director
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Grimm, Michael
Field Representative
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Nebl, Tonia
Staff Assistant
Towse, Linda
Office Manager
Underheim, Gregg
Field Representative; Senior Citizen Liaison
Vorpagel, Tyler
District Director
Wettstein, Clare
Deputy District Director; District Scheduler
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Gebhardt, Debra
Chief of Staff; Legislative Director
Wettstein, Clare
Deputy District Director; District Scheduler
Vorpagel, Tyler
District Director
Christus, Nicole
Scheduler; Legislative Assistant
Dykstra, Gregory
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Grawien, Chris
Legislative Assistant; Caseworker
Johnson, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Markowitz, Richard
Senior Legislative Assistant
Gebhardt, Debra
Chief of Staff; Legislative Director
Underheim, Gregg
Field Representative; Senior Citizen Liaison
Towse, Linda
Office Manager
Brooks, Lee
Press Secretary
Grimm, Michael
Field Representative
Underheim, Gregg
Field Representative; Senior Citizen Liaison
Christus, Nicole
Scheduler; Legislative Assistant
Wettstein, Clare
Deputy District Director; District Scheduler
Nebl, Tonia
Staff Assistant
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Tom Petri Committees
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Tom Petri Biography
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  • Elected: April 1979, 17th full term.
  • District: Wisconsin 6
  • Born: May. 28, 1940, Marinette
  • Home: Fond du Lac
  • Education:

    Harvard U., A.B. 1962, J.D. 1965

  • Professional Career:

    Law clerk, Fed. Judge James Doyle, 1965–66; Peace Corps, Somalia, 1966–67; Exec. dir., Ripon Society, 1968; White House aide, 1970; Practicing atty., 1970–79.

  • Political Career:

    WI Senate, 1972–79.

  • Ethnicity: White/Caucasian
  • Religion:

    Lutheran

  • Family: Married (Anne); 1 children

Republican Tom Petri, first elected in 1979, is a moderate who has occasionally paid a price for his political independence. Despite being the House’s fourth most-senior GOP member, he has been bypassed in his attempts to chair committees. He announced in April 2014 that he wouldn't seek a 19th term. Read More

Republican Tom Petri, first elected in 1979, is a moderate who has occasionally paid a price for his political independence. Despite being the House’s fourth most-senior GOP member, he has been bypassed in his attempts to chair committees. He announced in April 2014 that he wouldn't seek a 19th term.

Petri (PEE-try) spent his early years in Puerto Rico, where his father, a Navy pilot, was stationed. After his father died in World War II, the family moved to Fond du Lac, where, as a teenager, Petri was the host of a popular Wisconsin radio show called Teen Time. Petri got both his undergraduate and law degrees from Harvard University, and then was a Peace Corps volunteer in Somalia. In 1972, at age 32, he was elected to the state Senate. Two years later, he was the Republican nominee running against Democratic Sen. Gaylord Nelson. He walked across the state campaigning, but lost 62%-36%.

When he ran for the House in 1979, Petri beat Republican Tommy Thompson, then a state legislator, in the primary 35%-19%; he went on to win the special general election to succeed veteran Republican William Steiger with 50%.

Petri has a centrist voting record in the House, though he generally has aligned with his party against most of President Barack Obama’s major fiscal initiatives. He was the only Republican on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee to oppose the GOP’s 2012 surface transportation bill tying infrastructure spending to expanded oil drilling. “It’s not a jobs bill for Wisconsin,” he told The Capital Times of Madison. “They’re taking jobs from Wisconsin and giving them to other states.” He earlier bolted from the majority of Republicans in 2009 in supporting tougher regulations on credit card companies and predatory lending practices and in favoring the expansion of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program.

After Democrats won control of the House in 2006, Petri was the most senior member on Transportation and Infrastructure and hoped that he would assume the ranking Republican slot. The leadership passed him over for the more-partisan John Mica of Florida. “Maybe I’m missing something,” Petri told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. “Sometimes I think you can be more effective by working with people.” With the House GOP takeover in 2011, he became chairman of the Aviation Subcommittee and guided a Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill to passage in April. In 2009, he advocated a high-speed rail train from Madison to Milwaukee, but he switched his position in 2010 after Republican Scott Walker made the project a symbol of wasteful spending in his campaign for governor.

In 2013, Petri switched over to become chairman of the Highways and Transit Subcommittee. His appointment especially pleased bicycle lobbyists, who have applauded his active past efforts to protect funding for bike and safety programs in the face of Republican attempts to cut them. He expressed interest in considering a vehicle-mileage tax as an alternative to the gasoline tax to fund highway improvements. Despite concerns from some Republicans that the data used to collect information assessing the fees is an intrusion on privacy, he said the technology is well-established.

After the 2000 elections, Petri hoped to become chairman of the Education and the Workforce Committee—he was the most senior Republican on the committee—but his party’s leadership passed over him and installed the fourth most-senior Republican, John Boehner of Ohio, who went on to become the majority leader, and later, House speaker. Petri decried the “purge of moderate Republicans,” and afterward, his voting record became even more moderate. Working with California Democrat George Miller in 2005, he sponsored a $1,000 increase in Pell college grants, to $5,050 a year. He backed Democratic efforts in 2009 to replace federal student lending subsidies with direct lending from the government. He also pushed legislation that year to make more schools eligible for the Troops to Teachers program recruiting veterans to teach. But after the 2011 Republican takeover of the House, he joined in GOP efforts to reform the landmark No Child Left Behind law. He added provisions in 2012 to allow states to use special computer tests to fulfill testing requirements under the law and to create teacher and principal training academies.

Petri has been reelected easily and was among the few Republicans who ran without opposition in the Democratic year of 2006. He won with 71% in 2010 and 62% in 2012.

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Tom Petri Election Results
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2012 General
Tom Petri (R)
Votes: 223,460
Percent: 62.18%
Joe Kallas (D)
Votes: 135,921
Percent: 37.82%
2012 Primary
Tom Petri (R)
Votes: 73,376
Percent: 82.26%
Lauren Stephens (R)
Votes: 15,821
Percent: 17.74%
Prior Winning Percentages
2010 (71%), 2008 (64%), 2006 (100%), 2004 (67%), 2002 (100%), 2000 (65%), 1998 (93%), 1996 (73%), 1994 (100%), 1992 (53%), 1990 (100%), 1988 (74%), 1986 (97%), 1984 (76%), 1982 (65%), 1980 (59%), 1979 special (50%)
Tom Petri Votes and Bills
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National Journal’s rating system is an objective method of analyzing voting. The liberal score means that the lawmaker’s votes were more liberal than that percentage of his colleagues’ votes. The conservative score means his votes were more conservative than that percentage of his colleagues’ votes. The composite score is an average of a lawmaker’s six issue-based scores. See all NJ Voting

More Liberal
More Conservative
2013 2012 2011
Economic 31 (L) : 68 (C) 25 (L) : 75 (C) 37 (L) : 60 (C)
Social 46 (L) : 53 (C) 46 (L) : 53 (C) 44 (L) : 56 (C)
Foreign 51 (L) : 48 (C) 54 (L) : 46 (C) 52 (L) : 47 (C)
Composite 43.2 (L) : 56.8 (C) 41.8 (L) : 58.2 (C) 45.0 (L) : 55.0 (C)
Interest Group Ratings

The vote ratings by 10 special interest groups provide insight into a lawmaker’s general ideology and the degree to which he or she agrees with the group’s point of view. Two organizations provide just one combined rating for 2011 and 2012, the two sessions of the 112th Congress. They are the ACLU and the ITIC. About the interest groups.

20112012
FRC8066
LCV113
CFG6574
ITIC-75
NTU8381
20112012
COC94-
ACLU-15
ACU7276
ADA155
AFSCME0-
Key House Votes

The key votes show how a member of Congress voted on the major bills of the year. N indicates a "no" vote; Y a "yes" vote. If a member voted "present" or was absent, the bill caption is not shown. For a complete description of the bills included in key votes, see the Almanac's Guide to Usage.

    • Pass GOP budget
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2012
    • End fiscal cliff
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2012
    • Extend payroll tax cut
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2012
    • Find AG in contempt
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2012
    • Stop student loan hike
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2012
    • Repeal health care
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2012
    • Raise debt limit
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2011
    • Pass cut, cap, balance
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2011
    • Defund Planned Parenthood
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2011
    • Repeal lightbulb ban
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2011
    • Add endangered listings
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2011
    • Speed troop withdrawal
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2011
    • Regulate financial firms
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2010
    • Pass tax cuts for some
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2010
    • Stop detainee transfers
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2010
    • Legalize immigrants' kids
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2010
    • Repeal don't ask, tell
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2010
    • Limit campaign funds
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2010
    • Overturn Ledbetter
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2009
    • Pass $820 billion stimulus
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2009
    • Let guns in national parks
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2009
    • Pass cap-and-trade
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2009
    • Bar federal abortion funds
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2009
    • Pass health care bill
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2009
    • Bail out financial markets
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2008
    • Repeal D.C. gun law
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2008
    • Overhaul FISA
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2008
    • Increase minimum wage
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • Expand SCHIP
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • Raise CAFE standards
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2007
    • Share immigration data
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • Foreign aid abortion ban
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • Ban gay bias in workplace
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2007
    • Withdraw troops 8/08
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2007
    • No operations in Iran
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2007
    • Free trade with Peru
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
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The Almanac is a members-only database of searchable profiles compiled and adapted from the Almanac of American Politics. Comprehensive online profiles include biographical and political summaries of elected officials, campaign expenditures, voting records, interest-group ratings, and congressional staff look-ups. In-depth overviews of each state and house district are included as well, along with demographic data, analysis of voting trends, and political histories.
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