Almanac A members-only database of searchable profiles compiled and adapted from the Almanac of American Politics

Sen. Jerry Moran (R)

Kansas

N/A

moran.senate.gov

Biography

Elected: 2010, term expires 2016, 1st term.

Born: May 29, 1954, Great Bend, KS

Home: Hays, KS

Education: U. of KS, B.S. 1976, J.D. 1981

Professional Career: Operations officer, Consolidated State Bank, 1975–77; mgr., Farmers State Bank & Trust Co., 1977–78; practicing atty., 1981–96; instructor, Ft. Hays St. U., 1986.

Ethnicity: White/Caucasian

Religion: Methodist

Family: Married (Robba Addison) , 2 children

Republican Jerry Moran, who won his Senate seat in 2010 after nearly 15 years in the U.S. House, is the junior senator from Kansas. He was chosen to head the National Republican Senatorial Committee for the 2014 election, giving him the task of reversing the fortunes of a party that not only failed to fulfill predictions of reclaiming the majority in 2012, but ended up losing two seats to Democrats.

Moran grew up in the tiny town of Plainville on the western plains of Kansas, the son of an oil-field worker and a secretary at the local electric utility. He was known in high school as an ambitious student with a potentially bright future in politics. “I sat in government class and knew that this guy was going to do something,” Bonnie Staab, one of his classmates, told The Hays Daily News. In college, Moran worked as a summer intern for then-Rep. Keith Sebelius, R-Kan., whose son later married current Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, a former Kansas governor. The job enabled Moran to have a seat at the 1974 impeachment hearings of President Richard Nixon. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in economics, Moran spent four years as a banker. He returned to the University of Kansas to get a law degree, and then practiced law in the town of Hays for 15 years.

He also got involved in politics, winning election in 1988 as a state senator and rising to become Senate majority leader in 1995. When 1st District Rep. Pat Roberts, a Republican, ran for the Senate in 1996, Moran stepped into the House race to succeed him. With the help of GOP leaders, he avoided serious primary competition and won with 76% of the vote, which was tantamount to election.

In the House, Moran developed a reputation as a moderate, although he says he sees himself as a traditional Republican. He sometimes went his own way on major issues that split the two parties. To the dismay of GOP Speaker Dennis Hastert, he was one of 25 House Republicans who opposed the 2003 GOP Medicare prescription drug bill. Moran said the bill did not do enough to lower prescription drug prices, and he favored a Democratic proposal to give federal officials negotiating authority to lower drug costs. He later joined Democrats in backing an expansion of the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

A supporter of easing restrictions on trade with Cuba, which he said would benefit Kansas farmers, Moran in 2007 got through the House an amendment to ease restrictions on shipments of food and medicine to Cuba. However, it was removed from the final legislation to avoid a veto from President George W. Bush. As a member of the House Agriculture Committee, he was a defender of farm subsidies, which brought billions of federal dollars to his district. During the debate over the 2008 farm bill, Moran argued that the legislation was diverting too much money from farm subsidies for nutrition programs and other uses. He also said urban legislators had too much say in the process.

Moran was easily reelected to the House every two years. He resisted state party leaders’ pressure to challenge popular Gov. Sebelius in 2006, but decided to run for the Senate when Republican Sam Brownback announced that he would step aside to run for governor.

He had to first get by Rep. Todd Tiahrt, a Republican who had preceded Moran in the House by two years. The two waged a nasty and costly primary race, with their campaigns spending nearly $7 million combined. Tiahrt sought to turn the contest into a referendum on which of them was more conservative, and the candidates battled over endorsements. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was in Tiahrt’s camp, as was former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania and Fox News personality Sean Hannity. Moran secured the backing of Sens. John McCain of Arizona, Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, and Jim DeMint of South Carolina, and received most of the major newspaper endorsements. Moran won the contest with 50% of the vote to 45% for Tiahrt, prevailing on the strength of his home base in the state’s most Republican district.

The general election was uneventful. Moran faced Democrat Lisa Johnston, an assistant dean at Baker University and a newcomer to politics. Kansas has not elected a Democrat to the Senate since 1932, so Moran had little to fear. He won 70%-26%. Moran refused to debate Johnston, giving her no opportunity to raise her profile. He spent $6.5 million on his campaign, while she was able to raise just $32,000.

One of Moran’s first acts as a senator was to join the Senate Tea Party Caucus, a group formed to capitalize on the momentum of tea party activists during campaigns around the country in 2010. He was given a seat on the Appropriations Committee but committed to cut spending. He was one of just 26 senators to oppose the bipartisan deal to raise the nation’s debt limit in August 2011, noting that the $21 billion in deficit reduction over the first year of the agreement would cover less than a week’s worth of borrowing. Continuing his interest in trade with Cuba, Moran got a provision into the Senate’s 2012 financial services bill to ease agricultural trade with Cuba by allowing direct cash payments from Cuban buyers to U.S. institutions. It was stripped out of the final omnibus appropriations bill, however.

When the U.S. Agriculture Department urged employees in July 2012 to start having meatless Mondays for health reasons, Moran stood up for his state’s farmers and ranchers by denouncing the idea on the Senate floor. He also lashed out at the Labor Department that year for a proposal to prevent children under age 16 from working in dangerous farm jobs, saying, “If the federal government can regulate the kind of relationship between parents and their children on their own family’s farm, there is almost nothing off-limits in which we see the federal government intruding in a way of life.” But he also worked with Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., on a highly publicized bill that would create a new visa for foreign students receiving graduate degrees from U.S. schools.

After the 2012 election, NRSC chairman John Cornyn of Texas moved up to the leadership post of minority whip, and Moran campaigned early and eagerly to take his place as head of the committee, the main political arm of Republicans running for Senate seats. Many Republicans initially had hoped that the post would be of interest to the higher-profile Rob Portman of Ohio, who was a vice presidential contender in 2012, but Portman said he preferred to concentrate on legislating. Moran got the job and named Portman as the committee’s vice chairman for finance. In recognition of the GOP’s need to make inroads among Latinos, Moran also named incoming Texas Republican Ted Cruz as vice chairman for grassroots and political outreach.

Of the 33 seats up for grabs in November 2014, Republicans have to defend only 14 while Democrats have to defend 21. And most of the Republican seats remain in deeply Republican states. But a large part of Moran’s job will be to discourage far-right candidates with tea party backing but with little chance of statewide success, such as Iowa Rep. Steve King and Delaware 2010 Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell, who were both considering 2014 Senate bids.

Office Contact Information

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 224-6521

(202) 228-6966

DSOB- Dirksen Senate Office Building Room 521
Washington, DC 20510

MAIN OFFICE

(785) 628-6401

(785) 628-3791

DSOB- Dirksen Senate Office Building Room 521
Washington, DC 20510

DISTRICT OFFICE

(785) 628-6401

(785) 628-3791

1200 Main Street Suite 402
Hays, KS 67601-3649

DISTRICT OFFICE

(785) 628-6401

(785) 628-3791

1200 Main Street Suite 402
Hays, KS 67601-3649

DISTRICT OFFICE

(785) 628-6401

(785) 628-3791

923 Westport Place Suite 210
Manhattan, KS 66502

DISTRICT OFFICE

(785) 539-8973

(785) 587-0789

923 Westport Place Suite 210
Manhattan, KS 66502

DISTRICT OFFICE

(913) 393-0711

(913) 768-1366

23600 College Boulevard Suite 201
Olathe, KS 66051

DISTRICT OFFICE

(785) 628-6401

(785) 628-3791

23600 College Boulevard Suite 201
Olathe, KS 66051

DISTRICT OFFICE

(785) 628-6401

(785) 628-3791

Building 200 Suite 209
Wichita, KS 67226

DISTRICT OFFICE

(316) 631-1410

(316) 631-1297

Building 200 Suite 209
Wichita, KS 67226

DISTRICT OFFICE

(785) 628-6401

(785) 628-3791

306 North Broadway Suite 125
Pittsburg, KS 66762

DISTRICT OFFICE

(620) 232-2286

306 North Broadway Suite 125
Pittsburg, KS 66762

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

(785) 628-6401

(785) 628-3791

2400 Sumac Drive
Manhattan, KS 66502-3116

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

2400 Sumac Drive
Manhattan, KS 66502-3116

EXPORT CONTACTS » *

Staff

Sort by: Interest Name Title

Abortion

Emily Wilson
Legislative Correspondent

Aerospace

Emily Wilson
Legislative Correspondent

Agriculture

Garrett Kays
Legislative Correspondent

Judd Gardner
Legislative Assistant

Appropriations

Alex Richard
Deputy Chief of Staff; Legislative Director

Banking

William Ruder
Deputy Legislative Director

Evan Williams
Legislative Correspondent

Budget

Caroline Ross
Military Legislative Assistant

Alex Richard
Deputy Chief of Staff; Legislative Director

Thomas Bush
Legislative Assistant

tom_bush@moran.senate.gov
(202) 224-6521

Campaign

Brennen Britton
State Director

Nathan Heiman
Legislative Assistant

Trent Sterneck
Legislative Assistant

Commerce

Cort Bush
Senior Policy Advisor

Crime

Brennen Britton
State Director

Trent Sterneck
Legislative Assistant

Disability

Kyle Christian
Legislative Assistant

Joe Badger
District Representative

Victoria Lee
Legislative Correspondent

Disaster

Caroline Ross
Military Legislative Assistant

Emily Wilson
Legislative Correspondent

Education

Kyle Christian
Legislative Assistant

Joe Badger
District Representative

Victoria Lee
Legislative Correspondent

Energy

Garrett Kays
Legislative Correspondent

William Ruder
Deputy Legislative Director

Evan Williams
Legislative Correspondent

Environment

Garrett Kays
Legislative Correspondent

William Ruder
Deputy Legislative Director

Judd Gardner
Legislative Assistant

Family

Emily Wilson
Legislative Correspondent

Finance

William Ruder
Deputy Legislative Director

Evan Williams
Legislative Correspondent

Nathan Heiman
Legislative Assistant

Foreign

Emily Wilson
Legislative Correspondent

Nathan Heiman
Legislative Assistant

Trent Sterneck
Legislative Assistant

Gambling

Nathan Heiman
Legislative Assistant

Govt Ops

Tyler York
District Representative

Thomas Bush
Legislative Assistant

tom_bush@moran.senate.gov
(202) 224-6521

Trent Sterneck
Legislative Assistant

Carter Baum
Press Secretary

Health

Kyle Christian
Legislative Assistant

Joe Badger
District Representative

Victoria Lee
Legislative Correspondent

Homeland Security

Caroline Ross
Military Legislative Assistant

Emily Wilson
Legislative Correspondent

Housing

William Ruder
Deputy Legislative Director

Evan Williams
Legislative Correspondent

Human Rights

Nathan Heiman
Legislative Assistant

Immigration

Trent Sterneck
Legislative Assistant

Cort Bush
Senior Policy Advisor

Insurance

William Ruder
Deputy Legislative Director

Evan Williams
Legislative Correspondent

Intelligence

Caroline Ross
Military Legislative Assistant

Internet

Cort Bush
Senior Policy Advisor

Judiciary

Brennen Britton
State Director

Evan Williams
Legislative Correspondent

Trent Sterneck
Legislative Assistant

Labor

Trent Sterneck
Legislative Assistant

Land Use

Judd Gardner
Legislative Assistant

Evan Williams
Legislative Correspondent

Medicare

Kyle Christian
Legislative Assistant

Joe Badger
District Representative

Victoria Lee
Legislative Correspondent

Military

Caroline Ross
Military Legislative Assistant

Emily Wilson
Legislative Correspondent

Native Americans

Nathan Heiman
Legislative Assistant

Privacy

Brennen Britton
State Director

Public Works

William Ruder
Deputy Legislative Director

Recreation

Garrett Kays
Legislative Correspondent

Rules

Brennen Britton
State Director

Science

Cort Bush
Senior Policy Advisor

Seniors

Brennen Britton
State Director

Kyle Christian
Legislative Assistant

Victoria Lee
Legislative Correspondent

Small Business

Cort Bush
Senior Policy Advisor

Social Security

Kyle Christian
Legislative Assistant

Joe Badger
District Representative

Victoria Lee
Legislative Correspondent

Tax

Thomas Bush
Legislative Assistant

tom_bush@moran.senate.gov
(202) 224-6521

Technology

Cort Bush
Senior Policy Advisor

Telecommunications

Cort Bush
Senior Policy Advisor

Trade

Judd Gardner
Legislative Assistant

Transportation

Thomas Bush
Legislative Assistant

tom_bush@moran.senate.gov
(202) 224-6521

Urban Affairs

Evan Williams
Legislative Correspondent

Veterans

Caroline Ross
Military Legislative Assistant

Emily Wilson
Legislative Correspondent

Election Results

2010 GENERAL
Jerry Moran
Votes: 587,175
Percent: 70.09%
Lisa Johnston
Votes: 220,971
Percent: 26.38%
2010 PRIMARY
Jerry Moran
Votes: 163,483
Percent: 49.73%
Todd Tiahrt
Votes: 146,702
Percent: 44.63%
2008 GENERAL
Jerry Moran
Votes: 214,549
Percent: 81.88%
James Bordonaro
Votes: 34,771
Percent: 13.27%
2008 PRIMARY
Jerry Moran
Votes: 67,978
Percent: 100.0%
Prior Winning Percentages
House: 2008 (82%), 2006 (79%), 2004 (91%), 2002 (91%), 2000 (89%), 1998 (81%), 1996 (73%)

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