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

Biography

Elected: 2002, 6th term.

Born: November 6, 1941, Houston, TX

Home: Round Rock, TX

Education: TX Tech. U., B.A. 1964, U. of TX, J.D. 1969

Professional Career: Practicing atty., 1969-81.

Ethnicity: White/Caucasian

Religion: Lutheran

Family: Married (Erika) , 4 children ; 3 grandchildren

John Carter, a conservative Republican first elected in 2002, brings an ex-judge’s no-nonsense, law-and-order perspective to homeland security and immigration as the chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee on those issues.

Carter grew up in Houston and graduated from Texas Tech University and the University of Texas law school. He practiced law in Williamson County and served as a municipal judge in Round Rock. He was appointed a district judge in 1981 by Republican Gov. Bill Clements and in 1982 stood for election. Judicial elections are partisan in Texas, and Carter was the first Republican judge elected in Williamson County. Carter became known as the father of the county Republican Party.

In 2001, after a three-judge district court created a new Republican 31st District stretching from Williamson County to Houston, Carter retired from the bench and ran for Congress. The real contest was among the eight candidates for the Republican nomination. Carter’s main rivals were Peter Wareing, the son-in-law of Texas oilman Jack Blanton, and Brad Barton, son of Rep. Joe Barton of the 6th District. In the primary, Wareing led with 37% to 26% for Carter and 16% for Barton.

In the four-week runoff campaign, Carter attacked Wareing as a liberal in disguise, pointing to his campaign contributions to Democrats like Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Houston. When Wareing proposed that each candidate sign a “clean campaign pledge,” Carter offered what he called a “homestead pledge”—a ploy to highlight his charge that Wareing was a Houston carpetbagger who had rented an apartment in the district in order to run for the seat. Rep. Barton endorsed Carter as “the only true conservative in this race.” Wareing outspent Carter more than 2-to-1, but Carter won 57%-43%. He got 78% of the vote in Williamson County, which cast 33% of the vote. Carter won the general election easily and has had little trouble winning reelection.

In the House, Carter has been a reliable conservative. He did oppose some of the more drastic GOP proposals to cut spending in 2012, such as a failed amendment to impose an across-the-board cut in energy and water appropriations. He also was able to fight off a Republican attempt in 2011 to sharply cut spending for military bands, arguing that they “are an integral part to the patriotism that keeps our soldiers’ hearts beating fast.” He joined the Tea Party Caucus when it formed in July 2010 and was among the co-sponsors of the so-called “birther” bill in 2009 requiring future presidential candidates to provide proof of U.S. citizenship. Carter accused the Pentagon of watering down a 2010 report on the Fort Hood shootings to avoid discussing Islamic terrorism and has tried since then to award Purple Heart medals to the shooting victims so their families can receive benefits.

Taking over as Homeland Appropriations chairman, Carter argued forcefully for spending more to secure the U.S. Mexico border, but also acknowledged the need to “show compassion” to immigrants who are already in the United States. He took part in bipartisan discussions on a potential compromise on comprehensive reform measure. He had a few earlier legislative accomplishments. On the Judiciary Committee, he won passage of a bill to establish penalties for identity theft and also was successful in passing his Terrorist Penalties Enhancement Act.

He served three terms in the leadership as House Republican Conference secretary, becoming the chief antagonist of New York Democratic Rep. Charles Rangel in 2009. He introduced several resolutions seeking to remove Rangel as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee during the ethics investigation of Rangel, who ultimately was removed as head of the committee and censured for transgressions. But Carter himself drew Democrats’ fire for an alleged ethical lapse after he reportedly failed to disclose nearly $300,000 in profits from sales of oil stocks in 2006 and 2007. Carter responded by taking the offensive, noting that he had paid all taxes on his stock transactions and had admitted his errors, and then challenged Rangel to do the same. He stepped down from the post after the 2012 elections when Republicans sought to diversify their ranks; his replacement was North Carolina’s Virginia Foxx.

Office Contact Information

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-3864

(202) 225-5886

RHOB- Rayburn House Office Building Room 2110
Washington, DC 20515-4331

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-3864

(202) 225-5886

RHOB- Rayburn House Office Building Room 2110
Washington, DC 20515-4331

DISTRICT OFFICE

(202) 225-3864

(202) 225-5886

One Financial Center Suite 303
Round Rock, TX 78664-2901

DISTRICT OFFICE

(512) 246-1600

(512) 246-1620

One Financial Center Suite 303
Round Rock, TX 78664-2901

DISTRICT OFFICE

(254) 933-1392

(254) 933-1650

6544B South General Bruce Drive
Temple, TX 76502-5811

DISTRICT OFFICE

(202) 225-3864

(202) 225-5886

6544B South General Bruce Drive
Temple, TX 76502-5811

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

(202) 225-3864

(202) 225-5886

1717 North IH-35 Suite 304
Round Rock, TX 78664-2901

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

1717 North IH-35 Suite 304
Round Rock, TX 78664-2901

EXPORT CONTACTS » *

Staff

Sort by: Interest Name Title

Abortion

Sibel Kayaalp
Communications Director; Junior Legislative Assistant

Agriculture

Robert Schroeder
Department of Homeland Security Fellow

Appropriations

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Budget

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Education

Sibel Kayaalp
Communications Director; Junior Legislative Assistant

Energy

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Environment

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Govt Ops

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Gun Issues

Robert Schroeder
Department of Homeland Security Fellow

Health

Sibel Kayaalp
Communications Director; Junior Legislative Assistant

Homeland Security

Steven Gilleland
Deputy Chief of Staff

Robert Schroeder
Department of Homeland Security Fellow

Housing

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Immigration

Steven Gilleland
Deputy Chief of Staff

Robert Schroeder
Department of Homeland Security Fellow

Judiciary

Robert Schroeder
Department of Homeland Security Fellow

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Labor

Sibel Kayaalp
Communications Director; Junior Legislative Assistant

Military

Ari Zimmerman
Military Legislative Assistant

Science

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Social Security

Sibel Kayaalp
Communications Director; Junior Legislative Assistant

Tax

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Telecommunications

Sibel Kayaalp
Communications Director; Junior Legislative Assistant

Trade

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Transportation

Grady Bourn
Legislative Director

Election Results

2014 GENERAL
John Carter
Votes: 91,484
Percent: 64.06%
Louie Minor
Votes: 45,634
Percent: 31.95%
2012 GENERAL
John Carter
Votes: 145,348
Percent: 61.28%
Stephen Wyman
Votes: 82,977
Percent: 34.98%
2012 PRIMARY
John Carter
Votes: 32,917
Percent: 75.99%
Eric Klingemann
Votes: 10,400
Percent: 24.01%
2010 GENERAL
John Carter
Votes: 126,384
Percent: 82.54%
Bill Oliver
Votes: 26,735
Percent: 17.46%
2010 PRIMARY
John Carter
Votes: 52,321
Percent: 89.85%
Raymond Yamka
Votes: 5,910
Percent: 10.15%
2008 GENERAL
John Carter
Votes: 175,563
Percent: 60.27%
Brian Ruiz
Votes: 106,559
Percent: 36.58%
2008 PRIMARY
John Carter
Votes: 46,388
Percent: 100.0%
Prior Winning Percentages
2010 (83%), 2008 (60%), 2006 (58%), 2004 (65%), 2002 (69%)

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