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

Biography

Elected: 2002, 7th term.

Born: July 13, 1951, Kaysville, UT

Home: Brigham City, UT

Education: U. of UT, B.A. 1974

Professional Career: H.S. teacher, 1974-2002; Chair, UT Rep. Party, 1997-2001.

Ethnicity: White/Caucasian

Religion: Mormon

Family: Married (Jeralynn Hansen) , 5 children ; 6 grandchildren

Rob Bishop, a Republican first elected in 2002, is a leading advocate of states’ rights and a sharp critic of the federal government’s management of public lands, both hot-button issues in the rural West. He is known for a sarcastic wit that he employs in blasting Democrats, and took over as chairman of the Natural Resources Committee in 2015.

Bishop grew up in Davis County and graduated from the University of Utah. He became a high school history and government teacher in Box Elder County. (He remains fond of giving guided historical tours of the Capitol; in one videotaped for The Salt Lake Tribune’s website, he pointed out religious-themed paintings displayed in the Rotunda and quipped, “So much for the separation of church and state.”) In 1978, at age 27, he was elected to the state House. In 1993 and 1994, he was House speaker. He continued working as a teacher after leaving the legislature, and also worked as a lobbyist for state Republicans and for the National Rifle Association.

When the U.S. seat became open, both Bishop and former House Majority Leader Kevin Garn ran. As a former state party chair for four years, Bishop won 58% of the vote at the Republican nominating convention. With mostly similar conservative views, their chief difference was a contentious issue in Utah: the ongoing battle between banks and credit unions. The credit union lobby endorsed Bishop who, as a lobbyist in 1999, helped defeat legislation to curtail the credit unions’ tax-exempt status. Bishop won the primary 60%-40%. Democrats believed they had a chance in the general election with nominee Dave Thomas, a wealthy advertising executive and an anti-abortion rights Mormon bishop who presented himself as a fiscal conservative and “a regular guy” not tied to special interests. Bishop won more easily than expected, 61%-37%.

In the House, Bishop has been a reliable conservative vote and has a seat on the GOP leadership-driven Rules Committee. He joined the Tea Party Caucus in 2010, and the previous year he unsuccessfully offered a GOP resolution on the House floor calling for an investigation into Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s claim that the Central Intelligence Agency misled her about the use of torture techniques on suspected terrorists. He started a “10th Amendment Task Force” to advocate for allowing states to assume control of federal programs, and introduced a proposed constitutional amendment in 2011 that would allow any federal law or regulation to be overturned if two-thirds of states opposed it. During his years in the Utah Legislature, “I learned to hate the federal government,” he told The Salt Lake Tribune in May 2010. “I could point to (highway) overpasses that were made because there was a 10-to-1 (funding) match, or programs we ran simply because the government bribed us with money.”

But the Standard-Examiner of Ogden, in endorsing him for reelection in 2014, said: "Rep. Bishop has matured. He’s less of the tea party wannabe and more of a statesman willing to both listen and work hard for his constituents ... In fact, he expressed concern to us about some of the extreme right-wing conspiracy theories that he sometimes hears at town hall meetings, particularly on immigration."

On Natural Resources, Bishop showed little early inclination to compromise with Democrats. Soon after taking over as chairman, he included in a border-security bill a provision to exempt border immigration enforcement activities from some environmental laws within 100 miles of U.S. borders, a move that critics called a thinly disguised attempt to bar any regulation of those lands. He introduced a similar bill in 2011; it passed the House in 2012 on a near party-line vote and advanced no further.

He long has been highly critical of attempts to designate new national monuments in the West, and in 2009 and 2011, introduced bills calling for oil drilling in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and other areas. He told The Washington Post in 2012 that the Park Service, which was struggling to maintain its national parks, should stop acquiring land. “Why don’t we prioritize and realize the federal government cannot print money fast enough to do everything that needs to get done?” he asked. In January 2015, after Obama proposed to set aside more than 12 million acres of ANWR as wilderness, along with an oil and gas leasing program imposing tight restrictions, Bishop was livid. "By tightening his grasp on these resources, the president has revealed another lack of leadership on the global stage," he said in a Washington Times op-ed. This time, it’s America’s future leverage in world affairs and our nation’s path to energy security that’s at stake."

When Obama nominated Sally Jewell, the CEO of recreational retail chain REI, as his new Interior secretary in 2013, Bishop contended that REI “has intimately supported several special interest groups and subsequently helped to advance their radical political agendas.” Bishop’s spokeswoman pointed to the company’s support of the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance and the Outdoor Industry Association.

Bishop has been comfortably reelected every two years. In 2012, his Democratic rival was Donna McAleer, an Army veteran and technology executive who blamed him for contributing to Congress’ gridlock. The Tribune called her the best-qualified candidate her party had fielded in years, but it endorsed Bishop, who won 72%-25%. He did shoulder some of the blame for Democrat Jim Matheson’s improbable reelection in the 4th District; the Tribune reported that during the post-2010 census redistricting process, some GOP strategists sought to put a few liberal areas of Salt Lake County in Bishop’s district to help shore up the party in the 2nd and 4th districts, but that Bishop refused.

Office Contact Information

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-0453

(202) 225-5857

CHOB- Cannon House Office Building Room 123
Washington, DC 20515-4401

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-0453

(202) 225-5857

CHOB- Cannon House Office Building Room 123
Washington, DC 20515-4401

DISTRICT OFFICE

(801) 625-0107

(801) 625-0124

Federal Building Room 1017
Ogden, UT 84401-2361

DISTRICT OFFICE

(202) 225-0453

(202) 225-5857

Federal Building Room 1017
Ogden, UT 84401-2361

DISTRICT OFFICE

(435) 734-2270

(435) 734-2290

6 North Main Street
Brigham City, UT 84302-2116

DISTRICT OFFICE

(202) 225-0453

(202) 225-5857

6 North Main Street
Brigham City, UT 84302-2116

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

74 North 300 East
Brigham City, UT 84302

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

(202) 225-0453

(202) 225-5857

74 North 300 East
Brigham City, UT 84302

EXPORT CONTACTS » *

Staff

Sort by: Interest Name Title

Abortion

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Acquisitions

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Aerospace

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Agriculture

Casey Snider
Legislative Director; Policy Advisor

Appropriations

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Budget

Casey Snider
Legislative Director; Policy Advisor

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Environment

Casey Snider
Legislative Director; Policy Advisor

Foreign

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Health

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Homeland Security

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Immigration

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Intelligence

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Judiciary

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Military

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Tax

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Technology

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Telecommunications

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Transportation

Adam Stewart
Legislative Assistant

Veterans

Steven Petersen
Chief Counsel

Election Results

2014 GENERAL
Rob Bishop
Votes: 70,240
Percent: 64.21%
Donna McAleer
Votes: 31,668
Percent: 28.95%
2012 GENERAL
Rob Bishop
Votes: 175,487
Percent: 71.47%
Donna McAleer
Votes: 60,611
Percent: 24.69%
2012 PRIMARY
Rob Bishop
Unopposed
2010 GENERAL
Rob Bishop
Votes: 135,247
Percent: 69.19%
Morgan Bowen
Votes: 46,765
Percent: 23.93%
2010 PRIMARY
Rob Bishop
Unopposed
2008 GENERAL
Rob Bishop
Votes: 196,799
Percent: 64.85%
Morgan Bowen
Votes: 92,469
Percent: 30.47%
2008 PRIMARY
Rob Bishop
Unopposed
Prior Winning Percentages
2010 (69%), 2008 (65%), 2006 (63%), 2004 (68%), 2002 (61%)

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