U.S. Senate (R-OR)
"My sincere thank you to IAPAC for its generous contribution to my re-election. I commend IAPAC for its work to ensure Iranian Americans have a strong voice in our democracy - Iranian Americans have made significant contribution to the strength and diversity of America and will continue to do so for years to come."
After being sworn in to the United States Senate on January 7, 1997, Gordon Smith has quickly earned a reputation as a statesman with an independent streak. Senate leaders have recognized Smith's abilities and have continually asked him to serve in key leadership and committee positions. He has also become known for his ability to cross party lines in the interests of his constituents.
Smith serves on five major Senate committees: Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Energy and Natural Resources, Indian Affairs, and the powerful Finance Committee. He also serves as the Ranking Member of the Special Committee on Aging. In addition, he is a member of the Senate Western Water and Rural Health Caucuses as well as chairman of the High Tech Task Force. Smith is also co-chairman of the Senate Task Force on Medicare and Prescription Drugs and has been selected by the congressional leadership three times to be a Deputy Whip.
Smith believes the best economic policies are those that foster the entrepreneurial spirit that has helped make our nation great. His record is one of consistent support for lower taxes and policies that foster a strong economic climate. Smith has long been a strong supporter of increased funding for education because he understands its impact on the future competitiveness of our businesses on the world stage.
In June of 2004, the Senate passed Senator Smith's hate crimes legislation as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act. The legislation broadens federal jurisdiction to include hate crimes that cause death or bodily injury and adds sexual orientation, gender, and disability to the covered categories of hate crimes. "Hate crimes tear at the very fabric of our nation. They seek to intimidate entire groups of Americans and divide our nation," said Smith. "As a nation that serves as the beacon of freedom and liberty everywhere, we simply cannot tolerate violence against people based on their race, color, religion, or national origin."
A long time friend of the Iranian American Community, Senator Smith has worked with distinguished Iranian Americans since he entered politics. He appreciates the remarkable contributions Iranian Americans have made to the United States and has attended numerous Iranian American gatherings over the years, including Iranian American Republican Council meetings and an IAPAC reception in Washington, D.C.
First Elected: 1996
Committees: Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Energy and Natural Resources, Indian Affairs, and the powerful Finance Committee
Prev. Occupation: Frozen Food Company Executive, Attorney
Prev. Political Exp.: OR Senate, 1993-96
Education: BA Brigham Young University, 1976; JD Southwestern University, 1979