Mitchell Elias Daniels Jr. is an American academic administrator, businessman and retired politician who served as the 49th Governor of Indiana, from 2005 to 2013, a Republican. Since 2013, Daniels has been president of Purdue University. Born in Monongahela, Daniels is a graduate of Princeton University, received his Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center after studying at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law. Daniels began his career working as an assistant to Richard Lugar, working as his chief of staff in the Senate from 1977 to 1982, was appointed executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee when Lugar was chairman from 1983 to 1984, he worked as a chief political adviser and as a liaison to President Ronald Reagan in 1985, before he was appointed president of the conservative think tank, the Hudson Institute. Daniels moved back to Indiana, joining Eli Lilly and Company, working as president of North American Pharmaceutical Operations from 1993 to 1997, senior vice president of corporate strategy and policy from 1997 to 2001.
In January 2001, Daniels was appointed by President George W. Bush as the director of the U. S. Office of Management and Budget, where he served until June 2003. Daniels announced his intention to run in Indiana's 2004 gubernatorial election after leaving the Bush administration, he won the Republican primary with 67% of the vote, defeated Democratic incumbent Governor Joe Kernan in the general election. Daniels was reelected to a second term, defeating former U. S. Representative and US Department of Agriculture undersecretary Jill Long Thompson, on November 4, 2008. During his tenure as governor, Daniels cut the state government workforce by 18%, cut and capped state property taxes, balanced the state budget through budget austerity measures and increasing spending by less than the inflation rate. In his second term, Daniels saw protest by labor unions and Democrats in the state legislature over his policies regarding Indiana's school voucher program and the Indiana House of Representatives attempt to pass right to work legislation, leading to the 2011 Indiana legislative walkouts.
During the legislature's last session under Daniels, he signed the right-to-work law. It was speculated that Daniels would be a candidate in the 2012 presidential election, but he chose not to run, he is the author of the best selling book Keeping the Republic: Saving America by Trusting Americans. Daniels was selected to be president of Purdue University after his term as governor ended on January 14, 2013. Mitchell Elias Daniels Jr. was born on April 7, 1949, in Monongahela, the son of Dorothy Mae and Mitchell Elias Daniels Sr. His father's parents were immigrants of Antiochian Greek Orthodox descent. Daniels has been honored by the Arab-American Institute with the 2011 Najeeb Halaby Award for Public Service, his mother's ancestry was English. Daniels spent his early childhood years in Pennsylvania and Georgia; the Daniels family moved to Indiana from Pennsylvania in 1959 when his father accepted a job at the Indianapolis headquarters of the pharmaceutical company Pittman-Moore. The 11-year-old Daniels was accustomed to the mountains, he at first disliked the flatland of central Indiana.
He was still in grade school at the time of the move and first attended Delaware Trail Elementary, Westlane Junior High School, North Central High School. In high school he was student body president. After graduation in 1967, Daniels was named one of Indiana's Presidential Scholars—the state's top male high school graduate that year—by President Lyndon B. Johnson. In 1971, Daniels earned a Bachelor's degree from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. While there, he was a member of the American Whig–Cliosophic Society, where he overlapped with future Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, a year below, he studied law at the Indiana McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis. After accepting a job with newly elected Senator Richard Lugar, he transferred to the Georgetown University Law Center, from which he earned a Juris Doctor. In 1970, while an undergraduate student at Princeton, a grand jury indicted Daniels for marijuana possession and for maintaining a common nuisance.
The charges were dropped and Daniels pleaded guilty to "a disorderly person charge" based on a confession that he had used marijuana. He paid a $350 fine. According to Daniels' roommate at the time, police obtained a warrant to search the room based on the activity of another student who used to live in the room; the roommate told the Daily Princetonian that "Unbeknownst to... was coming back there and using the room when we're not there and was involved with drugs much worse than pot." Daniels told The Daily Princetonian in 2011 that "justice was served," and has disclosed the arrest on job applications, spoken about the incident in columns in The Indianapolis Star and The Washington Post. In February 2013, Princeton honored Daniels with the Woodrow Wilson Award, which recognizes an alumnus whose career embodies the call to duty in Wilson's famous speech, "Princeton in the Nation's Service"; the award was presented during Alumni Day activities on February 23, 2013. Daniels had his first experience in politics while still a teenager when, in 1968, he worked on the unsuccessful campaign of fellow Hoosier and Princeton alumnus William Ruckelshaus, running for the U.
S. Senate against incumbent Democrat Birch Bayh. After the campaign, Ruckelshaus helped Da
Republican Party (United States)
The Republican Party referred to as the GOP, is one of the two major political parties in the United States. The GOP was founded in 1854 by opponents of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which had expanded slavery into U. S. territories. The party subscribed to classical liberalism and took ideological stands that were anti-slavery and pro-economic reform. Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican president in the history of the United States; the Party was dominant over the Democrats during the Third Party System and Fourth Party System. In 1912, Theodore Roosevelt formed the Progressive Party after being rejected by the GOP and ran unsuccessfully as a third-party presidential candidate calling for social reforms. After the 1912 election, many Roosevelt supporters left the Party, the Party underwent an ideological shift to the right; the liberal Republican element in the GOP was overwhelmed by a conservative surge begun by Barry Goldwater in 1964 that continued during the Reagan Era in the 1980s. After the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the party's core base shifted, with the Southern states becoming more reliably Republican in presidential politics and the Northeastern states becoming more reliably Democratic.
White voters identified with the Republican Party after the 1960s. Following the Supreme Court's 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade, the Republican Party made opposition to abortion a key plank of its national party platform and grew its support among evangelicals. By 2000, the Republican Party was aligned with Christian conservatism; the Party's core support since the 1990s comes chiefly from the South, the Great Plains, the Mountain States and rural areas in the North. The 21st century Republican Party ideology is American conservatism, which contrasts with the Democrats' liberal platform and progressive wing; the GOP supports lower taxes, free market capitalism, a strong national defense, gun rights and restrictions on labor unions. The GOP was committed to protectionism and tariffs from its founding until the 1930s when it was based in the industrial Northeast and Midwest, but has grown more supportive of free trade since 1952. In addition to advocating for conservative economic policies, the Republican Party is conservative.
Founded in the Northern states in 1854 by abolitionists, modernizers, ex-Whigs and ex-Free Soilers, the Republican Party became the principal opposition to the dominant Democratic Party and the popular Know Nothing Party. The party grew out of opposition to the Kansas–Nebraska Act, which repealed the Missouri Compromise and opened Kansas Territory and Nebraska Territory to slavery and future admission as slave states; the Northern Republicans saw the expansion of slavery as a great evil. The first public meeting of the general anti-Nebraska movement, at which the name Republican was suggested for a new anti-slavery party, was held on March 20, 1854 in a schoolhouse in Ripon, Wisconsin; the name was chosen to pay homage to Thomas Jefferson's Republican Party. The first official party convention was held on July 1854 in Jackson, Michigan. At the 1856 Republican National Convention, the party adopted a national platform emphasizing opposition to the expansion of slavery into U. S. territories. While Republican candidate John C.
Frémont lost the 1856 United States presidential election to James Buchanan, he did win 11 of the 16 northern states. The Republican Party first came to power in the elections of 1860 when it won control of both houses of Congress and its candidate, former congressman Abraham Lincoln, was elected President. In the election of 1864, it united with War Democrats to nominate Lincoln on the National Union Party ticket. Under Republican congressional leadership, the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution—which banned slavery in the United States—passed the Senate in 1864 and the House in 1865; the party's success created factionalism within the party in the 1870s. Those who felt that Reconstruction had been accomplished, was continued to promote the large-scale corruption tolerated by President Ulysses S. Grant, ran Horace Greeley for the presidency; the Stalwart faction defended Grant and the spoils system, whereas the Half-Breeds pushed for reform of the civil service. The Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act was passed in 1883.
The Republican Party supported hard money, high tariffs to promote economic growth, high wages and high profits, generous pensions for Union veterans, the annexation of Hawaii. The Republicans had strong support from pietistic Protestants, but they resisted demands for Prohibition; as the Northern postwar economy boomed with heavy and light industry, mines, fast-growing cities, prosperous agriculture, the Republicans took credit and promoted policies to sustain the fast growth. The GOP was dominant over the Democrats during the Third Party System. However, by 1890 the Republicans had agreed to the Sherman Antitrust Act and the Interstate Commerce Commission in response to complaints from owners of small businesses and farmers; the high McKinley Tariff of 1890 hurt the party and the Democrats swept to a landslide in the off-year elections defeating McKinley himself. The Democrats elected Grover Cleveland in 1884 and 1892; the election of William McKinley in 1896 was marked by a resurgence of Republican dominance that lasted until 1932.
McKinley promised that high tariffs would end the severe hardship caused by the Pa
2008 United States presidential election
The 2008 United States presidential election was the 56th quadrennial presidential election, held on Tuesday, November 4, 2008. The Democratic ticket of Barack Obama, the junior Senator from Illinois, Joe Biden, the senior Senator from Delaware, defeated the Republican ticket of John McCain, the senior Senator from Arizona, Sarah Palin, the Governor of Alaska. Obama became the first African American to be elected as president. Incumbent Republican President George W. Bush was ineligible to pursue a third term due to the term limits established by the 22nd Amendment; as neither Bush nor Vice President Dick Cheney sought the presidency, the 2008 election was the first election since 1952 in which neither major party's presidential nominee was the incumbent president or the incumbent vice president. McCain secured the Republican nomination by March 2008, defeating Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee, other challengers; the Democratic primaries were marked by a sharp contest between Obama and the initial front-runner, Senator Hillary Clinton.
Clinton's victory in the New Hampshire primary made her the first woman to win a major party's presidential primary. After a long primary season, Obama clinched the Democratic nomination in June 2008. Early campaigning focused on the Iraq War and Bush's unpopularity. McCain supported the war, as well as a troop surge that had begun in 2007, while Obama opposed the war. Bush endorsed McCain, but the two did not campaign together, Bush did not appear in person at the 2008 Republican National Convention. Obama campaigned on the theme that "Washington must change,"; the campaign was affected by the onset of a major financial crisis, which peaked in September 2008. McCain's decision to suspend his campaign during the height of the financial crisis backfired as voters viewed his response as erratic. Obama won a decisive victory over McCain, winning the Electoral College and the popular vote by a sizable margin, including states that had not voted for the Democratic presidential candidate since 1976 and 1964.
Obama received the largest share of the popular vote won by a Democrat since Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964; as of the 2016 presidential election Obama's total count of 69.5 million votes still stands as the largest tally won by a presidential candidate. Hillary Clinton, U. S. Senator from New York John Edwards, former U. S. Senator from North Carolina Bill Richardson, Governor of New Mexico Dennis Kucinich, U. S. Representative from Ohio Joe Biden, U. S. Senator from Delaware Mike Gravel, former U. S. Senator from Alaska Christopher Dodd, U. S. Senator from Connecticut Evan Bayh, U. S. Senator from Indiana Tom Vilsack, former Governor of Iowa Media speculation had begun immediately after the results of the 2004 presidential election were released. In the 2006 midterm elections, the Democrats regained majorities in both houses of the U. S. Congress. Early polls taken before anyone had announced a candidacy had shown Senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama as the most popular potential Democratic candidates.
The media speculated on several other candidates, including Al Gore, the runner-up in the 2000 election. Edwards was one of the first to formally announce his candidacy for the presidency, on December 28, 2006; this run would be his second attempt at the presidency. Clinton announced intentions to run in the Democratic primaries on January 20, 2007. Obama announced his candidacy on February 10 in his home state of Illinois. Early in the year, the support for Barack Obama started to increase in the polls, he passed Clinton for the top spot in Iowa. Obama's win was fueled by first time caucus-goers and Independents and showed voters viewed him as the "candidate of change." Iowa has since been viewed as the state that jump-started Obama's campaign and set him on track to win both the nomination and the presidency. After the Iowa caucus, Joe Biden and Christopher Dodd withdrew from the nomination contest. Obama became the new front runner in New Hampshire, when his poll numbers skyrocketed after his Iowa victory The Clinton campaign was struggling after a huge loss in Iowa and no strategy beyond the early primaries and caucuses.
According to The Vancouver Sun, Campaign strategists had "mapped a victory scenario that envisioned the former first lady wrapping up the Democratic presidential nomination by Super Tuesday on Feb. 5." In what is considered a turning point for her campaign, Clinton had a strong performance at the Saint Anselm College, ABC, Facebook debates several days before the New Hampshire primary as well as an emotional interview in a public broadcast live on TV. Clinton won that primary by 2% of the vote, contrary to the predictions of pollsters who had her trailing Obama for a few days up to the primary date. Clinton's win was the
2008 Washington gubernatorial election
The gubernatorial election in Washington, 2008 elected the Governor of Washington on November 4, 2008. With the emergence from the August 19 primary of Republican Dino Rossi and incumbent Democratic Governor Christine Gregoire, the 2008 election was a rematch between the candidates from the 2004 election; that election was the closest in Washington State history, with each receiving 49 percent of the vote and Rossi winning the first two of three counts. In contrast to the recounts and months of legal challenges in their previous contest, Dino Rossi conceded defeat in the election to Gregoire on November 5, earning 47 percent of the vote. Under the changes to election law made by the passage of Initiative 872, partisan contests are no longer tied to registered parties, but candidates are allowed to indicate an arbitrary "party preference" to appear next to their name on the primary and general election ballots. An extreme example of this occurred in the 40th District race for state senator, where candidate Timothy Stoddard indicated a preference for the "Salmon Yoga" party.
Republican candidate Dino Rossi listed his party preference as "G. O. P." instead of the traditional party name "Republican". Critics of Rossi contended that the choice of party name was an attempt to distance himself from any negative opinions associated with the Republican Party. Rossi's campaign argued that the difference was insignificant, saying voters are aware that the terms refer to the same party. However, an Elway Research poll taken in August 2008 found that over 25% of registered voters were not aware that the term "GOP" meant the Republican Party. On September 23, the Washington State Democrats, alleging that the latter is a misrepresentation of his true party affiliation, filed a lawsuit against the Secretary of State to force the state to list Rossi to on the general election ballot as a Republican instead of with the "GOP Party" label. A King County Superior Court judge dismissed the suit, saying nothing in state law made the choice of party name illegal, but he acknowledged the potential confusion.
Had the lawsuit succeeded, many counties would have had to reprint their ballots, the already-cast absentee votes of military personnel may have become invalid. The Washington primary election was held August 19, 2008. For the first time, Washington ran a top-two primary, eliminating the "pick a party" primary used since 2004. Unlike traditional primaries, wherein each party with more than one candidate is reduced to a single person to appear on the general election ballot, the system reduces the entire crop of candidates from all parties down to the top two candidates, resulting in no more than two candidates appearing on the general election ballot for a given position; as a result, candidates from all parties were running against each other. To allow for ideological identification, each candidate in a partisan race was allowed to indicate an arbitrary party preference. While the primary was held on August 19, 2008, some counties such as King County allow absentee ballots to be postmarked by that date in order to be valid.
As a result, the primary vote tally may not be certified until as late as September 9, to allow time for mailed-in ballots to arrive and be counted by the counties. As an increasing number of counties allow, encourage, or mandate mail-in ballots for voters within the county, the number of such ballots can be significant; the vote tally as of October 10 is as follows: Christine Gregoire and Dino Rossi were declared the winners of the primary and placed on the ballot for the November 4 election, which coincided with the national election. However, with all Washington counties either or predominantly voting via mail-in ballot, many votes were cast prior to that date. King County, the largest county in the state, the one which carried Gregoire to victory in 2004, sent out overseas absentee ballots on October 5, resident mail-in ballots on October 17. In Washington state, mail-in ballots only need to be postmarked, not received, by November 4, meaning that valid ballots will continue to be received and counted after that date.
For the 2008 election, counties had until November 26 to send results to the state, the Secretary of State had until December 4 to certify all state results. At an August 7 press conference held by the Seattle Police Officers Guild to declare its endorsement of Rossi, the Guild forcibly removed Kelly Akers, a Gregoire campaign staffer, filming the event, from the premises; the Rossi campaign reiterated a standing policy to prevent opposing campaigns from filming Rossi's appearances, to deny them the ability to take "attack footage." Rossi's campaign staff includes a cameraman tasked with filming Gregoire appearances. Five debates were held between the candidates in the general election. *The Spokane debate was taped in the morning to be aired at the indicated time. All other debates were aired live; the Gregoire campaign had sought a sixth debate in Tacoma, sponsored by the Tacoma News-Tribune. The Rossi campaign instead sought a sixth debate in Vancouver, Washington sponsored by The Columbian.
The local Camas-Washougal Rotary Club went so far as to reserve a venue for October 8. The campaigns could not agree on either event; the Gregoire campaign had set aside August 15 for a pre-primary radio debate with Rossi on Seattle NPR station KUOW-FM. Rossi declined giving Gregoire solo airtime; these are the gubernatorial election results as of 11/25/2008 10:45 PM PST. Gregoire declared victory after late evening returns were posted, with 42% of the statewide vote counted, showing her with a 52% lead over Rossi. By 10:30 PM PST all five major television networks had called the race for Gregoire; the Ross
Ruth Ann Minner
Ruth Ann Minner is an American politician and businesswoman from Milford, in Kent County, Delaware. She is a member of the Democratic Party who served in the Delaware General Assembly, as the 23rd Lieutenant Governor of Delaware, the 72nd Governor of Delaware from 2001 to 2009. Minner was born Ruth Ann Coverdale at Slaughter Neck in Cedar Creek Hundred, Sussex County, near Milford. While growing up, she left high school at age 16 to help support her family. Subsequently, she married Frank Ingram with whom she had three children: Frank Jr. Wayne and Gary; when she was 32 her husband died of a heart attack, leaving her a single mother with three children. She earned her GED in 1968 and attended Delaware Technical and Community College, while working two jobs to support the family. In 1969 she married Roger Minner and together they operated a family towing business, the Roger Minner Wrecker Service. Roger Minner died of cancer in 1991. Ruth Ann Minner began her political career as a clerk in the Delaware House of Representatives and as a receptionist in the office of Governor Sherman W. Tribbitt.
In 1974 she was elected to the State House as a member of the "Watergate Class," a group of newly elected legislators from both parties, who came into office on a "good government" mission and a strong sense of their ability to make significant improvements. Minner rose to become Delaware's most powerful female politician, but she did it in a conventional way, representing a rural, small town constituency, building relationships and expertise by working in the legislative process over many years, she served four terms in the State House, from the 1975/1976 session through the 1981/82 session. At various times she served as chair of the powerful Bond Bill Committee, she chaired the Rules Committee. In that role she led several successful reforming efforts, including a change that removed the rule allowing Representatives to table roll call votes; this rule was used to help schedule votes when only the right combinations of Representatives were on the floor. In 1982 Minner was elected to the Delaware Senate and served there from the 1983/1984 session through the 1991/1992 session.
While in the State Senate Minner was noted for her sponsorship of the Delaware Land and Water Conservation Act, a key piece of legislation that protected 30,000 acres of land and created the Delaware Open Space Council. To fund the activities of this Council the General Assembly created the "Twenty-First Century Fund" from the proceeds of a multimillion-dollar corporate securities lawsuit. Elected Lieutenant Governor in 1992, she served two terms from January 19, 1993 to January 3, 2001. While in that position she chaired the Minner Commission on Government Reorganization and Effectiveness. Minner was elected Governor of Delaware in 2000, she had secured the Democratic nomination after her long years in the General Assembly, as Lieutenant Governor and her demonstrated ability to run a campaign by her large statewide victory margins in 1992 and 1996. Her opponent in 2000 was Republican John M. Burris, who had survived a bitter September primary contest with retired judge William Swain Lee. Minner won easily.
As the incumbent Lieutenant Governor, Minner took office upon the resignation of Governor Thomas R. Carper on January 3, 2001. Upon completing the unexpired term, Minner began her first full term on January 16, 2001, she served as the first female President of the Council of State Governments in 2005. Minner was Delaware's fourth consecutive two term governor and continued the business oriented policies and bipartisan, consensus style begun by her Republican predecessor, Pierre S. du Pont, IV. She was described as a "middle-of-the-road politician, with conservative fiscal views but progressive social policies." As governor, she worked to decrease cancer rates in Delaware, saying she "...was determined to reduce Delaware's high cancer rates. A task force...has created a road map of specific steps necessary... and I am implementing that plan. Result has been... the Clean Indoor Air Act, which has reduced cancerous pollutants in Delaware's restaurants and casinos by more than 90 percent." Regarding education, she said, "While it might be popular, it is not demanding to set standards that all students can meet right away....
Once high standards have been set, the key is to give our students and parents the tools to continuously improve." She supported "giving local schools control of new education dollars... expanding after-school and weekend class programs... and supports reading and math specialists." She opposed vouchers. "In 2005, she signed legislation creating the Student Excellence Equals Degree Scholarship program, which enables students who keep their grades up and stay out of trouble to go to college for free in the state of Delaware. She expanded her education specialist program, which has placed reading specialists in every elementary school, to include a plan to place math specialists in every Delaware middle school."On other issues she was "a firm supporter of a measure that would add sexual orientation to the list of characteristics in the Delaware code... that are not allowed to be used as basis for discrimination." She opposed "new gun control legislation," but supported "legislation requiring mandatory trigger locks and gun safety courses in schools."
And she said "I do not support additional sites or kinds of gambling... the state should not become any more reliant on this form of revenue." In her second inaugural address in January 2005, Minner concluded with this description of her philosophy: "for Ruth Ann Minner, farmer and daughter of a sharecropper, it is this: Work hard. Do the right thin
2008 Missouri gubernatorial election
The Missouri gubernatorial election, 2008 was an election for the Governor of Missouri, held on November 4, 2008. The incumbent governor, Matt Blunt, who had decided to retire, narrowly won the 2004 election by beating state auditor Claire McCaskill 51%-48%, would have faced a strong challenger in 2008. On January 22, 2008, Governor Blunt unexpectedly announced that he would not seek re-election because he had "achieved everything I set out to accomplish, more... Because I feel we have changed what I wanted to change in the first term, there is not the same sense of mission for a second." A November 2007 poll conducted by SurveyUSA showed Blunt with a 44% approval rating. His approval among Republicans polled was 68%, but his rating among Democrats was only 23%. On November 10, 2005, Democrat Jay Nixon filed the necessary paperwork with the Missouri Ethics Commission to launch a 2008 campaign for governor; the gubernatorial and other statewide office primaries were held August 5, 2008. CQ Politics rates the race as'Leans Democratic'.
March 25, 2008 – Filing deadline for Democrats and Libertarians August 5, 2008 – Primary elections August 19, 2008 – Filing deadline for other third parties and Independents November 4, 2008 – General election. Nixon on election night, won even though fellow Democrat, then-senator Barack Obama came within only 4,000 some votes of winning the state. Nixon was able to perform well in rural parts of the state; when combined with populated, strong Democratic areas like St. Louis and Kansas City, Hulshof didn't have a chance to come back. Nixon was declared the winner right. Hulshof conceded defeat at 9:02 P. M. Central Time. U. S. gubernatorial elections, 2008 Missouri gubernatorial election, 2004 Missouri Lieutenant gubernatorial election, 2008 Elections from the Missouri Secretary of State Missouri Governor candidates at Project Vote Smart Missouri Governor race from OurCampaigns.com Missouri Governor race from 2008 Race Tracker Campaign contributions from Follow the Money Hulshof vs Nixon graph of collected polls from Pollster.com Official campaign websites Jay Nixon, Democratic candidate Kenny Hulshof, Republican candidate Sarah Steelman, Republican candidate Andy Finkenstadt, Libertarian candidate
Matthew Roy Blunt is an American former naval officer and politician who served as the 54th Governor of Missouri from 2005 to 2009. Before his election as governor, Blunt served ten years in the United States Navy, was elected to serve in the Missouri General Assembly in 1998, as Missouri's Secretary of State in 2000, he grew up in a political family and his father Roy Blunt served in a variety of political offices. A Republican, Matt Blunt was elected governor on November 2, 2004, carrying 101 of Missouri's 114 counties. At age 33, he became the second-youngest person elected to that office after Kit Bond. Blunt did not seek a second term as governor, announcing his decision on January 22, 2008, in an address to Missourians, which surprised many supporters and staff. After working as a consultant, Blunt was hired as the president of the American Automotive Policy Council in 2011, representing the auto lobby in Washington, D. C. Born in 1970 in Greene County, Blunt is the son of politician Roy Blunt and his first wife Roseann Ray Blunt.
The senior Blunt was first elected to office in 1984 as Secretary of State for Missouri. He was elected as US Representative in 1997 and as U. S. Senator in 2010. After graduating from Jefferson City High School in Jefferson City, Matt Blunt was accepted into the United States Naval Academy, where he received a bachelor's degree in history in 1993. Blunt and his wife Melanie were married in May 1997; the couple has two sons, William Branch Blunt, born on March 9, 2005, Brooks Anderson Blunt, born on January 1, 2010. Blunt is a member of the State Historical Society of Missouri, the American Legion, the Missouri Farm Bureau; as an officer in the United States Navy, Blunt served as an engineering officer aboard the USS Jack Williams and as the navigator and administrative officer on the destroyer USS Peterson. His active duty service included participation in Operation Support Democracy, involving the United Nations blockade of Haiti, missions to interdict drug traffic off the South American coast, on duties involved in the interdiction of Cuban migrants in 1994.
During his Naval career, Blunt received numerous commendations, including four Navy and Marine Corps Achievement medals. He entered the Navy Reserve. Following the September 11, 2001 attacks, Blunt was called back into active naval service, after he had been elected to the office of Secretary of State for Missouri, he completed a six-month tour of duty in Great Britain during Operation Enduring Freedom, during which time he continued to work full-time for the state as well. He was a Lieutenant Commander in the Navy Reserve. In 1998, Blunt was elected as a Republican to the Missouri House of Representatives to represent the 139th legislative district for a two-year term. In 2000, he was elected Missouri Secretary of State. Blunt was the only Republican elected to statewide office in Missouri in 2000. In the general election on November 7, 2000, Blunt defeated Democratic opponent Steve Gaw with 51.4% of the vote, to Gaw's 45.1%. Blunt was 29 on election day, 30 at the time he assumed office, making him the youngest to win statewide office in Missouri.
His father had been elected to the same office at age 34. As Secretary of State, Blunt promoted a state election reform bill in 2002, which won support of the Republican-controlled Senate and Democratic House. In 2004, Blunt required all electronic voting machines purchased by the state to produce a voter-verified paper ballot. Blunt faced only token opposition in the Republican primary. In the general election, he faced Missouri State Auditor Claire McCaskill, who had defeated incumbent Governor Bob Holden in the Democratic primary; the first of two debates between Blunt and McCaskill was held on 18 October where McCaskill compared her experience to Blunt's inexperience. In the two debates Blunt described himself as bringing change to Missouri and was assisted by President George W. Bush during the campaign. McCaskill kept her distance from Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry due to Bush's lead in Missouri. In the end Blunt narrowly defeated McCaskill with surveys showing his conservative stance on social issues and the strong showing of President Bush in Missouri helped him to victory.
Blunt obtained strong leads in the rural parts of the state, sufficient to overcome McCaskill's leads in St. Louis and Jackson County. Blunt defeated McCaskill by 1,382,419 votes to 1,301,442 and thus became Missouri's second-youngest Governor; when Blunt took office on January 10, 2005, it was the first time in Missouri since 1921 that a Republican held the Governor's office with Republican majorities in both houses of the State Legislature. Blunt and his allies in the Missouri General Assembly moved to enact legislation that they said would create a positive business climate in the state and result in job growth. With legislative support, Blunt claimed in 2009 that he had enacted all of his policy proposals. Among the legislation passed were tort reform measures that overhauled the state's legal system, changes in the state's workers compensation laws. Blunt's first year in office was difficult, he was criticized by both the right and the left. In February 2006, a poll conducted by SurveyUSA showed him with a 33% job approval rating, the fifth lowest of any governor in the nation.
His approval among Republicans polled was 62%, but his rating among Democrats was