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Suzanne Bonamici

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Suzanne Bonamici
Suzanne Bonamici.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Oregon's 1st district
Assumed office
January 31, 2012
Preceded byDavid Wu
Member of the Oregon Senate
from the 17th district
In office
May 19, 2008 – November 21, 2011
Preceded byBrad Avakian
Succeeded byElizabeth Steiner Hayward
Member of the Oregon House of Representatives
from the 34th district
In office
January 2, 2007 – May 19, 2008
Preceded byBrad Avakian
Succeeded byChris Harker
Personal details
Suzanne Marie Bonamici

(1954-10-14) October 14, 1954 (age 68)
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
SpouseMichael Simon
RelativesNeil Simon (through marriage)
EducationLane Community College
University of Oregon (BA, JD)
WebsiteHouse website

Suzanne Marie Bonamici (/ˌbɒnəˈmi/ BONN-ə-MEE-chee; born October 14, 1954) is an American lawyer and politician serving as the U.S. representative for Oregon's 1st congressional district, a seat she was first elected to in a 2012 special election. The district includes most of Portland west of the Willamette River, as well as all of Yamhill, Columbia, Clatsop, and Washington counties.

A Democrat, Bonamici represented the 17th district in the Oregon State Senate from 2008 to 2011.[1] She was first elected to the Oregon House of Representatives in 2006.

Early life, education, and legal career

Bonamici was born in Detroit and raised in a small Michigan town. She earned an associate degree from Lane Community College in 1978, and a bachelor's degree in 1980 and J.D. in 1983, both from the University of Oregon.[2] After college, she became a legal assistant at Lane County Legal Aid in Eugene. After law school, she became a consumer protection attorney for the Federal Trade Commission in the nation's capital. She went into private practice in Portland and represented small businesses.[3]

Oregon legislature


In 2006, incumbent Democratic State Representative Brad Avakian decided to retire to run for the Oregon Senate. Bonamici ran for the open seat in Oregon's 34th House district and defeated Republican Joan Draper, 62%-36%.[4]

On April 30, 2008, commissioners from Washington and Multnomah Counties appointed Bonamici to represent Oregon's 17th Senate district. The seat became vacant when Avakian was appointed Commissioner of the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries.[5] She was sworn in on May 19, 2008.

Bonamici was unopposed in the November 2008 special election for the balance of Avakian's four-year term, and was elected with 97% of the vote.[6] In 2010, she was reelected with 64% of the vote.[7]

U.S. House of Representatives


Special election
Bonamici during the 112th Congress
Bonamici during the 112th Congress

In early 2011, Bonamici was mentioned as a possible successor to Representative David Wu after The Oregonian and Willamette Week reported that Wu exhibited odd behavior and clashed with his staff amid apparent mental illness during the 2010 election cycle.[8] After Wu resigned from Congress, Bonamici announced her candidacy for the special election to replace him,[9] touting endorsements from former Governor Barbara Roberts, former Congresswoman Elizabeth Furse, and incumbent Oregon Attorney General John Kroger, among others.[10]

On November 8, 2011, Bonamici won the Democratic Party of Oregon's nomination, with a majority of the vote in every county in the district and 66% of the vote overall, a 44-point margin over second-place finisher Brad Avakian. She defeated Republican nominee Rob Cornilles in the January 31, 2012, special election[11] by a 14-point margin.[12]

Before her election to Congress, Bonamici resigned from the Oregon Senate on November 21,[13] and was replaced by Elizabeth Steiner Hayward in December.[14]

2012 regular election

In November 2012, Bonamici was reelected to her first full term with over 60% of the vote.[15]


Bonamici with Oregon Secretary of State Dennis Richardson
Bonamici with Oregon Secretary of State Dennis Richardson

On July 31, 2014, Bonamici introduced the Tsunami Warning, Education, and Research Act of 2014 (H.R. 5309; 113th Congress) into the House.[16] The bill would authorize the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to spend $27 million a year for three years on their ongoing tsunami warning and research programs.[17]

Bonamici said, "the coastlines of the United States already play an integral role in the economic prosperity of this country and we must strengthen their preparedness and resiliency so they can continue to play that role going forward."[17] She added that the bill "will improve the country's understanding of the threat posed by tsunami events" because it will "improve forecasting and notification systems, support local community outreach and preparedness and response plans, and develop supportive technologies."[18]

In January 2023, Bonamici was one of 13 cosponsors of an amendment to the Constitution of the United States extending the right to vote to citizens sixteen years of age or older.[19]

Committee assignments

Caucuses memberships

Electoral history

Oregon's 1st congressional district: Results 2012–2022[24][25][26]
Year Democratic Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct
2012 (Special) Suzanne Bonamici 113,404 53.8% Rob Cornilles 83,396 39.6% Steve Reynolds Progressive 6,798 3.2% James Foster Libertarian 6,618 3.1% Write-ins 547 0.3%
2012 197,845 59.6% Delinda Morgan 109,699 33.0% 15,009 4.5% * Bob Ekstrom Constitution 8,918 2.7% 509 0.2%
2014 160,038 57.3% Jason Yates 96,245 34.5% James Foster Libertarian 11,213 4.0% Steve Reynolds Pacific Green 11,163 4.0% 597 0.2%
2016 225,391 59.6% Brian Heinrich 139,756 37.0% Kyle Sheahan 12,257 3.2% Write-ins 691 0.2%
2018 231,198 63.6% John Verbeek 116,446 32.1% Drew Layda 15,121 4.2% 484 0.1%
2020 297,071 64.6% Christopher Christensen 161,928 35.2% Write-ins 900 0.2%
2022 210,682 67.9% Christopher Mann 99,042 31.9% Write-ins 519 0.2%

* In the 2012 election, Steve Reynolds was co-nominated by the Libertarian and Pacific Green parties.[27]

Personal life

Bonamici is married to Michael H. Simon, a federal judge.[28] They have two children. Bonamici was raised Episcopalian and Unitarian, and subsequently converted to Judaism.[29][30] She attends Congregation Beth Israel with her husband (who was born Jewish), and their children.[31][32]

See also


  1. ^ "Suzanne Bonamici makes legislative resignation official". The Oregonian. November 21, 2011.
  2. ^ "Legislator Information Database". Oklahoma Legislature. Retrieved 2021-01-21.
  3. ^ "About Suzanne | Suzanne Bonamici for Congress". 2012-01-31. Retrieved 2016-11-11.
  4. ^ "OR State House 34 Race - Nov 07, 2006". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2016-11-11.
  5. ^ "Bonamici named to replace Avakian in state Senate". Beaverton Valley Times. May 1, 2008.
  6. ^ "OR State Senate 17 - Special Election Race - Nov 04, 2008". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2016-11-11.
  7. ^ "OR State Senate 17 Race - Nov 02, 2010". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2016-11-11.
  8. ^ "Oregon Democratic leaders say they hope Wu gets help, put off talk of his political future". The Oregonian. OregonLive. February 19, 2011. Retrieved March 2, 2011.
  9. ^ "Bonamici announces bid for Wu's seat in Congress". Statesman Journal. Retrieved August 6, 2011.
  10. ^ "Endorsements". Bonamici for Congress. Retrieved August 6, 2011.
  11. ^ "Oregon - County Vote Results". Associated Press. November 9, 2011. Retrieved November 9, 2011.
  12. ^ "January 31, 2012, Special Election Abstracts of Votes Representative in Congress, 1st District Official Results". Oregon Secretary of State. Retrieved February 1, 2012.
  13. ^ "Physician to sit in state seat". The Hillsboro Argus. December 22, 2011. Retrieved December 22, 2011.
  14. ^ Mapes, Jeff (December 21, 2011). "A Washington County commissioner at sea casts decisive vote to fill Oregon Senate seat". The Oregonian. Retrieved December 22, 2011.
  15. ^ Brown, Kate. "2012 election results". OR STATE SEC OF STATE. Retrieved November 11, 2016.
  16. ^ "H.R. 5309 - All Actions". United States Congress. 9 September 2014. Retrieved September 10, 2014.
  17. ^ a b Marcos, Cristina (September 8, 2014). "House passes bill to authorize tsunami forecasting programs". The Hill. Retrieved September 10, 2014.
  18. ^ "Representative Bonamici Introduces Bipartisan Tsunami Warning Bill". Safer Coastlines. Retrieved September 10, 2014.
  19. ^ "H.J.Res.16 - Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States extending the right to vote to citizens sixteen years of age or older". Retrieved 2023-01-24.
  20. ^ "Caucus Members". Congressional Progressive Caucus. Archived from the original on 22 October 2017. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  21. ^ "Membership". Congressional Arts Caucus. Retrieved 13 March 2018.
  22. ^ "Members". Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus. Retrieved 17 May 2018.
  23. ^ "90 Current Climate Solutions Caucus Members". Citizen´s Climate Lobby. Retrieved 20 October 2018.
  24. ^ "January 31, 2012, Special Election Official Results". Oregon Secretary of State. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  25. ^ "Election Statistics, 1920 to Present". History, Art and Archives United States House of Representatives. United States House of Representatives Office of the Historian. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  26. ^ "Official Results of November General" (PDF). Oregon Secretary of State.
  27. ^ "Voters' Pamphlet, Oregon General Election, November 6, 2012". Oregon Secretary of State. Retrieved March 25, 2019.
  28. ^ Duin, Steve (August 6, 2011). "In the wake of David Wu case, accusations fly in Oregon's First District". The Oregonian. Retrieved August 9, 2011.
  29. ^ Kampeas, Ron (16 October 2018). "A guide to the Jewish Democratic House candidates in the 2018 midterm elections". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. Retrieved 14 March 2022.
  30. ^ Kampeas, Ron. Twitter {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  31. ^ "Suzanne Bonamici". The Oregonian. Oregon Special Election voter guide. Retrieved January 23, 2012.
  32. ^ (PDF) {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links

Oregon House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the Oregon House of Representatives
from the 34th district

Succeeded by
Oregon Senate
Preceded by Member of the Oregon Senate
from the 17th district

Succeeded by
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Oregon's 1st congressional district

U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by United States representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
This page was last edited on 1 March 2023, at 02:34
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