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Michael Dean Crapo (/ˈkrp/ KRAY-poh; born May 20, 1951) is an American politician serving as the senior United States senator from Idaho, a seat he was first elected to in 1998. A Republican, he previously served as the U.S. Representative for Idaho's 2nd congressional district from 1993 to 1999.

Mike Crapo
Mike Crapo Official Photo 110th Congress.jpg
United States Senator
from Idaho
Assumed office
January 3, 1999
Serving with Jim Risch
Preceded byDirk Kempthorne
Chair of the Senate Banking Committee
Assumed office
January 3, 2017
Preceded byRichard Shelby
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Idaho's 2nd district
In office
January 3, 1993 – January 3, 1999
Preceded byRichard H. Stallings
Succeeded byMike Simpson
37th President pro tempore of the Idaho Senate
In office
Preceded byJim Risch
Succeeded byJerry Twiggs
Member of the Idaho Senate
from the 32nd district
In office
December 1, 1984 – December 1, 1992
Succeeded byMel Richardson
Personal details
Michael Dean Crapo

(1951-05-20) May 20, 1951 (age 68)
Idaho Falls, Idaho, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Susan Hasleton (m. 1974)
EducationBrigham Young University (BA)
Harvard University (JD)
WebsiteSenate website

Born in Idaho Falls, Crapo is a graduate of Brigham Young University and Harvard Law School. He practiced law in his home city throughout the 1980s, while also maintaining an active role in local Republican politics. His brother Terry Crapo was majority leader in the Idaho House of Representatives from 1968 to 1972 and an influential political figure until his death from leukemia in 1982. After his brother's death, Crapo successfully ran for the Idaho Senate in 1984. Crapo served as Senate President pro tempore from 1988 to 1992.

Crapo was elected to an open seat in Congress in 1992, representing Idaho's 2nd congressional district in the United States House of Representatives. After three terms in the House, he ran for the open seat in the U.S. Senate in 1998 when Dirk Kempthorne vacated it to run for Idaho Governor. Crapo was elected with 70% of the vote, and became the first Mormon to represent Idaho in the United States Senate.[1] In the 2004 election, he won 99% of the vote against his only opponent, write-in Democratic candidate Scott McClure. He was reelected again in 2010 with 71% of the vote, and again in 2016 with 66% of the vote.

Early life and educationEdit

Crapo was born in Idaho Falls, Idaho, the son of Melba (née Olsen) and George Lavelle Crapo. His brother Terry was 12 years older.[2] He is distantly related to Henry Howland Crapo, who served as Governor of Michigan from 1865 to 1869, and William Crapo Durant, Henry's grandson, who founded General Motors. He graduated from Idaho Falls High School in 1969. He earned a B.A. in political science from Brigham Young University in 1973 and a J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1977.

Early political careerEdit

Crapo in 1993

After graduating from law school, Crapo served for one year as a law clerk to Judge James M. Carter at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. He then returned to Idaho to practice as a lawyer, joining his brother's law firm of Holden Kidwell Hahn & Crapo in Idaho Falls. In the 1980s, he became active in the Republican Party's campaigns for seats in the state legislature. His brother Terry Crapo served in Idaho House of Representatives for four years as majority leader (1968 to 1972) and was considered a rising star in Idaho politics.[3] Following his brother Terry's death from leukemia in 1982, Mike ran for an open seat in the Idaho Senate. He was elected to the State Senate in 1984, where he served until 1992. In 1988, Senate President pro tempore Jim Risch unexpectedly lost reelection to the Idaho Senate, and Crapo was elected by his colleagues to the president's position. He served as senate president pro tempore from 1988 to 1992.

On January 27, 1989 he served as acting governor of Idaho for 12 hours. Governor Cecil D. Andrus was out of the state testifying before Congress, and then-Lieutenant Governor Butch Otter was out of the state on business for his employer Simplot. Due to laws of succession, the president pro tempore is next in line. Andrus, a Democrat, left Crapo a note saying, "Don't do anything I wouldn't do. ... P.S. The chair is comfortable, isn't it?" [4]

Crapo was elected to Congress in 1992, representing Idaho's 2nd congressional district in the United States House of Representatives. He was elected to the House for a total of three terms from 1993 until 1999. He ran and won election to the U.S. Senate in 1998.

U.S. SenateEdit


Crapo was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1998, gaining the seat of Republican Dirk Kempthorne, who stepped down to run successfully for governor. In his Senate bid, as in his House campaigns, Crapo's campaign made signs that had a macron placed over the "a" in his name (Crāpo) to indicate its correct pronunciation ("Cray-poe").

He was re-elected in 2004 with 99.2% of the vote, with the other .8% going to a write-in candidate, Democrat Scott McClure.[5]

In November 2010, Crapo was re-elected to a third term with 71% of the vote, defeating Democratic Party challenger P. Tom Sullivan and Constitution Party candidate Randy Bergquist.

In November 2016, Crapo was re-elected to a fourth term with 66% of the vote, defeating Democratic Party challenger Jerry Sturgill and Constitution Party candidate Ray Writz. In October 2016, after the Donald Trump and Billy Bush recording came to light, Crapo said he would not be voting for the Republican presidential nominee.[6] He later reversed this decision and supported candidate Trump.[7]


In the 111th Congress, Crapo served on the following Senate committees: Banking, Housing and Urban Development; Budget; Environment and Public Works; Indian Affairs; and Finance. He co-chairs the Senate Nuclear Caucus, the Canada-U.S. Inter-parliamentary Group (IPG); the COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) Caucus, which he founded; and the Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus.

Crapo became the state's senior senator when the 111th United States Congress convened on January 3, 2009, succeeding Larry Craig, who decided not to seek re-election. At the convening of the 112th United States Congress, Crapo is ranked 39th in seniority in the Senate.

He opposed President Barack Obama's health reform legislation, voted against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in December 2009,[8] and again voted against the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010.[9]

In April 2013, Crapo was one of forty-six senators to vote against the passing of a bill which would have expanded background checks for all gun buyers. He voted with 40 Republicans and 5 Democrats to stop the passage of the bill. The New York Times had predicted a 0% chance of Crapo voting for the bill.[10]

The New York Times noted that Crapo became "something of a hero among advocates of bipartisanship" for his involvement in the "Gang of Six".[11]

His view on senatorial responsibilities for Supreme Court nominees has evolved. Regarding President George Bush's 2006 nomination of Samuel Alito, Crapo said in a press release, "All of the President's nominees deserve up-and-down votes and not efforts to obstruct judicial nominees for political purposes. Judges are not politicians, and hopefully, Judge Alito's nomination will put an end to the politics which have crept into the nomination process."[12] But, in contrast in 2016, his press release regarding President Obama's nomination of Merrick Garland to replace the late Antonin Scalia said,

The Constitution gives the President the right to make nominations to the Supreme Court, with the advice and consent of the Senate. As part of its role in this process, the Senate may, at its discretion, withhold consent. The next Supreme Court justice will make decisions that affect every American and shape our nation's legal landscape for decades. Therefore, the current Supreme Court vacancy should be filled by an individual nominated by the next President of the United States.[13]

In 2017, Crapo was one of 22 senators to sign a letter[14] to President Donald Trump urging the President to have the United States withdraw from the Paris Agreement.

Committee assignmentsEdit

Caucus membershipsEdit

  • International Conservation Caucus
  • Senate Diabetes Caucus
  • Senate Nuclear Cleanup Caucus (co-chair)
  • Senate Renewables and Energy Efficiency Caucus (co-chair)
  • Sportsmen's Caucus (co-chair)
  • Western Water Caucus
  • Zero Capital Gains Tax Caucus

Political positionsEdit

Crapo with Brigadier General Carmelo Burgio of Carabinieri in Afghanistan, 2010.


Crapo is pro-life. In 1998, he supported a bill that made it illegal for minors to cross state lines to get abortions in order to avoid parental consent laws.[15] In 2009, he voted to restrict UN funding for population control policies.[16]

Gun lawEdit

In 2012, Crapo stated that he disagreed that more gun control regulations would curb violence in the United States. He also stated that he supported efforts to improve mental health access rather than more gun laws.[17]

As of 2013, Crapo had an "A+" rating from the National Rifle Association (NRA) for his positive voting record on causes supported by the NRA. That same year, Crapo joined 12 other Senators stating he would filibuster any attempts by Democrats to introduce additional gun control regulations in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.[18] Additionally, Crapo supported legislation to make open carry legal in National Parks.[19]

In January 2017, the NRA praised Crapo for introducing the Hearing Protection Act, which would make access to gun silencers easier.[20]

In response to the 2017 Las Vegas shooting, Crapo called for "solidarity" and praised first responders. Additionally, he stated "May we unite in the fight against evil with an ever-vigilant drive toward peace."[21] The Hearing Protection Act bill was tabled in wake of the shooting.[22]

Personal lifeEdit

Crapo married Susan Diane Hasleton in June 1974, and the couple have five children. He is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.[23]

Crapo was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1999 and underwent a radical prostatectomy in January 2000. He had a full recovery and was declared cancer-free at that time. He had a recurrence in 2005 of prostate cancer, and he underwent a series of radiation treatments. He has become active in advocating early detection tests for cancer and other treatable diseases. Crapo has also pushed to create a federal Office of Men's Health.[24]

Crapo was arrested on December 23, 2012, for DUI after running a red light in Alexandria, Virginia, at around 12:45 am EST. He failed field sobriety tests, registering a blood alcohol content of 0.11 percent.[25][26] Hours after his arrest, Crapo issued a public apology for his behavior.[27] Various Idaho media outlets were critical of Crapo's arrest, particularly in light of the temperance beliefs of his religion.[28][29]

On January 4, 2013, Crapo pleaded guilty to a drunk driving charge and received the standard punishment for a first-time offender in Virginia: $250 fine and court costs, one-year suspension of his driver's license, and court-ordered alcohol education and awareness classes. He successfully completed all. Following his court appearance, Crapo held a news conference outside the Alexandria courthouse, again apologizing and providing a more complete explanation regarding his actions as well as his intention to regain the trust of Idahoans.[30]

Crapo is an Eagle Scout, awarded in 1966. He received the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award (DESA) in 2000.

Electoral historyEdit

Republican primary results[31]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Mike Crapo 110,205 87.27%
Republican Matt Lambert 16,075 12.73%
Total votes 126,280 100.00%
General election results[32]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Mike Crapo 262,966 69.54% +13.01%
Democratic Bill Mauk 107,375 28.39% -15.08%
Natural Law George J. Mansfeld 7,833 2.07%
Majority 155,591 41.14% +28.10%
Turnout 378,174
Republican hold Swing
Republican Party primary results[33]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Mike Crapo (Incumbent) 118,286 100.00%
Total votes 118,286 100.00%
United States Senate election in Idaho, 2004[34]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Mike Crapo (Incumbent) 499,796 99.18% +29.64%
Democratic Scott F. McClure (write-in) 4,136 0.82%
Majority 495,660 98.36% +57.22%
Total votes 503,932 100.0% +125,578
Republican hold
Republican Primary results [35]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Mike Crapo (Incumbent) 127,332 79.3%
Republican Claude "Skip" Davis 33,150 20.7%
Total votes 160,482 100.0%
United States Senate election in Idaho, 2010[36]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Michael Crapo (Incumbent) 319,953 71.19% -27.99%
Democratic Tom Sullivan 112,057 24.93% N/A
Constitution Randy Bergquist 17,429 3.88% N/A
Majority 207,896 46.26%
Total votes 449,439 100.00%
Republican hold Swing
Republican primary results[37]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Mike Crapo(Incumbent) 119,633 100.00%
Total votes 119,633 100.00%
United States Senate election in Idaho, 2016 [38]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Mike Crapo (incumbent) 449,017 66.13% -5.06%
Democratic Jerry Sturgill 188,249 27.73% +2.80%
Constitution Ray J. Writz 41,677 6.14% +2.26%
Total votes 678,943 100.0% N/A
Republican hold


  1. ^ "Mormon Has Good Chance At Senate Seat Republican Rep. Crapo Would Be First Lds Member From Idaho To Win". Retrieved 2017-04-18.
  2. ^ "1".
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "Lewiston Morning Tribune - Google News Archive Search".
  5. ^ "2004 General Results statewide". Retrieved 2017-04-12.
  6. ^ Scott, Eugene (October 8, 2016). "Crapo, Ayotte pull support for Trump". CNN. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
  7. ^ KIM, SEUNG MIN (October 24, 2016). "Crapo ditches Trump un-endorsement". Politico. Retrieved 4 September 2018.
  8. ^ "U.S. Senate: U.S. Senate Roll Call Votes 111th Congress - 1st Session".
  9. ^ "U.S. Senate: Legislation & Records". Retrieved 2010-08-29.
  10. ^ Silver, Nate (April 18, 2013). "Modeling the Senate's Vote on Gun Control". The New York Times.
  11. ^ Weisman, Jonathan (20 July 2012). "Tax Loopholes Block Efforts to Close Gaping U.S. Deficit". New York Times. Retrieved 7 November 2014.
  12. ^ [2]
  13. ^ "Crapo Statement on Supreme Court Nominee - U.S. Senator Mike Crapo of Idaho".
  14. ^ Inhofe, James. "Senator". Retrieved 7 June 2017.
  15. ^ Wickline, Michael R. "Craig, Crapo back abortion travel ban; Measure would penalize those who take minors out of state for procedure". The Lewiston Tribune. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  16. ^ "Michael Crapo on Abortion". Retrieved 2019-03-20.
  17. ^ Barnhill, Frankie. "Idaho Senator Says Gun Control Won't Resolve Culture Of Violence". Boise State Public Radio. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  18. ^ Pilkington, Ed; Yuhas, Alan (9 April 2013). "Meet the 13 Republican senators vowing to block a gun control law". The Guardian. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  19. ^ Stuckey, Mike (24 July 2008). "Showdown over packing heat in national parks". MSNBC. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  20. ^ "NRA Applauds Senator Crapo on Introduction of Hearing Protection Act". NRA-ILA. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  21. ^ Price, Mike (2 October 2017). "Idaho lawmakers release statements on Las Vegas shooting | East Idaho News". East Idaho News. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  22. ^ Johnson, Dean. "Debate over gun control reignites". KTVB. Retrieved 4 October 2017.
  23. ^ "Mike Crapo Bio". Archived from the original on 31 December 2012. Retrieved 24 December 2012.
  24. ^ "Sen. Mike Crapo". National Journal Almanac. Retrieved 15 August 2014.
  25. ^ "DUI charge: Jan. 4 court date for Idaho Sen. Crapo". Seattle PI. Retrieved 24 December 2012.
  26. ^ "Sen. Michael Crapo arrested on DUI in Virginia". Political Eye. CBS News. Retrieved 24 December 2012.
  27. ^ "Mike Crapo Drunk Driving", Politico
  28. ^ "U.S. senator Mike Crapo pleads guilty to DWI charge". Retrieved 4 January 2013.
  29. ^ "Sen. Crapo's DUI bust is latest Idaho politician scandal". Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
  30. ^ "Crapo apologizes after DUI arrest". Retrieved 2016-08-12.
  31. ^
  32. ^
  33. ^
  34. ^
  35. ^ "Idaho US Senate Primary Results". Associated Press. May 25, 2010. Retrieved May 25, 2010.
  36. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on September 22, 2012. Retrieved October 6, 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  37. ^ "Official Primary Election Statewide Totals". Idaho Secretary of State. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
  38. ^ "Nov 08, 2016 General Election Results". Idaho Secretary of State. Retrieved December 19, 2016.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit

  Media related to Mike Crapo at Wikimedia Commons

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Richard Stallings
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Idaho's 2nd congressional district

Succeeded by
Mike Simpson
Party political offices
Preceded by
Dirk Kempthorne
Republican nominee for U.S. senator from Idaho
(Class 3)

1998, 2004, 2010, 2016
Most recent
Preceded by
Richard Burr
Senate Republican Chief Deputy Whip
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Dirk Kempthorne
U.S. senator (Class 3) from Idaho
Served alongside: Larry Craig, Jim Risch
Preceded by
Richard Shelby
Ranking Member of the Senate Banking Committee
Succeeded by
Sherrod Brown
Chair of the Senate Banking Committee
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Chuck Schumer
United States senators by seniority
Succeeded by
Tom Carper