Open main menu

Wikipedia β

Robert Aderholt

Robert Brown Aderholt[1] (born July 22, 1965) is the U.S. Representative for Alabama's 4th congressional district, serving since 1997. He is a member of the Republican Party. The district includes most of Tuscaloosa County north of the Black Warrior River, as well as the far northern suburbs of Birmingham in Walker County and the southern suburbs of Huntsville and Decatur.

Robert Aderholt
Rep. Robert B. Aderholt.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Alabama's 4th district
Assumed office
January 3, 1997
Preceded by Tom Bevill
Personal details
Born Robert Brown Aderholt
(1965-07-22) July 22, 1965 (age 52)
Haleyville, Alabama, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Caroline McDonald
Education University of North Alabama
Birmingham-Southern College
Samford University (JD)

Aderholt is a member of the congressional Tea Party Caucus and has taken conservative stands on issues such as abortion, tax reform, and defense spending.[2]


Early life, education and career

Aderholt was born in Haleyville, Alabama, to Mary Frances Brown and Bobby Ray Aderholt.[3] Aderholt's father, a part-time minister for a small group of Congregational churches in northwest Alabama, was a circuit judge for more than 30 years. He attended the University of North Alabama and then Birmingham-Southern College from which he graduated. During college, Aderholt was a member of Kappa Alpha Order. Aderholt received his J.D. from the Samford University Cumberland School of Law and practiced law after graduation.

In 1992, Aderholt was appointed Haleyville municipal judge.[4] In the same year, he was a delegate to the Republican National Convention. In 1995, he became the top aide to Governor Fob James. He won the 1996 Republican primary in the race to succeed 15-term Democratic incumbent Tom Bevill.

Political positions


He does not support reducing the defense budget to close the American deficit, and in May 2012 said "cuts to defense budgets – the federal government's primary Constitutional responsibility – shouldn't be the relief valve for uncontrolled domestic program spending".[5] Aderholt opposes government spending to stimulate economic growth. He voted against the $787 Billion Stimulus Package in February 2009.[citation needed]

Environmental issues

During the 2013 111th Congress, Aderholt voted for the amendment by Rep. Scalise (R-LA)[Notes 1] which would "require that Congress be allowed to vote on any executive regulation that would impose any tax, price, or levy upon carbon emissions... effectively prevents the executive branch from levying any form of carbon tax without Congressional approval. Since a carbon tax would be tremendously destructive to the economy as a whole, this measure would hopefully make such a tax unlikely to pass."[6] Aderholt opposed regulations on greenhouse gas emissions, and in December 2008 helped write a letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which stated, "I am opposed to any attempt to impose greenhouse gas regulations under the Clean Air Act on the agricultural industry."[7] Aderholt was against the policies promoted by the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference as well as the US proposed Cap and Trade Bill, part of what he argued was an "unrealistic carbon emissions reduction mandate" that would result in a loss of American jobs. He agreed with the global warming petition project[8] that, "[t]here is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing, or will in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate."[9]


Aderholt is a supporter of the gun rights. He was endorsed by the NRA in the 2010 general election,[10] and received $2000 from them.[11]

Mass shootings

In the wake of the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, Aderholt called it a terrorist attack and stated "we do not have the luxury of debating the political correctness of 'radical Islam'." He stated a need to "hunt down those who would do us harm." He opposed the media and President Obama using the shooting to "push any type of political agenda relating to gun control. He made a call to the White House and Congress to "protect the homeland."[12]

Human rights

Aderholt is opposed to same-sex marriage. He has received high ratings from the Family Research Council, the Traditional Values Coalition, and the American Family Association.[13] In 2013, the Human Rights Campaign gave him a score of 0 on its Congressional Scorecard.[14]

Regulatory reform

In December 2011, Aderholt voted in support of H.R. 10, the "Regulations From the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act," which would have required congressional approval for any "major regulations" issued by the executive branch but, unlike the 1996 Congressional Review Act, would not require the president's signature or override of a probable presidential veto.[15][16]

Social issues


During the “March for Life” rally in Washington on Jan 22, 2010, he said, “The issue of abortion and the sanctity of life is something that I feel strongly about and I encourage my colleagues to look for ways to curb and stop abortions in the United States, while compassionately educating on this important issue.”[17]


Aderholt has a "D" rating from NORML regarding his voting record on cannabis-related matters. He voted against allowing veterans access to medical marijuana, if legal in their state, per their Veterans Health Administration doctor's recommendation.[18]

Tax reform

Aderholt is a signer of Americans for Tax Reform’s Taxpayer Protection Pledge.[19]

He voted in favor of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.[20] Aderholt said he voted for the bill "to give back more money to Alabama taxpayers."[21] He also stated that the bill "does the right thing." He cited the raising of the child tax credit, changes to the state and local tax deductions, and stated that "more than 80% the people in the 4th District of Alabama will receive a tax cut." Aderholt also says that more businesses will stay in the US due to a lower corporate tax rate and therefore the act is a "jobs bill."[22]

U.S. House of Representatives

Committee assignments


Aderholt's voting record is generally conservative. However, his votes on economic issues have been generally based on the concerns of his district rather than an overarching ideology.[citation needed] He has been notable in his support of quotas on steel imports and sponsored a bill assessing additional anti-dumping duties on foreign steel in 1999. He voted against the free trade agreements with Chile, Morocco, and Singapore, but supported the US-Australia FTA. As a member of the Appropriations Committee, Aderholt has secured a significant amount of highway and sewer funding for the 4th District. Aderholt voted in favor of a joint resolution to withdraw the United States from the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2000 and 2005.[23][24] He is involved with the NASA Space Launch System and has urged to increase funding for the programs based in Alabama.[13]

Aderholt is a supporter of Roy Moore.[citation needed]

Aderholt voted in favor of the Central America Free Trade Agreement, but has since stated that he relied on promises by the Bush White House that were not kept.[citation needed]

On November 4, 1999, Aderholt voted in favor of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act,[25] which some economists, including Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz, believe helped create the 2007 financial crisis.[26][27]

Bills sponsored

Sponsor HR 3808: Interstate Recognition of Notarizations Act of 2010, 111th Congress

The bill was cosponsored by Reps. Bruce Braley (D., Iowa), Michael Castle (R., Del.), and Artur Davis (D., Ala.).

H.R. 3808 Interstate Recognition of Notarizations Act of 2010 – To require any Federal or State court to recognize any notarization made by a notary public licensed by a State other than the State where the court is located when such notarization occurs in or affects interstate commerce.

Apr 27, 2010: This bill passed in the House of Representatives by voice vote. A record of each representative’s position was not kept.

Sep 27, 2010: This bill passed in the Senate by Unanimous Consent. A record of each senator’s position was not kept.

Oct 8, 2010: Vetoed by President.

H.R. 2017 Continuing Appropriations Act, 2012

May 26, 2011: Introduced

June 2, 2011: Passed House with amendments

September 26, 2011: Passed Senate with amendments

September 30, 2011: Became Public Law 112-33 [28]

Political campaigns

As the Republican nominee, Aderholt faced a considerable challenge against State Senator Bob Wilson Jr., who called himself a Democrat "in the Tom Bevill tradition". This was a seriously contested race, receiving a deal of national coverage and significant support from the Republican Party. Newt Gingrich personally visited the district during the campaign. Aderholt won narrowly, 50%–48%, becoming only the second Republican to represent this district since Reconstruction. The first, Jim Martin, was swept into office in what was then the 7th District during the 1964 wave that delivered the state's electoral votes to Barry Goldwater. Aderholt has never faced another contest nearly that close, and has been reelected nine times. He even ran unopposed in 2004, 2010, 2014, and 2016.

Aderholt's increasing margins reflected the growing Republican trend in this part of Alabama. While Democrats still have a majority in voter registration, the district's Democrats are very conservative on social issues, even by Alabama standards. With a Cook Partisan Voting Index of R+30, it is the fifth-most Republican district in the nation and the third-most Republican district east of the Mississippi.

2010 campaign

Aderholt was re-elected unopposed.[citation needed]

2012 campaign

Aderholt was reelected in the November election where he beat State representative Daniel Boman, the Democratic nominee.[29] In 2012 Aderholt raised $1,207,484.98 for his campaign, but spent only $963,859.15. Parker Towing was his largest contributor, providing $24,000.00. $493,856, 41% of his contributions came from large individual contributions. $583,000, 48% came from PACs.[13]

Electoral history

Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Primary Election, 1996
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 10,410 48.83
Republican Kerry Rich 5,860 27.48
Republican Barry Guess 2,434 11.42
Republican Mickey Moseley 1,596 7.49
Republican Ronny Branham 1,021 4.79
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 1996
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 102,741 49.89%
Democratic Robert T. Wilson, Jr. 99,250 48.20%
Libertarian Alan F. Barksdale 3,718 1.81%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 1998
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 106,297 56.40% +6.51%
Democratic Donald H. Bevill 82,065 43.54% -4.66%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2000
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 140,009 60.58% +4.18%
Democratic Marsha Folsom 86,400 37.39% -6.15%
Libertarian Craig Goodrich 3,519 1.52% +1.52%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2002
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 139,705 86.72% +26.14%
Libertarian Tony H. McLendon 20,858 1.42% +11.43%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2004
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 191,110 74.73% -11.99%
Democratic Carl Cole 64,278 25.14% +25.14%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2006
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 130,385 70.17% -4.56%
Democratic Barbara Bobo 54,382 29.71% +4.57%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2008
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 196,741 74.76% +4.59%
Democratic Nicholas B. Sparks 66,077 25.11% -4.60%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2010
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 167,714 98.82% +24.06%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2012
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 197,736 74.00% -24.82%
Democratic Daniel Boman 69,427 26.00% +26.00%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 132,831 98.57% +24.57%
Write-ins Write-ins 1,921 1.43% +1.43%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Primary Election, 2016
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 86,660 81.18%
Republican Phil Norris 20,096 18.82%
Alabama's 4th Congressional District House Election, 2016[30]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Robert B. Aderholt 235,925 98.53% -.04%
Write-ins Write-ins 3,519 1.47% +.04%

Personal life

Aderholt is married to the former Caroline McDonald. Her father Albert McDonald served in the Alabama State Senate and was Alabama Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries.[31] They have two children, Robert Hayes and Mary Elliot.[32]


  1. ^ H. Amendment: H.Amdt. 448 to H.R. 367


  1. ^ U.S. House of Representatives[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ Orndorff Troyan, Mary (August 4, 2010). "Alabama Rep. Robert Aderholt joins congressional Tea Party Caucus". Retrieved September 5, 2014. 
  3. ^ Family Tree Maker's
  4. ^ McCutcheon, Michael; Barone, Chuck (2013). 2014 Almanac of American Politics. The University of Chicago Press. 
  5. ^ "Redstone's Pivotal Role in Nation's Technology Must be Protected, says Rep. Robert Aderholt". Retrieved November 19, 2012. 
  6. ^ Freedom Works 2013.
  7. ^ "Inhofe Says EPA's New Boiler Rule Could Kill Nearly 800,000 Manufacturing Jobs". Fox News. 28 September 2010. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  8. ^ Global warming petition project, Global warming petition project, retrieved 21 September 2013 
  9. ^ Aderhodt 2010.
  10. ^ "Obama to present gun agenda; all but one Alabama representative supported by NRA". On The Issues. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  11. ^ "Robert Aderholt on Gun Control". Challen Stevens. Retrieved 5 August 2014. 
  12. ^ Berkowitz, Bonnie; Cai, Weiyi; Lu, Denise; Gamio, Lazaro. "Everything lawmakers said (and didn't say) after the Orlando mass shooting". Washington Post. Retrieved 31 December 2017. 
  13. ^ a b c VoteSmart 2012.
  14. ^ "Congressional Scorecard: Measuring Support for Equality in the 112th Congress" (PDF). Human Rights Campaign. Retrieved 5 August 2014. 
  15. ^ Sonmez, Felicia (December 7, 2011). "REINS bill to expand congressional power over executive regulations passed by House". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 10, 2013. 
  16. ^ "FreedomWorks Scorecard". 
  17. ^ Baragona, Justin. "Taking Back the House, Vol. 3: Robert Aderholt and Alabama's 4th District". PoliticalUSA. Retrieved 25 January 2017. 
  18. ^ "Alabama Scorecard - - Working to Reform Marijuana Laws". Retrieved 21 December 2017. 
  19. ^ ATR 2010.
  20. ^ Almukhtar, Sarah (19 December 2017). "How Each House Member Voted on the Tax Bill". The New York Times. Retrieved 21 December 2017. 
  21. ^ Hagstrom, Jerry. "Senate Passes Tax Bill Late Tuesday, But Rules Force House to Revote Wednesday". DTN Progressive Farmer. Retrieved 21 December 2017. 
  22. ^ "House passes $1.5T tax bill, delivering on a major piece of GOP agenda". 19 December 2017. Retrieved 21 December 2017. 
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^ "GovTrack: House Vote on Conference Report: S. 900 [106th]: Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act". 1999-11-04. Retrieved 2010-08-22. 
  26. ^ Baram 2008.
  27. ^ Paletta 2009.
  28. ^ "Bill Summary and Status". 
  29. ^ "Alabama Secretary of State" (PDF). 
  30. ^
  31. ^ 'Funeral Service set for Albert McDonald, former state senator and ag commissioner from Madison,', Steve Doyle, July 7, 2014
  32. ^ [1]


External links