Steven Joseph "Steve" Chabot (born January 22, 1953) is an American politician who has been the United States Representative for Ohio's 1st congressional district since 2011. Chabot, a member of the Republican Party, previously represented the district from 1995 to 2009.
Early life, education, and pre-political career
Chabot was born in 1953 in Cincinnati, Ohio, the son of Gerard Joseph and Doris Leona (née Tilley) Chabot; paternally, he is of French-Canadian descent. He graduated from La Salle High School in Cincinnati in 1971, and then from the College of William and Mary in 1975, earning a B.A. in history. He went on to obtain a Juris Doctor degree from Northern Kentucky University's Salmon P. Chase College of Law, in Highland Heights, Kentucky, in 1978. He worked as an elementary school teacher in 1975–1976 while taking law classes at night.
As a practicing attorney from 1978 to 1994, Chabot handled domestic disputes and the drafting of wills as a sole practitioner. He operated out of small law office in Westwood.
Early political career
Chabot ran unsuccessfully for the Cincinnati City Council as an independent candidate in 1979 and as a Republican in 1983. Then, running as a Republican, he won a seat in 1985 and was re-elected in 1987 and 1989. In 1988, he ran for the U.S. House of Representatives against seven-term incumbent Democrat Tom Luken, who defeated Chabot 56–44%. After that, he was appointed a Commissioner of Hamilton County, Ohio, in 1990, and was elected later that year and again in 1992, staying until 1994.
U.S. House of Representatives
In 1994, he ran for the U.S. House again and defeated Democratic incumbent David S. Mann of Ohio's 1st congressional district, 56%–44%. The race was over balanced budgets and abortion. In 1996, Chabot was a top target from Democrats, but he defeated Democrat Mark Longabaugh, member of the Cincinnati City Council, 54%–43%. In 1998, he defeated popular Cincinnati Mayor Roxanne Qualls, 53% to 47%. In the series of debates during that campaign, Qualls criticized Chabot for not funneling enough federal spending back to his home district. Chabot countered that he would not support "wasteful or unnecessary" federal programs. In 2000, he defeated City Councilman and Harvard graduate John Cranley 53–44%. In 2002, he defeated Greg Harris, with 65% of the vote. In 2004, he defeated Greg Harris again, with 60% of the vote.
He defeated Democratic challenger John Cranley again, this time by a narrower margin of 52–48%.
Chabot was defeated by State Representative Steve Driehaus 52%–48%.
In a rematch, Chabot defeated Democratic incumbent Steve Driehaus, Libertarian Jim Berns, and Green Party nominee Richard Stevenson. Chabot won by a margin 51%–46%.
Steve Chabot defeated Democratic nominee Jeff Sinnard 58%–38%, with Green nominee Rich Stevenson, and Libertarian nominee Jim Berns picking up the balance. He was helped by the 2010 round of redistricting, which shifted most of heavily Republican Warren County to the 1st.
Chabot has a conservative voting record and is a member of the Republican Study Committee.
Chabot served as one of 12 managers in the Senate Impeachment trial for President Bill Clinton.
As Chairman of the House Subcommittee on the Constitution, Chabot authored the legislation to ban the practice of partial-birth abortion. President George W. Bush signed the bill into law on November 5, 2003.
Chabot is a strong advocate for fiscal responsibility, and has pursued a fiscally conservative standard for the government. The Concord Coalition and anti-tax advocacy groups such as Citizens Against Government Waste and the National Taxpayers Union consistently rated Chabot as one of the most anti-tax members of Congress.
Chabot's work in Congress included the elimination of logging subsidies in the Tongass National Forest in Alaska, co-sponsored the Voting Rights Act reauthorization, and promoted relations with Taiwan. Chabot opposes abortion except if the mother's life is in danger or in cases of rape and incest. Chabot authorized a bill, which passed the House but not the Senate, to make it illegal to take a minor across state lines for an abortion. Chabot has voted to restrict federal funding for embryonic stem cell research.
In 2002, Chabot helped spearhead the local campaign against building a light rail system in Hamilton County. In that same year, Chabot and John Boehner advocated teaching intelligent design alongside the theory of evolution by natural selection in Ohio high schools.
Chabot was a staunch advocate of a federal prohibition of online poker. In 2006, he cosponsored H.R. 4777, the Internet Gambling Prohibition and Enforcement Act, and voted for H.R. 4411, the Goodlatte-Leach Internet Gambling Prohibition Act. In 2007, Chabot voted against the reauthorization of the State Children's Health Insurance Plan (S-CHIP) which would have expanded S-CHIP to cover four million more participants. The bill passed the House and Senate, however President Bush vetoed the bill on October 3, 2007. Chabot voted against the veto-override.
Chabot conducted a Town Hall meeting with his constituents on August 22, 2011, where video cameras were banned. During the meeting two citizens had video cameras seized by a police officer. The incident was captured by one of the seized cameras and by press cameras that were allowed to record the meeting. A Chabot spokesman stated that video cameras will be allowed at the next town hall meeting.
On March 25, 2014, Chabot introduced the Foreign Cultural Exchange Jurisdictional Immunity Clarification Act (H.R. 4292; 113th Congress) into the House. According to a legislative digest provided by House Republicans, the bill "narrowly amends the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) to make it easier for U.S. cultural and educational institutions to borrow art and other culturally significant objects from foreign countries." However, the changes made by the bill would not provide any immunity to art or objects that were "taken in violation of international law by Nazi Germany between January 30, 1933 and May 8, 1945."
The group Republicans for Environmental Protection issued Chabot an "environmental harm demerit" in 2006 for contributing to urban sprawl by sponsoring H.R. 4772, a bill that allows land use disputes to proceed immediately to federal court; according to the organization, the bill "would have undermined local control over local planning and zoning matters, a central principle of America's federal system". In the same year, the group praised Chabot for offering legislation "prohibiting the Forest Service from spending taxpayer dollars to build new logging roads for private interests in the Tongass National Forest. The nonpartisan League of Conservation Voters gave Chabot a grade of 10% for the 109th Congress, noting that he voted "anti-environment" on 11 out of 12 issues selected by that organization as crucial; his lifetime grade from the LCV is 23%.
In June 2007, Chabot sponsored an amendment to block federally funded road building in Tongass National Forest. Proponents of the amendment said that the federal timber program in Tongass is a dead loss for taxpayers, costing some $30 million annually, and noted that the Forest Service faces an estimated $900 million road maintenance backlog in the forest. Supporters of the bipartisan amendment included the Republicans for Environmental Protection. Of the bill, Representative Chabot said "I am not opposed to logging when it's done on the timber company's dime...But in this case, they are using the American taxpayer to subsidize these 200 jobs at the tune of $200,000 per job. That just makes no sense".
Gary Lindgren, Chabot's chief of staff, said that "there's not a connection" between the donations and the earmarks. Lindgren said the earmarks are for major institutions where it would be expected that board members would be politically active. "You could look at almost any district, and the people who sit on boards of museums and institutions will be wealthy and donate to campaigns", said Tom Schatz, president of Citizens Against Government Waste. Schatz noted that Chabot has won high marks from CAGW in the past.
- Committee on Foreign Affairs
- Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific
- Subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia (Chairman)
- Committee on the Judiciary
- Subcommittee on the Constitution
- Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet
- Committee on Small Business
- "OH District 1 Race – Nov 08, 1994". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- "OH District 1 Race – Nov 05, 1996". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- "OH District 1 Race – Nov 03, 1998". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- https://web.archive.org/web/20110516101148/http://nationaljournal.com/pubs/almanac/2006/people/oh/rep_oh01.htm. Archived from the original on May 16, 2011. Retrieved July 5, 2006.
- Wilkinson, Howard (1998-10-28). "Chabot, Qualls debate pork vs. fair share". The Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved 2009-10-28.
- ^ "OH District 1 Race – Nov 07, 2000". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- "OH District 1 Race – Nov 05, 2002". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- "OH – District 01 Race – Nov 07, 2006". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- "OH – District 01 Race – Nov 04, 2008". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- Zeleny, Jeff (2010-07-03). "In Midterm Elections, a Rougher Road for Incumbent Democrats". The New York Times.
- "Politics 2010: Parties play take-away, keep-away in Ohio". UPI.com. 2010-05-02. Retrieved 2010-08-23.
- Official Hamilton County Candidates and Issues List Hamilton County Ohio Board of Elections
- "2010 election results for Ohio". The New York Times. Retrieved 11-03-2010.
- "OH – District 01 Race – Nov 02, 2010". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- "Ohio Secretary of State" (PDF).
- "Steve Chabot – Legislative Issues". US House web site. 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-02-02. Retrieved 2009-10-28.
- National Taxpayers Union – Rates Congress Database
- "Cut it out – Stop spending taxpayers' money to build roads for timber companies". The Columbus Dispatch – Editorial. 2006-05-16. Retrieved 2009-10-28.
- Snyder, Charles (2006-06-30). "US House adopts measure on Taiwan". Taipei Times. p. 1. Retrieved 2009-10-28.
- Monk, Dan; Lucy May (2001-05-11). "Missing the bus". Business Courier of Cincinnati. pp. 1, 12. Retrieved 2009-10-28.
- Murray, Iaian (June 5, 2002). "Scientific Boehner: The new creationism and the congressmen who support it". The American Prospect. Retrieved 2009-10-28.
- Thomas (Library of Congress): HR 4777
- Thomas (Library of Congress): HR 4411
- HWilkinson, , "Democrats’ cameras seized by police at Chabot Town Hall meeting", Cincinnati.com, August 24, 2011
- Kurt Nimmo,  "Cops Confiscate Cameras at Ohio Congressman’s Town Hall", August 24, 2011
- "H.R. 4292 – Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
- ^ "Legislative Digest – H.R. 4292". House Republican Conference. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
- Republicans for Environmental Protection 2006 Scorecard
- League of Conservation Voters 2006 National Scorecard
- U.S. House Boosts Spending for Environment, Conservation
- Jonathan Allen, "Chabot aims earmarks at places linked to donors", The Hill, September 19, 2006
|Year||Winner||Votes||Pct||Runner-up||Votes||Pct||3rd Party||Party||Votes||Pct||3rd Party||Party||Votes||Pct|
|1988||Thomas A. Luken (inc.)||117,682||57%||Steve Chabot||90,738||43%|
|1994||Steve Chabot||92,997||56%||David S. Mann (inc.)||72,822||44%|
|1996||Steve Chabot (inc.)||118,324||54%||Mark P. Longabaugh||94,719||43%||John G. Halley||Natural Law||5,381||2%|
|1998||Steve Chabot (inc.)||92,421||53%||Roxanne Qualls||82,003||47%|
|2000||Steve Chabot (inc.)||116,768||53%||John Cranley||98,328||45%||David A. Groshoff||Libertarian||3,399||2%||Richard L. Stevenson||Natural Law||1,933||1%|
|2002||Steve Chabot (inc.)||110,760||65%||Greg Harris||60,168||35%|
|2004||Steve Chabot (inc.)||173,430||60%||Greg Harris||116,235||40%||*|
|2006||Steve Chabot (inc.)||105,680||52%||John Cranley||96,584||48%|
|2008||Steve Driehaus||155,455||52%||Steve Chabot (inc.)||140,683||48%||*|
|2010||Steve Chabot||103,770||52%||Steven L. Driehaus (inc.)||92,672||45%||Jim A. Berns||Libertarian||3,076||2%||Richard L. Stevenson||Natural Law||2,000||1%|
|2012||Steve Chabot||201,907||58%||Jeff Sinnard||131,490||38%||Jim A. Berns||Libertarian||9,674||3%||Richard L. Stevenson||Green Party||6,645||2%|
*Write-in and minor candidate notes: In 2004, Rich Stevenson received 198 votes. In 2008, Eric Wilson received 85 votes and Rich Stevenson received 67 votes.
On August 22, 2011, Representative Chabot asked Cincinnati police to confiscate cameras being used by private citizens to record a town-hall meeting, even as media television cameras recorded the incident. YouTube videos of the incident provided wide awareness of the incident, and the participating police officer was later disciplined.
On October 26, 2016, CityBeat reported on Steve Chabot's world travels using taxpayer money. "[Since] 2011, Chabot has flown to 46 countries on 16 separate excursions, gracing the likes of Mongolia, Myanmar and Moldova with his presence. The tab to taxpayers? Almost $200,000."
Chabot and his wife Donna have two children.