Steve Stockman returns to Congress after 16-year absence

Republican Steve Stockman scored one of the biggest upsets of the 1994 election when he took out Texas Democratic Rep. Jack Brooks, a 42-year incumbent. He was defeated in the next election. Now Stockman will return to Congress after a 16-year absence, beating Democrat Max Martin.

Just four years before his first stint in the House, Stockman found himself unemployed and homeless. He was arrested on a drug charge and subsequently became a born-again Christian. Stockman drifted to Texas and became active in conservative politics, losing two congressional elections before the ’94 “Republican revolution” swept him into office.

Stockman compiled a strongly conservative voting record during his only term, with 1990s liberal activists NewtWatch dubbing him “anti-consumer, anti-education, anti-environment, anti-gay, anti-law enforcement, anti-seniors politician who’s hypocritical on congressional reform, hostile to poor and middle-class families, and a supporter of Internet censorship.”

“Other than that,” quipped the left-wing magazine Mother Jones, “the group says, he seems nice enough.” Stockman made it to Congress the first time because Brooks, a former NRA ally, voted for the assault weapons ban.

Stockman originally considered running to succeed retiring Texas Rep. Ron Paul this year, but instead campaigned successfully in Texas’ newly drawn 36th congressional district.

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