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Frank Wolf (politician)

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Title: Frank Wolf (politician)  
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Subject: Barbara Comstock, United States congressional delegations from Virginia, United States House of Representatives elections in Virginia, 2008, United States House of Representatives elections, 2014, Dick Black (politician)
Collection: 1939 Births, American People of German Descent, American Presbyterians, Georgetown University Law Center Alumni, Living People, Members of the United States House of Representatives from Virginia, Northern Virginia Politicians, Pennsylvania State University Alumni, People from Fairfax County, Virginia, People from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Republican Party Members of the United States House of Representatives, United States Army Officers, Virginia Lawyers, Virginia Republicans
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Frank Wolf (politician)

Frank Wolf
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 10th district
In office
January 3, 1981 – January 3, 2015
Preceded by Joe Fisher
Succeeded by Barbara Comstock
Personal details
Born (1939-01-30) January 30, 1939
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Carolyn Stover
Alma mater Pennsylvania State University, University Park
Georgetown University
Religion Presbyterianism
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service 1962–1967

Frank Rudolph Wolf (born January 30, 1939) is an American Republican legislator who represented Virginia's 10th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from January 1981 to January 2015. He announced in December 2013 that he would not run for re-election in 2014, and retired at the conclusion of his 17th term in office.[1] At the time of his announcement, he was the state's longest serving congressman.[2]


  • Early life, education, and early political career 1
  • U.S. House of Representatives 2
    • Elections 2.1
    • Tenure 2.2
      • Human rights 2.2.1
      • China 2.2.2
      • Iraq War 2.2.3
      • Social issues 2.2.4
    • Committee assignments 2.3
    • Caucus memberships 2.4
  • Electoral history 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5

Early life, education, and early political career

Born and raised in West Washington, D.C.. He then joined the United States Army as a reservist and became a lawyer for the military.

Wolf entered politics in 1968, at the age of 29, when he became a legislative assistant to Edward Biester, the Republican congressman from Pennsylvania's 8th congressional district. From 1971 to 1975, Wolf served as an assistant to Secretary of the Interior Rogers Morton.

U.S. House of Representatives


1981, Congressional Pictorial Directory, Wolf as a first term Congressman

During the 1976 presidential election year, Wolf's first campaign for Virginia's 10th congressional district ended with his loss in the Republican primary to Vince Callahan by 45%–42%.[4] Two years later, amidst the 1978 midterm elections, he won the Republican nomination unopposed, but lost the general election to the incumbent Democrat, Joseph L. Fisher, 53%–47%.[4]

Along with Ronald Reagan's decisive victory over incumbent President Jimmy Carter in the 1980 presidential election, Wolf's third run for the House seat proved to be successful, as he won the Republican primary with 75% of the vote and then defeated Fisher in a rematch, 51%–49%.[4] In the 1982 midterms, Wolf won re-election with 53% of the vote.[4] Since then, he has won re-election with an average of 67% of the vote, and was unopposed by a Democratic opponent in 1994 and 2000. His closest races have come in the Democratic wave elections of 2006 and 2008. On both occasions he defeated professor Judy Feder, by 57%–41% and 59%–39%, respectively.[4][5] In 2012, as Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney carried the district by 1%, Wolf was re-elected by 20%.[6] In September 2013, it was announced that Wolf will be challenged in the 2014 election by Democrat Richard Bolger, a Fairfax attorney and small business owner.[7][8]

The Governor of Virginia in 1993. The district kept approximately the same complexion after the 2000 apportionment by a Republican Virginia General Assembly, but lost territory in the outlying areas of the district to allow for population growth in Fairfax and Loudoun. In 2013, the Fairfax portion of the district holds about 40 percent of the population, Loudoun county holds 30 percent, and the remainder of the district at 30 percent.
Advocacy group ratings[9]
Year Group Ratings
2010 ACLU 13
2011 ACLU
2010 ACU 92
2011 ACU 80
2010 ADA 10
2011 ADA 10
2010 CFG 69
2011 CFG 72
2010 AFSCME 0
2011 AFS 44
2010 FRC 100
2011 FRC
2010 LCV 10
2011 LCV 21
2010 ITIC 33
2011 ITIC
2010 NTU 75
2011 NTU 67
2010 COC 88
2011 COC 93


Wolf has been especially prominent in three areas: transportation, human rights, and gambling. Before he retired, he was the co-chair of the US Congress Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, formerly the Human Rights Caucus.[10]

The National Rifle Association gives him an A- and the American Civil Liberties Union gives him a 0%. Some other rankings include 0% from Clean Air Flow Energy, 100% from National Right to Life, 0% from the Human Rights Coalition, 17% from the National Educational Association, 5% from the League of Conservation Voters, 92% from the United States Border Control and 10% by the Alliance for Retired Americans.

Human rights

Wolf has traveled extensively to places around the world where people are suffering, including five times to the Sudan since 1989. He has advocated for relief of the Darfur genocide.[11] He has also convened conferences in his district to address human rights issues around the world.

After the trial of the leadership of the Bahá'í community of Iran was announced on February 11, 2009[12] Wolf voiced his deep concern over the "systematic persecution" of the Bahá'ís.[13] On February 13 Wolf offered a resolution on the subject of the trial of the Iranian Bahá'í leadership co-sponsored by seven others in H. RES. 175 – "Condemning the Government of Iran for its state-sponsored persecution of its Baha'i minority and its continued violation of the International Covenants on Human Rights" which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs.[14] The situation has gathered international attention including defense of Nobel Laureate attorney Shirin Ebadi in June[15] after she received threats in April warning her against making speeches abroad, and defending Iran's minority Baha'i community[16] – see Arrest of Bahá'í leaders.

On September 30, 2010, Wolf spoke against Jackie Speier, Wolf became the co-chair of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Caucus, a group created in response to the ongoing persecution of Ahmadis. On May 9, 2014, Wolf introduced the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom Reauthorization Act of 2014 (H.R. 4653; 113th Congress), a bill that would amend the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 to reauthorize the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) as an independent federal government advisory body through FY2019.[17]


Wolf has vocally criticized the human rights record of China.[18] Around the time of the 1995 International Women's Conference in Beijing, Wolf called for the Most Favored Nation status of China to be revoked, alleging that human fetuses were considered a delicacy in China .[19] He was one of the leading congressman trying to stop the grant of permanent MFN status to China in 1999. [20] When Wolf and Congressman Chris Smith were in Beijing shortly before the 2008 Summer Olympics, the Chinese security service prevented them from participating in a dinner meeting with local human rights lawyers.[21]

In the 2011 United States federal budget, Wolf inserted a clause prohibiting NASA and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy from any joint scientific activity with China for the remainder of the 2011 fiscal year. Wolf remarked, "We don't want to give them the opportunity to take advantage of our technology, and we have nothing to gain from dealing with them. And frankly, it boils down to a moral issue. ... Would you have a bilateral program with Stalin?"[22] This prohibition resulted in Chinese journalists being denied access to the launching of Space Shuttle Endeavour on the mission STS-134, that was carrying the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer which was built in part by Chinese scientists.[23]

In June 2014, Wolf got House support for an amendment that would rename the street holding the Chinese embassy; the amendment would change International Place to Liu Xiaobo Plaza, in honor of Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo.[24]

Iraq War

During the Bush administration, Wolf voted consistently with the President's positions. For example, Wolf voted in favor of military action in Iraq in 2002. He also voted to make the Patriot Act permanent, opposed requiring Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrants for wiretaps within the United States, and supported the president in restricting congressional oversight for CIA interrogations.[11]

However, in March 2006, Congress, at Wolf's suggestion by inserting an earmark into a supplemental appropriation bill, and in a breach with the Bush administration, announced the creation of the Iraq Study Group to reassess the U.S. strategy in Iraq.[25][26]

Social issues

Wolf believes abortion should be illegal and he opposes subsidized birth control for federal employees. As congressman, Wolf also voted to deny funding to Planned Parenthood. He also opposed funding for international family planning in developing countries. Frank Wolf was against the Employment Non-Discrimination Act for fear it would destroy religious freedom. He believes marriage is between one man and one woman.[27] Wolf has signed letter supporting the "one man one woman" issue in the Manhattan Declaration.[27]

Committee assignments

Caucus memberships

In the 109th Congress, Wolf was chairman of Subcommittee on Foreign Operations, Export Financing, and Related Programs, and its ranking minority member in the 110th. He was co-chairman of the Congressional Human Rights Caucus with Jim McGovern, who replaced the late Tom Lantos. [28] Wolf is a member of the Moderate Republican Main Street Partnership.

Electoral history

Virginia's 10th congressional district: Results 1978–2012[29][30][31]
Year Republican Votes Pct Democrat Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct
1978 Frank Wolf 61,981 47% Joseph Fisher 70,892 53%
1980 Frank Wolf 110,840 51% Joseph Fisher 105,883 49%
1982 Frank Wolf 86,506 53% Ira Lechner 75,361 46% Scott Bowden Independent 2,162 1%
1984 Frank Wolf 158,528 63% John Flannery 95,074 37%
1986 Frank Wolf 95,724 60% John Milliken 63,292 40%
1988 Frank Wolf 188,550 68% Robert Weinberg 88,284 32%
1990 Frank Wolf 103,761 61% N. MacKenzie Canter 57,249 34% Barbara Minnich Independent 5,273 3% Lyndon LaRouche Independent 2,293 1%
1992 Frank Wolf 144,471 64% Ray Vickery 75,775 33% Alan Ogden Independent 6,874 3%
1994 Frank Wolf 153,311 87% (no candidate) Bob Rilee Libertarian 8,267 5% Alan Ogden Independent 13,687 8%
1996 Frank Wolf 169,266 72% Robert Weinberg 59,145 25% Gary Reams Libertarian 59,145 3%
1998 Frank Wolf 103,648 72% Cornell Brooks 36,476 25% Robert Barnett Independent 4,506 3%
2000 Frank Wolf 238,817 84% (no candidate) Brian Brown Libertarian 28,107 10% Marc Rossi Independent 3,226 6%
2002 Frank Wolf 115,917 72% John Stevens 45,464 28%
2004 Frank Wolf 205,982 64% James Socas 116,654 36%
2006 Frank Wolf 138,213 57% Judy Feder 98,769 41% Wilbur Wood Libertarian 2,107 1% Neeraj Nigam Independent 1,851 1%
2008 Frank Wolf 223,140 59% Judy Feder 147,357 39% Neeraj Nigam Independent 8,457 2%
2010 Frank Wolf 131,116 63% Jeff Barnett 72,604 35% William Redpath Libertarian 4,607 2%
2012 Frank Wolf 214,038 58% Kristin Cabral 142,024 39% J. Kevin Chisholm Independent 9,855 3%


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  28. ^ Barr, Andy. "McGovern Replaces Lantos as Human Rights Co-Chair" (The Hill, June 12, 2008)
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External links

  • Appearance on YouTube at Ethnic Community Campaign Rally, VA, September 9, 2006
  • Appearance on YouTube at GOP Civic Picnic at Vint Hill, September 16, 2006
United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Joe Fisher
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 10th congressional district

Succeeded by
Barbara Comstock
Preceded by
Jim McGovern
Chairperson of the House Human Rights Commission
Succeeded by
Joe Pitts
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