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Walter B. Jones

Walter B. Jones

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Walter Beaman Jones, Jr. (born February 10, 1943, in Farmville, North Carolina
Farmville, North Carolina
Farmville is a town in Pitt County, North Carolina, eight miles to the west of Greenville, North Carolina. According to a census taken in 2008 the estimated population is 4,615...

) is the U.S. Representative
United States House of Representatives
The United States House of Representatives is one of the two Houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate.The composition and powers of the House are established in Article One of the Constitution...

 for , serving since 1995. He is a member of the Republican Party
Republican Party (United States)
The Republican Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Democratic Party. Founded by anti-slavery expansion activists in 1854, it is often called the GOP . The party's platform generally reflects American conservatism in the U.S...

. The district encompasses the Outer Banks
Outer Banks
The Outer Banks is a 200-mile long string of narrow barrier islands off the coast of North Carolina, beginning in the southeastern corner of Virginia Beach on the east coast of the United States....

 and areas near the Pamlico Sound
Pamlico Sound
Pamlico Sound in North Carolina, is the largest lagoon along the U.S. East Coast, being long and 24 to 48 km wide. It is a body of water separated from the Atlantic Ocean by the Outer Banks, a row of low, sandy barrier islands, including Cape Hatteras. The Neuse and Pamlico rivers flow in...

. Jones' father was Walter B. Jones, Sr.
Walter B. Jones, Sr.
Walter Beaman Jones, Sr. , was an American politician from the state of North Carolina who served in the United States House of Representatives, and was the father of Walter Beaman Jones, Jr., who is currently a Representative for the Republican Party.Jones was born in Fayetteville, North Carolina,...

, a Democratic Party
Democratic Party (United States)
The Democratic Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Republican Party. The party's socially liberal and progressive platform is largely considered center-left in the U.S. political spectrum. The party has the lengthiest record of continuous...

 congressman from the neighboring 1st district
North Carolina's 1st congressional district
North Carolina's 1st congressional district is located mostly in the northeastern part of the state. This area is located on North Carolina's Coastal plain and contains towns such as Roanoke Rapids, Rocky Mount, Goldsboro, and New Bern....

. The younger Jones has long since dropped the "Jr." from his name.

Early life, education and career


Jones is a lifelong resident of Farmville
Farmville, North Carolina
Farmville is a town in Pitt County, North Carolina, eight miles to the west of Greenville, North Carolina. According to a census taken in 2008 the estimated population is 4,615...

, a suburb of Greenville, North Carolina
Greenville, North Carolina
Greenville is the county seat of Pitt County and principal city of the Greenville, North Carolina metropolitan area. Greenville is the health, entertainment, and educational hub of North Carolina's Tidewater and Coastal Plain and in 2008 was listed as the Tenth Largest City in North Carolina...

. He attended Hargrave Military Academy
Hargrave Military Academy
Hargrave Military Academy is a private American boarding school located in the town of Chatham, Virginia.Hargrave is a school affiliated with the Baptist General Association of Virginia emphasizing Christian values that focuses on a college and military preparatory program...

 in Chatham, Virginia
Chatham, Virginia
Chatham is a town in Pittsylvania County, Virginia, United States. Chatham's population was 1,338 at the 2000 census. It is included in the Danville, Virginia Metropolitan Statistical Area. Chatham is home to Chatham High School and Hargrave Military Academy. It is also home to Chatham Hall , an...

, and graduated in 1966 with a Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Arts
A Bachelor of Arts , from the Latin artium baccalaureus, is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, the sciences, or both...

 from Atlantic Christian College (now Barton College
Barton College
Barton College is a private liberal arts college located in Wilson, North Carolina. Barton College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, The NC Association of Colleges and Universities; the NC Department of Public Instruction; the NC Board of Nursing; and the Committee...

) in Wilson, North Carolina
Wilson, North Carolina
Wilson is a city and the county seat of Wilson County in the Coastal Plain region of the U.S. state of North Carolina. The 18th largest city in the state, Wilson had a population of 49,167 according to the 2010 census.- Geography :...

 before serving four years (1967–1971) in the North Carolina National Guard
North Carolina National Guard
The North Carolina National Guard consists of the:*North Carolina Army National Guard*North Carolina Air National GuardThe NCNG is an all-volunteer force of nearly 12,000 soldiers and airmen who serve in both federal and state capacities...

. He worked as an executive with his family's business supply company.

Religion


Jones was raised a Southern Baptist but is a Roman Catholic
Roman Catholic Church
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church, with over a billion members. Led by the Pope, it defines its mission as spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, administering the sacraments and exercising charity...

 convert
Religious conversion
Religious conversion is the adoption of a new religion that differs from the convert's previous religion. Changing from one denomination to another within the same religion is usually described as reaffiliation rather than conversion.People convert to a different religion for various reasons,...

.

North Carolina House of Representatives


Jones was first elected as a Democrat to the North Carolina House of Representatives
North Carolina House of Representatives
The North Carolina House of Representatives is one of the two houses of the North Carolina General Assembly. The House is a 120-member body led by a Speaker of the House, who holds powers similar to those of the President pro-tem in the state senate....

 in 1983 and served for five terms, until 1992. He was known in the North Carolina House for his advocacy of campaign finance reform and lobbying reform.

Committee assignments

  • Committee on Armed Services
    United States House Committee on Armed Services
    thumb|United States House Committee on Armed Services emblemThe U.S. House Committee on Armed Services, commonly known as the House Armed Services Committee, is a standing committee of the United States House of Representatives...

    • Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces
      United States House Armed Services Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces
      House Armed Services Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces is a subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee in the United States House of Representatives.-Jurisdiction:...

    • Subcommittee on Military Personnel
  • Committee on Financial Services
    United States House Committee on Financial Services
    The United States House Committee on Financial Services is the committee of the United States House of Representatives that oversees the entire financial services industry, including the securities, insurance, banking, and housing industries...

    • Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit
      United States House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit
      The U.S. House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit is a subcommittee of the House Committee on Financial Services.-Jurisdiction:...

    • Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy and Technology
      United States House Financial Services Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy and Technology
      The U.S. House Financial Services Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy and Technology is a subcommittee of the House Committee on Financial Services...

       (Vice Chair)


He also serves on the Liberty Caucus
Liberty Caucus
The Liberty Caucus is a group of Republican members of the United States House of Representatives. It hosts a luncheon in Washington, D.C., every Thursday....

 (sometimes called the Liberty Committee), a group of libertarian
Libertarianism
Libertarianism, in the strictest sense, is the political philosophy that holds individual liberty as the basic moral principle of society. In the broadest sense, it is any political philosophy which approximates this view...

-minded Republican congressional representatives. Congressman Ron Paul
Ron Paul
Ronald Ernest "Ron" Paul is an American physician, author and United States Congressman who is seeking to be the Republican Party candidate in the 2012 presidential election. Paul represents Texas's 14th congressional district, which covers an area south and southwest of Houston that includes...

 hosts a luncheon for the Liberty Caucus every Thursday. Other members include Jim Duncan of Tennessee
Tennessee
Tennessee is a U.S. state located in the Southeastern United States. It has a population of 6,346,105, making it the nation's 17th-largest state by population, and covers , making it the 36th-largest by total land area...

, Roscoe Bartlett
Roscoe Bartlett
Roscoe Gardner Bartlett, Ph.D. is the U.S. Representative for , serving since 1993. He is a member of the Republican Party, and a member of the Tea Party Caucus...

 of Maryland
Maryland
Maryland is a U.S. state located in the Mid Atlantic region of the United States, bordering Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia to its south and west; Pennsylvania to its north; and Delaware to its east...

, Scott Garrett
Scott Garrett
Ernest Scott Garrett is the U.S. Representative for , serving since 2003. He is a member of the Republican Party. The district includes much of the northwestern portion of the state...

 of New Jersey
New Jersey
New Jersey is a state in the Northeastern and Middle Atlantic regions of the United States. , its population was 8,791,894. It is bordered on the north and east by the state of New York, on the southeast and south by the Atlantic Ocean, on the west by Pennsylvania and on the southwest by Delaware...

, and Jeff Flake
Jeff Flake
Jeffrey Lane "Jeff" Flake is the U.S. Representative for , serving since 2001. He is a member of the Republican Party. He was featured in the documentary series How Democracy Works Now: Twelve Stories....

 of Arizona
Arizona
Arizona ; is a state located in the southwestern region of the United States. It is also part of the western United States and the mountain west. The capital and largest city is Phoenix...

.

Political positions


Unlike Walter, Sr., a moderate Democrat, Jones has a somewhat conservative
Conservatism
Conservatism is a political and social philosophy that promotes the maintenance of traditional institutions and supports, at the most, minimal and gradual change in society. Some conservatives seek to preserve things as they are, emphasizing stability and continuity, while others oppose modernism...

 voting record according to the American Conservative Union
American Conservative Union
The American Conservative Union is an American political organization advocating conservative policies, and is the oldest such conservative lobbying organization in the country.-Organization:...

, with a lifetime rating of 86.2 from that interest group. However, his voting record has drifted more toward the left in recent years according to the group's ranking. In the last three years, he received some of the lowest ACU ratings of any Republican from the South. In 2006, he received a 79, in 2007 he received a 71, in 2008 he received a 58, in 2009 he received a 83 and in 2010 he received a 65, his lowest rating ever.. The former four ratings were the lowest recorded in those years for a Republican from North Carolina.

Jones said that his father was able to vote his conscience until he became a member of the House Democratic leadership, at which time he had to vote with the party line, as when he opposed but still voted for the 1975 federal bailout of a bankrupt New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

: "He had to vote it that way. I would rather do what I think is right than to sell my political soul." Jones drifted towards the libertarian spectrum when he changed his positions on foreign policy including the Iraqi war.

Jones opposes pork barrel spending projects and is a staunch advocate of federal prohibition of online poker
Poker
Poker is a family of card games that share betting rules and usually hand rankings. Poker games differ in how the cards are dealt, how hands may be formed, whether the high or low hand wins the pot in a showdown , limits on bet sizes, and how many rounds of betting are allowed.In most modern poker...

. In 2006, he cosponsored H.R. 4777, the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act and voted for H.R. 4411, the Goodlatte-Leach Internet Gambling Prohibition Act. In 2008, he opposed H.R. 5767, the Payment Systems Protection Act (a bill that sought to place a moratorium on enforcement of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act while the U.S. Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve defined "unlawful Internet gambling").

Jones has sided with the Democrats on economic issues such as raising the minimum wage
Minimum wage
A minimum wage is the lowest hourly, daily or monthly remuneration that employers may legally pay to workers. Equivalently, it is the lowest wage at which workers may sell their labour. Although minimum wage laws are in effect in a great many jurisdictions, there are differences of opinion about...

. He is an animal lover and has said he would like a memorial created on the National Mall
National Mall
The National Mall is an open-area national park in downtown Washington, D.C., the capital of the United States. The National Mall is a unit of the National Park Service , and is administered by the National Mall and Memorial Parks unit...

 for war dogs. Jones endorsed Ron Paul
Ron Paul
Ronald Ernest "Ron" Paul is an American physician, author and United States Congressman who is seeking to be the Republican Party candidate in the 2012 presidential election. Paul represents Texas's 14th congressional district, which covers an area south and southwest of Houston that includes...

 in the 2008 race for president of the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. In an annual survey conducted by Washingtonian magazine, Congressional staffers voted Jones the "kindest" member of the House.

In 2007, Jones cosponsored legislation with fellow North Carolina congressman Heath Shuler
Heath Shuler
Joseph Heath Shuler is a businessman, a former NFL quarterback, and the U.S. Representative for , serving since 2007. He is a member of the Democratic Party....

 to require airlines to have sections of the aircraft where large movie screens were not visible. This was to avoid the situation where children could watch films potentially objectionable by their parents. He also was the only Republican co-sponsor of legislation to challenge Tom DeLay
Tom DeLay
Thomas Dale "Tom" DeLay is a former member of the United States House of Representatives, representing Texas's 22nd congressional district from 1984 until 2006. He was Republican Party House Majority Leader from 2003 to 2005, when he resigned because of criminal money laundering charges in...

's proposed changes to House ethics rules.

On February 14, 2008, Rep. Jones was one of only three Republicans (along with Ron Paul
Ron Paul
Ronald Ernest "Ron" Paul is an American physician, author and United States Congressman who is seeking to be the Republican Party candidate in the 2012 presidential election. Paul represents Texas's 14th congressional district, which covers an area south and southwest of Houston that includes...

 and Wayne Gilchrest
Wayne Gilchrest
Wayne Thomas Gilchrest is a former Republican member of the United States House of Representatives who represented . In 2008, the moderate Gilchrest was defeated in the Republican primary by State Senator Andy Harris....

) to vote to hold George W. Bush confidantes Joshua Bolten and Harriet Miers
Harriet Miers
Harriet Ellan Miers is an American lawyer and former White House Counsel. In 2005, she was nominated by President George W. Bush to be an Associate Justice of the U.S...

 in contempt of Congress for failing to testify and provide documents relevant to the firing of federal prosecutors. On September 15, 2009, Jones was one of only seven Republicans to vote for a resolution of disapproval of fellow Representative Joe Wilson for his actions during President Obama's address to a Joint Session of Congress on September 9, 2009.

Jones presents the Walter B. Jones Campus Defender of Freedom Award to a North Carolina activist selected by a committee at Duke University
Duke University
Duke University is a private research university located in Durham, North Carolina, United States. Founded by Methodists and Quakers in the present day town of Trinity in 1838, the school moved to Durham in 1892. In 1924, tobacco industrialist James B...

, including the Duke College Republicans; in 2009, Jones presented the award to B.J. Lawson
B.J. Lawson
William "B.J." Lawson is a Republican Party politician who ran for the United States House of Representatives in North Carolina's 4th congressional district in both the 2008 and 2010 elections....

. At the 2009 ceremony, Jones said that "The Republican party needs to have a face that can be seen and identified with by people of all races. The future of the Republic party lies in being able to relate to the average working family." He also spoke in favor of making Duke's endowment more transparent, saying that he is in favor of more openness on the part of institutions: "To me, sunshine is the answer."

On April 15, 2011, Jones was one of four Republican members of congress to vote against The Path to Prosperity
The Path to Prosperity
The Path to Prosperity was the Republican Party's budget proposal for the year 2012. It competed with budget proposals outlined separately by President Barack Obama. and the Congressional Progressive Caucus. The Republican proposal was formalized and passed by the House of Representatives on...

.

Iraq war


Jones was initially a strong supporter of the conflict in Iraq, but then became one of the leading Republicans opposed to continued involvement in Iraq. Jones became well-known for leading the effort, along with GOP Rep. Bob Ney
Bob Ney
Robert William Ney is an American politician from the U.S. state of Ohio. A Republican, Ney represented Ohio's 18th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1995 until November 3, 2006, when he resigned...

, to have french fries
French fries
French fries , chips, fries, or French-fried potatoes are strips of deep-fried potato. North Americans tend to refer to any pieces of deep-fried potatoes as fries or French fries, while in the United Kingdom, Australia, Ireland and New Zealand, long, thinly cut slices of deep-fried potatoes are...

 renamed "freedom fries
Freedom fries
Freedom fries is a political euphemism for French fries used by some people in the United States as a result of anti-French sentiment during the controversy over the U.S. decision to launch the 2003 invasion of Iraq. France expressed strong opposition in the United Nations to such an invasion...

" in House cafeteria menus as a protest against French
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 opposition to the 2003 invasion of Iraq
2003 invasion of Iraq
The 2003 invasion of Iraq , was the start of the conflict known as the Iraq War, or Operation Iraqi Freedom, in which a combined force of troops from the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and Poland invaded Iraq and toppled the regime of Saddam Hussein in 21 days of major combat operations...

. Jones later modified his stance on the war to a considerable extent. In 2005, he stated that he had come to believe that there had been little reason to go to war, despite his earlier support, which had been based upon selective intelligence supplied to Congress. He said of his previous position on the fries, "I wish it had never happened." In July 2006, the names were quietly changed back.

On March 17, 2005, he sponsored a bill endorsing the conduct of his Camp Lejeune constituent, controversial Marine Corps
United States Marine Corps
The United States Marine Corps is a branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for providing power projection from the sea, using the mobility of the United States Navy to deliver combined-arms task forces rapidly. It is one of seven uniformed services of the United States...

 Lieutenant
Lieutenant
A lieutenant is a junior commissioned officer in many nations' armed forces. Typically, the rank of lieutenant in naval usage, while still a junior officer rank, is senior to the army rank...

 Ilario Pantano
Ilario Pantano
Ilario G. Pantano is a former United States Marine Corps second lieutenant. He has also been an author, a television commentator, and served as a deputy sheriff in Wilmington, North Carolina...

, who faced charges (subsequently dropped) for having shot two Iraqis (allegedly unarmed civilians) on April 15, 2004.

Jones called on President
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 George W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Walker Bush is an American politician who served as the 43rd President of the United States, from 2001 to 2009. Before that, he was the 46th Governor of Texas, having served from 1995 to 2000....

 to apologize for misinforming Congress to win authorization for the war. Jones said, "If I had known then what I know today, I wouldn't have voted for that resolution."

He contends that the United States went to war "with no justification." On the subject, he said, "I just feel that the reason of going in for weapons of mass destruction, the ability of the Iraqis to make a nuclear weapon, that's all been proven that it was never there." He added that his change of opinion came about from attending the funeral
Funeral
A funeral is a ceremony for celebrating, sanctifying, or remembering the life of a person who has died. Funerary customs comprise the complex of beliefs and practices used by a culture to remember the dead, from interment itself, to various monuments, prayers, and rituals undertaken in their honor...

 of a sergeant killed in Iraq, when his last letter to his family was being read out. On June 16, 2005, he joined with three other members of Congress (Neil Abercrombie
Neil Abercrombie
Neil Abercrombie is the 7th and current Governor of Hawaii. He was the Democratic U.S. Representative of the First Congressional District of Hawaii which comprises urban Honolulu. He served in Congress from 1986 to 1987 and from 1991 to 2010 when he resigned to successfully run for governor...

, Dennis Kucinich
Dennis Kucinich
Dennis John Kucinich is the U.S. Representative for , serving since 1997. He was furthermore a candidate for the Democratic nomination for President of the United States in the 2004 and 2008 presidential elections....

 and Ron Paul
Ron Paul
Ronald Ernest "Ron" Paul is an American physician, author and United States Congressman who is seeking to be the Republican Party candidate in the 2012 presidential election. Paul represents Texas's 14th congressional district, which covers an area south and southwest of Houston that includes...

) in introducing a resolution calling for the start of a withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq to begin by October 2006. Jones covered the hallway outside his office with photographs of soldiers who had died in Iraq. He said, "If we were given misinformation intentionally by people in this administration, to commit the authority to send boys, and in some instances girls, to go into Iraq, that is wrong. Congress must be told the truth."

In 2007, he and Rep. William Delahunt (D-MA) introduced the Constitutional War Powers Resolution, which seeks to "prohibit the president from ordering military action without congressional approval, except when the United States or U.S. troops were attacked or when U.S citizens needed to be evacuated."

On January 12, 2007, he introduced H. J. Res. 14: Concerning the use of military force by the United States against Iran in the 110th congress. According to Jones on his web site, the resolution requires that — absent a national emergency created by an attack, or a demonstrably imminent attack, by Iran upon the United States or its armed forces — the President must consult with Congress and receive specific authorization prior to initiating any use of military force against Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

. This resolution was removed from a military spending bill for the war in Iraq by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
Nancy Pelosi
Nancy Patricia D'Alesandro Pelosi is the Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives and served as the 60th Speaker of the United States House of Representatives from 2007 to 2011...

 (D-CA) on March 13, 2007.

On March 23, 2007, Jones was one of two Republicans to vote for a bill that would require President George W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Walker Bush is an American politician who served as the 43rd President of the United States, from 2001 to 2009. Before that, he was the 46th Governor of Texas, having served from 1995 to 2000....

 to bring combat troops home from Iraq
Iraq
Iraq ; officially the Republic of Iraq is a country in Western Asia spanning most of the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range, the eastern part of the Syrian Desert and the northern part of the Arabian Desert....

 by September 1, 2008. The other Republican was Wayne Gilchrest
Wayne Gilchrest
Wayne Thomas Gilchrest is a former Republican member of the United States House of Representatives who represented . In 2008, the moderate Gilchrest was defeated in the Republican primary by State Senator Andy Harris....

 of Maryland's 1st congressional district
Maryland's 1st congressional district
Maryland's 1st congressional district is a congressional district in the U.S. state of Maryland. The district encompasses the entire Eastern Shore, including Salisbury, as well as parts of Anne Arundel, Baltimore and Harford counties....

.

Jones's views on the war in Iraq did not ingratiate him to Bush or to the Republican leadership, which prevented him from succeeding the late Jo Ann Davis
Jo Ann Davis
Jo Ann Davis was a Representative in the U.S. Congress. A member of the Republican Party from the United States Commonwealth of Virginia, she represented the state's from 2001 until her death in 2007. She was the second woman—after Leslie L...

 as ranking Republican on the Readiness Subcommittee
United States House Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness
House Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness is a subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee in the United States House of Representatives.-Jurisdiction:The Readiness Subcommittee exercises oversight and legislative jurisdiction over:...

 of the Armed Forces Committee. He was passed over for Randy Forbes
Randy Forbes
James Randy Forbes is the U.S. Representative for , serving since 2001. He is a member of the Republican Party.-Early life, education and career:...

 when the 110th Congress convened because the full committee's ranking member, Duncan Hunter
Duncan Hunter
Duncan Lee Hunter is an American politician. He was a Republican member of the House of Representatives from California's 52nd, 45th and 42nd districts from 1981 to 2009....

 of California
California
California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third-largest by land area...

, didn't agree with Jones' change of heart on the war. He had been approached by some Democrats about bolting the GOP and either becoming an independent caucusing with the Democrats or switching back to the Democratic Party outright.

Additionally, Jones' changed views on the war and other issues angered many Republicans in his district, which has the largest military presence of any in North Carolina. For the first time since his initial run for Congress, he faced substantive primary opposition in Onslow County commissioner Joe McLaughlin
Joseph R. McLaughlin (North Carolina politician)
Joseph R. McLaughlin is a Republican member of the Onslow County, North Carolina Board of Commissioners, and was a candidate for U.S. Congress challenging incumbent Walter B. Jones, Jr...

. However, on May 6, 2008, he defeated poorly funded McLaughlin by a 60% to 40% margin and was nominated for another term. Jones defeated Craig Weber in the general election by a margin of 65%-35%.

Political campaigns


Shortly after his father died, Jones unsuccessfully sought the Democratic nomination for his father's seat in the 103rd United States Congress
103rd United States Congress
- House of Representatives :- Leadership :- Senate :* President: Dan Quayle , until January 20, 1993** Al Gore , from January 20, 1993* President pro tempore: Robert Byrd - Majority leadership :* Majority Leader: George Mitchell...

 of 1992 (losing to Eva Clayton in a primary runoff).

He switched parties and won in the 3rd District in the 1994 Republican takeover of Congress
United States House elections, 1994
The 1994 U.S. House of Representatives election was held on November 8, 1994, in the middle of President Bill Clinton's first term. As a result of a 54-seat swing in membership from Democrats to Republicans, the Republican Party gained a majority of seats in the United States House of...

, defeating incumbent
Incumbent
The incumbent, in politics, is the existing holder of a political office. This term is usually used in reference to elections, in which races can often be defined as being between an incumbent and non-incumbent. For example, in the 2004 United States presidential election, George W...

 Democrat Martin Lancaster
Martin Lancaster
Harold Martin Lancaster is the former President of the North Carolina Community College System and former Chair of the National Council of State Directors of Community Colleges...

. The race was initially very close until Jones released a picture of Lancaster jogging with President Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton
William Jefferson "Bill" Clinton is an American politician who served as the 42nd President of the United States from 1993 to 2001. Inaugurated at age 46, he was the third-youngest president. He took office at the end of the Cold War, and was the first president of the baby boomer generation...

, whose socially liberal stands (especially on gays in the military) angered many voters in this district. Although Democrats have a large advantage in registered voters, the 3rd has always had a very strong social conservative tint; Jesse Helms
Jesse Helms
Jesse Alexander Helms, Jr. was a five-term Republican United States Senator from North Carolina who served as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee from 1995 to 2001...

 in particular had a large base of support here. With his victory, Jones became the first (and as of the 2008 elections, only) Republican to represent a significant portion of eastern North Carolina in the House since Reconstruction. The 3rd had incorporated a large amount of his father's former territory. Jones has been re-elected every two years since.

His most serious general election challenge came in 2000, when his opponent spent well in excess of $1.4 million in attempting to unseat him. Jones garnered some 63% of the vote in that contest, largely helped by George W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Walker Bush is an American politician who served as the 43rd President of the United States, from 2001 to 2009. Before that, he was the 46th Governor of Texas, having served from 1995 to 2000....

 winning the 3rd with his highest victory margin in the state. He was easily reelected to a 7th term in 2006, receiving 69% of the vote despite a very bad result for Republicans overall. In the aforementioned race, Jones ran against Craig Weber, a popular weatherman on WCTI-TV
WCTI-TV
WCTI-TV is the ABC-affiliated television station for the Inner Banks area of Eastern North Carolina that is licensed to New Bern. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on VHF channel 12 from a transmitter in Trenton along NC 58...

 in New Bern (the ABC
American Broadcasting Company
The American Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network. Created in 1943 from the former NBC Blue radio network, ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Company and is part of Disney-ABC Television Group. Its first broadcast on television was in 1948...

 affiliate for much of the district) and a former Marine
United States Marine Corps
The United States Marine Corps is a branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for providing power projection from the sea, using the mobility of the United States Navy to deliver combined-arms task forces rapidly. It is one of seven uniformed services of the United States...

.

Honor


A park in Havelock, North Carolina
Havelock, North Carolina
Havelock is a city in Craven County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 22,442 at the 2000 census, and estimated to be 21,906 in 2006...

 was named after Jones and is simply called Walter B. Jones Park.

External links