John Culberson (R-TX-7)i
John Culberson Congressman Texas District 7
John Culberson Biography from House.gov
Biography of John Culberson
As a fiscally conservative “Jeffersonian Republican,” Congressman John Culberson is committed to Thomas Jefferson’s vision of limited government, individual liberty, and states’ rights. Simply put, John Culberson believes in “Letting Texans Run Texas.”
John Culberson was elected in 2000 to represent the 7th District, a seat formerly held by President George H. W. Bush and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Archer. In Congress, John’s priorities include strengthening the economy by cutting taxes, creating jobs, and balancing the budget; securing the border, advancing medical and scientific research; and improving Houston transportation.
John is a member of the House Appropriations Committee, which is responsible for funding the federal government. His position on the committee allows him to promote his vision for effective government – lower taxes, less regulation, and more local control. In 2011, John was selected to chair the Subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs. With the third largest subcommittee budget on the Appropriations Committee, John is committed to providing our military and veterans with the very best care and resources while eliminating inefficient programs.
In 2011, John was also selected to be the Vice Chair of the Homeland Security Subcommittee. John believes the lawlessness on the border requires immediate action, and in close cooperation with the Texas Border Sheriffs’ Coalition, he continues to secure federal funding for the sheriffs to enforce existing law and provide the necessary support for our Border Patrol agents.
In addition to his leadership roles on two Subcommittees, John also serves on the Commerce, Justice and Science Subcommittee, where he’s a tireless advocate for law enforcement and NASA.
John is also a zealous advocate for increasing our national investment in medical and scientific research. He recognizes that breakthroughs in these areas are vital to meeting the economic and technological challenges we face in the 21st century.
John also believes in cost-effective transportation projects that reduce congestion on Houston’s busy freeways. His signature transportation project, the Katy Freeway expansion, is the nation’s first combination Interstate highway with locally-owned toll lanes. The project was finished years ahead of schedule, and according to TxDOT has cut travel time in half.
A life-long Texan, John Culberson earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Southern Methodist University in Dallas in 1981. After college, he worked for his father’s political consulting and advertising agency before earning a Juris Doctorate degree from South Texas College of Law in Houston. Before his election to Congress, he practiced law as a civil defense attorney with the Houston firm Lorance and Thompson.
In 1986, John was elected to the Texas House of Representatives while he was a law student. He spent 14 years in the Texas House and in his last term in 1999, he was selected by his peers to serve as Minority Whip.
He is best remembered in Austin for his successful effort to restore state control of the Texas prison system from a federal judge. After introducing and passing legislation in the Texas House, and drafting key pieces of federal law, John fought in court on behalf of his legislation and the ruling returned full authority over state prisons to the Texas Legislature.
John and his wife, Belinda, have been married nearly 20 years and have a 15 year old daughter, Caroline. They are members of Memorial Drive United Methodist Church.
Biography from Culberson for Congress
John Culberson is the third Congressman to represent the Seventh District of Texas. The Texas Legislature created District Seven in 1965, and George H. W. Bush was elected as the first Congressman in 1966. Bill Archer succeeded him in 1970, and John Culberson was elected in 2000.
John Culberson is a native Houstonian and a lifelong resident of District Seven. He and his wife, Belinda, were married in 1989, and they have a twelve year old daughter. The Culbersons are members of Memorial Drive United Methodist Church. Congressman Culberson grew up in West University Place, where he attended West University Elementary School. He graduated from Lamar High School, and went on to earn his Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Southern Methodist University in Dallas in 1981. After college, he worked with his father, Jim Culberson, at his political consulting and advertising agency helping dozens of local and state Republican candidates win their races. He earned his Juris Doctorate degree from South Texas College of Law in Houston. He practiced law as a civil defense attorney with Lorance and Thompson until he was sworn in to serve in Congress.
In 1986, while still a law student, John Culberson was elected to the Texas House of Representatives. Over his fourteen years in the House his principal committee assignments were the Public Education Committee and the Corrections Committee. Beginning with his first term in 1987, he was a member of the Republican Whip team in the Texas House, and in his last term in 1999, his colleagues selected him to be the Minority Whip.
While serving in Austin, his most significant achievement was his successful eleven year effort to take back control of Texas’ prison system from federal District Judge William Wayne Justice. That experience taught him how to truly restore the 10th Amendment and let Texans run Texas. He did the legal research to design and pass state law, HB 124 in 1991 to lay the proper legal foundation. Culberson then helped draft key pieces of a federal law, the Prison Litigation Reform Act in 1997, to ensure that the effort would succeed. Acting in his official capacity as state representative, Culberson then used these two laws to sue Judge Justice in Justice’s own courtroom.
As the Austin American Statesman reported on February 15, 1999, “when Culberson launched his campaign [to take back Texas prisons], most of his fellow lawmakers ignored him. ‘Culberson’s crusade,’ some called it…But few are underestimating Culberson now…” On June 17, 2002, in the landmark prison reform case now known as Ruiz vs. Johnson, et al., and Culberson, et al., Judge Justice signed the final order ending his 30 year reign and returning full authority over state prisons to the Texas Legislature. Today, the primary reference book on Congress, the National Journal’s 2004 Almanac of American Politics, (AAP), reports in its profile of District Seven that after his election in 2000, “Culberson quickly showed his political instincts when he became the freshman representative on the Republican Steering Committee, which makes House Committee assignments.” On June 11, 2001, Roll Call newspaper reported that, “After making sure that everyone else in his class was well situated, Culberson was rewarded with [a seat on the House] Transportation Committee. He is particularly pleased since his top local legislative priority is securing funds for the expansion of the Katy Freeway… ‘My experience in the Texas Legislature and my experience so far in Congress is that doing the right thing for the right reasons always has good consequences,’ Culberson said.” On February 2, 2003, the Houston Chronicle reported: “Departing the [Transportation Committee] is Rep. John Culberson, an up and coming conservative who managed to land an even better position. Culberson is on the powerful House Appropriations Committee, and this past week was awarded a coveted spot on that panel’s Transportation Subcommittee.”
Congressman Culberson serves on the House Appropriations Committee, and is a member of the House Republican Whip team. He currently serves on the Commerce, Justice, Science Subcommittee and the Homeland Security Subcommittee, where he works to secure our borders and win the War on Terror.