Olympia Snowe: At a Glance
Senator Olympia J. Snowe, the senior Republican Senator for the State of Maine, is known nationally for her work on budget deficit reduction, defense, health care, education technology, women’s issues, and student financial aid. Snowe has served the citizens of Maine since 1973, when she was first elected to the Maine House of Representatives, succeeding her first husband, the late Peter Snowe. In 1976, she was elected to the Maine Senate, gaining particular recognition for her work on health care issues.
In 1978, Snowe was elected to serve in the United States House of Representatives – the youngest Republican woman ever elected to the House – an office to which she was subsequently re-elected seven times, before her 1994 election to the United States Senate. In 2000, Senator Snowe – a Republican in an increasingly blue state – won re-election to the Senate, attaining nearly 70% of the votes cast, against the President of the Maine Senate. She recently announced that she will seek a third term of service in 2006.
Senator Snowe has never lost an election, and regularly attains over 60% of the vote; she is “the standard against which all post-war political figures must be judged in terms of electoral success” (Christian Potholm, An Insider’s Guide to Maine Politics: 1946-1996). She was described by Congressional Quarterly as a “New England brand of political pragmatism and fiscal moderation”. She has a record of tireless public service and strong advocay of issues which spans three decades; throughout that career, she has developed a reputation as an important leader with deep concerns for a variety of issues that are particularly germaine to America in this time: strong national defense, healthcare, the environment, fiscal prudence in government, and support for small business.
Senator Snowe is married to former Maine Governor John R. McKernan Jr.; she is a member of the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in Lewiston, Maine.