United States Senator|
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2007
Serving with Rob Portman
|Preceded by||Mike DeWine|
|Vice Chair of the Joint Pensions Committee|
March 8, 2018 – January 3, 2019
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Position abolished|
|Ranking Member of the Senate Banking Committee|
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2015
|Preceded by||Mike Crapo|
|Member of the
U.S. House of Representatives|
from Ohio's 13th district
January 3, 1993 – January 3, 2007
|Preceded by||Donald J. Pease|
|Succeeded by||Betty Sutton|
|47th Secretary of State of Ohio|
January 12, 1983 – January 14, 1991
|Preceded by||Anthony J. Celebrezze Jr.|
|Succeeded by||Bob Taft|
|Member of the
Ohio House of Representatives|
from the 61st district
January 3, 1975 – December 31, 1982
|Preceded by||Joan Douglass|
|Succeeded by||Frank Sawyer|
Sherrod Campbell Brown
November 9, 1952
Mansfield, Ohio, U.S.
( m. 1979; div. 1987)
Connie Schultz ( m. 2004)
Yale University (
Ohio State University ( MA, MPA)
Sherrod Campbell Brown ( //,  born November 9, 1952) is an American politician serving as the senior United States Senator from Ohio, a seat he was first elected to in 2006. A member of the Democratic Party, he was the U.S. Representative for Ohio's 13th congressional district from 1993 to 2007 and the 47th Secretary of State of Ohio from 1983 to 1991. He started his political career in 1975 as an Ohio State Representative.
Brown defeated two-term Republican incumbent Mike DeWine in the 2006 U.S. Senate election and was reelected both in 2012, defeating state Treasurer Josh Mandel, and in 2018, defeating U.S. Representative Jim Renacci. In the Senate, he was chair of the Agriculture Subcommittee on Hunger, Nutrition and Family Farms and the Banking Subcommittee on Economic Policy, and is also a member of the Committee on Finance, the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, and Select Committee on Ethics. At the start of the 114th Congress in January 2015, Brown became the Ranking Democratic Member on the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs.  He was later appointed co-chair of the newly formed Joint Multiemployer Pension Solvency Committee in March 2018. 
- 1 Early life, education, and academic career
- 2 Early political career
- 3 U.S. House of Representatives
- 4 U.S. Senate
- 5 Potential national campaigns
- 6 Political positions
- 7 Committee assignments (115th Congress)
- 8 Personal life
- 9 Books authored
- 10 Electoral history
- 11 See also
- 12 References
- 13 External links
Brown was born in Mansfield, Ohio, the son of Emily (née Campbell) and Charles Gailey Brown, M.D.  He has Scottish, Irish, German, and English ancestry, and was named after his maternal grandfather.  He became an Eagle Scout in 1967. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Russian studies from Yale University in 1974. At Yale, he lived in Davenport College. While in college, Brown campaigned for liberal politicians such as George McGovern.  He went on to receive a Master of Arts degree in education and a Master of Public Administration degree from The Ohio State University at Columbus in 1979 and 1981, respectively. He taught at the Mansfield branch campus of The Ohio State University from 1979 to 1981.  He backpacked in India during the state of emergency imposed by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. 
During his senior year in college, Brown was recruited by a local Democratic leader to run for Ohio's state house.  Brown served as a state representative in Ohio from 1974 to 1982. At the time of his election to the Ohio House, he was the youngest person elected to that body.  In 1982, Brown ran for Ohio Secretary of State to succeed Anthony J. Celebrezze Jr. Brown won a four-way Democratic primary that included Dennis Kucinich, then defeated Republican Virgil Brown in the general election. In 1986, Brown was reelected, defeating Vincent C. Campanella. As Secretary of State, Brown focused on voter registration outreach.  In 1990, he lost reelection in a heated campaign against Republican Bob Taft. 
In 1992, Brown moved from Mansfield to Lorain, Ohio, and won a heavily contested Democratic primary for the open seat for Ohio's 13th district, in the western and southern suburbs of Cleveland, after eight-term incumbent Don Pease announced his retirement. The Democratic-leaning district gave him an easy win over the little-known Republican Margaret R. Mueller. He was reelected six times. 
The Democrats lost their long-held House majority in the 1994 elections, and stayed in the minority for the remainder of Brown's tenure. As ranking member of the Energy and Commerce Health subcommittee, Brown successfully advocated for increased funding to fight tuberculosis. 
In 2005, Brown led the Democratic effort to block the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA). For many months, Brown worked as whip on the issue, securing Democratic "nay" votes and seeking Republican allies. After several delays, the House of Representatives finally voted on CAFTA after midnight on July 28, 2005, which ended in passage by one vote. 
Brown was the ranking minority member on the House Energy and Commerce Committee's Health Subcommittee. He also served on the Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet and the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection. While serving on the House International Relations Committee, he was also a member of the Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific. 
In August 2005, Brown announced he would not run for the United States Senate seat held by two-term Republican incumbent Mike DeWine.  In October, however, Brown reconsidered his decision.  His announcement came shortly after Democrat Paul Hackett stated that he would soon announce his candidacy. On February 13, 2006, Hackett withdrew from the race, all but ensuring that Brown would win the Democratic nomination. In the May 2 primary, Brown won 78.05% of the Democratic vote. His opponent, Merrill Samuel Keiser Jr., received 21.95% of the vote. 
In April 2006, Brown, along with John Conyers, brought an action against George W. Bush and others, alleging violations of the Constitution in the passage of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005.  The case, Conyers v. Bush, was ultimately dismissed for lack of standing. 
On November 7, 2006, Brown defeated DeWine, 56% to 44%. 
Brown ran for reelection in 2012, facing opponent Josh Mandel, who in 2010 had defeated the incumbent state treasurer by 14 points. Mandel raised $2.3 million in the second quarter of 2011 alone, to Brown's $1.5 million.  Early on, Brown enjoyed a steady lead in the polls.  Mandel won the March Republican primary with 63% of the vote. 
The Washington Post reported that no candidate running for reelection (save Barack Obama) faced more opposition from outside groups in 2012 than Brown did. As of April 2012, over $5.1 million had been spent on television ads opposing him, according to data provided by a Senate Democratic campaign operative. The United States Chamber of Commerce spent $2.7 million. 60 Plus Association, a conservative group that opposes health care reform, spent another $1.4 million. Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS and the Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee also spent heavily in the race.  In May 2012, Brown campaigned with West Wing actor Martin Sheen. 
On November 6, 2012, Brown held his seat, winning 50.7% of the vote to Mandel's 44.7%. Independent candidate Scott Rupert received 4.6% of the vote. 
A staunch critic of free trade who has taken progressive stances on financial issues, Brown has said that the Democratic Party should place stronger emphasis on progressive populism. 
One of Bernie Sanders's closest allies in the U.S. Senate, Brown nevertheless endorsed Hillary Clinton and campaigned for her in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary in Ohio.  He was vetted as a potential vice-presidential running mate for Clinton. The choice came down to Brown and Tim Kaine, who was ultimately selected.  Brown had the distinct disadvantage that had Clinton won, Ohio's Republican Governor John Kasich would have chosen Brown's replacement in the Senate, whereas Kaine's replacement would be chosen by Democrat and Clinton ally Terry McAuliffe. 
In May 2017, Washington Monthly suggested that Brown could unite the establishment and progressive wings of the Democratic Party as a presidential candidate in 2020.  On November 12, 2018, Cleveland.com reported that Brown was "seriously" considering a presidential run. 
In a 2017 issue of Dissent, Michael Kazin introduced an interview with Brown by praising him as "a politician ahead of his time" and "perhaps the most class-conscious Democrat in Washington." Brown told Kazin that many Ohioans think "that people on the coasts look down on them" and blamed this notion on Fox News and the Wall Street Journal. 
Brown opposed the Iraq War and voted against the Iraq Resolution as a House Representative.  He voted against the $87 billion war budgetary supplement. He also voted for redeploying US troops out of Iraq by March 2008. 
In 2012, he co-sponsored a resolution to "oppose any policy that would rely on containment as an option in response to the Iranian nuclear threat."  In 2015, Brown co-sponsored an amendment to the budget that was unanimously approved by the Senate and that would reimpose sanctions on Iran if Iran violated the terms of the interim or final agreement by advancing its nuclear program. 
Weeks after the 2014 Hong Kong class boycott campaign and Umbrella Movement broke out which demanded genuine universal suffrage among other goals, Brown (the chair of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China), along with co-chair U.S. Rep. Chris Smith and U.S. Senators Ben Cardin, Marco Rubio, Roger Wicker, Dianne Feinstein, and Jeff Merkley, and U.S. Representatives Nancy Pelosi, Dan Lipinski and Frank Wolf, introduced the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act, which would update the United States–Hong Kong Policy Act of 1992 and U.S. commitment to democratic development in Hong Kong. 
In 2017, Brown criticized U.S. support for Saudi Arabia's military campaign in Yemen, saying "It’s becoming increasingly clear that Saudi Arabia has been deliberately targeting civilian targets. And that’s absolutely unacceptable..." 
In May 2018, Brown was one of 12 senators to sign a letter to President Trump urging him not to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal on the grounds that "Iran could either remain in the agreement and seek to isolate the United States from our closest partners, or resume its nuclear activities" if the US pulled out and that both possibilities "would be detrimental to our national security interests." 
Brown voted against a controversial Anti-Boycott Act initiated by Republicans,  which would make it illegal for U.S. companies to engage in boycotts against Israel and Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories. 
In December 2015, Brown co-sponsored a bill in Congress that would restrict ISIS's financing by authorizing new sanctions on foreign financial institutions that knowingly facilitate financial transactions with ISIS. The bill called for tightening international passport regulations and additional screening of persons attempting to enter the U.S. on certain types of visas. The bill would also provide grants to local law enforcement agencies to train for active shooter situations and terrorist attacks and to conduct cyber-training to identify and track extremists such as the couple behind the 2015 San Bernardino attack. Brown also called for banning those on the no fly list from purchasing assault weapons.   
Brown's opposition to the 2017 tax bill led to what was described as a "shouting match" with Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah, who accused Brown of "spouting off" to the effect that the tax bill benefited the rich. 
In March 2018, Vice President Mike Pence criticized Brown for his recent vote against the Republican tax bill ( TCJA).  Brown had argued the bill overwhelmingly benefited wealthy individuals and corporations with a much smaller impact to the middle class. 
In 2014, Brown introduced the Gold Star Fathers Act of 2014 (S. 2323; 113th Congress), a bill that would expand preferred eligibility for federal jobs to the fathers of certain permanently disabled or deceased veterans.  Brown said that "when a service member is killed in action or permanently and totally disabled, the government should do its part to be there for grieving parents - no matter if they're fathers or mothers." 
In 2015, Brown and U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan (Ohio) introduced legislation that would give military veterans priority in scheduling classes in colleges, universities, and other post-secondary education programs. 
Brown consistently votes in favor of gun control, which has earned him a "F" rating from the National Rifle Association (NRA).  He has criticized the political influence of gun manufacturers. 
Brown called the Republican legislature in Ohio "lunatics" for introducing a concealed carry bill that would allow individuals to carry guns into airplane terminals (before security), police buildings, private airplanes, and day care facilities. 
In the wake of the Orlando nightclub shooting, Brown participated in the Chris Murphy gun control filibuster.  A few weeks later, Brown voted for the Feinstein Amendment, which would have barred any individual on the terrorist watchlist from buying a gun. 
In February 2013, conservative commentator George F. Will wrote in support of Brown's proposal to break up consolidated banks and finance industry conglomerates by restoring the Glass-Steagall Act. 
In 2016, after the leak of the Panama Papers, Brown and Elizabeth Warren urged the Treasury Department to investigate whether U.S. individuals were involved in possible tax avoidance and misconduct associated with the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca. 
In the wake of the Flint water crisis, Brown introduced legislation that would force the federal government to step in when cities and states fail to warn residents about lead-contaminated drinking water and to give Ohio's school districts money to test it.  
Brown supported the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, voting for it in December 2009,  and he voted for the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010. 
Brown did not cosponsor Senator Bernie Sanders's single-payer health plan, despite saying he has "always been supportive" of the system. Brown also said he was supporting his own plan, which would lower Medicare eligibility to 55.   In 2006, Brown cosponsored the similar Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act. 
Brown voted against prohibiting same-sex couples from adopting children in Washington D.C. He received a 100% score from the Human Rights Campaign in 2005-2006, indicating a pro-gay rights stance.  On December 18, 2010, he voted in favor of the Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act of 2010. 
In October 2018, Brown was one of 20 senators to sign a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urging him to reverse the rolling back of a policy that granted visas to same-sex partners of LGBTQ diplomats who had unions that were not recognized by their home countries, writing that too many places around the world have seen LGBTQ individuals "subjected to discrimination and unspeakable violence, and receive little or no protection from the law or local authorities" and that refusing to let LGBTQ diplomats bring their partners to the US would be equivalent of upholding "the discriminatory policies of many countries around the world." 
Brown praised West Virginia teachers who held a nine-day strike in early 2018. "When this society fails to pay its teachers a living wage, it's pretty shameful," he said. "Those teachers engaged the public to put pressure on a Republican legislature that historically underfunds education and they got the legislature to finally do the right thing. So I was proud of those teachers for standing up." He also praised other recent activist demonstrations, such as the anti-gun protests by Parkland High School students in Florida and the Women's March after President Trump's inauguration. "That's what makes our country great — when people stand up and push back when they're mistreated," he said. 
Brown has criticized free trade with China and other countries. In a 2006 Washington Post article, Brown argued against free trade on the grounds that labor activism was responsible for the growth of the U.S. middle class, and that the U.S. economy is harmed by trade relations with countries that lack the kind of labor regulations that have resulted from that activism. 
In 2011, the Columbus Dispatch noted that Brown "loves to rail against international trade agreements."  Brown's book, Myths of Free Trade, argues that "an unregulated global economy is a threat to all of us."  In his book, he recommends adopting measures that would allow for emergency tariffs, protect Buy America laws, including those that give preference to minority and women-owned businesses, and hold foreign producers to American labor and environmental standards.  Brown was the co-author and sponsor of a bill that would officially declare China a currency manipulator and require the Department of Commerce to impose countervailing duties on Chinese imports. 
In May 2016, Brown called for tariffs to be imposed on imports from China and praised Hillary Clinton's plan to enforce rules and trade laws and triple the enforcement budgets at the United States Department of Commerce and the International Trade Commission. 
- Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry 
Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs (Ranking Member)
- Subcommittee on Economic Policy (Ex-Officio)
- Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Protection (Ex-Officio)
- Subcommittee on Housing, Transportation, and Community Development (Ex-Officio)
- Subcommittee on National Security and International Trade and Finance (Ex-Officio)
- Subcommittee on Securities, Insurance, and Investment (Ex-Officio)
- Committee on Finance 
- Committee on Veterans' Affairs 
Brown's second wife, Connie Schultz, was a newspaper columnist at the Cleveland Plain Dealer, but resigned because being a politician's spouse presented a conflict of interest.  She won a Pulitzer Prize in 2005.  She is also the author of Life Happens (2007) and ...and His Lovely Wife (2008), in which she describes her experiences as the spouse of a U.S. Senate candidate.  Brown was married to Larke Recchie from 1979 to 1987, and they had two children. During their divorce proceedings, Recchie obtained a restraining order against Brown to keep him from harassing or annoying her and from "doing bodily harm." In a supporting affidavit, she said she was "in fear for the safety and well-being of myself and our children due to [Brown's] physical violence and abusive nature" and that Brown had "intimidated, pushed, shoved and bullied" her on several occasions.  Years later, Recchie walked back her claims of physical violence against Brown.  She and Schultz became friends and filmed an ad together for Brown's 2006 Senate campaign. Recchie hosted a fund-raising event for Brown's 2012 reelection campaign against Republican Josh Mandel and issued a statement saying, "I understand that in campaigns you often have to go after your opponent, but Josh Mandel should know better than to go after our family. I ask that he immediately put a stop to this kind of politics. I was proud to support Sherrod in 2006 and I'm proud to support him again this time around against Josh Mandel. Josh Mandel should immediately stop this kind of dirty campaigning." 
On May 18, 2014, Brown was awarded an honorary doctor of public service degree from Otterbein University. Along with his wife, Brown delivered a keynote address at the undergraduate commencement. 
Brown is the author of two books:
- Congress from the Inside: Observations from the Majority and the Minority ISBN 0-87338-630-2
- Myths of Free Trade: Why American Trade Policy Has Failed ISBN 1-56584-928-0
|Libertarian||Margaret Ann Leech||143,943||4|
|Democratic||Sherrod Brown (inc.)||1,805,833||60|
|Democratic||Sherrod Brown (inc.)||1,604,058||47|
|Republican||Margaret R. Mueller||88,889||35|
|Independent||Werner J. Lange||3,844||2|
|Republican||Gregory A. White||86,422||46|
|Independent||John M. Ryan||2,430||1|
|Republican||Kenneth C. Blair, Jr.||87,108||36|
|Natural Law||David Kluter||8,707||4|
|Republican||Grace L. Drake||72,666||38|
|Republican||Rick H. Jeric||84,295||32|
|Natural Law||David Kluter||3,108||1|
|Democratic||Merrill Samuel Keiser, Jr.||163,628||22|
|Independent||Richard Duncan (write-in)||830||0|
- Ohio United States Senate elections
- Election Results, U.S. Representative from Ohio, 13th District
- List of United States Representatives from Ohio
- Currency Exchange Rate Oversight Reform Act of 2011
- Brown–Kaufman amendment
- List of Eagle Scouts
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H.Con.Res.117 - Expressing the sense of Congress that the United States Government should reaffirm its unwavering commitment to the Taiwan Relations Act as the cornerstone of United States relations with Taiwan, and for other purposes., Congress.gov, March 25, 2003
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Unsafe Lead Levels in Tap Water Not Limited to Flint,
New York Times, February 8, 2016
Jo Ingles, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown Wants Water Tested In Ohio's Schools, Statehouse News Bureau, May 3, 2016
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- Interview With Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown, CNN, May 15, 2016
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- "Sherrod Brown on the Issues". www.ontheissues.org. Retrieved 2019-01-11.
- Monk, Jonathan (January 24, 2018). "Senator Sherrod Brown applauds President Trumps washing machine tariffs". WTOL. Retrieved January 25, 2018.
- Defense Department Pushed to Buy 'Made in America' Military Uniforms, ABC news, October 18, 2012
- "Committee Membership | The United States Senate Committee On Agriculture, Nutrition & Forestry". www.agriculture.senate.gov. Retrieved 2018-08-01.
- "Membership | United States Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs". www.banking.senate.gov. Retrieved 2018-08-01.
- "Membership | The United States Senate Committee on Finance". www.finance.senate.gov. Retrieved 2018-08-01.
- "Committee Members | United States Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs". www.veterans.senate.gov. Retrieved 2018-08-01.
- "Connie Schultz, Plain Dealer Columnist". cleveland.com. Archived from the original on August 25, 2010. Retrieved August 29, 2010.
- The 2005 Pulitzer Prize Winner in Commentary: Connie Schultz of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland.
- "...AND HIS LOVELY WIFE by Connie Schultz". Kirkus Review. May 20, 2010. Retrieved January 25, 2018.
- "The old divorce claims: A 'despicable' attack from Josh Mandel, or fair game against Sherrod Brown?". cleveland.com. Retrieved 2018-11-19.
- "Dark money website revives allegations from Sherrod Brown's 1980s-era divorce". cleveland.com. Retrieved 2018-11-19.
- Rogin, Ali (July 27, 2016). "Sherrod Brown: Everything You Need to Know". ABC News. Retrieved October 22, 2016.
- "Religious affiliation of members of 115th Congress" (PDF). pewresearch.org. Pew Research Center. Retrieved January 16, 2019.
- "Board of Trustees". Gallaudet University. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
- "Senator and Writer Duo Address Commencement". Otterbein Towers (Early Summer 2014): 7. Retrieved June 29, 2015.
- "Election Statistics". Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives. Retrieved January 10, 2008.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sherrod Brown.|
- Sherrod Brown official U.S. Senate site
- Sherrod Brown for Senate
- Sherrod Brown at Curlie
- Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Profile at Vote Smart
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission
- Legislation sponsored at the Library of Congress
- Appearances on C-SPAN
- Sherrod Brown columns at HuffPost
- Collected news and commentary at the Cleveland Plain Dealer