Robert H. Michel


Robert H. Michel

Infobox Officeholder
name = Robert Henry "Bob" Michel


imagesize = 175
small

caption =
order = 18th Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives
term_start = January 3, 1981
term_end = January 3, 1995
deputy = Trent Lott (1981-1989)
Dick Cheney (1989)
Newt Gingrich (1989-1995) (whips)
predecessor = John Rhodes
successor = Dick Gephardt
order2 = 13th Minority Whip of the United States House of Representatives
term_start2 = January 3, 1975
term_end2 = January 3, 1981
predecessor2 = Leslie C. Arends
successor2 = Trent Lott
order3 = Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois' 18th district
term_start3 = January 3, 1957
term_end3 = January 3, 1995
predecessor3 = Harold Himmel Velde
successor3 = Ray LaHood
birth_date = birth date and age|1923|03|23
birth_place = Peoria, Illinois
death_date =
death_place =
constituency = Illinois' 18th congressional district
party = Republican
spouse = Corinne Woodruff (1948-2003)
children = Scott, Bruce, Robin, Laurie
profession =
education = Bradley University
religion = Presbyterian


footnotes =

Robert Henry "Bob" Michel (born March 2 1923 in Peoria, Illinois) is a former member of the United States House of Representatives from Illinois.

Michel grew up in Peoria. When the Second World War broke out, he joined the United States Army and served with the 39th Infantry regiment as an infantryman in England, France, Belgium, and Germany from February 10 1943, to January 26 1946. He was wounded by machine gun fire and awarded two Bronze Stars, the Purple Heart, and four battle stars.

After the war, he attended Bradley University in Peoria, and graduated in 1948. From 1949 to 1956, he worked as an administrative assistant to U.S. Representative Harold Velde.

He was elected as a Republican to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1956 and served until his retirement on January 3, 1995. Michel served as Minority Whip from 94th Congress though the 96th Congress. Later, he served as Minority Leader from the 97th Congress through 103rd Congresses. A moderate, Michel was criticized by Newt Gingrich and other young, aggressive conservative congressmen for being too easy-going and not fighting hard enough for Republican goals in the House during its long period of Democratic control. Michel retired in 1995.

On January 18, 1989, outgoing president Ronald Reagan conferred upon him the Presidential Citizens Medal, the second highest civilian award given, making him the 7th recipient of the honor.

Michel stirred a minor controversy in the early 1990s when he fondly recalled minstrel shows in which he had participated in blackface as a young man, expressing his regret that they had fallen out of fashion.

While in Congress, Michel was the usual pitcher in the annual Democrats vs. Republicans baseball game.

Namesakes and honors

The Bob Michel Bridge, carrying Route 40 across the Illinois River in Peoria, is named after Robert H. Michel, as is the Robert H. Michel Student Center at Bradley University.

In the Capitol, the second-floor suite of offices occupied by the Speaker were designated the "Robert H. Michel Rooms" by the House in 1995.

External links

* [http://www.house.gov/rules/rl30607.pdf Information about Michel's Leadership positions (PDF File)]
* [http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodisplay.pl?index=M000692 Biography]


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