Legislator Spotlight: Henry Hyde of Illinois
The Sixth Party System is rolling out a new on-going series taking a historical look at various Representatives and Senators who have served significant roles in the history of Congress. Only retired members will be examined. This examination will largely be ethnographic, with some analysis of the policies put forth by the individual.
Our first member is Henry Hyde of Illinois. He is certainly not my ideological soul mate, but nonetheless, his accomplishments and importance in the House cannot be denied.
Henry J. Hyde (R)
- Represented the Republican-centric suburbs north of Chicago, including cities in Cook and DuPage counties, such as Park Ridge, Wheaton,and Elmhurst.
- Most famously authored the Hyde Amendment language to federal appropriations bills, which has in perpetuity banned federal funds for abortion.
- He is widely considered an honest-broker and someone who legislates in good faith. Ideologically he is a compassionate conservative, as he has supported the assault weapons ban and family medical leave, while holding the line on most far-right evangelical ideations.
- His magnanimity allowed him to work as one of the most prolific legislators of his cohort. Was always willing to vote his conscience, and compromise for the greater good—a rare quality in American legislators.