|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Michigan's 7th district
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2011
|Preceded by||Mark Schauer|
January 3, 2007 – January 3, 2009
|Preceded by||Joe Schwarz|
|Succeeded by||Mark Schauer|
|Member of the|
Michigan House of Representatives
January 3, 1983 – January 3, 1999
|Preceded by||James E. Hadden|
|Succeeded by||Doug Spade|
|Constituency||40th district (1983–1992)|
57th district (1992–1999)
Timothy Lee Walberg
April 12, 1951
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
|Education||Taylor University (BA)|
Wheaton College (MA)
Timothy Lee Walberg (born April 12, 1951) is an American politician. A member of the Republican Party, he has served as the U.S. representative for Michigan's 7th congressional district since 2011. He previously represented the district from 2007 to 2009.
Walberg was born and educated in Chicago, Illinois, the son of Alice Ann and John A. Walberg. His paternal grandparents were Swedish. He left a position with the U.S. Forest Service to pursue higher education. He studied forestry at Western Illinois University and attended Moody Bible Institute before earning a B.A. in religious education from Taylor University. By then Walberg was halfway through a four-year stint as a pastor at Grace Fellowship Church in New Haven, Indiana, which concluded when he enrolled in graduate school at Wheaton College. After receiving an M.A. in communications in 1978, Walberg relocated to Tipton, Michigan, where he led services at Union Gospel Church.
Walberg was a member of the Michigan House of Representatives from 1983 to 1998. He also spent time as a pastor and as a division manager for the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago while continuing to live in Michigan.
After six years out of politics, Walberg ran in a field of six candidates in the 2004 Republican primary for the 7th District after six-term incumbent Nick Smith retired. Walberg finished third in the primary. State Senator Joe Schwarz won the primary and the general election.
Walberg defeated Schwarz in the Republican primary. In the general election, he defeated Democratic nominee Sharon Renier, 50%–46%.
In 2007, there was a failed recall effort against Walberg.
Entering the 2008 race, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Chris Van Hollen identified Walberg as one of the most vulnerable Republican incumbents in Congress. On August 23, 2007, State Senate Minority Leader Mark Schauer announced he would challenge Walberg. The previous occupant of the seat, Joe Schwarz, who lost to Walberg in the 2006 Republican primary, declined to run but on September 30 endorsed Schauer.
Schauer narrowly defeated Walberg in the November election, 49% to 47%. Between the two candidates, around $3.5 million was spent on the campaign, making it one of the most expensive House races in the 2008 election. Schauer outspent Walberg by nearly $300,000.
On July 14, 2009, Walberg announced that he would challenge incumbent Mark Schauer. He defeated Marvin Carlson and Brian Rooney in the Republican primary.
Polling showed the race as a dead heat. Walberg defeated Schauer, 50%–45%.
Wahlberg defeated Democratic nominee Kurt Haskell, 53%–43%.
Walberg defeated former Democratic State Representative Pam Byrnes with 54% of the vote.
Walberg defeated Doug North in the August 2 Republican primary and Democratic nominee State Representative Gretchen Driskell in the general election, with 55% of the vote.
Walberg defeated Driskell again, with 53.8% of the vote.
Walberg defeated Driskell a third time, with 58.7% of the vote.
Walberg has repeatedly invoked birther conspiracy theories about President Barack Obama, arguing that Obama should have been impeached over his birth certificate.
Walberg has repeatedly voted to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
On July 23, 2014, Walberg introduced the Senior Executive Service Accountability Act, a bill that would give government agencies tools to remove executives in the Senior Executive Service for performance issues. In January 2016, the bill was referred to the United States House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
In 2015, Walberg cosponsored an resolution to amend the US constitution to ban same-sex marriage. Walberg also cosponsored a resolution disagreeing with the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, which held that same-sex marriage bans violated the constitution.
Walberg rejects the scientific consensus on climate change. On the subject, he said in May 2017, "I believe that there is a creator in God who is much bigger than us. And I’m confident that, if there’s a real problem, he can take care of it."
In December 2020, Walberg was one of 126 Republican members of the House of Representatives to sign an amicus brief in support of Texas v. Pennsylvania, a lawsuit filed at the United States Supreme Court contesting the results of the 2020 presidential election, in which Joe Biden defeated incumbent Donald Trump. The Supreme Court declined to hear the case on the basis that Texas lacked standing under Article III of the Constitution to challenge the results of an election held by another state.
Walberg and his wife Sue live in Tipton (near Tecumseh), where they brought up their three children. Walberg's son Matthew works as a crime reporter for the Chicago Tribune.
Walberg is an ordained pastor. Ordained as a Baptist, he currently identifies as nondenominational and attends a church affiliated with the Church of the United Brethren in Christ.
On November 15, 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, Walberg tested positive for the virus.
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