|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from California's 22nd district
January 3, 1993 - January 3, 1995
|Bob Lagomarsino (Redistricting)|
Roy Michael Huffington Jr.
September 3, 1947
Dallas, Texas, U.S.
(m. 1986; div. 1997)
|Education||Stanford University (BA, BS)|
Harvard University (MBA)
Michael Huffington (born September 3, 1947) is an American politician, bisexual LGBT activist, and film producer. He was a member of the Republican Party, and a congressman for one term, 1993-1995, from California. Huffington was married to Arianna Huffington, the Greek-born co-founder of HuffPost, from 1986 to 1997.
In 1965, Huffington graduated from Culver Military Academy in Culver, Indiana, where he received the Central States Amateur Rowing Association Medal when he rowed on the light weight crew. After graduation he was elected to the Culver Chapter of the Cum Laude Society. In 1970, he received a BS degree in engineering and a BA degree in economics concurrently from Stanford University. Huffington was a member of the varsity crew, student senator, and co-president of his senior class. In 1972, he received an MBA in finance from Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Huffington's wealth is derived from a merchant bank he started and his share of the family's Houston oil, gas and real estate firm that was sold to Taiwan interests in 1990. His father, Roy M. Huffington, made a fortune through natural gas interests in Indonesia.
In 1986, President Ronald Reagan appointed Huffington as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Negotiations Policy, with responsibility for conventional arms control negotiations. He was awarded the Secretary of Defense Medal for Outstanding Public Service.
In 1992, Huffington was elected to the House of Representatives from California's 22nd District (Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties). He spent a record $5.4 million on his campaign, 95% of it his own money. He spent about $3.5 million in the Republican primary, in which he defeated veteran incumbent Robert J. Lagomarsino. Huffington later defeated then Santa Barbara County Supervisor, Gloria Ochoa, in the general election. He donated his entire congressional salary to the Partnership for Children of Santa Barbara County in 1993, and to the Partnership for Children of San Luis Obispo County in 1994.
In 1994, after one term in the House, Huffington spent $28 million in a bid for the seat in the United States Senate held by Dianne Feinstein. She had won the seat in a special election two years earlier against John F. Seymour, who has been appointed in 1991 to fill the vacancy caused by the retirement of Governor-elect Pete Wilson. In the Republican primary, Huffington defeated William E. Dannemeyer. At the time, Huffington's campaign was the most expensive in a non-presidential election in American history. He lost to Feinstein in the general election by 1.9 percent of the vote.
During 1998, Huffington was co-chairman (with actor and director Rob Reiner) of Proposition 10 in California, which increased the state excise tax on cigarettes by 50 cents per pack. The resulting multi-hundred million dollars of tax revenue was used for prenatal care and for the health care and education of children under six years of age.
In the 2003 California recall election, Huffington endorsed Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger. His ex-wife, Arianna Huffington, was an opposing candidate. She withdrew before the election, although her name remained on the ballot.
On June 29, 2006, Huffington co-chaired the Log Cabin Republicans "The Courage To Lead: An Evening With The Governor" dinner that honored California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Huffington also personally contributed $1 for every $2 contributed to the Log Cabin Republicans (a 501(c)(4) tax designated organization) for that dinner.
In 2006, Huffington became the director of It's My Party Too, a group founded by former New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman. A moderate Republican organization with libertarian leanings, it advocated fiscal conservatism, social progressivism, environmental protection and limited government interference in personal matters. In 2007, It's My Party Too evolved into the Republican Leadership Council.
Huffington married Arianna Huffington, a Greek-born writer and lecturer, on April 12, 1986. They had two daughters and divorced in 1997. In December 2006, he became a blogger for The Huffington Post, which was co-founded by his ex-wife in 2005.
Since that time, Huffington has made a number of contributions to LGBT causes. Later that year, he provided the initial grant that launched SOIN (Sexual Orientation Issues in the News) at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication. Then in 2005, Huffington helped to establish a summer fellowship program for LGBT students at Stanford University. He also spoke at the National Equality March rally at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on October 11, 2009.
Huffington was raised Presbyterian, became Episcopalian at age 38, and ultimately joined the Greek Orthodox Church in 1996 after a visit to Istanbul, Turkey. Between 2007 and 2012, Huffington gave $2.5 million to establish the Huffington Ecumenical Institute at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, in order to promote dialogue between the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches. Concerning the Institute's mission, Huffington said, "My dream is that someday I'll get to see members of the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church be able to take communion in each other's churches."
Huffington found a post-political career as a film producer. From 1991 to 2000, he was co-owner of Crest Films Limited.
Among his other production credits:
|Democratic||Dianne Feinstein (incumbent)||3,979,152||46.7||-7.6|
|Peace and Freedom||Elizabeth Cervantes Barron||255,301||3.0||+0.2|
|Libertarian||Richard Benjamin Boddie||179,100||2.1||-0.6|
|American Independent||Paul Meeuwenberg||142,771||1.7||-0.9|
|Libertarian||William Howard Dilbeck||7,553||3.0|
|No party||Bialosky (write-in)||104||0.1|
|U.S. House of Representatives|
Robert J. Lagomarsino
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 22nd congressional district
|Party political offices|
John F. Seymour
| Republican nominee for U.S. Senator from California