Lamar Alexander is considered to be one of the most bipartisan Republican members of
the Senate. He has announced that he will not seek re-election in 2020.
Alexander graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Vanderbilt University and received a J.D. from
the New York University. He won election as governor of Tennessee in 1978. He served as
president of the University of Tennessee from 1988 until 1991, when he was appointed
Secretary of Education under President Bush. In 2002, he was elected to the US Senate,
where he is chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.
Alexander voted against the Affordable Care Act of 2009. He voted against a bill to expand
background checks for gun buyers. In 2014 he received a rating of 74% from the NRA. He
is opposed to abortion rights and to same sex marriage. He does not believe in using
federal spending to promote economic growth. In 2017 Alexander voted in favor of funding
for international climate change dialogue. According to 538, Alexander has voted 91% in
line with Trump, although he opposed the border wall “National Emergency” declaration.
Lamar is married to Leslee (Honey) Buhler. They have 4 children and 9 grandchildren.
After eight years as Governor, the Alexander family moved to Australia, where he wrote a
book, “Six Months Off.” He is also a pianist who has performed on the Grand Ole Opry,
with the Billy Graham Crusade and with Tennessee symphonies.