Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Congressional Sex Scandals

The Singing Senator

Craig began his elected career by winning a seat to the Idaho Senate in 1974 and moving on to represent Idaho's First Congressional district in the House of Representatives in 1980. After ten years in the House he ran for and won a Senate seat, defeating his opponent with 57 percent of the vote.

The Singing Senators: Sens. James Jeffords, R-Vt., from left, John Ashcroft, R-Mo., Larry Craig, R-Idaho, and Trent Lott, R-Miss.
The Singing Senators: Sens. James Jeffords, R-Vt., from left,
John Ashcroft, R-Mo., Larry Craig, R-Idaho, and Trent Lott,
R-Miss.

Craig, who had been raised on a ranch in rural Idaho and had attended a one-room school house, graduated from the University of Idaho in 1969 with a bachelor's degree in political science. He married in 1983 and adopted his wife's three children. The couple never had other children. Craig's generally conservative record included votes against federal funding for abortion, in favor of surveillance of telephone and other communications of U.S. citizens, and against expanding federal funding of children's health care. He had also been a reliable negative vote on gay issues. He voted in favor of the Defense of Marriage Act in 1996 preventing interstate recognition of same-sex marriages and defining marriage for purposes of federal law as exclusively between one man and one woman, voted no to expand hate crimes to include sexual orientation in 2000 and voted yes to create a Constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in 2006. He was a vocal critic of Bill Clinton during the Monica Lewinski scandal, calling Clinton a "nasty, bad, naughty" boy on Meet the Press.

He additionally, in his off-hours, formed the Singing Senators barbershop quartet in 1995 with fellow Senators Trent Lott, John Ashcroft and James Jeffords.

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