Senator John Cornyn
Republican - Texas United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510
John Cornyn, 50, of San Antonio, was sworn in on December 2, 2002 to replace Phil Gramm after winning the November election in a landslide victory.
John Cornyn came to the U.S. Senate with a commitment to strengthen our national defense and homeland security, get the economy moving again, improve education for our children, and reform Medicare by offering a prescription drug benefit for seniors who need it. Senator Cornyn will work with the Texas Congressional Delegation to promote solid, conservative Texas values in Washington.
Serving Texas as Attorney General from 1999-2002, John Cornyn won wide praise for his dedication to professionalism over politics.
As the state's chief law enforcement officer, he was responsible for directing many programs vital to the interests of Texas families, such as child support and consumer protection as well as providing legal representation to more than 300 state agencies.
After serving six years as a District Court Judge in San Antonio, he was elected to the Texas Supreme Court in 1990 and reelected in 1996. He resigned from the Supreme Court to run for Attorney General, promising to halt the growing influence of special interests and reverse the under achieving performance of key agency programs. He was the first Republican to win the position since Reconstruction.
Senator Cornyn was the first Texas Attorney General in nearly 20 years to personally appear before the U.S. Supreme Court doing so on two occasions, including arguing for the right of Texas school children to conduct voluntary prayers before high school football games.
His professional leadership has won extensive recognition, including from the Federal Office of Child Support enforcement for national leadership in child support collections, fatherhood initiatives and client services. Business Week magazine has called him a national leader on privacy protection interests. In 2000, he received the Outstanding Texas Leader Award from the John Ben Shepperd Public Leadership Forum. In 2001, the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas presented him with the James Madison Award for his efforts to promote open government. He was also recognized in 2002 by the Texas chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Publishers for his outstanding Hispanic outreach at the Office of the Attorney General.
In 1999, John Cornyn launched Texas Exile, a crime control initiative that takes guns from career criminals without infringing on the rights of law-abiding citizens. During his tenure Texas led the nation in prosecuting federal gun crimes, while working in conjunction with federal, state and local law enforcement officials to help prevent gun violence.
Senator Cornyn was born in Houston on February 2, 1952, the son of John and Gale Cornyn, both native Texans. His father, a B-17 pilot in World War II, was an oral pathologist in the U.S. Air Force and, after his retirement, taught at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio.
A graduate of Trinity University and St. Mary's School of Law, both in San Antonio, Senator Cornyn also earned a Masters of Law from the University of Virginia Law School in 1995. He was named the St. Mary's Distinguished Law School Graduate in 1994 and a Trinity University Distinguished Alumnus in 2001.
He has been married to Sandy Cornyn for 23 years. They have two daughters, Danley and Haley. The Cornyns currently divide their time between Austin and Washington, D.C.
Alphabetical Listing of Senators