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Tom Tancredo

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Subject: Results of the 2008 Republican Party presidential primaries, Republican Party presidential debates, 2008, Colorado gubernatorial election, 2010, United States presidential election, 2008 timeline, Political positions of Republican candidates, 2008
Collection: 1945 Births, American Anti–illegal Immigration Activists, American Evangelicals, American People of Italian Descent, American Presbyterians, Christian Creationists, College Republicans, Colorado Republicans, Constitution Party (United States) Politicians, Former Roman Catholics, Italian-American Culture in Colorado, Living People, Members of the Colorado House of Representatives, Members of the United States House of Representatives from Colorado, Politicians from Denver, Colorado, Republican Party Members of the United States House of Representatives, Tea Party Movement Activists, United States Presidential Candidates, 2008, University of Northern Colorado Alumni
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Tom Tancredo

Tom Tancredo
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Colorado's 6th district
In office
January 3, 1999 – January 3, 2009
Preceded by Daniel Schaefer
Succeeded by Mike Coffman
Personal details
Born Thomas Gerard Tancredo
(1945-12-20) December 20, 1945
Denver, Colorado, U.S.
Political party Republican (Before 2010; 2011–present)
Constitution (2010–2011)
Spouse(s) Jackie Tancredo
Alma mater University of Northern Colorado
Religion Nondenominational Christianity

Thomas Gerard "Tom" Tancredo (; born December 20, 1945) is an American politician from Colorado, who represented the state's sixth congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from 1999 to 2009, as a Republican. He ran for President of the United States during the 2008 election, and was the Constitution Party's unsuccessful nominee for Governor of Colorado in 2010.

Tancredo was elected to the

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Daniel Schaefer
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Colorado's 6th congressional district

Succeeded by
Mike Coffman
Party political offices
Preceded by
Clyde Harkins
Constitution nominee for Governor of Colorado
Most recent
  • Run, Tom, run!, Jane Chastain, WorldNetDaily, January 18, 2007
  • Denver Post Column: "Tancredo for president in 2008? Well, why not?"
  • Congressman: Destroying sites option if U.S. attacked
  • mp3 audio file of "bomb holy sites" radio interview
  • Rating by League of Conservation Voters
  • NPR tackles Tancredo by Brent Bozell
  • Tancredo's Raw Truth About Terrorism by Diana West
  • He supports Tancredo's 'strong anti-illegal immigration campaign' by Gary Kastrup
  • Why The Immigration Debate Matters by Jane Roh
  • Tancredo for president by Joseph Farah
Media coverage
  • Back Roads Interview with Rep. Tom Tancredo M.E. Sprengelmeyer, Rocky Mountain News, July 1, 2007
  • Interview with Tom Tancredo at Right Wing News
  • In Mortal Danger: The Battle for America's Border and SecurityTom Tancredo talks about his book
  • Tancredo on the Record by Amanda Griscom Little
  • Tom Tancredo at Vote 2008 at PBS NewsHour
  • Tom Tancredo Ranking in Spartan Internet Political Performance Index (2008 presidential campaign)
  • Genealogy of Tom Tancredo
Documentaries, topic pages and databases
  • Tancredo for Governor official campaign site

External links

  1. ^ "Tancredo Not Seeking Re-election". CBS News. 29 October 2007. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  2. ^ Catalina Camia (23 May 2013): Tom Tancredo jumps into Colo. governor's race USA Today, retrieved 31 July 2013
  3. ^ William Addams Reitwiesner. "Ancestry of Tom Tancredo". Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  4. ^ Robert Sanchez, “Down but not out”, 5280, Feb. 2011.
  5. ^ Anne C. Mulkern (November 27, 2005). "Firebrand Tancredo puts policy over party line". The Denver Post. Retrieved November 9, 2009. 
  6. ^ "Tom Tancredo". Right Web. 6 February 2008. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  7. ^ "Allard: No third term" M.E. Sprengelmeyer, January 15, 2007, Rocky Mountain News
  8. ^ Sudan Peace Act (H.R. 5531), 2 October 2002, retrieved 2010-10-16 
  9. ^ Kelly, Denver Post Staff Writer, Sean (August 9, 2001). "Tancredo, Lamm try to close U.S. doors Immigration bill calls for 5-year ban". Denver Post. pp. A.01.  
  10. ^ "H.R.2712 – Mass Immigration Reduction Act of 2001". United States Congress. 1 August 2001. Retrieved 23 January 2015. 
  11. ^ "H.R.946 – Mass Immigration Reduction Act of 2003". United States Congress. 26 February 2003. Retrieved 23 January 2015. 
  12. ^ "H.J.Res.19 – Proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States to establish English as the official language of the United States.". United States Congress. 18 January 2007. Retrieved 23 January 2015. 
  13. ^ Expressing the sense of Congress that the United States should resume normal diplomatic relations with the Republic of China on Taiwan, and for other purposes (H. Con. Res. 69), 2005-02-16, retrieved 2010-10-16 
  14. ^ "Expressing the sense of Congress that the United States should resume normal diplomatic relations with Taiwan (the Republic of China), and for other purposes (H. Con. Res. 73)". 16 February 2007. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  15. ^ [6]
  16. ^ "Immigration Reform: Why Business Could Get Burned". Businessweek. 2006-04-10. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  17. ^ CPAC 2006 Speeches
  18. ^ "Congressman Tom Tancredo Announces Run For Presidency". YouTube. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  19. ^ Sprengelmeyer, M.E. (January 30, 2007). "Tancredo rules out 3rd-party candidacy".  
  20. ^ American Conservative Union Rankings
  21. ^ "Poll at CPAC Shows Overwhelming Support for New Republican Leadership; Few Believe Bush or Congress Learned From Mistakes; Tancredo, Gingrich, Brownback Seen as Most Conservative". 9 May 2007. Archived from the original on October 7, 2011. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  22. ^ [7]
  23. ^ "Online Presidential Debate 1.1". YouTube. 2007-04-08. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  24. ^ "Congressman Tom Tancredo addresses CPAC". American Conservative Union. 2 March 2007. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  25. ^ "Questions show depths GOP has sunk". Times Daily. 13 May 2007. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  26. ^ M. E. Sprengelmeyer (11 August 2007). "Hoax aimed at Tancredo's straw poll chances". Rocky Mountain News. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  27. ^ "Tom Tancredo Airs Graphic New Ad in Iowa Depicting Terrorist Attack". Fox News. November 13, 2007. 
  28. ^ Tancredo drops out, endorses Romney USA Today'.' Retrieved December 20, 2007.
  29. ^ "Tom Tancredo". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 25, 2010. 
  30. ^ "2008 Presidential Election: Tom Tancredo Campaign Money". Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  31. ^ "Search – Global Edition – The New York Times". International Herald Tribune. March 29, 2009. Retrieved March 20, 2010. 
  32. ^ "Politics". The New York Observer. Retrieved March 20, 2010. 
  33. ^ "Tom Tancredo will address Constitution Party meeting". Independent Political Report. 19 August 2009. Archived from the original on August 25, 2009. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  34. ^ "Tancredo threatens third party run". Retrieved July 23, 2010. 
  35. ^ "Tancredo pulls third-party trigger". Retrieved July 26, 2010. 
  36. ^ "Politics briefs". Tulsa World (Tulsa, Oklahoma). 19 Jan 2011. p. A.7. 
  37. ^ "FEC Electronic Filings by TEAM AMERICA PAC". Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  38. ^ Tancredo's Drudge campaign: Defeat amnesty, politicians M.E. Sprengelmeyer and Alan Gathright,, June 6, 2007, Rocky Mountain News
  39. ^ a b "Tom Tancredo Staffer Pleads Guilty to Karate-Chopping Black Woman « The Washington Independent". Retrieved March 20, 2010. 
  40. ^ a b Beutler, Brian (June 1, 2009). "Tancredo Aide Pleads Guilty to Karate Chopping Pedestrian, Calling Her 'Nigger' | TPMDC". Retrieved March 20, 2010. 
  41. ^ Riley, Michael (June 2, 2009). "Tancredo PAC chief part of nominee tiff". The Denver Post. Retrieved March 20, 2010. 
  42. ^ Chief’s action draws notice
  43. ^ Treviño, Marisa (19 Aug 2011). "New research shows how vital the role of all Latinos is to the US economy". La Prensa San Diego. pp. 1, 5. 
  44. ^ "Muslim fury grows at Pope's speech | Mail Online". London: September 15, 2006. Retrieved March 20, 2010. 
  45. ^
  46. ^ "Project Vote Smart – National Right to Life Committee Rating". Retrieved March 20, 2010. 
  47. ^ [8]
  48. ^ Sioux City Journal: Brownback, Tancredo squabble over donation
  49. ^ "Tancredo Says: STOP ALL LEGAL Immigration (His Fellow Candidates Vehemently Disagree)". The Moderate Voice. 2007-06-05. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  50. ^
  51. ^ Ochoa, Julio. "Teen sparks debate on immigrant rights". The Tribune. Retrieved January 20, 2007. 
  52. ^ "INS Delays Deporting Honor Student". The Denver Channel. Retrieved January 24, 2007. 
  53. ^ "Response from Denver Mayor Hickenlooper to Congressman Tom Tancredo on Spanish language Denver Public Libraries". letter. June 22, 2005. Retrieved 2010-09-09. 
  54. ^ To amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to repeal authorities relating to H1-B visas for temporary workers, 15 March 2005, retrieved 2010-10-16 
  55. ^ "'"Tancredo pulls plug on 'sanctuary cities. 16 June 2007. Retrieved 2010-10-21. 
  56. ^ Congressman Tom Tancredo – Press Release – Tancredo Blasts Dems for Funding Illegal Alien Healthcare
  57. ^ Immigration Reform’s Point Man
  58. ^ Wolf, Leon H. "Tom Tancredo's Unsavory Backers."
  59. ^ Tom Tancredo, In Mortal Danger: The Battle for America's Border and Security, Nashville, Tennessee, 2006, 224 pp., ISBN 978-1-58182-527-5
  60. ^ "HR 6975: Jihad Prevention Act" Library of Congress THOMAS database. Retrieved July 26, 2009.
  61. ^ "About the debate", Intelligence Squared US webpage, May 3, 2011. Retrieved 2011-05-25.
  62. ^ Patricia Calhoun, Tom Tancredo endorsement in Denver's mayor race: Viva Romer!, Westword, 26 May 2011.
  63. ^ Who Really Stalled the Voting Rights Act Renewal Duke Falconer
  64. ^ Federalism up in smoke Mike Krause
  65. ^ Wang, Beverley (2007-09-05). "Tancredo targets N.H. 'sanctuary state' bill". Associated Press. 
  66. ^
  67. ^ Tom Tancredo, "Time For a Constitutional Convention?"
  68. ^ National Taxpayers Union reports: 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006
  69. ^ NTU's Taxpayer Friends in the House for: 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006
  70. ^ NTU's Taxpayer Friends in the House for 2006
  71. ^ Tom stands for America
  72. ^ Coffman Left Rally To Protest Tancredo; Lawmaker Supports Iraq War But Didn't Fight In Vietnam, Rocky Mountain News (Denver, CO) March 27, 2003
  73. ^ Art Moore (15 July 2005). "'"Tancredo clarifies 'ultimate response. WorldNetDaily. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  74. ^ Rocky Mountain News : Denver News, Business, Homes, Jobs, Cars, & Information
  75. ^ "Republican Presidential Debate in South Carolina". The New York Times. May 15, 2007. Retrieved May 25, 2010. 
  76. ^ a b c Interview with Tom Tancredo, David Shankbone, Wikinews, September 25, 2007.
  77. ^ [9]
  78. ^ "U.S. State Department cringes as presidential hopefuls muddy diplomatic waters". International Herald Tribune. 2009-03-29. 
  79. ^ "State Department Rebukes Campaign Sloganeering". Newsroom America. 
  80. ^ "Bomb Mecca threat rapped". Gulf Daily News. 2007-08-04. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  81. ^ "Tancredo attacks Sotomayor for belonging to La Raza, ‘a Latino KKK’ « Colorado Independent". Retrieved March 20, 2010. 
  82. ^ "Former GOP Rep. Tancredo: civics literacy test should be required to vote". Associated Press. February 6, 2010. 
  83. ^ "'"Tea Party Fireworks: Speaker Rips McCain, Obama, 'Cult of Multiculturalism. Retrieved February 5, 2010. 
  84. ^ Bartels, Lynn (February 6, 2010). "Tancredo blasted for poll test idea". Denver Post. Retrieved February 6, 2010. 
  85. ^ "UNC officials apologize to Tancredo" Published: April 16, 2009, UPI
  86. ^ Patricia Calhoun, "Pot Party," Westword, October 29, 2009, p.11.
  87. ^ "Tom Tancredo on Civil Rights". Retrieved 2010-10-21. 
  88. ^ Tancredo speech to Family Research Council, 10/19/2007.
  89. ^ Huffington PostAxelrod, Ethan (July 8, 2010). "Tom Tancredo: Obama A Greater Threat To The U.S. Than Al-Qaeda Or The U.S.S.R.". Huffington Post. 
  90. ^ YouTube Video "Tom Tancredo at Ken Buck's DeMint Rally". 
  91. ^ Condon, Stephanie, "White House Assails Tom Tancredo for Suggesting Obama Go 'Back' to Kenya", CBS News, April 19, 2010. Retrieved 2012-02-08.
  92. ^ Tom Tancredo (July 22, 2010). "The case for impeachment: Obama has violated his oath of office over immigration". Washington Times. 
  93. ^ Crugnale, James, "MSNBC Guest: My dog is better at handling the economy than Obama", February 7th, 2012. Retrieved 2012-02-08.
  94. ^ a b Crowley, Michael (March 28, 2005). "On the Hill: Border War".  
  95. ^ "Immigration Issue Yanked Off GOP Agenda".  
  96. ^ "GOP, You Are Warned".  
  97. ^ "Anti-Immigration Rep. Accused of Hiring Illegal Workers".  
  98. ^ "Tancredo on Immigration".  
  99. ^ Colorado Inside Out, Tancredo misled about controversial South Carolina speech”, Media Matters, 25 June 2007.
  100. ^ Zaitchik, Alexander (September 11, 2006). "Congressman addresses hate group".  
  101. ^ Jessup, Terry (September 14, 2006). "Denver Pastors Call For Tom Tancredo's Resignation". CBS4 Denver. Archived from the original on September 15, 2006. Retrieved November 30, 2006. 
  102. ^ [10]
  103. ^ Kovacs, Joe (November 19, 2006). "The New World Disorder: Bush Doesn't Think America Should Be An Actual Place". WorldNetDaily. Retrieved September 9, 2007. 
  104. ^ Bush, Jeb (November 28, 2006). "Letter to Tancredo from Jeb Bush" (PDF). Rocky Mountain News. Retrieved November 30, 2006. 
  105. ^ Tancredo, Tom (November 29, 2006). "Letter to Jeb Bush from Tancredo" (PDF). US Congress. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 January 2007. 
  106. ^ "Happy Birthday December Rotarians" (PDF). December 2006. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  107. ^ "Some Disappointed Tancredo Cancelled Speech". CBS4 Miami. December 16, 2006. Retrieved September 9, 2007. 
  108. ^ Tancredo bows out of speech in Miami : Local News : The Rocky Mountain News
  109. ^ Anne Mulkern (1 December 2006). "Tancredo protesters turn violent". The Denver Post. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  110. ^ REMARKING ON THE POPE'S VISIT AND ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION (House of Representatives – April 17, 2008). Congressional Record.
  111. ^ a b Mulkern, Anne C. (2008-04-17). "Tancredo slams pope on immigration". The Denver Post. Retrieved 2010-10-16. 
  112. ^ Wakin, Daniel J.; Preston, Julia (April 20, 2008). "Pope Speaks Up for Immigrants, Touching a Nerve". The New York Times. Retrieved May 25, 2010. 
  113. ^ a b "An Interview with Congressman Tancredo". Right Wing News. Retrieved 2011-02-12. 
  114. ^ "Terrorists Organizations". U.S. Department of State Country Reports on Terrorism. Retrieved 2011-02-13. 
  115. ^ "On The Record".  
  116. ^ Lewis, A. (February 3, 2009). "Tancredo hit by hedge fund fallout".  
  117. ^ Svaldi, A. (February 3, 2009). "Boulder firm tells investors to expect heavy losses".  


  • In Mortal Danger: The Battle for America's Border and Security. WND Books, 2006. (ISBN 1-58182-527-7)


Tancredo is the honorary chairman of Youth for Western Civilization.

On February 3, 2009, the Denver Post revealed that Tancredo has probably lost a significant amount of money invested in hedge funds with Agile Group,[116] a Boulder-based investment company with substantial investments in Bernie Madoff's investment firm.[117]

A former Catholic, Tancredo now attends Cherry Hills Community Church.[111] Tancredo is married to Jackie Tancredo. They met at Drake Junior High School as teachers, and married in 1977.[115] They have two children and five grandchildren.

Personal life

[113].Clinton Administration Tancredo states that this was done "for political reasons" by the [114] Tancredo has stated that he would like to see the United States give more support to the Iranian exile organization

Mujahedin-E-Khalq organization

On April 17, 2008, Tancredo alleged that Pope Benedict XVI was encouraging illegal immigration to the USA to boost membership in the Catholic Church. In response to a statement by the Pope at a Mass in Washington, Tancredo stated, "I suspect the pope's immigration comments may have less to do with spreading the gospel than they do about recruiting new members of the church." While Tancredo was raised a Catholic, he now attends Cherry Hills Community Church, an evangelical Christian church.[110][111][112]

Catholic Church

In another incident, student protests against a Tancredo speech scheduled to be given at the [109]

Michigan State University speech

On December 12, 2006, Tancredo was announced by the Rotary Club of Miami as its guest speaker.[106] The next day, the event was canceled by the restaurant. News reports said, "The manager of the restaurant where Tancredo was to speak, the Rusty Pelican on Key Biscayne, said Wednesday that the owners didn't want him to appear on Thursday in order to keep up the integrity and reputation of the business. The manager also said staff members objected to working the party where his immigration talk was supposed to be held, some customers threatened to boycott the restaurant, and the restaurant had received bomb threats." Tancredo spokesman Carlos Espinosa said "What is more 'Third World country' than threatening to bomb the place?"[107] Tancredo referred to Miami as having been taken over by "thugs" and "separatists" and declared that "I knew speaking your mind could be dangerous in Havana—I guess it's equally dangerous to do so in Miami. Apparently, there isn't much of a difference between the two anymore."[108]

In a November 19, 2006 interview with Florida Governor Jeb Bush who, in a letter to the congressman, called Tancredo's remarks "naive."[104] Tancredo replied in a letter, "I certainly understand and appreciate your need and desire to try and create the illusion of Miami as a multiethnic 'All American' city," he said. "I can also appreciate ... that the cultural and ethnic diversity of the city offers many advantages to its residents. However, it is neither naïve nor insulting to call attention to a real problem that cannot be easily dismissed through politically correct happy talk."[105]

City of Miami

Tancredo has called for the abolition of the Congressional Black Caucus, the Democratic Congressional Hispanic Caucus and the Republican Congressional Hispanic Caucus. He said about these caucuses, "It is utterly hypocritical for Congress to extol the virtues of a colorblind society while officially sanctioning caucuses that are based solely on race," and "If we are serious about achieving the goal of a colorblind society, Congress should lead by example and end these divisive, race-based caucuses."[102]

On September 11, 2006, in Columbia, South Carolina, Tancredo spoke to a gathering of the "Americans Have Had Enough Coalition", which he had helped found. The League of the South also invited its own members to attend the event. The room at the South Carolina State Museum in which Tancredo spoke had a prominent picture of Robert E. Lee and was draped with Confederate battle flags.[99] At the closing of the event, men dressed in Confederate military uniforms reportedly began to sing "Dixie".[100] Several days later, Tancredo came under heavy criticism from a group of Denver ministers for attending the function. In his defense, Tancredo said, "I gave it [the same speech] in probably five or six different venues, this was just one, all of them were open to the public. I don't check people at the door for their private thoughts."[101]

Americans Have Had Enough Coalition speech and other racial controversies

In 2002, the Denver Post reported two illegal immigrants were among the crew hired to remodel his basement. Tancredo said he could not have known their immigration status—they were subcontractors hired by the contractors he hired.[97][98]

Illegal employees of contractor

In an interview, Tancredo said his falling out with the White House has lasted. "One reason I am persona non grata at the White House is not just because of immigration... but because I refuse to support him on his trade policy, his education policy, Medicare and prescription drugs initiatives.... Here was a Republican Congress increasing government to an extent larger than it had been increased since Medicare had come into existence."[76] Tancredo reported that his career in Congress was threatened by the leadership because of his stances. "I was called into Tom DeLay’s office because I was supporting Republican challengers to Republican incumbents. I had a group called Team America that went out and did that. He called me and said to me, 'You’re jeopardizing your career in this place by doing these things.' And I said, 'Tom, out of all the things you can threaten with me that is the least effective because I do not look at this place as a career.'"[76]

Tancredo's outspoken advocacy for persona non grata in the Bush White House.[94] According to Tancredo, he and Bush's political adviser, Karl Rove, got into a "screaming match" after Tancredo claimed that "if the nation suffered another attack at the hands of terrorists able to skirt immigration laws, the blood of the people killed" would be on Bush's and Congress’ hands. Rove responded by calling Tancredo "a traitor to the party" and "a traitor to the president," and warned him to never "darken the doorstep of the White House."[94] Tancredo responded by stating that "the president’s position on immigration is going to hurt [him]. I want the president to win [the 2004 election]. I am not doing any of these things or saying any of these things because I want to hurt the Republican Party or the president".[95] National Review's David Frum wrote that "[n]o issue, not one, threatens to do more damage to the Republican coalition than immigration".[96]

Conflict with party leadership


In February 2012, Tancredo said on Hardball with Chris Matthews, in a discussion of candidate Mitt Romney's economic policy alternatives to the president: "Hell, my dog’s better at it than Obama!" [93]

On July 22, 2010, in an editorial in the Washington Times, Tancredo said that Congress should bring impeachment charges against President Obama.[92]

In April 2010, while not addressing directly widespread "birther" sentiment in the Republican Party, Tancredo said at a South Carolina Tea Party rally about the president: "If his wife says Kenya is his homeland, why don't we just send him back?"[91]

In a speech given at a campaign event for Colorado Senate candidate Ken Buck on July 8, 2010, Tancredo said of President Barack Obama, "...the greatest threat to the United States today, the greatest threat to our liberty, the greatest threat to the Constitution of the United States, the greatest threat to our way of life; everything we believe in. The greatest threat to the country that our founding fathers put together is the man that's sitting in the White House today." [89][90]

Barack Obama

Said Tancredo in September 2007, "You have to remember that we are always just one kooky judge away from actually having homosexual marriage forced on all the rest of us, because of the [full faith and credit] clause in the U.S. Constitution. Therefore, we need, we absolutely have to have, a constitutional amendment that defines marriage."[87] He is in full support of the Federal Marriage Amendment. Due to his numerous stances opposing the gay rights movement, he has received ratings of 7% from the American Civil Liberties Union, 0% from the Human Rights Campaign, and 19% from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.. As of 2007, however, Tancredo boasted a 97.8% rating from the American Conservative Union.[88]

Federal Marriage Amendment

Tancredo has declared himself in favor of the legalization of marijuana. He said that his reasons to legalize marijuana include "The issue of violence that surrounds it—not just on the border—and the crimes all over the place. The number of people in prison and the amount we spend to keep them there. The broken families." While in Congress, Tancredo voted each year to attach an amendment, which never passed, that would have prevented the US Justice Department from spending any money to "enforce any drug laws in contradiction to state law."[86]

Marijuana legalization

On April 14, 2009, a speech by Tancredo at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was disrupted by students protesting his views on immigration in which he called for a civics literacy test before voting.[85]

On February 4, 2010, Tancredo spoke at the National Convention for the Tea Party movement where he told attendees that Barack Obama won because of "people who could not even spell the word ’vote’ or say it in English". He then proposed "a civics literacy test" as a prerequisite to voting.[82][83] These remarks were criticized by the Democratic Colorado House Speaker Terrance Carroll and the Southern Poverty Law Center's research director Heidi Beirich. Tancredo has denied the charge that his remarks were aimed at a specific group.[84]

Voting rights

Tancredo became one of the outspoken conservative opponents to the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. On May 28, 2009, he made an appearance on CNN to voice his opposition and claimed that Sotomayor was a racist. When CNN’s Rick Sanchez asked him if Sotomayor was a racist, Tancredo replied “certainly her words would indicate that that is the truth”. He then compared the Hispanic-American advocacy group La Raza to the Ku Klux Klan by saying "it’s a Latino KKK without the hoods or the nooses".[81]

Sonia Sotomayor nomination

During a July 31, 2007 townhall meeting in Iowa, Tancredo said that a threat to bomb Mecca and Medina was "the only thing I can think of" that could deter a nuclear terrorist attack. This statement drew substantial criticism from the Council on American-Islamic Relations,[77] as well as State Department spokesman Tom Casey, who stated that "To somehow suggest that an appropriate response to terrorism would be to attack sites that are holy and sacred to more than a billion people throughout the world is just absolutely crazy."[78][79][80]

During the Republican Presidential Debate broadcast on Fox on May 15, 2007, Tancredo made a statement in passing that the root cause of Islamic terrorism is “a dictate of their religion.”[75] In September 2007 Tancredo defended his remarks: "I still believe it is something we must consider as a possible deterrent because at the present time there are no negative consequences that would accrue to the people who commit a crime such as a nuclear, chemical or biological attack."[76]

During a 2005 radio interview on Orlando talk-radio station WFLA AM 540, Tancredo responded to a questioner asking about the hypothetical U.S. response to a nuclear attack on U.S. cities by al-Qaeda, by saying that one possible response would be to retaliate by "taking out" Muslim holy sites (specifically, Mecca) if it were clearly proven that Islamic terrorists were behind such an attack.[73][74] Several days later, in an interview on CNN together with James Zogby, Tancredo said that the attack was mentioned merely as a hypothetical response and insisted that there was nothing for which he should apologize.

Tancredo's position on [71] Fellow Republican State Treasurer Mike Coffman refused to share the stage with Tancredo at a pro-war rally for the Iraq war in 2003 because of Tancredo's failure to serve in the Vietnam War. In 1970 Tancredo appealed his 1-A draft status, which would have put him at the top of the list for draft eligibility during the Vietnam War. Tancredo said he was diagnosed with depression when he was 16 or 17 and received medication for five years for panic attacks and bouts of anxiety and depression.[72]

Foreign policy

The National Taxpayers Union awarded Tancredo a grade of A for each year he has served in Congress. Tancredo was awarded a grade of A for votes he cast in 1999 to 2006 inclusively.[68] Additionally, Tancredo received the National Taxpayers Union's "Taxpayers' Friend Award" in 1999 to 2006 inclusively as well [69] The award is given by the NTU to those members of Congress that are among "the strongest supporters of responsible tax and spending policies".[70] He is also a strong supporter of the FairTax and advocates the repeal of the 16th Amendment.

Fiscal policy

In July 2012 Tancredo wrote an article for World Net Daily advocating a constitutional convention. The US Supreme Court decision upholding Obamacare, said Tancredo, "sends a powerful message to the American people, but one the court never intended: In the struggle to safeguard our liberties, politicians have failed and the Supreme Court has failed. It’s time to trust the people."[67]

Article V Convention

On the other hand, Tancredo supports Federal action in what he considers its proper sphere. He has suggested state legislators and 'sanctuary city' mayors should be imprisoned for passing laws contrary to federal immigration law.[65] He also supports the Federal Marriage Amendment to ban gay marriage nationally, and defended this position by stating a constitutional amendment is the "last resort" to neutralize judicial activism that would legalize gay marriage in courts, against the wishes of voters. The amendment would also use Constitutional means to prevent voters and legislators from legalizing gay marriage in their states.[66]

He was one of 33 congressmen to vote against the renewal of the Voting Rights Act because he asserted that its requirement of multilingual ballots would result in a costly unfunded mandate.[63] He was one of a handful of Republicans who voted for a bill proposed by Maurice Hinchey and Dana Rohrabacher to stop the Department of Justice from raiding medical marijuana patients and caregivers in states where medical marijuana is legal, citing states' rights concerns.[64]


Tancredo's anti-illegal immigration stance became a campaign issue during the 2011 Denver mayoral campaign, which Tancredo did not enter. The Chris Romer campaign tried to erode rival Michael Hancock's support among Hispanics by emails and robocalls claiming that Tancredo had endorsed Hancock. Tancredo, who had neither met nor endorsed Hancock, responded by appearing on a radio talk show and endorsing Romer.[62]

Pre-Debate Poll Results: 16% For | 54% Against | 30% undecided
Post Debate Poll Results: 35% For | 52% Against | 13% undecided[61]

In May 2011, Tancredo represented the affirmative with Kris Kobach in a radio-broadcast debate of the motion "Don't give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses." The two debated Mayor Julián Castro of San Antonio and Tamar Jacoby of ImmigrationWorks USA. Tancredo and Kobach were declared the victors based on before and after polling of the live in-attendance audience mostly by convincing much of the self-identified undecided audience members of the strength of the motion.

Tancredo's has staunchly supported tightening immigration requirements from Islamic countries. On September 18, 2008, Tancredo introduced H.R. 6975, the Jihad Prevention Act, which would require aliens to attest that they will not advocate installing a Sharia law system in the United States as a condition for admission, and for other purposes. Aliens failing to make such an attestation would be ineligible for admission. Further, the visa of any alien advocating the installation of a Sharia law system in the United States would be subject to revocation.[60]

In 2006, Tancredo published In Mortal Danger: The Battle for America's Border and Security through Joseph Farah's WND Books in Nashville, Tennessee. The volume focuses on American cultural identity and his proposals to remedy what he contends to be major flaws in the immigration system.[59]

A journalist at RedState has criticized Tancredo for accepting political contributions from anti-illegal immigration activist John Tanton, founder of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). FAIR was criticized for supporting sterilizations and RU-486 for third world women the one-child policy. FAIR received $1.5 million from a controversial group, The Pioneer Fund.[58]

Tancredo has made it a point in all of his public speeches to differentiate between those who enter the United States legally and those who come illegally. He frequently attends naturalization ceremonies to support new citizens for "doing it the right way".[57]

On July 30, 2007, Tancredo "criticized Congressional Democrats for eliminating a requirement that anyone applying for Medicaid and State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) services provide proof of U.S. citizenship". According to Tancredo, "[t]he new Democrat plan would raise taxes and make it easier for illegal aliens to obtain taxpayer-funded medical benefits".[56]

Tancredo was the sponsor of a successful, bi-partisan amendment to a Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill that would withhold federal emergency services funds from 'sanctuary cities'.[55]

Tancredo sponsored legislation to eliminate H-1B visas for temporary workers in 2005.[54]

Tancredo criticized the Denver Public Library system for purchasing reading materials written in Spanish and for offering space for classes to be held for these library users, on the grounds that putting Spanish-speakers in a 'linguistic ghetto' would delay their integration into American society.[53]

Tancredo has called for halting illegal immigration, and a three-year moratorium on all legal immigration to allow those immigrants already in the country to be assimilated. Tancredo called for the deportation of the family of Jesus Apodaca, an undocumented immigrant child in a Denver high school.[51][52]

Tom Tancredo is perhaps best known for his opposition to illegal immigration.[49] Tancredo founded the Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus in May 1999. He served as its Chairman until January 2007, when he turned the chairmanship over to Brian Bilbray.[50]


Tancredo was criticized by pro-life forces for accepting over $20,000 in donations from John Tanton, founder of the Federation for American Immigration Reform and a founder of a Planned Parenthood chapter.[48]

In the first Republican debate held on May 3, 2007, Tancredo agreed that the U.S. Supreme Court should repeal the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, adding that it would be "the greatest day in this country's history."[47]

Tancredo has said that [45] He voted in favor of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, and in favor of legislation requiring parental notification when a minor seeks an abortion. He received an "A" on the National Right to Life Committee report card,[46] indicating that he votes in Congress on the pro-life side of this issue.


Tancredo traces his interest in politics to the eighth grade, when he played Fidel Castro in a class assignment. Tancredo urges America to reject "the siren song of multiculturalism" and depicts Islam as "a civilization bent on destroying ours." In July 2005, Tancredo proposed that America respond to any future terrorist attack by bombing Mecca and other holy sites. In September 2006, when Pope Benedict XVI gave a speech quoting a 14th-century Byzantine emperor who said the prophet Mohammed had brought "things only evil and inhuman",[44] sparking Muslim anger throughout the world, Tancredo urged him not to apologize.

Issue positions

In June 2011 Tancredo founded a Super PAC called the American Legacy Alliance to support candidates for federal office who oppose illegal immigration.[43]

American Legacy Alliance

On February 3, 2005, Tancredo presented the Team America "American Patriot Award" to New Ipswich, New Hampshire, Police Chief W. Garrett Chamberlain for "taking an extra step to help protect our country’s borders".[42]

Tancredo founded the Team America political action committee in 2004[37] in order to raise contributions for congressional candidates who opposed illegal immigration. Because of campaign law requirements, Tancredo was forced to resign from Team America PAC. The PAC was noted for targeting incumbent Congressman Chris Cannon in the 2006 Republican primary.[38] In 2009, reporters discovered that Marcus Epstein, the Executive Director of Team America, had assaulted an African American woman in 2007, and had used a racial epithet.[39][40][41] Tancredo kept Epstein on his staff despite the guilty plea.[39][40]

Team America PAC

Political action committees

Tancredo announced he would run for governor again in 2014. He was angry at Colorado governor John Hickenlooper because Hickenlooper has passed gun restrictions, and because Hickenlooper has granted a stay of execution for a multiple murderer.

In January 2011 Tancredo re-registered as a Republican, saying it is the "only game in town".[36]

In July 2010, Tancredo warned the two Republican candidates for governor in Colorado that if whoever won the primary was behind in polling the day after the primary and did not drop out, Tancredo would respond by entering the race as the candidate for the American Constitution Party.[34] Tancredo subsequently announced that he was going ahead with plans to run as a Constitution Party candidate.[35]

Tancredo spoke at the Constitution Party's national committee meeting on October 23, 2009.[33]

After he ended his run for president, Tancredo decided against running for reelection.[31] Former Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez said he spoke to Tancredo about possible runs for governor or Senate in 2010.[32]

2010 Colorado gubernatorial campaign and 2014 campaign

Individual contributions made up the most of the campaign cash that Tancredo had received, being about 97% of his total pocketbook. PAC contributions were low, only around $75,500, of the $1,311,869[29] He granted himself $200 for his campaign and received no federal funding. $88,457 of his money came from interest from the campaign's bank accounts and loans from outside sources. The majority of Tancredo's funds were not disclosed.[30]

On his 62nd birthday December 20, 2007, Tancredo formally ended his candidacy for the 2008 Republican Presidential nomination, and endorsed Mitt Romney.[28]

On November 13, 2007, the Tancredo campaign released an ad called "Tough on Terror" in which a hypothetical terrorist attack occurs in a shopping mall. The ad blames inept border security for the attack and flashes images of an injured child and a wrecked train. A voiceover comments, "There are consequences to open borders beyond the 20 million aliens who have come to take our jobs ... the price we pay for spineless politicians who refuse to defend our borders against those who come to kill." [27]

On September 5, 2007, during a visit to Concord, New Hampshire, Tancredo made it clear that he supports strictly enforcing immigration laws and deporting all illegal immigrants. He believes so-called sanctuary policies provide safe havens for criminals. Tancredo also mentioned his support of the building of a fence between Mexico and the United States, and that mayors and city council members who adopt sanctuary city policies should face criminal charges. He urged New Hampshire Governor John Lynch to veto an upcoming immigration bill and demanded the ouster of the bill's sponsors.

On August 10, 2007, Rep. Tom Tancredo's presidential campaign reportedly was the victim of an e-mail hoax on the eve of the Republican Party straw poll in Ames, Iowa. The Des Moines Register reports that a hoax e-mail sent on Friday to almost 500 Tancredo supporters told them—falsely—that chartered buses to ferry them to the daylong events had either been cancelled or delayed.[26]

In a May 3, 2007 debate among the ten candidates for the 2008 Republican Presidential nomination, Tancredo was one of three who raised their hands when asked if anyone did not believe in the theory of evolution.[25]

If you want to call me a single-issue candidate, that's fine, just so long as you know that my single issue is the survival and the success of the conservative movement in America.

A quote from Tancredo's speech in 2007 to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) was as follows:[24]

On April 2, 2007, Tancredo announced that he would run for President in the 2008 election. This announcement was made on 1040 WHO Talk Radio in Iowa. He denounced other Republican candidates for their lack of consistency on the illegal immigration issue, the issue on which Tancredo will run. In early April, he also participated in what was billed as the first online presidential debate, against fellow Republican and presidential candidate Duncan Hunter.[23]

At the 2007 CPAC conference, held March 1–3, Tancredo was ranked sixth in the CPAC straw poll, with 9%, when first and second choices were combined.[22]

On February 13, the American Conservative Union issued ratings for potential presidential candidates.[20] Tancredo took first with a lifetime ranking of 99 out of 100. The website polled 525 people who attended CPAC 2007, and 88.1% believed that Tancredo would govern as a conservative. Newt Gingrich polled next at 87.9%.[21]

A spokesman for Tancredo's exploratory committee has confirmed that he would not run on a third party platform, and that "they've had no intention to run as a third-party candidate, ever, and we'll never consider that because he's a Republican, period".[19]

On January 16, 2007, Tancredo announced that he formed an exploratory committee on seeking the presidential nomination of the Republican Party. He said that the Republican Party needs someone who can offer America a "common sense agenda".[18]

On February 9, 2006, Tancredo addressed the Conservative Political Action Conference,[16] the annual conference of the American Conservative Union,.[17] He scored 5% of the vote in the 2008 CPAC straw poll.

In July 2005, Tancredo confirmed he was moving toward a presidential run.[15]

In February 2005, Tancredo announced he would seek the Republican nomination for president if all other candidates failed to address the illegal immigration problem.

2008 Presidential campaign

In 2005, Tancredo introduced[13] a resolution calling on the President to recognize the government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) and to abandon the One-China policy. He has been critical of the People's Republic of China. This has since been modified and reintroduced as H. Con. Res. 73.[14]

Tancredo introduced the Mass Immigration Reduction Act. The act would have imposed an indefinite NumbersUSA, Population-Environment Balance, Carrying Capacity Network, Federation for American Immigration Reform, Negative Population Growth, and the American Patrol. Tancredo introduced the bill in 2001 (H. R. 2712)[10] and 2003 (H. R. 946).[11] Tancredo did not re-introduce the bill in 2005. In 2007, he proposed an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to "establish English as the official language of the United States," (H.R. 19).[12]

Tancredo sponsored the Sudan Peace Act.[8] The Sudan Peace Act says "A viable, comprehensive, and internationally sponsored peace process, protected from manipulation, presents the best chance for a permanent resolution of the war, protection of human rights, and a self-sustaining Sudan". The Act passed the House of Representatives with a 359–8 vote, was passed unanimously in the Senate without amendment seven days later, and was signed into law on November 21, 2002.

Significant legislation

  • Foreign Affairs Committee
    • Subcommittee on Africa and Global Health
    • Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade
  • Natural Resources Committee
    • Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands

Committee assignments

After Dan Schaefer decided not to run for a seventh full term in the 6th Congressional District in 1998, Tancredo narrowly won the five-way Republican primary, and the election in November. He was only the second person to represent the 6th District since its creation in 1983 (former astronaut Jack Swigert was elected as the district's first congressman in 1982, but died before taking office). Despite his promise to serve only three terms in Congress,[7] he decided to run for a fourth term and won re-election.

U.S. House of Representatives

Tancredo was appointed by President Independence Institute in 1993, a conservative think tank based in Golden, Colorado, serving there until his election to Congress. He was a leader in the Colorado term limits movement.

In 1976, while teaching history at Drake Junior High School in Arvada, he ran for and won a seat in the Colorado House of Representatives. He served two terms (1977–1981) and was one of the leaders of a vocal group of conservative legislators opposing the policies of Colorado Governor Dick Lamm.[6] During the 1970s, Tancredo pioneered opposition to bilingual education, an issue that would remain a feature of his political orientation.

As a Republican student activist Tancredo spoke in support of the Vietnam War. After graduating from the University of Northern Colorado he became eligible to serve in Vietnam in June 1969. Tancredo has said he went for his physical, telling doctors he had been treated for depression, and eventually got a "1-Y" deferment.[5]

Tancredo was born in Young Americans for Freedom (YAF).

Early life, education and career


  • Early life, education and career 1
  • U.S. House of Representatives 2
    • Committee assignments 2.1
    • Significant legislation 2.2
  • 2008 Presidential campaign 3
  • 2010 Colorado gubernatorial campaign and 2014 campaign 4
  • Political action committees 5
    • Team America PAC 5.1
    • American Legacy Alliance 5.2
  • Issue positions 6
    • Abortion 6.1
    • Immigration 6.2
    • Federalism 6.3
    • 6.4 Article V Convention
    • Fiscal policy 6.5
    • Foreign policy 6.6
    • Sonia Sotomayor nomination 6.7
    • Voting rights 6.8
    • Marijuana legalization 6.9
    • Federal Marriage Amendment 6.10
    • Barack Obama 6.11
  • Controversy 7
    • Conflict with party leadership 7.1
    • Illegal employees of contractor 7.2
    • Americans Have Had Enough Coalition speech and other racial controversies 7.3
    • City of Miami 7.4
    • Michigan State University speech 7.5
    • Catholic Church 7.6
    • Mujahedin-E-Khalq organization 7.7
  • Personal life 8
  • Books 9
  • References 10
  • External links 11

Tancredo ran for governor in 2014, this time as a Republican, because of his opposition to Colorado governor John Hickenlooper's refusal to execute convicted murderer Nathan Dunlap, and because of Hickenlooper's attempts to pass gun control legislation.[2] Tancredo competed for the Republican Party's nomination with Bob Beauprez, Steve House, Greg Brophy, Mike Kopp, and Scott Gessler. Tancredo lost the primary to Beauprez.

Tancredo announced on July 26, 2010 that he planned to change parties and run for Governor of Colorado on the American Constitution Party ticket. He received 617,030 votes (36.7%), coming in second place, well ahead of the Republican Party nominee, who got about 11% of the vote.

for the nomination. his campaign in Mitt Romney, centering his campaign on the issues of illegal immigration and terrorism. He dropped out of the race in December 2007 to assist former Massachusetts Governor for President in 2008 Tancredo ran for the Republican Party nomination [1]

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