From OpenCongress Wiki
James Thomas Kolbe was a Republican member of the U. S. House of Representatives representing the 5th District of Arizona from 1985 to 2003 and the 8th District from 2003 to 2007. He opted to retire rather than seek reelection in 2006.
Kolbe was born June 28, 1942 in Evanston, Illinois. He was a Congressional Page in high school and was educated at Northwestern University and Stanford University. He served in the United States Navy and was a special assistant to Illinois Governor Richard Ogilvie, a business executive, and a member of the Arizona Senate before entering the House.
Kolbe was one of three openly gay members of the U.S. House and was the second openly gay Republican to serve in the House. Kolbe revealed his homosexuality in August 1996 after his vote in favor of the Defense of Marriage Act spurred efforts by some in the gay community to "out" him. In spite of the "outing", he won re-election. He has been mild in his support of same-sex marriage, although strong in his support of universal civil unions. Kolbe supports abortion rights and is a strong proponent of guest worker programs for immigrants.
Kolbe voted for the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 that started the Iraq War.
On November 23, 2005, Kolbe announced that he would not seek a 12th term in 2006. His exit left the politically competitive district open. Democrats nominated Gabrielle Giffords and Republicans nominated Randy Graf to contest the November 2006 election for his vacant seat. (See U.S. congressional elections in 2006) 
Meet the Cash Constituents
|Links to more campaign contribution information for Jim Kolbe
from the Center for Responsive Politics' OpenSecrets.org site.
|Fundraising profile:||2008 election cycle||Career totals|
|Top contributors by organization/corporation:||2008 election cycle||Career totals|
|Top contributors by industry:||2008 election cycle||Career totals|
Rep. Mark Foley (R-Fla.) congressional page scandal
In October 2006, Kolbe became swept up in the Mark Foley page scandal. Following Rep. Mark Foley’s (R-Fla.) resignation after the revelation of “over-friendly” emails and sexually suggestive instant messages that he sent to teenage congressional pages, Kolbe revealed that he had learned of similar correspondence by Foley as early as 2000. He was subsequently criticized by some for not taking stronger action upon receiving the information. In December 2006, Kolbe asked the FEC for permission to use his remaining campaign funds to pay any legal bills that he would incur as a result of the scandal.
- Read a full account of the Mark Foley page scandal
Justice Department investigation
On October 13, federal prosecutors opened a preliminary investigation of a camping trip that Kolbe took in July 1996 to the Grand Canyon with two teenage congressional pages. Also on the trip were National Park Service employees, several Kolbe staffers and Kolbe's sister. The investigation was launched after an unidentified former page made allegations about Kolbe's behavior on the trip.  Specifically, the young man allegedly told authorities that he was “uncomfortable with a particular social encounter” that involved physical contact when he and Kolbe were alone. 
Committees and Affiliations
Committees in the 109th Congress (2005-2006)
- House Committee on Appropriations
- Subcommittee on Foreign Operations Export Financing and Related Programs - Former Chair
- Subcommittee on Homeland Security
- He is a member of the Inter-American Dialogue
- Leadership Council, Initiative for Global Development 
- Director, International Republican Institute
- Member, Council on Foreign Relations Task Force on Latin America 
- Advisory Board, Project on Middle East Democracy 
More Background Data
Articles and Resources
- Jake Tapper, "A gay Republican talks about trade. Rep. Jim Kolbe says he's not the GOP's prime-time poster boy for tolerance. He wants to tell you about NAFTA," Salon, August 1, 2000.
- Chris Bull, "The Reluctant Warrior—openly gay Republican Jim Kolbe," The Advocate (FindArticles.com), November 7, 2000.
- Jonathan Weisman, "Lawmaker Saw Foley Messages In 2000. Page Notified GOP Rep. Kolbe," Washington Post, October 9, 2006. re Mark Foley
- Jake Tapper, John Yang and Avery Miller, "Foley's Reputed Visit to the Page Dormitory. New Testimony May Pose Problems for GOP Leadership," ABC News, October 10, 2006.
- John Aravosis, "Rep. Kolbe (R-AZ): I told page to notify Speaker's staffer in 2000"; "IMPORTANT UPDATE: Kolbe was apparently close to the same Page with whom Foley had the lurid instant message chat"; "Kolbe was a member of the Page Board when the earlier emails were brought to his attention"; and "I really wish Washington Post reporters would read the Washington Post," AMERICAblog, October 10, 2006.
- Paul Kiel, "Kolbe: My Spokeswoman Is A Liar (Or I Am)," TPM Muckraker, October 10, 2006.
- Jim Popkin and Aram Roston, "Rep. Kolbe visited Grand Canyon with pages. Park Service workers, office staffers accompanied group during 1996 trip," NBC News (MSNBC), October 11, 2006.
- Jim Popkin, Aram Roston and the NBC News Investigative Unit, "Feds probe trip that Kolbe made with pages," MSNBC, October 13, 2006.
- "U.S. reviews lawmaker's '96 trip that included 2 ex-pages," Associated Press (Chicago Tribune), October 14, 2006.
- "Sources: Inquiry opened over Kolbe, male ex-pages," CNN, October 14, 2006.
- Rhonda Schwartz and John Yang, "Trandahl Names Kolbe as a 'Problem' With Page Program, Source Says," The Blotter Blog/ABC News, October 26, 2006.
Local blogs and discussion sites
- AZ Congress Watch
- Man Eegee - Latino Politico
- Daniel's News and Views
- Rum, Romanism, and Rebellion
- Western Democrat
- Blog for Arizona
District Office - Sierra Vista:
77 Calle Portal, Suite B-160
Sierra Vista, AZ 85635
District Office - Tucson:
1661 North Swan Road, Suite 112
Tucson, AZ 85712