Larry E. Craig (born July 20, 1945 in Midvale, Idaho) is the senior United States Senator from Idaho. He is a member of the Republican Party.
Craig was born and educated in Idaho. He was elected to the Idaho State Senate in 1974. By this time he was also a farmer and rancher. In 1969, he earned a B.A. from the University of Idaho, where he served as Student Body President and was a member of the Delta Chi fraternity. He pursued graduate studies before returning to the family ranching business in 1971.
In 1974, Craig was elected to the Idaho State Senate, where he served three terms until 1980, when he was elected to the United States House of Representatives, of which he was a member from 1981 until 1991, being reelected every two years. During his tenure as a member of the House of Representatives, he strongly supported the Balanced Budget Amendment and President Reagan's push to expand vocational education.
Craig was elected to the United States Senate in 1990, succeeding the retiring Jim McClure. He was reelected in 1996 and 2002. He was chairman of the Republican Policy Committee from 1997 until 2003. He then became chairman of the Special Committee on Aging. He is currently chairman of the Committee on Veterans' Affairs. He is most noted for his well-reasoned and conservative approach to issues.
In addition to his job as a Senator, he is on the Board of Directors of the National Rifle Association.
Senator Larry Craig attempted to amend the Iraq War supplemental bill with AgJOBS bill (S. 359). The AgJOBS amendment would have granted legal status to roughly 500,000 to 1 million illegal immigrants in farm work. However, Sen. Craig was only able to garner 53 of the 60 votes needed for the amendment. 60 votes were needed instead of the usual 51 becasue the amendment was not relevant to the matter at hand. He is a supporter of President Bush's Guest-Worker Program.
With fellow Congressmen Trent Lott, John Ashcroft, and James Jeffords, he formed a barbershop quartet called The Singing Senators.
On December 16th, 2005, Craig voted against a cloture vote on the USA PATRIOT Act, on a vote of 52-47. On December 21st, 2005, Craig successfully negotiated a six-month extension of the USA PATRIOT Act so concerns about civil liberties could be further addressed.
On February 9, 2006, Craig announced an agreement between himself, the White House, and fellow Senators John E. Sununu, Arlen Specter, Lisa Murkowski, Chuck Hagel, and Richard Durbin to reauthorize the USA PATRIOT Act.
Prior to the nomination of Idaho Governor Dirk Kempthorne, Craig had been mentioned as a possible contender to succeed Gale Norton as United States Secretary of the Interior in March, 2006.