|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Alabama's 2nd district
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2011
|Preceded by||Bobby Bright|
|Member of the Montgomery City Council|
Martha Kehres Dubina
July 26, 1976
Montgomery, Alabama, U.S.
|Father||Joel Fredrick Dubina|
|Education||New York University (BM)|
Samford University (JD)
Martha Kehres Roby (//; née Dubina, July 26, 1976) is an American attorney and politician serving as the U.S. Representative for Alabama's 2nd congressional district since 2011. A member of the Republican Party, she defeated the incumbent Democratic U.S. Representative Bobby Bright in 2010. That year, Roby and Terri Sewell became the first women elected to Congress from Alabama in regular elections. On July 26, 2019, Roby announced she would retire from Congress at the end of her current term, which ends in 2021.
Early life, education, and legal career
Martha Roby was born in Montgomery, Alabama. She is the daughter of Joel Fredrick Dubina, a Senior Judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. She attended New York University, where she received a Bachelor of Music degree. She then entered the Samford University Cumberland School of Law at Birmingham, Alabama, receiving her J.D. in 2001.
Before entering politics, she worked at the law firm of Copeland, Franco.
Montgomery City Council
In her first term on the Council, Roby joined 3 other council members and then mayor Bobby Bright in opposing the building of a shopping mall in East Montgomery. She also opposed privatizing the disposal of household garbage, supported a 10 cent cigarette tax increase, and argued for a state sales tax holiday.
U.S. House of Representatives
Roby challenged incumbent Democratic U.S. Congressman and former Montgomery Mayor Bobby Bright in Alabama's 2nd congressional district. In the four-candidate Republican primary, Roby ranked first with 49% of the vote, narrowly missing the 50% threshold needed to win the nomination and avoid a run-off. Rick Barber ranked second with 29% of the vote. In the run-off election, Roby defeated him 60%-40%.
The 2010 race was one of the most expensive races in the district's history. Roby spent a total of $1,240,275.64 on her 2010 election. Most of her funds came from large individual contributions. Her top contributor was Jim Wilson and Associates, a Montgomery real estate developer, who contributed $25,300. Leadership PACs contributed a total of $106,010.
Roby defeated Bright by 51%-49%, a difference of 4,780 votes. Roby won 7 of the district's 16 counties: Autauga, Elmore, Covington, Coffee, Geneva, Dale, and Houston Counties. Bright won Montgomery County with 59% of the vote.
The 2nd district had long been a conservative district, and Roby won a second term, defeating Democrat Therese Ford 64%-36%. She won 11 of the district's 15 counties. She lost her home county of Montgomery by a margin of 53%-47%.
Roby won the election with 67.34% of the vote, defeating Democratic nominee Erick Wright.
On March 1, 2016, Roby won the Republican primary with 64% of the vote. She won the general election with 48.8% of the vote. Democrat Nathan Mathis received 40.5% of the vote and write-in candidates received 10.7% of the vote.
Roby defeated Bobby Bright, the incumbent she first defeated in 2010 and who had since switched to the Republican Party, in the Republican primary and subsequent run-off. She received 68% of the vote in the run-off. In the general election, she defeated Democratic nominee Tabitha Isner with 61.4% of the vote.
- United States House Committee on Appropriations
- House Select Committee on the Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in Benghazi
In December 2011, Roby voted in support of H.R. 10, the "Regulations From the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act," which would have required congressional approval for any "major regulations" issued by the executive branch but, unlike the 1996 Congressional Review Act, would not require the president's signature or override of a probable presidential veto.
Roby voted in September 2013 to cut $39 billion from the food stamp program. In 2011, approximately 41,000 households in Roby's congressional district received food stamps.
In February 2017, she voted against a resolution that would have directed the House to request 10 years of Trump's tax returns, which would then have been reviewed by the House Ways and Means Committee in a closed session. In 2017, Roby also co-sponsored a bipartisan bill to require sexual harassment and anti-discrimination training for all House members, employees, staff and unpaid personnel. The bill passed the House. She does not support the ability for lawmakers to use tax dollars to settle sexual harassment claims.
In July 2019, Roby said she would retire from Congress at the end of her term. In December 2019, Roby voted to oppose the impeachment of Donald J. Trump in her position on the House Judiciary Committee. During the vote, Roby's son, George, sat on her lap. Regarding impeachment, Roby said that Americans "should feel cheated" and that the Democrats conducted "an incomplete and inadequate pursuit of the truth."
As of January 2019, Roby has voted with her party in 92.4% of votes so far in the 116th United States Congress and voted in line with President Trump's position in 93.8% of the votes. She has a 58% rating, regarding her conservative votes, from Heritage Action for America.
Vote Smart, a non-profit, non-partisan research organization that collects and distributes information on candidates for public office in the United States, "researched presidential and congressional candidates' public records to determine candidates' likely responses on certain key issues." According to Vote Smart's 2016 analysis, Roby generally supports pro-life legislation, opposes an income tax increase, opposes federal spending as a means of promoting economic growth, supports lowering taxes as a means of promoting economic growth, opposes requiring states to adopt federal education standards, supports building the Keystone Pipeline, supports government funding for the development of renewable energy, opposes the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions, opposes gun-control legislation, supports repealing the Affordable Care Act, supports requiring immigrants who are unlawfully present to return to their country of origin before they are eligible for citizenship, opposes same-sex marriage, supports increased American intervention in Iraq and Syria beyond air support, and opposes allowing individuals to divert a portion of their Social Security taxes into personal retirement accounts.
She supports the Hyde Amendment and opposes abortion providers having access to Title X money. She opposes sex-selective and race-selective abortions. She supports efforts to include "preborn human person[s]" in the 14th Amendment of the United States Constitution and co-sponsored a bill to do so. In 2011, she signed a prohibition on funding the United Nations Population Fund. She co-sponsored the Sanctity of Human Life Act.
During the 2010 election, Roby promised to reduce government spending and that that she would support a Balanced Budget Agreement, support a line-item veto, support ending the current earmark process, oppose government bailouts and takeovers of private companies, and support the requirement of budgets to be submitted for Social Security and Medicare.
Roby has a "D" rating from marijuana legalization advocacy group the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) and a score of zero out of six from the National Cannabis Industry Association regarding her voting record on cannabis-related matters. Roby opposes the legalization of medical, recreational, and veterans' use of marijuana. She also opposes hemp legalization.
When the Obama administration issued guidance in 2016 that transgender students in public schools be allowed to choose which bathrooms to use, Roby said the administration had "lost their minds." The Human Rights Campaign gives Roby a rating of zero for her lack of support for pro-LGBTQ rights policies.
During her time in the Alabama legislature, Roby suggested the possibility of impeachment for then federal judge Mark Fuller, who was charged and plead guilty for spousal abuse. Roby voted to oppose the Violence Against Women Act because she says portions of the law are unconstitutional. These portions include the ability for non-Native Americans to prosecute Native Americans in tribal court for domestic violence charges. She says "It takes away potential due process for people who are not a member of the tribe."
Roby pledged to maintain defense spending at least 4% of Gross Domestic Product and that she would support missile defense programs in 2010.
In 2010, she pledged to abolish the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). As of 2017, Roby has a 0% rating with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees and a 10% rating from the AFL-CIO for her pro-worker voting record. She has a 89% rating from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce for her support of pro-business policies. She opposes increasing the federal minimum wage and supports abolishing the federal minimum wage, saying "The best thing the federal government can do to ensure increasing wages is to get out of the way," while claiming it stifles growth.
When asked if there was one federal department or agency that she could eliminate, she said she would abolish the Department of Education but keep federal grants to states intact. Roby supports voluntary prayer in all schools.
Energy and environment
In 2010, Roby opposed reduced dependence on foreign oil and cap and trade. The environmental advocacy group the League of Conservation Voters gives her a lifetime score of 4%. Roby opposes the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases. She supports efforts to drill for oil on the outer continental shelf. She also opposes increasing taxes to fight climate change.
During the 2010 election, Roby said she would vote to require that all legislation be posted online for 72 hours before debate and require that every piece of legislation begin with an explanation of its constitutionality.
Roby is a gun owner.
She also opposes federal funding being used to fund research using human embryos.
During Roby's 2010 campaign, she promised to support ending pre-existing conditions as exclusion from receiving health insurance benefits and to vote to defund health care reform. In 2010, Roby expressed support for Paul Ryan's "Roadmap for America's Future", which would privatize portions of Medicare. She has stated publicly that she opposes privatization of Medicare and Social Security.
Roby has repeatedly voted to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). On May 4, 2017, she voted in favor of repealing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and passing the American Health Care Act. In stating her support for the American Health Care Act (AHCA), Roby said the Affordable Care Act was a "failed law" and that the AHCA put in place a "patient-centered system that lowers costs, increases choices, and isn't run by the government". The U.S. House voted on the legislation before the bill had been scored by the Congressional Budget Office.
In 2013, Roby received a score of 0% from the Alliance for Retired Americans for supporting privatization and market-based reforms. She opposes efforts to raise the retirement age for social security, to reduce in Social Security benefits and to increase in payroll taxes for Social Security benefits.
Roby supports tax reform, including the abolition of the estate tax.In the 112th United States Congress, Roby signed the Americans for Tax Reform Taxpayer Protection Pledge. In 2010, Roby signed a pledge sponsored by Americans for Prosperity to not vote for any global warming legislation that would raise taxes. Roby voted for the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. She said that more businesses will stay in the U.S. due to the tax cuts and that she is "proud" of the legislation which she says "will help families keep their own money."
After the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, Roby said "I'm horrified and heartbroken by the terrorist attack in Orlando. I'm praying for the victims and their families, and I ask others to send prayers of comfort and healing for everyone affected. This is the worst terrorist attack on American soil since September 11, 2001. Though reports on the killer's ties to specific groups still coming in, we must fully dispel the notion that our struggle against radical Islamic terrorism is solely an overseas fight. That fight is here in the Homeland, and all American leaders must come to grips with it."
In October 2016, Roby withdrew her presidential endorsement of Donald Trump, saying: "Donald Trump's behavior makes him unacceptable as a candidate for president, and I won't vote for him". Following Trump's election, Roby became more supportive of Trump, and attempted to make amends, subsequently gaining his endorsement for her reelection campaign. She earned Trump's endorsement in the primary reportedly after House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy encouraged Trump to endorse her. In October 2019 Roby voted for a resolution condemning President Trump for removing U.S. military forces from Syria, that had protected greatly endangered Kurdish civilians as well as fighters and their military resistance to the Islamic State in Syria (ISIS) enabling attacks upon them by Turkish forces and the Assad government in Syria. She voted in opposition of the impeachment of Trump, stating that "the bar to impeach a sitting president of the United States has not been met."
War and peace
Roby voted yes on banning armed forces in Libya without congressional approval. She opposed the removal of armed forces in Afghanistan in 2011.
|Alabama 2nd Congressional District Republican Primary Election, 2010|
|Republican||John Beau McKinney III||3,349||4.48|
|Alabama 2nd Congressional District Republican Primary Runoff Election, 2010|
|Alabama 2nd Congressional District Election, 2010|
|Alabama 2nd Congressional District Election, 2012|
|Republican||Martha Roby (inc.)||180,591||63.60|
|Alabama 2nd Congressional District Election, 2014|
|Republican||Martha Roby (inc.)||113,103||67.34|
|Alabama 2nd Congressional District Republican Primary Election, 2016|
|Republican||Martha Roby (inc.)||78,689||66.37|
|Republican||Robert "Bob" Rogers||6,856||5.78|
|Alabama 2nd Congressional District General Election, 2016|
|Republican||Martha Roby (inc.)||134,886||49|
|No Party||Write Ins||29,609||10|
- The Montgomery Advertiser, May 12, 1996
- GOP's Roby defeats Bright in Alabama's 2nd District Archived 2015-12-22 at the Wayback Machine Montgomery Advertiser, November 2, 2010.
- "Representative Martha Dubina Roby (R-Alabama, 2nd) - Biography from LegiStorm". Legistorm.com. Retrieved May 18, 2017.
- Elizabeth B. Andrews was elected to fill an unexpired term in the House, while Senators Dixie Bibb Graves and Maryon Pittman Allen were appointed and never elected.
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- "These are all the Republicans who don't want you to see Donald Trump's tax returns". indy100. 2017-02-28. Retrieved 2017-03-01.
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- Moseley, Brandon (26 December 2019). "Roby announces FCC funding to expand broadband in Autauga County". Alabama Political Reporter. Archived from the original on 20 January 2020. Retrieved 20 January 2020.
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- [dead link]
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Following a March 2017 Oval Office meeting with Trump, Roby posted an online video in which she recalled: “I sat in the Oval Office and looked the President in the eye and told him I was with him.”
- Weigel, David. "Alabama runoff: Rep. Martha Roby, who criticized Trump in 2016, wins GOP nomination". Washington Post. Retrieved 2018-07-24.
- All but two Alabama Republican congressmen vote to condemn Trump’s Syria exit, AL.com, Eddie Burkhalter, October 17, 2019. Retrieved October 27, 2019.
- "Martha Roby on War & Peace". On the Issues. Retrieved 21 January 2020.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Martha Roby.|
- Congresswoman Martha Roby official U.S. House site
- Martha Roby for Congress
- Martha Roby at Curlie
- Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Profile at Vote Smart
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission
- Legislation sponsored at the Library of Congress
|U.S. House of Representatives|
|Preceded by |
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives |
from Alabama's 2nd congressional district
|U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)|
|Preceded by |
| United States Representatives by seniority |
|112th||Senate: R. Shelby • J. Sessions||House: S. Bachus • R. Aderholt • J. Bonner • M. Rogers • M. Brooks • M. Roby • T. Sewell|
|113th||Senate: R. Shelby • J. Sessions||House: S. Bachus • R. Aderholt • J. Bonner • M. Rogers • M. Brooks • M. Roby • T. Sewell • B. Byrne|
|114th||Senate: R. Shelby • J. Sessions||House: R. Aderholt • M. Rogers • M. Brooks • M. Roby • T. Sewell • B. Byrne • G. Palmer|
|115th||Senate: R. Shelby • J. Sessions • L. Strange • D. Jones||House: R. Aderholt • M. Rogers • M. Brooks • M. Roby • T. Sewell • B. Byrne • G. Palmer|