|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Indiana's 2nd district
January 3, 2013
|Member of the Indiana House of Representatives|
from the 21st district
January 5, 2005 - November 16, 2010
|Richard W. Mangus|
|Born||August 17, 1963|
South Bend, Indiana, U.S.
Taylor University (BA)
Jacqueline R. Walorski (born August 17, 1963) is an American politician who has been the U.S. Representative for Indiana's 2nd congressional district since 2013. She is a member of the Republican Party, and she was a member of the Indiana House of Representatives, representing Indiana's 21st district, from 2005 to 2010. In 2010, Walorski won the Republican nomination for Indiana's 2nd congressional district, but narrowly lost in the general election to Democratic incumbent Joe Donnelly. In 2012, Walorski won the seat after Donnelly vacated it to run for the U.S. Senate.
Born in South Bend, Indiana on August 17, 1963, Walorski grew up with her two older brothers in the city's Gilmer Park neighborhood. Her mother, Martha C. (née Martin), worked as a meat cutter at a local grocery store, and her father, Raymond B. Walorski, worked as a firefighter and owned an appliance store. She has Polish and German ancestry. As a child, she attended Hay Elementary School and graduated from Riley High School in 1981. She then attended Liberty Baptist College from 1981 to 1983, and graduated from Taylor University, receiving her B.A. in Communications and Public Administration in 1985.
Walorski began her career as a television reporter for WSBT-TV, a CBS affiliate in South Bend, from 1985 to 1989, and was the executive director of the St. Joseph County Humane Society from 1989 to 1991. Walorski was appointed as the director of institutional advancement at Ancilla College in 1991, a position she held until she was appointed as the director of membership at the St. Joseph County Chamber of Commerce in 1996. She later worked as the director of annual giving at Indiana University South Bend from 1997 to 1999.
Walorski moved to Romania in 2000 and founded Impact International, a foundation to provide medical supplies and attention to impoverished children. Walorski did Christian missionary work in Romania before returning to the U.S. in 2004.
In 2004, Walorski ran for a seat in the Indiana House of Representatives after incumbent Republican State Representative Richard Mangus decided to retire. She ran for Indiana's 21st District, a district which represented the suburban area between South Bend and Elkhart. Walorski defeated Democrat Carl H. Kaser 64%-36%. In 2006, she won a second term with 53% of the vote. In 2008, she won a third term unopposed.
During her tenure in the Indiana House, Walorski was a sponsor of Indiana's Voter ID law, requiring voters to present Government issued identification during in person voting. The Voter ID law led to many lawsuits and was brought before the Supreme Court, where the law was upheld in Crawford v. Marion County Election Board, and is cited as helping the expansion of Voter ID laws in other states.
Walorski has been criticized for missing a committee vote and the opportunity for stopping the Daylight Saving Time bill from passing out of committee, even though that bill died on the House floor. After a different bill passed introducing DST, she authored and introduced a bill to rescind DST, a measure that ended up dying.
Walorski authored legislation combating identity theft, including in 2006 when she sponsored a bill requiring companies to notify customers who are Indiana residents, of any security breaches that could cause identity theft, identity deception or fraud, and making it a Class C felony and imposing a $50,000 fine on anyone who has the identities of over 100 persons. With Walorski saying that "Identity theft is the most rapidly growing crime in the United States. We need to find a solution to this problem before it gets any bigger in Indiana."
Walorski became active in the caucus and was appointed as Assistant Floor Leader. She served on the Family, Children, & Human Affairs and the Public Policy committees.
On January 31, 2009, Walorski formally announced her bid to challenge incumbent Democratic U.S. Congressman Joe Donnelly in Indiana's 2nd congressional district. Walorski won the Republican primary on May 4, 2010 with 61% of the votes, defeating opponents Martin Dolan, Jack Jordan, and Tony Zirkle. She was defeated, 48%-47% on November 2, 2010 by Donnelly.
On March 22, 2011, Walorski announced that she would run for Indiana's 2nd Congressional District again. Over the Indiana legislature's 2011-2013 legislative session, the predominantly Republican Indiana House and Senate redrew Indiana's congressional districts. After redistricting, the newly drawn 2nd district included all Elkhart County, Walorski's home county, and the demographics of the new district included more registered Republican voters.  Had the district existed under these lines in 2008, Barack Obama would have won it by just 0.3 percentage point, 49.6 percent to John McCain's 49.3 percent. In contrast, he won the old 2nd with 54 percent of the vote.
Incumbent Democratic Congressman Donnelly decided not to seek re-election, opting instead to run for the U.S. Senate. Walorski ran against Libertarian candidate Joe Ruiz of Mishawaka and Democratic candidate Brendan Mullen of Granger, an Iraq War veteran.
On May 8, 2012, Walorski easily won the primary election with 73% of the vote, winning all 10 counties in the 2nd District. Many articles have been written about Walorski's role as a woman running for Congress.
Walorski defeated Mullen 49%-48%, likely helped by Mitt Romney carrying her district with 56 percent of the vote. She took office on January 3, 2013. At the same time, Donnelly was elected to the Senate.
Walorski has received endorsements from the National Federation of Small Business and the U.S. and Indiana Chambers of Commerce.
On May 25, 2018, Walorski introduced legislation to double the death gratuity paid to the families of service members killed on active duty. The legislation would increase the current death gratuity of $100,000 to $200,000. Under the bill, at least 60% of the benefit would be paid to the surviving spouse. Service members could choose how the remaining 40 percent would be disbursed. The bill would also cap death benefits for members of Congress at $74,000. This would result in a payment of about $100,000 less than what would be paid under the current system.
Walorski has advocated privatizing Social Security. In March 2010 she said, "I think the one thing we have to do is the thing that Bush actually tried to do a couple years ago, which is privatize Social Security and allow people to invest in their own retirement."
In a statement released on May 31, 2018, Walorski announced her opposition to tariffs on goods imported from American allies. She said that such duties threaten American businesses and workers. Tariffs announced the same day by the Trump administration were the impetus for her statement. These include a 25-percent tariff on steel and a 10-percent tariff on aluminum. Walorski also asked that system for granting exclusions for certain kinds of products be accelerated. Walorski and 15 other members of House Committee on Ways and Means also addressed a letter to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross asking that companies that successfully apply for exclusion receive rebates on tariffs already paid while their applications were pending; President Trump signed an executive order to ensure such refunds take place.
In 2015, Walorski rejected the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, a bill banning Late termination of pregnancy, an abortion procedure given beyond 20 weeks into a pregnancy. In 2013, Walorski had said she would support a ban on late-term abortions.
In October 2017, Walorski asked the Indiana State Department of Health to deny an application to open an abortion clinic in South Bend. Walorski said the clinic would undermine efforts to reduce the number of abortions in the area.
Walorski supported President Donald Trump's 2017 executive order to impose a temporary ban on entry to the U.S. to citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries. She believes that it "will allow our national security officials to examine the vetting process and strengthen safeguards to prevent terrorists from entering our homeland."
In 1995, Walorski married her husband, Dean Swihart, a schoolteacher in Mishawaka. She resides in Jimtown, an unincorporated suburban community west of Elkhart, and is a member of South Gate Church, an Assemblies of God megachurch in South Bend.
Walorski has been awarded the following foreign honor:
|Democratic||Carl H. Kaser||7,728||36%|
|N/A||Clyde James (Write-in)||232||1%|
|Democratic||Joe Donnelly (incumbent)||91,341||48%|
|N/A||Kenneth R. Luntz, Jr. (Write-in)||3||0%|
|Republican gain from Democratic||Swing|
|Republican||Jackie Walorski (incumbent)||85,119||59%|
|Republican||Jackie Walorski (incumbent)||164,355||59%|
|Republican||Jackie Walorski (incumbent)||125,499||55%|
|No party||Richard Wolf (Write-in)||27||0|