|U.S. Representative from Illinois's 8th District|
From: January 3, 2005 - January 3, 2011
Melissa Luburich Bean (born January 22, 1962 in Chicago, Illinois) was a U.S. Representative from Illinois's 8th congressional district, covering the northern suburbs of Chicago. She was a member of the House Financial Services Committee and Small Business Committee. Since 2007, she served as chairwoman of the Small Business Subcommittee on Tax, Finance and Exports.
Previously, Bean was president of Sales Resources Inc, a home business that trains executives to develop marketing and sales campaigns. She ran an energetic campaign for Congress in 2004, defeating 36-year incumbent Phil Crane despite receiving little assistance from national Democrats. Bean portrayed herself as fiscally conservative and socially moderate.
In 2009, she became vice-chair of the centrist New Democrats and a member of the Blue Dog Coalition. Bean was also one of just 15 House Democrats who voted for the Central American Free Trade Agreement, and the lone Democrat to vote against a $607 billion spending bill for labor and Health and Human Services programs. Bean faced a competitive reelection in 2006, narrowly winning with 51% of the vote. In 2008, she increased her winning percentage to 61%.
Bean supported Democrat initiatives under the Obama administration, such as the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. In 2010, Bean was defeated by Tea party activist Joe Walsh in the general election.