Michael Baumgartner (born 1975) is a member of the Washington State Senate and a Republican. Baumgartner represents parts of the City of Spokane, Airway Heights, and Cheney including Eastern Washington University.
Baumgartner was born in Pullman, Washington. His mother is a Kindergarten teacher and his father was a Washington State University professor. Baumgartner earned a scholarship to attend Washington State University's Honors College. There, he was awarded a Thomas Foley scholarship, and was named a Stephenson scholar, an award given to the top graduates from the Honors College. He graduated in 1999 with a degree in Economics with minors in French and Mathematics. In 2002, he earned a Masters degree in Public Administration from Harvard University.
Baumgartner taught classes at Harvard. He volunteered as a researcher on environmental science teams with the US Forest Service. During the Iraq War, he served as the Economics Officer in the Office of Joint Strategic Planning & Assessment (JSPA) at the United States Embassy in Baghdad, helping the Iraqi government as part of the Baghdad Security Plan. He was praised by then-General David Petraeus as well as Ambassador Ryan Crocker. In 2008, he spent seven months working as a civilian contractor in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan. That same year, the Boston Globe referred to Baumgartner as the "Architect of Hope" in the Middle East.
While serving as Washington State Senator, Baumgartner has sponsored an amendment to the Washington State Constitution to rise Higher Education to the State's #2 focus, reorganizing and streamlining central service functions, powers, and duties of the State Government, and reforming the rule-making process for State Economic Policy.
The Association of Washington Business has awarded him their 'Cornerstone Award' also, in recognition of his support for employers, economic development, and business-related issues in the Washington State Legislature. In 2012, Baumgartner was named one of the National Federation of Independent Business' Guardians of Business, the highest award they offer, in recognition of his votes that side "100 Percent" with small businesses. Baumgartner is the ranking minority member of the Economic Development Trade & Innovation Committee, and serves on the Ways & Means Committee, as well as the Higher Education & Workforce Development Committee.
2012 U.S. Senate election
In October 2011 Baumbartner announced his challenge to U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA). Cantwell, who running for her third term. Baumgartner earned a place on the November general election ballot by finishing in second after Cantwell in the open Washington primary.
Baumgartner aroused controversy when he publicly condemned Republican Todd Akin's remarks about the rape exception to abortion legislation. A reporter for Seattle Met magazine, Josh Feit, asked him to clarify his own view of that subject. "I have empathy for the victims of rape. Rape is a tragedy. It’s a terrible thing. Certainly, we need to give victims all the help we can. There is no place in politics for uttering something so ignorant about pregnancy and rape," Baumgartner told Feit. Feit posted the comment on the magazine's website with the suggestion that Baumgartner had not been fully responsive. Baumgartner then sent a private email to Feit telling the blogger to "go f--- yourself". The email was published on the public interest blog PubliCola. Baumgartner has since stated that the blogger "had it coming" and will not be apologizing for the remarks.
- campaign website
- Honors College: Michael Baumgartner. Honors.wsu.edu (2006-02-14). Retrieved on 2012-07-05.
- What I'd rather read - The Boston Globe. Boston.com (2008-06-02). Retrieved on 2012-07-05.
- Vote Michael Baumgartner for US Senate. Baumgartnerforsenate.com. Retrieved on 2012-07-05.
- Bill Sponsorship. Leg.wa.gov. Retrieved on August 27, 2012.
- Baumgartner. Leg.wa.gov. Retrieved on August 27, 2012.
- Washington - Oregon - Idaho. Nwcn.com (2011-09-30). Retrieved on August 27, 2012.
- Byers, Dylan (August 22, 2012). Senate hopeful to reporter: 'Go f--k yourself'. Politico. Retrieved on August 27, 2012.
- Sen. Michael Baumgartner explains his comment to a Seattle liberal blogger'. Youtube (August 27, 2012).
- Senate candidate won't apologize for sending 'F-bomb' in email. The Dori Monson Show (2012-08-22). Retrieved on August 27, 2012.