Former New York Republican Representative Bill Paxon became a member of Congress in 1988 and resigned on February 25, 1998, amidst speculation as to his true motivation. (Also see external links below.)
Paxon was described in July 1997 as "a loyal, yet back-room player until 1994, when his role as chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) thrust him in the spotlight after the Republicans gained 52 seats and recaptured the House for the first time in 40 years."
Paxon was "known as a political wonk obsessed by the how to of winning elections [who] lobbied vigourously [and] unanimously won the NRCC post. There he inherited a $4.5 million debt-ridden, overstaffed committee which held little credibility within the GOP. After downsizing the committee, Paxon worked with then-Minority Whip Newt Gingrich to showcase the revamped NRCC, soliciting large donations and recruiting a record number of GOP challengers. Paxon and the NRCC also helped craft the Contract With America, winning close to unanimous support for the package from Republican candidates."
On the Board of Governors for the Partnership for Public Service.
"Leaving the NRCC in 1996, Paxon was elected chairman of the House Republican Leadership where he ... served as a loyal lieutenant for House Speaker Newt Gingrich."
"A natural politician, Paxon's roots are in Buffalo where at the age of 15 he volunteered in the first congressional campaign of favorite hometown boy and Buffalo Bill quarterback, Jack Kemp. Paxon continued in politics after college and at the tender of 23 was elected to the Erie County legislature, the youngest member ever (1978-1982). He was elected to the New York Assembly in 1988, but later the same year won Kemp's House seat when the former football star ran for president."
"A staunch and consistent conservative, Paxon fought against the 1991 gasoline tax increase and has proposed legislation that would clamp down on corrupt environmental contractors. [While sitting] on the Energy and Commerce Committee, policy [was] not Paxon's strong suit. Democratic Rep. Louise Slaughter, whose district adjoins Paxon's in upstate New York, has observed, 'Legislation does not interest him. His interest is just to rid the world of Democrats.'"
Other Related SourceWatch Resources
- What's Wrong with the Paxon Picture?, Arianna Online, March 4, 1998.
- Jacob Weisberg, Bill Paxon's Mysterious Epiphany. A replaceable man falls on his sword, MSN.com, March 7, 1998: Paxon was "displaced from his position in the House Republican leadership as punishment for his role in the failed coup against Speaker Newt Gingrich" in July 1997.
- Notebook: Bill Paxon Drops Out Of The Political Ring, TIME, March 9, 1998.