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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
California State Government November 2, 2004 Election
Smart Voter Full Biography for Bill L. Jones

Candidate for
United States Senator

This information is provided by the candidate


Bill Jones is one of California's most respected Republican leaders, with an impressive balance of experience as a rancher, businessman, legislator and state constitutional officer.

He was elected California Secretary of State in 1994, making history by becoming the first resident of the Central Valley to serve in a statewide constitutional office in over a century. He was re-elected in 1998, with the endorsement of almost every major newspaper. He became the state's highest elected Republican officeholder, running over 300,000 votes ahead of the Republican gubernatorial candidate that year. He has served on the board of directors for both the Fresno City and County Chambers of Commerce and was Chair of the Fresno County Republican Central Committee.

Bill Jones instituted numerous reforms as Secretary of State to increase voter participation, streamline office operations, cut costs and reduce paperwork. His fair-minded, even-handed administration drew praise from the news media, reform groups and legislators of both parties, and ended his 2nd term with approximately the same number of state employees he began with eight years earlier.

Among his accomplishments was the state's first-ever Elections Summit to review California's elections law to help guarantee a fraud-free voting system. He also established a Voter Fraud Task Force, implemented strict penalties for candidates and lobbyists who fail to meet important disclosure requirements, and created an advisory panel to prepare for the future electronic filing of campaign contribution and expenditure reports. He established an award-winning museum on California history, which has attendees of over 60,000 school children per year and a web site to help teachers teach California history.

In addition, he worked to improve the state's position in the international trade arena and as a nationally recognized leader of agriculture, trade and water issues, played an active role in the creation of an efficient and stable water supply system for the state.

Before his election as Secretary of State, Bill Jones served as a legislator from Fresno in the California State Assembly. In 1990, his fellow Republican legislators elected him to serve as Assembly Republican Leader. During his tenure in the Legislature, Jones compiled a distinguished record of achievement and an unparalleled reputation for honesty and integrity.

While serving as Republican Leader, he successfully fought for the historic reapportionment of 1992. The re-drawing of the legislative district lines that year returned fair and competitive elections to California and erased the severely gerrymandered district lines that existed previously.

In 1994, Jones received national acclaim when he authored California's immensely popular "Three Strikes" law. In an unprecedented act, voters placed an identical measure on the ballot that year, where it received 72 percent of the vote.

A second generation California rancher and farmer, Bill Jones has been married for 33 years. He and his wife, Maurine, have two daughters, Wendy and Andrea, and two grandchildren, Lauren and Luke.

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: October 19, 2004 19:26
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