Frank Church
American politician
Frank Church
Frank Forrester Church III was an American lawyer and politician. A member of the Democratic Party, he served as a United States Senator from Idaho from 1957 to 1981. Church was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 1976 presidential election, losing to Jimmy Carter. He is known for heading the Church Committee, which investigated abuses in the U.S. intelligence agencies.
Biography
Frank Church's personal information overview.
{{personal_detail.supertitle}}
{{personal_detail.title}}
{{personal_detail.title}}
Photo Albums
Popular photos of Frank Church
Relationships
View family, career and love interests for Frank Church
Show More Show Less
News
News abour Frank Church from around the web
In Memoir, Cheney Addresses Controversies - New York Times
Google News - over 5 years
The revelations prompted major investigations by Congress, most aggressively by a committee led by Senator Frank Church that extracted extensive classified information from the executive branch, presenting a continuing headache for the Ford
Article Link:
Google News article
Saddle Creek Comlex fire sees slight growth - KPAX-TV
Google News - over 5 years
Much of the fire has burned with the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness with about 9200 acres of the fire on the Idaho side of the state line. Authorities are working to protect area lookouts, campgrounds, and homes, including Gattin Ranch from
Article Link:
Google News article
Bitterroot wildfire grows by almost 10000 acres in single day - The Missoulian
Google News - over 5 years
HAMILTON - Pushed by heavy winds late Monday, the Saddle fire in the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness grew by almost 10000 acres in a day. On Tuesday, the fire slowed as firefighters on the Montana side began looking for opportunities to
Article Link:
Google News article
TUESDAY'S FIRST FORECAST: Sunshine and 85 - The Missoulian
Google News - over 5 years
Winds shouldn't be as gusty as they were Monday, however, welcome news to firefighters on the line in West Riverside and in both the Bob Marshall and Frank Church-River of No Return wilderness areas. Tonight, skies will be mostly clear, forecasters say
Article Link:
Google News article
Pete Cenarrusa, Bethine Church host Sept. 8-9 symposium on comparative democracy - The Idaho Statesman
Google News - over 5 years
The Cenarrusa Foundation for Basque Culture and the Frank Church Institute partners with the Basque government in the forum, which will be held at the Idaho Capitol. Cenarrusa long pressed the US government to be more sympathetic to Basque autonomy and
Article Link:
Google News article
Broomfield's schools sprung up in 1880s - Broomfield Enterprise
Google News - over 5 years
In 1892, she married Frank Church, the son of local pioneers George and Sarah Church. Frank and Katherine's son, Marcus Church, attended the Lorraine School from 1906 to 1913. A few decades later, another Lorraine schoolteacher was Miss Emily E
Article Link:
Google News article
Idaho fires send smoke into southern Bitterroot Valley - The Missoulian
Google News - over 5 years
HAMILTON - A pair of fires in Idaho's Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness flared Thursday and dropped a good amount of smoke into some portions of the southern Bitterroot Valley. Pushed by winds exceeding 30 mph, the Saddle fire in the upper
Article Link:
Google News article
In remembrance: Carl Burke was a yarn-spinner, pacifist, dad and grandpa - IdahoStatesman.com
Google News - over 5 years
Frank Church during Church's 1976 presidential campaign, holding up a picture of Church. After Church's wife, Bethine, Burke was the four-term senator's closest confidant. One of Idaho's most powerful lawyers and political operatives, Burke died June
Article Link:
Google News article
Who is the Worse President: Jimmy Carter or Barack Obama? - Intellectual Conservative
Google News - over 5 years
Among Carter's competitors for the Democratic Party presidential nomination in 1976 were: Scoop Jackson, Walter Mondale, Birch Bayh, Lloyd Bentsen, Robert Byrd, Frank Church, Sargent Shriver, Morris Udall, Gerry Brown and George Wallace
Article Link:
Google News article
Zimo: New book has plenty of great Idaho shots - Bellingham Herald
Google News - over 5 years
Deren became entranced by the wilderness of Central Idaho when he worked clearing trails in the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness for the Payette National Forest. His book will definitely make people gain a more complete understanding of the
Article Link:
Google News article
Carl Burke: 2nd Man In This Picture - The Spokesman Review (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
I went looking for a photo of Carl Burke, the great Idaho attorney and the only campaign manager Frank Church ever had, and, of course, couldn't find one online. He could have been the second man in this photo of the Senator and Bethine
Article Link:
Google News article
Idaho GOP leaders mull moving up presidential primary timeline - Ontario Argus Observer
Google News - over 5 years
Secretary of State Ben Ysursa says Idaho's primary “has been a non-event,” excepting 1976, when native son Frank Church and Ronald Reagan were on the ballot. “The election in late May has proven to be meaningless,” Ysursa said
Article Link:
Google News article
Hey, Baby, It's the Fourth of July - Slate Magazine (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
Frank Church was one of the best friend civil libertarians ever had. At the lower political level? I'd go with Maynard Jackson, the first black mayor of Atlanta, and thus the first black executive of a southern mega-city, and someone who understood
Article Link:
Google News article
Western Montana Getaway: Glorious Magruder Corridor encased in wilderness - The Missoulian
Google News - over 5 years
You're surrounded by two of the biggest chunks of wilderness in the nation - the Selway-Bitterroot to the north, the Frank Church-River of No Return to the south. Motorized access was retained along the Magruder Corridor when the roadless wilderness
Article Link:
Google News article
High water puts damper on recreation in Rocky mountains - Reuters
Google News - over 5 years
US Forest Service managers of the Middle Fork Salmon River in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness are reporting a plunge in the number of launches on an Idaho waterway famed for its granite-walled canyons, endless rapids, sandy beaches and
Article Link:
Google News article
Volunteers maintain Idaho wilderness trails - Seattle Daily Journal of Commerce (subscription)
Google News - over 5 years
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A group of volunteers who have worked to keep trails in Idaho's Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness clean and ready for visitors is expanding its efforts to the Frank Church-River of No Return wilderness. The Selway-Bitterroot Frank
Article Link:
Google News article
An inside look at a piece of Idaho history - IdahoStatesman.com
Google News - over 5 years
The Clarks would keep the ranch in the family for 70 years, and it would play a major role in shaping Idaho: Chase Clark's daughter, Bethine, married a young Boisean with aspirations named Frank Church. The ceremony was at the family's ranch at
Article Link:
Google News article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Frank Church
    FIFTIES
  • 1984
    Age 59
    Three years after leaving the Senate, Church was hospitalized for a pancreatic tumor on January 12, 1984.
    More Details Hide Details Less than three months later, he died at his home in Bethesda, Maryland, on April 7 at age 59. A memorial service was held at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. and then his body was flown home to Idaho, where he lay in state beneath the rotunda of the Idaho State Capitol. His funeral was held in downtown Boise at the Cathedral of the Rockies on April 12 and televised throughout Idaho. Church was buried at Morris Hill Cemetery near his boyhood hero, Senator William Borah. His parents and paternal grandparents are also buried at Morris Hill, in the St. John's Catholic section. His maternal grandparents are buried across town in the Pioneer Cemetery, as are the Bayhouse great-grandparents.
    It was renamed the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness in 1984, shortly after the diagnosis of his pancreatic cancer.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1983
    Age 58
    Church received an honorary doctorate from Pennsylvania's Elizabethtown College in 1983 to honor his work for the American people during his career in public office.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1981
    Age 56
    His papers, originally given to his alma mater Stanford University in 1981, were transferred to Boise State University at his request in 1984.
    More Details Hide Details Church was the last Democrat to serve in the U.S. Senate from Idaho. Church was stunned by what the Church Committee learned about the immense operations and electronic monitoring capabilities of the National Security Agency (NSA), an agency whose existence was unknown to most Americans at the time. Church stated in 1975: "That capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything: telephone conversations, telegrams, it doesn't matter. There would be no place to hide." He is widely quoted as also stating regarding the NSA: "I don't want to see this country ever go across the bridge... I know the capacity that is there to make tyranny total in America, and we must see to it that this agency and all agencies that possess this technology operate within the law and under proper supervision, so that we never cross over that abyss. That is the abyss from which there is no return."
  • 1980
    Age 55
    The latter position proved to be widely unpopular in Idaho and led to the formation of the "Anybody But Church Committee" (ABC), committee created by the National Conservative Political Action Committee (NCPAC), based in Washington, D.C. ABC and NCPAC had no formal connection with the 1980 Senate campaign of conservative Republican congressman Steve Symms, which permitted them, under former Federal election law, to spend as much as they could raise to defeat Church.
    More Details Hide Details Church lost in his attempt for a fifth term to Symms by less than one percent of the vote. His defeat was blamed on the activities of the Anybody But Church Committee and the national media's early announcement in Idaho of Republican presidential candidate Ronald Reagan's overwhelming win. These predictions were broadcast before polls closed statewide, specifically in the Pacific Time Zone in the north. Many believed that this caused many Democrats in the more politically moderate Idaho Panhandle to not vote at all., Church is the last Democrat to represent Idaho in the U.S. Senate. Following his 24 years in the Senate, Church practiced international law with the Washington, D.C., firm of Whitman and Ransom, specializing in Asian issues.
  • 1976
    Age 51
    In 1976, Church belatedly sought the Democratic nomination for president and announced his candidacy on March 18 from rustic Idaho City, his father's birthplace.
    More Details Hide Details Although he won primaries in Nebraska, Idaho, Oregon, and Montana, he withdrew in favor of the eventual nominee, former Georgia governor Jimmy Carter. Church remains the only Idahoan to win a major-party presidential primary election. By June, Carter had the nomination sufficiently locked up and could take time to interview potential vice-presidential candidates. The pundits predicted that Church would be tapped to provide balance as an experienced senator with strong liberal credentials. Church promoted himself, persuading friends to intervene with Carter in his behalf. If a quick choice had been required as in past conventions, Carter later recalled, he would probably have chosen Church. But the longer period for deliberation gave Carter time to worry about his compatibility with the publicity-seeking Church, who had a tendency to be long-winded. Instead, Carter invited Senators Edmund Muskie, John Glenn, and Walter Mondale to visit his home in Plains, Georgia, for personal interviews, while Church, Henry M. Jackson, and Adlai Stevenson III would be interviewed at the convention in New York. Of all the potential candidates, Carter found Mondale the most compatible. As a result, Carter selected Mondale as his running mate.
    Church was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 1976 presidential election, losing to Jimmy Carter.
    More Details Hide Details He is known for heading the Church Committee, which investigated abuses in the U.S. intelligence agencies. Born and raised in Boise, Idaho, Church was the younger of the two sons of Frank (II) and Laura Bilderback Church. His father co-owned a sporting goods store and took the sons on fishing, hunting, and hiking outings in the Idaho mountains. The family was Catholic and conservative, and Frank III attended St. Joseph's School as a youngster, where he went by the nickname "Frosty." His older brother Richard became a career officer in the U.S. Marines Corps, and retired as a colonel.
  • 1975
    Age 50
    In late 1975 and early 1976, a sub-committee of the U.S. Senate led by Church concluded that members of the Lockheed board had paid members of friendly governments to guarantee contracts for military aircraft in a series of illegal bribes and contributions made by Lockheed officials from the late 1950s to the 1970s.
    More Details Hide Details In 1976, it was publicly revealed that Lockheed had paid $22 million in bribes to foreign officials in the process of negotiating the sale of aircraft including the F-104 Starfighter, the so-called "Deal of the Century." Church also sponsored, along with Pennsylvania Republican John Heinz, the "conscience clause," which prohibited the government from requiring church-affiliated hospitals to perform abortions.
  • FORTIES
  • 1974
    Age 49
    In 1974, Church joined Senator Frank Moss, D-Utah, to sponsor the first legislation to provide federal funding for hospice care programs.
    More Details Hide Details The bill did not have widespread support and was not brought to a vote. Congress finally included a hospice benefit in Medicare in 1982.
  • 1972
    Age 47
    He was also the primary proponent in the establishment of the Sawtooth Wilderness and National Recreation Area in central Idaho in 1972.
    More Details Hide Details Church also was instrumental in the creation of Idaho's River of No Return Wilderness in 1980, his final year in the Senate. This wilderness comprised the old Idaho Primitive Area, the Salmon River Breaks Primitive Area, plus additional lands. At 2.36 million acres (9,550 km²), over, it is the largest wilderness area in the nation outside of Alaska.
  • 1970
    Age 45
    In September 1970, Church announced on television and in speeches across the country that "the doves had won."
    More Details Hide Details Author David F. Schmitz states that Church based his assertion on the fact that two key propositions of the anti-war movement, "A negotiated peace and the withdrawal of American troops," were now official policy. The only debate that remained would be over when to withdraw, not whether to withdraw, and over the meaning of the war. Church concluded: So the last service the doves can perform for their country, is to insist that President Nixon's withdrawal program truly leads to a "Vietnamization" of the war. It must not become a device for lowering—and then perpetuating—an American military presence in South Vietnam for the indefinite future. Our long ordeal in this mistaken war must end. The gathering crisis in our own land, the deepening divisions among our people, the festering, unattended problems here at home, bear far more importantly on the future of our Republic than anything we ever had at stake in Indochina.
    He was the co-author of two legislative efforts to curtail the war: the Cooper–Church Amendment of 1970, and the Case–Church Amendment of 1973.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1967
    Age 42
    "It must be pointed out that a United States senator is not a state officer but a federal officer whose position is created by Article I, Section I of the United States Constitution," Shepard wrote in a June 17, 1967, opinion for the secretary of state. "There seems to be no provision for canvassing the votes of a recall election of a United States senator."
    More Details Hide Details Most commentators at the time believed that the recall attempt strengthened Church politically by allowing him to play the role of political martyr and he was reelected in the next year's election over Republican Congressman George V. Hansen 60% to 40%. Church was a key figure in American foreign policy during the 1970s, and served as chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations from 1979 to 1981. Following the instinct that led him to ask questions early on (see above), Church was one of the first senators to publicly oppose the Vietnam War in the 1960s, although he had supported the conflict earlier.
    In 1967, a recall campaign was waged against Church by Ron Rankin, a Republican county commissioner in Kootenai County in northern Idaho.
    More Details Hide Details Rankin unsuccessfully sued Idaho's secretary of state to accept recall petitions. The U.S. District Court for Idaho ruled that the state's recall laws did not apply to U.S. senators and that such a recall would violate the U.S. Constitution. Allan Shepard, Idaho's attorney general at the time, agreed with the court's decision.
  • THIRTIES
  • 1964
    Age 39
    Recently declassified documents show that the young veteran also challenged his mentor, behind closed doors, after the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin incident, making this prescient warning: "In a democracy you cannot expect the people, whose sons are being killed and who will be killed, to exercise their judgment if the truth is concealed from them."
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1957
    Age 32
    However, Church managed to find his way into Johnson's good graces by providing key assistance in getting the Civil Rights Act of 1957 passed.
    More Details Hide Details LBJ was so grateful he made the young Idahoan a veritable protégé, rewarding him with plum assignments, such as a seat on the prestigious Senate Foreign Relations Committee, a position which allowed Church to follow in the footsteps of his idol, William Borah.
    Upon entering the Senate in January 1957, Church made the mistake of voting on a measure against the wishes of Democratic Majority Leader, Lyndon Johnson, and Johnson punished Church by all but ignoring him for the next six months.
    More Details Hide Details Church found solace from Republican Minority Leader, William Knowland.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1952
    Age 27
    Church became an active Democrat in Idaho and after an unsuccessful try for the state legislature in 1952, he ran for the U.S. Senate in 1956.
    More Details Hide Details After a closely contested primary election against former Senator Glen H. Taylor, Church handily defeated Republican incumbent Herman Welker in the general election. At the age of 32, Church became the fifth youngest member ever to sit in the U.S. Senate. Church was reelected three times (1962, 1968 and 1974), the only Democrat ever to win reelection to the U.S. Senate from Idaho.
  • 1950
    Age 25
    In 1950, Church graduated from Stanford Law School and returned to Boise to practice law and teach public speaking at the junior college.
    More Details Hide Details Frank and Bethine had two sons, Frank Forrester Church IV, who died in 2009, and Chase Clark Church, who lives in Boise. Both boys were named for their grandfathers.
  • 1947
    Age 22
    In June 1947 he married Bethine Clark, daughter of Chase Clark, a former Democratic governor of Idaho and the federal judge for the state.
    More Details Hide Details The wedding took place at the secluded Robinson Bar Ranch, the Clark family's ranch in the mountains east of Stanley (and now owned by singer Carole King, since 1981). He entered Harvard Law School that fall and after one year at Harvard, Church transferred to Stanford Law School, when he thought the cold Massachusetts winter was the cause of a pain in his lower back. The pain did not go away and the problem was soon diagnosed as testicular cancer. After one of his testicles and glands in his lower abdomen were removed, Church was given only a few months to live. However, he rebounded from the illness after another doctor started X-ray treatments. This second chance led him to later reflect that "life itself is such a chancy proposition that the only way to live is by taking great chances."
  • 1946
    Age 21
    Following his discharge in 1946, he returned to Stanford to complete his education, receiving his bachelor's degree in history in 1947, with Phi Beta Kappa honors.
    More Details Hide Details
  • TEENAGE
  • 1944
    Age 19
    He was commissioned a second lieutenant on his 20th birthday in 1944 and served as a military intelligence officer in the China-Burma-India theater.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1942
    Age 17
    Church enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1942, was called up the following year and attended officer candidate training at Fort Benning in Georgia.
    More Details Hide Details
    Church enrolled at Stanford University in California in 1942 and joined Theta Xi fraternity.
    More Details Hide Details
    Church graduated from Boise High School in 1942, where he served as student body president.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1941
    Age 16
    As a junior in 1941, he won the American Legion National Oratorical Contest.
    More Details Hide Details The prize was sufficient to provide for four years at the college of the winner's choice.
  • 1940
    Age 15
    In his youth, Church admired William E. Borah, who represented Idaho in the U.S. Senate from 1907 to 1940.
    More Details Hide Details
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1924
    Born
    Born on July 25, 1924.
    More Details Hide Details
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
All data offered is derived from public sources. Spokeo does not verify or evaluate each piece of data, and makes no warranties or guarantees about any of the information offered. Spokeo does not possess or have access to secure or private financial information. Spokeo is not a consumer reporting agency and does not offer consumer reports. None of the information offered by Spokeo is to be considered for purposes of determining any entity or person's eligibility for credit, insurance, employment, housing, or for any other purposes covered under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)