ENG: Danny Lee "Dan" Burton (born June 21, 1938) is the former U.S. Representative for Indiana's 5th congressional district, and previously the 6th district, serving since 1983. He is a member of the Republican Party. The district includes most of the northern suburbs of Indianapolis as well as the southern fringe of the Fort Wayne area: Tipton, Grant, Miami, Wabash, Huntington, Hamilton, and Hancock counties, and parts of Marion, Shelby, Howard and Johnson counties. In January 2012 he decided to retire.
Early life, education, and early career
Burton was born in Indianapolis, the son of Bonnie L. (née Hardesty) and Charles W.
Burton. His father, a former policeman, was abusive to his mother, and never held a job for very long. The family moved constantly, living in trailer parks, cabins, and motels. In June 1950, some years after the couple divorced, his mother went to the police and got a restraining order against his father. He responded by kidnapping Burton's mother. Burton and his younger brother and sister were briefly sent to the Marion County Children's Guardian Home. After his mother escaped, Burton's father went to jail for two years. Burton's mother remarried, and Burton and his younger brother and sister had happier teenage years.
Burton worked as a caddy at a local country club in order to make ends meet, where he learned the golf skills that led to his winning a statewide golf championship in high school. He graduated from Shortridge High School in 1957, and attended Indiana University (1958–59) and the Cincinnati Bible Seminary (now known as Cincinnati Christian University) (1959–60). He served in the United States Army from 1956 to 1957, before leaving active duty to return to college but remained in the Army Reserves from 1957 to 1962.
After school, Burton became a real estate broker and he founded the Dan Burton Insurance Agency in 1968.
Burton was a member of the Indiana House of Representatives from 1967 to 1968 and again from 1977 to 1980 and the Indiana State Senate from 1969 to 1970 and again from 1981 to 1982.
U.S. House of Representatives - Elections
Burton first ran for Congress in 1970, losing to Democratic incumbent Andy Jacobs in Indiana's 11th congressional district. Burton ran again in 1972, losing in the Republican primary to William Hudnut.
After the 1980 census, the Republican-controlled state legislature reconfigured the 6th District into a heavily Republican district focused on the suburbs north of Indianapolis. Burton jumped into the Republican primary halfway into his second stint in the state senate, and won a five-way Republican primary with 37% of the vote. He then defeated Democrat George Grabianowski in the general election 65%-35%.
He would be reelected 14 times, never dropping below 62% in a general election. His district was renumbered as the 5th District after the 2000 census.
In 2008, Burton faced a well-funded challenger for the Republican primary for the first time since his initial run for the seat in former Marion County Coroner Dr. John McGoff. Burton defeated McGoff 52% to 45% in the closest Republican primary election of his career.
In the 2010 primary, he faced six challengers in the Republican primary. He won the primary with a plurality of 30%.
He defeated State Representative Luke Messer (28%), Dr. John McGoff (19%), State Representative Mike Murphy (9%), Brose McVey (8%), Andy Lyons (4%), and Ann Adcock (3%). Burton only carried a majority in one county (55%): Huntington.
In 2012, Burton was due to face a number of challengers in the Republican primary including McGoff, former U.S. Attorney Susan Brooks, former U.S. Congressman David McIntosh, and attorney Jack Lugar. On the Democratic side, State Representative Scott Reske and labor activist Tony Long entered the race. Redistricting is said to have made the 5th district slightly more Democratic, but still heavily Republican. In January 2012, he decided to retire saying "I don't want to get into it, it's about personal problems with family health."
Controversies - Tainted Funds from Pakistan
In July 2011, Burton was revealed by an FBI investigation to have received tainted election funds ultimately traced to the military intelligence services of Pakistan, apparently as a quid pro quo for "supporting to Pakistan's position on Kashmir". These funds were routed via the so-called Kashmiri American Council, run by Syed Ghulam Nabi Fai, later revealed to be a front for the Pakistani Military. Subsequently, Burton's office donated the funds to charity. Burton had long been portrayed as a "good friend of Pakistan" and, over the course of many years, regularly issued pro-Pakistan and anti-India statements, both of which ceased following the revelations regarding the funds from Pakistan. The FBI did not charge Burton with having been aware of the source of the funds received via the Kashmiri American Council.
Burton's first wife, Barbara (Logan) Burton, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1993 at the age of 56. She died in 2002 after battling breast and colon cancer. They had three children together: Kelly, Danielle and Danny.
In 1995 speaking of the then recent affairs of Republican Robert Packwood and the unfolding affair of Democrat Bill Clinton Burton stated "No one, regardless of what party they serve, no one, regardless of what branch of government they serve, should be allowed to get away with these alleged sexual improprieties..." In 1998 the magazine Vanity Fair was to print an article detailing an affair which Burton himself had in 1983 which produced a child. Before publication Burton admitted to fathering a son with a former state employee.
In August 2006, Burton married Dr. Samia Tawil in Park City, Utah. She was the internist who cared for Burton's wife, Barbara, during her battle with cancer. Tawil and her first husband had divorced in 2005.
Burton's brother, Woody Burton, is a Republican member of the Indiana House of Representatives, representing District 58.
Burton is a member of the board of advisors of The Institute on Religion and Public Policy. Burton is a 33° Scottish Rite Freemason, and a member of Evergreen-Oriental Lodge No. 500 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
January 23, 2013