John H. Cox

John Herman Cox (born July 15 1955) is an American lawyer, accountant, businessman, broadcaster, and aspiring politician. He was the first Republican to seek formally the party's 2008 nomination for president, but effectively withdrew from the race in late 2007 and suspended his campaign shortly after.


Born on the near south side of Chicago, Cox is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he majored in accounting and political science, and of Illinois Institute of TechnologyChicago-Kent College of Law. He is married to Sarah, has four daughters, and is Catholic. He credits his wife as inspiring him to run for president. [cite news|url=|title=The Sane Fringe Candidate|author=Labash, Matt|work=Weekly Standard|date=2007-05-21|accessdate=2007-11-21|volume=12|issue=34]

In 1981 he founded a law firm specializing in corporate law and tax planning, John H. Cox and Associates Ltd. In 1985, he founded Cox Financial Group Ltd., which specializes in investment counseling, income tax planning, retirement planning, and asset protection. In 1995 he founded Equity Property Management, a real estate management firm specializing in apartment rental property.

He hosted "The Progressive Conservative", a twice-weekly bought-time radio talk show on low-wattage WJJG 1530 AM in Chicago. [cite news|url=|title=Talk show hosts aim for U.S. Senate|author=Feder, Robert|work=Chicago Sun-Times|date=2003-07-22|accessdate=2007-11-21] Featuring guests like Michael Moriarty, [cite web|url=|title=Michael Moriarty Unofficial, Unauthorized, Unsanctioned Home Page|date=2005-09-21|accessdate=2007-11-21] its themes included criticism of trial lawyers [cite web|url=|title=The Rule of Lawyers: Author Events|accessdate=2007-11-21] and creation of a website in March 2003 that nominated public figures (such as Janeane Garofalo, Jacques Chirac, and Martin Sheen) as "Friends of Saddam". [cite news|url=|title=Progressive Conservative Radio Program Launches "Friends of Saddam" Website|publisher=Business Wire|date=2003-03-23|accessdate=2007-11-21]

At the 2006 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), Cox was a speaker, in a debate on the issue of capital punishment. Unlike most conservatives, Cox opposes the death penalty.

Cox has served on a local school board and a zoning board.

Cox created a chapter of Rebuilding Together, a nationwide charitable organization that is dedicated to renovating homes for low-income, elderly, and disabled persons and families with children. Seeing the need for the program in his community, Cox recruited a board and formed the "Christmas in April" North Suburban Chicago Chapter. He has served on the boards of charities such as the American Cancer Society, Boy's Hope/Girl's Hope, and United Charities. Cox currently sits on the board of the USO and the FireWorks for Kids Foundation.

Illinois political campaigns

In 2000, Cox ran for Congress in Illinois's 10th congressional district to replace retiring Congressman John Edward Porter, losing the Republican primary race to former Porter aide Mark Kirk.

In 2002, Cox ran for U.S. Senate in Illinois on a conservative platform, aligning himself with Reagan Republicans. He lost the Republican primary with 23% to Jim Durkin. Cox later served as president of the Cook County, Illinois, Republican Party.

In 2004, Cox garnered 41.43% of the votes against long-time incumbent Democrat Eugene Moore in the Cook County Recorder of Deeds race. [cite web|url=|title=Suburban Cook County Election Results|publisher=Cook County Election Department|accessdate=2007-11-21] Cox said he decided to run for the office in order to eliminate the position; he saw the office as an unnecessary duplication of services that had become a "model of waste and corruption". [cite web|url=|title=REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE - JOHN COX||accessdate=2007-11-21]

2008 presidential campaign

Campaign developments

On March 9 2006, Cox announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for U.S. president in 2008, becoming the first Republican to formally enter the 2008 presidential race. [cite news|author=Tabor, Nathan, and Kouri, Jim|url=|title=Election 2008: First Republican Announces Presidential Run|work=Renew America|date=2006-05-04|accessdate=2008-08-16]

His campaign said he visited all 99 counties in Iowa, and his website indicated he continued to make almost monthly visits there during 2007. It also stated that he made twelve campaign trips to the early primary state of New Hampshire between March 2006 and February 2007, and visited the early primary state of South Carolina at least five times since the announcement of his campaign. [cite web|url=|title=Schedule: John Cox|publisher=John Cox official campaign website|accessdate=2007-10-19]

Statewide and national Republican Party polls consistently showed Cox with one percent or less of the popular vote. Because of this, Cox was not invited to participate in any of the Republican presidential debates held, except for the September 17 2007, Values Voter Debate. [cite web|url=|title=Values Voter Debate] He asked a federal court to stop the May 15 2007, South Carolina debate unless he could take part, asserting in a lawsuit that the South Carolina GOP and Fox News Channel "rigged" their selection process to exclude him, by not including his name in the state poll that was used to determine who would be allowed in the South Carolina debate. [cite news|url=|&p_action=search&p_field_base-0=&p_text_base-0="john%20cox"&Search=Search&p_perpage=10&p_maxdocs=200&p_queryname=700&s_search_type=keyword&p_sort=_rank_%3AD&p_field_date-0=YMD_date&p_params_date-0=date%3AB%2CE&p_text_date-0=-1qzY|title=Candidate sues over debate|work=Fort Worth Star-Telegram|date=2007-05-11|page=A7] [cite news|author=Associated Press|title=GOP invites 10 presidential hopefuls to debate|url=|work=Orangeburg Times and Democrat|date=2007-05-03|accessdate=2007-05-05|quote = Chicago investment adviser John Cox will not be invited because he did not obtain high enough poll results as required by the party and Fox News Channel.] On May 11 2007, the judge refused to halt the debate. [cite web|url=|title=Dead link|accessdate=2007-10-19] [cite news|author=Dinan, Stephen|title=Outsider wants in at GOP debate|url=|work=Washington Times|date=2007-05-03|accessdate=2007-05-05|quote=He will be standing outside the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum in Simi Valley, Calif., during tonight's first Republican candidate debate, arguing that he has as much right to be on the stage as the other candidates do.] Cox also accepted an invitation to a debate at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa, scheduled to air on MSNBC on November 6, but the debate was eventually cancelled. [cite news|url=|title=Cox to be in MSNBC debate|publisher=Newsvine|accessdate=2007-10-19]

His name was on the ballot in the Ames Straw Poll on August 11 2007, where he also spoke. [cite news|url=|title=Tomorrow's GOP Scrimmage|author=Murray, Mark|publisher=MSNBC|date=2007-08-10|accessdate=2008-01-09|work=First Read] He came in last (eleventh) with 41 votes, or 0.3% of the vote.

On October 27 2007, Cox "all but conceded defeat" during the annual Reagan Dinner in Des Moines, Iowa, sponsored by the Republican Party of Iowa. [cite news|url=|work=Iowa Independent|author=Wagner, Jay|date=2007-10-28|accessdate=2008-01-09|title=Huckabee, Thompson Energize Crowd At Reagan Dinner] He stated he would return to Chicago to start a political action committee to promote "non-career politicians". [cite news|url=|title=Ron Paul: Tear down missiles, Mr. Whatsyaname|publisher=Baltimore Sun|work=The Swamp|author=Pearson, Rick|date=2007-10-27|accessdate=2007-01-09] [cite news|url=|work=Huffington Post|author=Wagner, Jay|date=2007-10-29|accessdate=2008-01-09|title=Huckabee, Thompson Energize Crowd At Reagan Dinner] His joking about his chances of winning was widely taken as a concession speech. However, the next day, Cox clarified to the "Rocky Mountain News" that he was "not out of the race".cite news|url=|title=Existential politics|author=Sprengelmeyer, M.E|date=2007-10-28|accessdate=2008-01-09|work=Rocky Mountain News] On November 12, the "Des Moines Register" published his letter to the editor and identified him as a Republican candidate seeking the nomination for president. [cite news|url=|title=Cox: Statesmen will focus on ideas, not moneymaking|work=Des Moines Register|date=2007-11-12|accessdate=2008-01-09|author=Cox, John] He stated he continued to seek change within the Republican Party, and has paid ballot fees and appears on ballots in South Carolina, California, and several other states; he can also be included in non-fee caucus states such as Nevada.

A Washington Secretary of State spokeswoman said ambiguously that Cox had withdrawn from that state's primary after he had sought inclusion on the state ballot; [cite news|url=|title=Initial list for presidential primary released|work=Tri-City Herald|date=2007-11-14|accessdate=2008-01-09|author=Mulick, Chris] he failed to make the ballot in a large number of primary states, such as West Virginia. On December 19 2007, Cox told "Chicago Tribune" reporter Eric Zorn that he had closed his campaign offices in late November, and said competing in the presidential race was a lost cause. [cite news|url=,1,5179589.column?ctrack=2&cset=true|title=Catching up with early departures|author=Zorn, Eric|date=2007-12-20|work=Chicago Tribune|accessdate=2008-01-04] But later in December, he was characterized as still "aiming for the presidency" "to reach the conservative electorate and talk about what Americans get with candidates with name recognition",cite news|url=|title=Cox continues Oval Office run despite a deck stacked against him|work=Iowa Politics|author=Dorsey, Chris|date=2007-12-29|accessdate=2008-01-09] and he cited this description on his official blog.

The Iowa Republican Party did not report results for Cox or for any write-ins in the Republican Iowa caucus of January 3 2008; "Iowa Farmer Today" said Cox "had little support" in the caucus. [cite news|url=|work=Iowa Farmer Today|author=Lucht, Gene|date=2008-01-09|accessdate=2008-01-31|title=Caucuses good for Iowa: Farm Bureau president] On January 8, Cox received 40 votes in the New Hampshire primary.cite news|url=|publisher=Catholic News Service|work=Washington Letter|date=2008-01-18|author=O'Brien, Nancy Frazier|accessdate=2008-01-31|title=The incredible shrinking field of Catholic presidential candidates] [cite news|url=|work=Politico|author="Politico" Partners|title=State of the States: Heading west|date=2008-01-12|accessdate=2008-01-31] On January 19, CNN carried a photo of Cox's and other campaigns' signs on its politics homepage, as a lead for discussing the South Carolina and Nevada votes; [cite news|url=|title=S.C., Nevada could spring new front-runners|author=CNN|publisher=CNN|work=Election Center 2008|date=2008-01-19|accessdate=2008-01-31] Cox captured 83 votes in South Carolina on that date. [cite news|url=|title=South Carolina Official Results: Republican Presidential Preference Primary - January 19, 2008|date=2008-01-19|accessdate=2008-02-01|publisher=State of South Carolina] His official blog host later stated that he "suspended his bid for the White House in 2008, but the fight for a limited and constitutional government remains in full force." [cite web|url=| Web Site Unavailable|date=2008|publisher=SmallGov Times|accessdate=2008-03-21] John Cox was interviewed on the 30 minute television program "Public Affairs" in Chicago, Illinois, April 20, by host Jeff Berkowitz. It was shown several times in the cities surrounding Chicago at later dates and is uploaded to YouTube. He stated he was looking at the 2012 election, the banner title captions from the program stated John Cox is a candidate for the 2008 Presidential Primary, and another showed his campaign website.


As of December 22 2006, the Cox campaign had committee chairmen in 33 states, including Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina. A campaign press release of October 26 2006 touted a volunteer organization of 104 counties across the nation. [cite press release|title=John Cox Presidential Campaign Announces Three State Committee Chairs; 16 States Now Organized for First Announced Candidate of the 2008 Race|publisher=Cox 2008 Committee, Inc.|date=2006-10-24|url=|accessdate=2007-05-05|quote=The campaign has volunteer coordinators organizing 104 counties.] After that point, many county organizers left the campaign for candidates considered more viable.


In the first quarter of 2007, Cox raised $2,668, according to his campaign's Federal Election Commission report. Total raised from individuals through that quarter was $12,107, while Cox had loaned his campaign $745,000. [cite web|url=|title=Form 3P for COX 2008 COMMITTEE INC|accessdate=2007-05-05|author=Ruff, Claremont, treasurer, Cox 2008 Committee, Inc.|work=FEC Form 3P: Report Of Receipts And Disbursements|publisher=Federal Election Commission] Cox insisted that he provided enough funds to sustain the campaign, and that he left television and radio advertising up to those who agree with his message.

In the second quarter of 2007, Cox raised $1,410, lower than any announced candidate for president. As of June 30 2007, Cox had loaned his campaign over $935,000, and the Cox for President campaign had $11,355 on hand. [cite web|url=|work=FEC Form 3P: Report Of Receipts And Disbursements|publisher=Federal Election Commission|accessdate=2007-10-19|title=Form 3P for COX 2008 COMMITTEE INC]

In the final quarterly FEC report of 2007, [ [ F.E.C. IMAGE 28930294963 (Page 1 of 89) ] ] Cox reported raising just $266 between June 30 2008 and December 31 2008, and the campaign had $1,963.63 on hand. Cox had loaned his campaign an additional $30,000 in the quarter, bringing the total contribution from his own pocket to just over $1,055,000 for his presidential campaign. By December 31, 2007, his total expenses had reached $1,058,250 since entering the race in February, 2006, according to the FEC report.


External links

* [ Official Campaign Website]
* [ Project Vote Smart - John H. Cox] voter information
* David Gargill, [ "Not what it takes: Running for president on less than $2,000 a day"] , "Harper's Magazine", February 2008 (subscription required for online access)

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