“Samantha Smoot coordinates the federal and state legislative efforts for the Human Rights Campaign and federal campaign work for HRC and the HRC political action committee.
Smoot, a veteran political activist and organizer, has worked on electoral and issue advocacy campaigns in the United States for the last 18 years. In 2005r, while based in Beirut, Lebanon, with the National Democratic Institute, she designed and ran a project to equip women in Lebanon, Iraq, Jordan, Egypt and Palestine with the skills to run successfully for public office and to promote women’s political participation.
From 1998-2004, Smoot served as president of the Texas Freedom Network, an organization of 22,000 members that defends religious freedom and individual liberties. As a leading advocate for religious pluralism, public education and progressive public policies, she appeared on MSNBC, “ABC Nightly News,” “The O’Reilly Factor,” National Public Radio and “Donahue,” and was quoted in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and The Christian Science Monitor.
Smoot has worked with candidates for political office at all levels of government in 26 states in the United States. She served on the political staffs of EMILY’s List, an organization that helps elect Democratic women to the U.S. Congress and Senate, and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
In 1995, Smoot worked on Capitol Hill as administrative assistant to Rep. Ken Bentsen, D-Texas. Prior to that, she worked on the campaigns of Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., and Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich.
A lifelong activist, Smoot has worked on campaigns for women’s reproductive rights, political participation and domestic violence prevention. She completed her bachelor’s degree in history and literature from Harvard University in 1987 and is a graduate of W.T. White High School in Dallas. Smoot’s permanent home is in Austin, Texas.
“There is a clear, well-coordinated effort to undermine the teaching of evolution in Texas classrooms.”
“Religion should be taught in the home and places of worship, rather than in public schools.”
“Intelligent design is just creationism dressed up in a laboratory coat.”
“It [the Discovery Institute] says that the theory of evolution can’t explain the diversity of life on this planet and that there must have been a designer. That is a very valid and commonly held religious perspective, but not one that is upheld by scientific evidence. Therefore it’s not one that belongs in science classrooms.”