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Stumped: Candidate, Widow of Former Member in Spat Over Name

Bob Stump is running for Franks’ seat in Arizona, but widow of former Rep. Bob Stump says he’s misleading voters

Candidate Bob Stump, born Chris Robert Stump, says the name Bob has been in his family for generations. (
Candidate Bob Stump, born Chris Robert Stump, says the name Bob has been in his family for generations. (

Will the real Bob Stump please stand up?

Bob Stump is currently a candidate in the Republican primary for Arizona’s 8th Congressional District after Rep. Trent Franks’ abrupt resignation.

The problem is that Stump’s first name is Chris, but when he entered politics, he started going by his middle name “Robert” shortened to “Bob Stump,” the name of a former Arizona Republican member of Congress who died in 2003, according to 12News.

This led the late Stump’s widow, Nancy, to send an email to reporters telling the new Bob Stump to stop using the name.

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“There is an individual who is misleading the voters of the 8th Congressional district by insinuating he is somehow related to my late husband,” she said. “He is not.”

In the past, candidate Stump has defended the use of the name, saying it’s been in the family for generations.

“My dad had Alzheimer’s disease and one of the only names he remembered was my name and his,” the candidate said. “My dad didn’t want me to be known as Junior, so that’s why they gave me the middle name of Robert.”

The candidate’s mother released a statement defending his use of the name.

“My late husband was also named Bob Stump, as was my husband’s father,” Jane Stump said in a statement tweeted by her son. “My husband and I had every right to name our son after him. This name has been in our family since at least the 19th-century.”

In response, Nancy Stump put out another statement, which she said would be her last comment on the matter.

Rep. Bob Stump, R-Ariz., shown here in 2002, served 13 terms in the House. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call file photo)

“Let’s be clear: Christopher Robert Stump is not related to my late husband or our family in any way, shape or form,” she said. “I would ask that he publicly acknowledge that he is not related to our family and stop this charade. The voters deserve to know the truth.”

There are 12 candidates running for Franks’ seat. The primaries are on Feb. 27.

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