WASHINGTON, April 27 (UPI) -- The U.S. House of Representatives will honor former Majority Leader Dick Armey, R-Texas, at a ceremony unveiling his official portrait.
The painting, paid for through private contributions, is scheduled to be turned over Wednesday in the Capitol's Statuary Hall. Once an obscure back-bencher, Armey rose through party ranks to the become the first GOP majority leader in 40 years, a post he held between 1994 and 2002.
Armey's influence is still felt in Washington. A number of his former aides, including Republican National Chairman Ed Gillespie and White House director of congressional affairs David Hobbs, hold key political positions while former Armey chief of staff Kerry Knott, now of Comcast, Verizon's Peter Davidson and Preston Gates' Dennis Stephens are just a few of the many ex-Armey staffers in senior public affairs positions.
The primary author of the 1994 Contract with America, which helped propel the GOP to majority status in the House for the first time in 40 years, Armey now heads up the grassroots group Citizens for a Sound Economy.