Ruppersberger Committee Assignments Wiki

This article is about the American legislator. For the fictional district attorney, see Adam Schiff (Law & Order).

Adam Schiff
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 28th district


Assumed office
January 3, 2013
Preceded byHoward Berman
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 29th district
In office
January 3, 2003 – January 3, 2013
Preceded byHenry Waxman
Succeeded byTony Cárdenas
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 27th district
In office
January 3, 2001 – January 3, 2003
Preceded byJames E. Rogan
Succeeded byBrad Sherman
Member of the California State Senate from the 21st district
In office
December 2, 1996 – November 30, 2000
Preceded byNewton R. Russell
Succeeded byJack Scott
Personal details
BornAdam Bennett Schiff
(1960-06-22) June 22, 1960 (age 57)
Framingham, Massachusetts, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Eve Schiff
EducationStanford University(BA)
Harvard University(JD)
WebsiteHouse website

Adam Bennett Schiff (born June 22, 1960) is the U.S. Representative for California's 28th congressional district. He has served in Congress since 2001. He is a member of the Democratic Party. Schiff represented the 27th and 29th Districts between 2001 and 2013, which included the areas of Alhambra, Altadena, San Gabriel, Burbank, Glendale, South Pasadena, Temple City, Monterey Park, and Pasadena. In 2010, his district was re-districted to include new areas including La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta-Montrose and Sunland-Tujunga, as well as large slices of central Los Angeles including Hollywood, the Hollywood Hills, West Hollywood, Echo Park, Silver Lake, and Los Feliz, in addition to areas he represented before, such as Burbank, Glendale, and the western part of Pasadena.

Schiff has become an influential voice for his party in the House of Representatives on foreign policy and national security issues.[1] He serves as ranking member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. He is currently on leave from the House Appropriations Committee which he joined in 2007. He previously served on the United States House Foreign Affairs Committee, and serves on the State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee.

Early life, education, and career[edit]

Schiff was born in Framingham, Massachusetts, the son of Edward and Sherrill Ann (Glovsky) Schiff.[2] He was raised in a Jewish family, and moved to Danville, California, during high school.[3] He received a political science degree from Stanford University and a J.D. degree from Harvard Law School.

After receiving his law degree from Harvard, Schiff began working as a prosecutor in the Los Angeles branch of the U.S. Attorney's Office. While an assistant U.S. Attorney, he gained attention by prosecuting a case against Richard Miller, a former FBI agent convicted of "passing secret documents to the Soviet Union in exchange for a promised $65,000 in gold and cash."[4] The first time Miller was tried, it resulted in a hung jury; the second time, it resulted in a conviction overturned on appeal,[5] and the third time he was convicted.

California State Senate[edit]

Schiff was elected to the California State Senate in 1996, after two unsuccessful bids for state assembly.[6] He chaired that body's judiciary committee during his one term.

During his tenure in the state senate, Schiff authored Senate Bill 1847, Chapter 1021. Signed into law in 1998, this created the Pasadena Blue Line Authority, which continued work on the stalled then-Blue Line light rail extension to Pasadena, which would later be named the Gold Line instead.

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]

Schiff is currently serving his ninth term in Congress.

2003 invasion of Iraq[edit]

Schiff voted in favor of the 2003 invasion of Iraq.[7] In February 2015, discussing how or whether to tailor Bush-era plans from 2001 and 2002 to fight ISIS, Schiff was asked if he regretted voting to invade. He said, "Absolutely. Unfortunately, our intelligence was dead wrong on that, on Saddam at that time. [The vote] set in motion a cascading series of events which have [had] disastrous consequences."[8][9]

Armenian genocide resolution[edit]

Schiff has been a leading voice in Armenian-American issues; he claims to have over 70,000 Armenian-Americans in his district.[10][11] He introduced U.S. House Resolution 106, recognizing the Armenian genocide, which was approved by the House Foreign Affairs Committee on October 11, 2007[12] but began to lose support after Turkey's prime minister said that approval of the resolution would endanger U.S.-Turkey relations.[13] On March 4, 2010 the resolution was again approved to go forward by the House Foreign Affairs Committee by a 23-22 margin.[14] Immediately, the Turkish government recalled its U.S. ambassador.[14] Schiff said in 2007, "When you think about what we have against us -- the president, a foreign policy establishment that has condoned this campaign of denial, the Turkish lobby -- against that you have the truth, which is a powerful thing but doesn't always win out."[15] He continues to reintroduce the resolution each subsequent Congress.[citation needed]

Campaign finance reform[edit]

After the Supreme Court struck down campaign finance reform legislation in the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission and McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission cases, Schiff introduced a constitutional amendment to overturn both decisions, H.J.Res 31, drafted by Harvard Law School Constitutional scholar Laurence H. Tribe.[16]

Helicopter noise[edit]

Beginning with Rep. Howard Berman before Berman was defeated for reelection, Schiff has worked on reducing unwanted helicopter noise across Los Angeles County by proposing legislation to force the FAA to study and regulate helicopter noise in Los Angeles, the Helicopter Noise Relief Act.[17] After reintroducing his legislation, Schiff worked with Senator Dianne Feinstein to push the FAA to act, and together they attached a provision in the 2014 omnibus appropriations package directing the Secretary of the Department of Transportation and FAA to address helicopter noise in Los Angeles County skies.[18] As a result, in 2015 the FAA created a county-wide helicopter noise public complaint system, the first step towards regulation.[19][20]

Intelligence and surveillance reform[edit]

Schiff has been a prominent supporter of surveillance reforms, especially in the wake of the leaks of classified intelligence by Edward Snowden.[21] In 2007, in response to disclosure of the Terrorist Surveillance Program, Schiff and Rep. Jeff Flake offered a successful amendment in the House of Representatives to clarify that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act is the exclusive means for collecting foreign intelligence information within the United States.[22] Schiff has been a critic of the bulk collection of telephone metadata by the National Security Agency. In January 2014, Schiff introduced the Telephone Metadata Reform Act,[23] which would prohibit the bulk collection of domestic phone records. Schiff has also introduced several bills aimed at reforming the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, including a bill to require outside counsel to be appointed to argue for privacy and civil liberties protections in certain cases before the Court.[24]

Investigation of Benghazi attack[edit]

Schiff was appointed to the House Select Committee on Benghazi in 2014 by Nancy Pelosi to serve as one of the five Democrats on the Committee.[25] Schiff had participated in the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence investigation into the attacks on the Benghazi diplomatic compound, which found that the initial talking points provided by the intelligence community were flawed but without an intention to deceive, and that diplomatic facilities across the world lacked adequate security.[26] The report's findings were unanimous and bipartisan. Before he was appointed as a Member of the Benghazi Select Committee, Schiff called the establishment of a select committee to investigate the 2012 attack a "colossal waste of time," and said Democratic leaders should not appoint any members, stating: "I think it's just a tremendous red herring and a waste of taxpayer resources."[27] Despite those reservations, he still accepted an appointment to the Committee because if he felt he "could add value, [he] would serve."[28]

Press freedom[edit]

Schiff formed the bipartisan, bicameral Congressional Caucus for the Freedom of the Press in 2006[29] aimed at advancing press freedom around the world. The Caucus proposed the Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act and it was originally introduced to Congress by Schiff and Rep. Mike Pence (R., Ind.) and by Sen. Christopher Dodd (D., Conn.) on October 1, 2009 in response to the murder of Daniel Pearl by terrorists in Pakistan.[30][31] The legislation requires the United States Department of State to expand its scrutiny of news mediaintimidation and freedom of the press restrictions during its annual report on human rights in each country.[32] After its introduction, the act passed through the House of Representatives with a vote of 403 to 12 and passed unanimously in the Senate; however, a provision requiring the Secretary of State (in coordination with the Department of State’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, and in consultation with the Undersecretary for Public Affairs and Public Diplomacy) to establish a grant program aiming to promote freedom of the press worldwide was removed in the Senate.[31][33] On May 17, 2010 President Barack Obama, accompanied by the Pearl family, signed into law the Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act.[34]

Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen[edit]

In 2015, Schiff supported the Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen, saying: "The military action by Saudi Arabia and its partners was necessitated by the illegal action of the Houthi rebels and their Iranian backers. ... But ultimately, a negotiated end to this crisis is the only way to restore order in Yemen and shrink the space for terrorism."[35]

War authorization reform and authorization against ISIS[edit]

After the President's speech at the National Defense University examining the U.S. war powers during the War on Terror, Schiff introduced bipartisan legislation to repeal the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists, the legislation passed in the days after the September 11 attacks to combat Al Qaeda, because he felt that "the current AUMF is outdated and straining at the edges to justify the use of force outside the war theater."[36] The bill, introduced with Rep. Tom Rooney (R-FL), was intended to sunset. In addition to his legislation, Schiff has been a forceful proponent of debating and voting on a new war authorization against ISIS.[37]


Further information: Special Counsel investigation (2017–present)

On April 2, 2017 Schiff, the ranking member on the House Select Intelligence Committee which is tasked with conducting inquiries related to Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections, appeared on CNN's State of the Union. In the wide-ranging interview Schiff and host Jake Tapper discussed Michael Flynn's request for immunity, Schiff's and Devin Nunes's separate inspections of White House documents, Trump's allegations of wiretapping in Trump Tower, and Nunes's apparent close association with the Trump White House.[38] Tapper asked Schiff if there was evidence of Donald Trump–Russia collusion. Schiff replied: "I don't think we can say anything definitively at this point. We are still at the very early stage of the investigation. The only thing I can say is that it would be irresponsible for us not to get to the bottom of this."[39] Tapper asked, "Do you think that Chairman Nunes was part of an attempt to provide some sort of cover for the president's claim about Obama wiretapping him at Trump Tower, which, obviously, this does not prove, but to cover for that, or an attempt to distract, as you're suggesting?" Schiff replied, "It certainly is an attempt to distract and to hide the origin of the materials, to hide the White House hand. The question is, of course, why? And I think the answer to the question is this effort to point the Congress in other directions, basically say, don't look at me, don't look at Russia, there is nothing to see here."[40] A few days later Nunes recused himself as leader of the investigative panel while the House Committee on Ethics investigated whether he had disclosed classified information.[41][42]

On July 23, 2017, on "Meet the Press", Schiff stated, "[A]t the end of the day we need to make sure that our president is operating not in his personal best interests and not because he's worried about what the Russians might have but because what he is doing is in America's best interest. The fact that we have questions about this is in itself harmful."[43] The following morning on Twitter President Trump referred to Schiff as "Sleazy Adam Schiff, the totally biased Congressman looking into 'Russia'" and called the Russian collusion investigation "the Dem loss excuse".[44] Schiff responded on Twitter that the President's "comments and actions are beneath the dignity of the office."[45]

Committee and caucuses[edit]

Committee assignments[edit]


  • Co-chair of the Congressional International Anti-Piracy Caucus
  • Co-founded the Democratic Study Group on National Security
  • Co-founded the Congressional Caucus for Freedom of the Press
  • Vice Chair of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus[46]

Caucus memberships[edit]

Congressional campaigns[edit]

In 2000, Schiff challenged Republican incumbent Jim Rogan in what was then the 27th District. The district had once been a Republican stronghold, but had been trending Democratic since the early 1990s. In what was the most expensive House race ever at the time[50] (several elections in 2006[51] and 2008[52] later eclipsed it), Schiff unseated Rogan, taking 53 percent of the vote to Rogan's 44 percent. He became only the second Democrat to represent this district since its creation in 1913.

After the 2000 census, the district was renumbered as the 29th and made significantly more Democratic. As a result, Schiff has never faced another contest nearly as close as his 2000 bid, and has been reelected eight times. His district became even more Democratic after the 2010 census, when it was renumbered as the 28th and pushed into Los Angeles itself.

In 2010, Schiff defeated Tea Party backed Republican John Colbert for a 6th term.[53] In 2012, he defeated Republican Phil Jennerjahn.[54] In 2014, he defeated independent candidate Steve Stokes. [55] In 2016, he defeated Republican candidate Lenore Solis.

Personal life[edit]

Schiff's maintains a residence in Burbank, California with his wife, Eve Sanderson.[56][not in citation given] They have two children, Alexa and Elijah.[57]

Schiff has participated in multiple endurance challenges including triathlons and marathons. Schiff was the only Congressman to participate in the inaugural Washington, D.C. triathlon in 2010,[58] and has since participated in other races in Philadelphia, New York City and Malibu.[59] In 2014, Schiff was the first member of Congress to participate in the AIDS/LifeCycle, a seven-day charity bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles to raise awareness and funding to fight HIV and AIDS.[60]

He is the cousin to actor, Richard Schiff and producer, Paul Schiff[61].

See also[edit]


  1. ^Neuman, Johanna (June 5, 2005). "Congressman Is Gaining a Name in Foreign Affairs". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 22, 2014. 
  2. ^Stone, Kurt F. (2011). The Jews of Capitol Hill: A Compendium of Jewish Congressional Members. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press. ISBN 9780810857315. p. 564.
  3. ^Peschiutta, Claudia (July 22, 2000). "Meet Adam Schiff". Glendale News-Press. Retrieved August 22, 2014. 
  4. ^Soble, Ronald (October 10, 1990). "Ex-FBI Agent Miller Guilty of Espionage". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 22, 2014. 
  5. ^Fleeman, Michael (August 22, 1990). "THIRD ESPIONAGE TRIAL BEGINS FOR FORMER FBI AGENT". Associated Press. Retrieved August 22, 2014. 
  6. ^Mills, James (August 30, 2012). "Adam Schiff Enjoying Getting to Know West Hollywood". Patch-AOL. Retrieved August 22, 2014. 
  7. ^"Roll Call Vote in House on Iraq Resolution". The New York Times. October 10, 2002.
  8. ^U.S. Deputy: We do not want a second invasion of Iraq and Arabs must end their wars themselves. SHAFAQ. 13 February 2015.
  9. ^"Obama Asks Congress for War Powers; Interview with Representative Adam Schiff". CNN. February 11, 2015. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  10. ^Washington Post: "Worse than irrelevant: A congressional resolution about massacres in Turkey 90 years ago endangers present-day U.S. security", p. A16, October 10, 2007
  11. ^Wall Street Journal: "Political History", Review & Outlook, October 2, 2007
  12. ^"U.S. House Speaker: Armenian Genocide Measure Will Go Forward". Archived from the original on October 13, 2007. Retrieved October 11, 2007. 
  13. ^"Turkey's PM says U.S. relations in danger". Reuters. October 12, 2007. Archived from the original on October 13, 2007. Retrieved October 12, 2007. 
  14. ^ abSimon, Richard; Watanabe, Teresa (March 5, 2010). "House panel narrowly passes recognition of Armenian genocide". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on March 7, 2010. Retrieved March 4, 2010. 
  15. ^Simon, Richard (October 17, 2007). "Genocide resolution's support starts to fade". L.A. Times. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  16. ^Wells, Jason. "Rep. Schiff introduces constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United decision". 
  17. ^Aguilar, Erika (December 7, 2012). "Congressman Schiff says he will reintroduce helicopter noise bill". Southern California Public Radio. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  18. ^Simon, Richard (January 14, 2014). "Spending bill to likely give L.A. $130 million for key rail projects". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  19. ^"FAA To Create Public Complaint System For Helicopter Noise". CBS Los Angeles. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  20. ^Weikel, Dan (April 1, 2015). "Complaint system for helicopter noise begins operations countywide". L.A. Times. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  21. ^Holman, Kwame (July 2, 2013). "Crusader for More Transparency on Intelligence Sees Risk and Reward From Snowden Leaks". PBS. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  22. ^Anderson, Nate. "House reaffirms FISA as "exclusive means by which electronic surveillance may be conducted"". Ars Technica. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  23. ^Shabad, Rebecca (January 14, 2014). "Schiff unveils NSA metadata reform bill". The Hill. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  24. ^Sledge, Matt. "Adam Schiff Prepares FISA Court Bill To Create Special Privacy Advocate". Huffington Post. 
  25. ^Weisman, Jonathan (May 22, 2014). "Pelosi Picks 5 Democrats for Panel on Benghazi". New York Times. Retrieved August 23, 2014. 
  26. ^Walsh, Dierdre (August 6, 2014). "Benghazi probe presses ahead despite new report". Retrieved August 23, 2014. 
  27. ^Hicks, Josh (May 4, 2014). "Schiff: Benghazi select committee a 'colossal waste of time'". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 10, 2014. 
  28. ^Mikailian, Arin (May 24, 2014). "House appoints Schiff to Benghazi investigation committee". Burbank Leader. Retrieved August 23, 2014. 
  29. ^"The Congressional Caucus for Freedom of the Press Calls on Secretary of State Rice to Urge Russia to Protect Journalist Rights". Schiff Congressional Website. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  30. ^"President Obama Signs the Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act". The Cypress Times. Retrieved December 1, 2010. 
  31. ^ abMeckler, Laura (May 17, 2010). "Obama Signs Pearl Press-Freedom Act". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved December 1, 2010. 
  32. ^"U.S. to Promote Press Freedom". The New York Times. New York, NY. 
  33. ^Liberman, Rachel (May 18, 2010). "The Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act: A positive step in an ambiguous direction". Sociology Lens. Retrieved June 2, 2017.
  34. ^Meckler, Laura (May 17, 2010). "Obama Signs Daniel Pearl Press Freedom Act". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  35. ^"Saudi Arabia Gets Bipartisan Backing for Yemen Airstrikes". U.S. News. March 27, 2015. Archived from the original on March 28, 2015. 
  36. ^Ackerman, Spencer. "Congressman Preps Bill to End Terror War Authority". Wired. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  37. ^Schiff, Adam (November 17, 2014). "Congress must exercise its war powers". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  38. ^Parker, Ashley (April 2, 2017). "Top Democrat accuses White House of trying to distract from Russia probe". The Chicago Tribune. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  39. ^"Schiff: Still no 'definitive' link between Russia, Trump campaign". Fox News. April 2, 2017.
  40. ^"Interview With California Congressman Adam Schiff". CNN. April 2, 2017. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  41. ^Berman, Russell (April 6, 2017). "The Swift Fall of Devin Nunes". =The Atlantic. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  42. ^Huetteman, Emmarie (April 6, 2017). "Devin Nunes to Step Aside From House Investigation on Russia". The New York Times. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  43. ^"Transcript: Rep. Adam Schiff on "Face the Nation," July 23, 2017". Retrieved 2017-07-24. 
  44. ^Wire, Sarah D. (July 24, 2017). "California's Rep. Adam Schiff gets a Trump nickname: 'Sleazy'". L.A. Times. Retrieved October 5, 2017. 
  45. ^@RepAdamSchiff (July 24, 2017). "With respect Mr. President, the problem is how often you watch TV" (Tweet). Retrieved October 5, 2017 – via Twitter. 
  46. ^"Members". Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus. Retrieved August 31, 2016. 
  47. ^"Members". New Democrat Coalition. Retrieved 6 February 2018. 
  48. ^"Members". House Baltic Caucus. Retrieved 21 February 2018. 
  49. ^"Membership". Congressional Arts Caucus. Retrieved 13 March 2018. 
  50. ^Center for Responsive Politics. "Most Expensive Races 2000". Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  51. ^Center for Responsive Politics. "Most Expensive Races 2006". Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  52. ^Center for Responsive Politics. "Most Expensive Races 2008". Retrieved April 9, 2012. 
  53. ^[1]Archived March 13, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
  54. ^Jason Wells and Mark Kellam (November 7, 2012). "Gatto, Liu, Schiff handily hold on to their seats". Glendale News-Press. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 13, 2017. 
  55. ^Kellam, Mark. "Schiff, Gatto easily win their political races". Glendale News-Press. Retrieved November 21, 2014. 
  56. ^Stone, Kurt F. The Jews of Capitol Hill: A Compendium of Jewish Congressional Members Lanham, Md. | Scarecrow Press | 2011
  57. ^"Meet Adam Schiff « Adam Schiff for Congress". June 22, 1960. Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  58. ^

Harold Watson "Trey" Gowdy III (; born August 22, 1964) is an American attorney, politician, and former federal prosecutor serving as the U.S. Representative for South Carolina's 4th congressional district since 2011. He is a member of the Tea Party movement and a Republican.[1] His district includes much of the Upstate region of South Carolina, including Greenville and Spartanburg.

Before his congressional career, Gowdy served as a federal prosecutor in the District of South Carolina from 1994 to 2000 and then as the solicitor (district attorney) for South Carolina's Seventh Judicial Circuit, comprising Spartanburg and Cherokee Counties, from 2000 to 2010. From 2014 to 2016, Gowdy chaired the United States House Select Committee on Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in Benghazi which was partly responsible for discovering the existence of Hillary Clinton's private email server.[2] His investigative committee spent over two and a half years and $7.8 million investigating the events surrounding the 2012 Benghazi attack.[3][4] Gowdy pressed for the prosecution of Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential campaign.[5] Since 2017 he chairs the House Oversight Committee.

On January 31, 2018, Gowdy announced he would not seek reelection in 2018 and that he intends to pursue a legal career instead of politics.[6][7]

Early life, education[edit]

Trey Gowdy was born on August 22, 1964, in Greenville, South Carolina. He is the son of Novalene (née Evans) and Harold Watson "Hal" Gowdy, Jr, MD.[8][9] He grew up in Spartanburg,[10] where, as a young man, he delivered newspapers for the local daily and worked at the community market.[11] Gowdy graduated from Spartanburg High School (1982) and earned a Bachelor of Arts in History from Baylor University (1986) and a Juris Doctor from the University of South Carolina (1989).[11]

Gowdy is married to Terri (née Dillard)[12] Gowdy, a former Miss Spartanburg and 2nd runner up for Miss South Carolina.[13] The couple have two children, Watson and Abigail. Terri Dillard Gowdy is a Teacher's Aide in the Spartanburg School District.[14]

Legal career[edit]

Gowdy clerked for John P. Gardner on the South Carolina Court of Appeals as well as for federal judge George Ross Anderson Jr. of the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina. He then went into private practice before being appointed an Assistant United States Attorney in April 1994. Gowdy would later be awarded the Postal Inspector’s Award for the successful prosecution of J. Mark Allen, one of “America’s Most Wanted” suspects.

In February 2000, he left the United States Attorney’s Office to run for 7th Circuit Solicitor. He defeated incumbent Solicitor Holman Gossett[15] in the Republican primary. He ran unopposed in the general election. Gowdy was re-elected in 2004 and 2008, both times unopposed. During his tenure, he appeared in four[16] episodes of the television program "Forensic Files," as well as Dateline NBC and SCETV.[17] He prosecuted the full set of criminal cases, including seven death penalty cases.

When the State faced a budget crunch that forced many employees to go on unpaid furloughs, Gowdy funneled part of his campaign account into the Solicitor's budget so his staff could keep working.[18]



Main article: United States House of Representatives elections in South Carolina, 2010 § District 4

In the summer of 2009, Gowdy announced that he would challenge incumbent Republican U.S. Congressman Bob Inglis in the Republican primary for South Carolina's 4th congressional district.

Inglis, who got a 93% lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union,[19] angered the conservative wing of the Republican Party by taking stances that were perceived to be more moderate than those he had taken when he first represented the district from 1993 to 1999; besides opposing elements in his own party on issues including climate change, he attracted attention as a member of the Judiciary Committee for providing the deciding vote that prevented a measure designed to protect the phrase "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance from coming to the House floor.[20] He drew five Republican challengers, including Gowdy. Like most of the challengers, Gowdy ran well to Inglis' right.[20] In the June 2010 primary, Gowdy ranked first with 39% of the vote, short of the 50% majority threshold to win outright and avoid a run-off. Inglis received 27% of the vote. Jim Lee got 14%, State Senator David L. Thomas got 13%, and former Historian of the United States House of Representatives Christina Jeffrey was last with 7% of the vote.[21][22]

In the run-off election, Gowdy defeated Inglis 70%–30%.[23] The 4th district was considered so heavily Republican that it was widely presumed Gowdy had clinched a seat in Congress with his primary victory.[24] Gowdy defeated Democratic nominee Paul Corden 63%–29%.[25]


Main article: United States House of Representatives elections in South Carolina, 2012 § District 4

Gowdy ran for reelection to a second term against Democrat Deb Morrow.[26] During redistricting following the 2010 census, one proposed map saw large portions of Gowdy's home county of Spartanburg County cut out of the district, while leaving all of Greenville County within the district. Gowdy was initially quoted as being "disappointed" with the version, even though the redrawn 4th would have been as solidly Republican as its predecessor. The final map moved a portion of Greenville County to the 3rd district while leaving all of Spartanburg County in the 4th district. Gowdy was quoted as being "pleased" with this version, since Greenville and Spartanburg counties remained linked. Roll Call rated his district as Safe Republican in 2012.[27] Gowdy easily secured a second term, defeating Morrow 65%–34%.[28]


Main article: United States House of Representatives elections in South Carolina, 2014 § District 4

Gowdy ran for reelection again in 2014. His only opponent was Libertarian Curtis E. McLaughlin.[29] He was reelected with 85.2% of the popular vote.


In the November 2016 election, Gowdy faced Democrat Chris Fedalei, a 26-year-old attorney. Trey Gowdy defeated Chris Fedalei with 67.23% of the vote to retain his seat.[30]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]


In August 2011 during the 2011 United States debt ceiling crisis, Gowdy opposed Speaker John Boehner’s debt limit bill, and he voted against the final debt ceiling agreement.[31] He also opposed the 2011 defense authorization bill, citing concerns about the prospect of Americans being detained without trial on national security grounds.[32] In December 2010, he told Congressional Quarterly that he would support a measure only if its sponsor could demonstrate that the Constitution gave the government the power to act in a particular realm.[18]

Gowdy worked on the Committee on Judiciary, the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, and the Committee on Education and the Workforce. Gowdy frequently speaks on the floor of the House on issues ranging from Operation Fast and Furious to his support for the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.

In 2012, he received the Defender of Economic Freedom award from the fiscally conservative 501(c)4 organization Club for Growth. The award is given to the members of Congress who have the year's highest ranking, according to the Club for Growth's metrics. Gowdy scored 97 out of 100, and was one of 34 congressmen given the award.[33]

An ardent social conservative, Gowdy considers himself "pro-life plus." He not only believes "in the sanctity of life," but argues that "the strategy should be broader than waiting for the Supreme Court to revisit Roe v. Wade."[34]

Trey Gowdy signed the Contract from America, which aims to defund, repeal, and replace the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, limit United States Environmental Protection Agency regulations, enact a reform of the federal tax code, pass a balanced budget amendment, and end earmarks.[35][36]


On March 4, 2014, Gowdy introduced the ENFORCE the Law Act of 2014 (H.R. 4138; 113th Congress) into the House.[37] The bill would give the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate both the standing to sue the President of the United States in a federal district court to clarify a federal law (that is, seek a declaratory judgment) in the event that the executive branch is not enforcing the law.[38][39] House Republicans argued that the bill was necessary because the Obama Administration refused to enforce the laws.[40] H.R. 4138 has passed the House but has yet to become law.

In total, Gowdy has sponsored 11 bills, including:[41]

112th Congress (2011–2012)[edit]

  • H.R. 1894, a bill to permit a guilty plea made by the accused prior to the announcement of the sentence in a capital offense trial before a military commission to form the basis of an agreement to reduce the maximum approved sentence, introduced May 13, 2011
  • H.R. 2076, a bill to allow the Attorney General to assist with investigation incidents in which three or more people are killed or are targeted to be killed, introduced June 1, 2011, signed into law January 14, 2013
  • H.R. 6620, a bill to authorize the United States Secret Service to protect former presidents, their spouses, and their children under the age of 16, introduced November 30, 2012, signed into law January 10, 2013

113th Congress (2013–2014)[edit]

  • H.R. 652, a bill to prohibit non-humanitarian relief foreign aid from being sent to countries that engage in state-sanctioned persecution of religious minorities, prevent equal access to education on the basis of gender, race, or ethnicity, or do not accept the return of nationals who have been extradited, introduced February 13, 2013
  • H.R. 5401, a bill to prohibit Libyan nationals from engaging in aviation maintenance, flight operations, or nuclear-related studies or training inside the United States, introduced September 8, 2014

Committee assignments[edit]


In July 2015, Republican nominee Donald Trump named Gowdy as a possible nominee for United States Attorney General in a Trump cabinet.[44] In late December 2015, Gowdy endorsed Senator Marco Rubio for president, praising him as a rarity among elected officials for having kept his campaign promises.[45] Gowdy's endorsement strained his relations with Donald Trump's campaign; Trump said that Gowdy had "failed miserably on Benghazi".[46][47] Rubio withdrew from the race in March, after losing his home state of Florida to Trump. Two months later, on May 20, Gowdy endorsed Trump for president, admitting that while he was a "Rubio guy", he would support the presumptive Republican nominee.[48] After the dismissal of FBI Director Comey, Gowdy was being considered for his replacement. However, the veteran representative told Attorney General Sessions that he wanted to remain in his congressional seat.[49]

On December 1, 2017, the congressional Office of Compliance said that while Gowdy was acting as chairman of the House Select Committee on Benghazi, a former congressional aide who alleged he was fired in part because he was not willing to focus his investigative work on Hillary Clinton (a charge which was later dropped by Podliska) and because he was absent from the position while fulfilling an Air Force Reserve assignment, reached a settlement with Congress and the House Employment Counsel. An attorney for the former aid stated that "I can confirm that my client is one person who brought a veterans status discrimination and retaliation suit against Congress and that the case settled on terms that were satisfactory to my client, It was alleged by Elise Viebeck of the PowerPost that Rep. Gowdy was responsible for use of taxpayer funds to pay the claim against the government."[50]

Electoral history[edit]

RepublicanTrey Gowdy51,54170.18
RepublicanBob Inglis (incumbent)21,89829.82
Total votes73,439100.00
RepublicanTrey Gowdy137,58663.45
DemocraticPaul Corden62,43828.79
ConstitutionDave Edwards11,0595.10
LibertarianRick Mahler3,0101.39
GreenFaye Walters2,5641.18
Total votes216,838100.00
RepublicanTrey Gowdy (Incumbent)173,20164.90
DemocraticDeb Morrow89,96433.71
GreenJeff Sumerel3,3901.27
Total votes266,884100.0
RepublicanTrey Gowdy (Incumbent)126,45284.84
LibertarianCurtis E McLaughlin Jr21,96914.74
Total votes149,049100
RepublicanTrey Gowdy (Incumbent)198,64867.19
DemocraticChris Fedalei91,67631.01
ConstitutionMichael Chandler5,1031.73
Total votes295,670100.00


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  2. ^Dumain, Emma. (31 January 2018). "Gowdy, key player in Clinton, Trump campaign probes, won’t seek another term." McClatchy DC website Retrieved 31 January 2018.
  3. ^"The Endless Trial of Trey Gowdy's Benghazi Committee". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2017-05-12. 
  4. ^"Clinton team used special program to scrub server, Gowdy says". Fox News. 2016-08-26. Retrieved 2017-05-13. 
  5. ^"Gowdy: Clinton should be prosecuted". thestate. Retrieved 2017-05-13. 
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  7. ^Dumain, 2018.
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  9. ^"Harold Watson "Trey" Gowdy III". Retrieved May 9, 2012. 
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  12. ^"Biography". December 11, 2012. 
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  14. ^Trey Gowdy. Retrieved August 28, 2015.
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  29. ^Shain, Andrew (March 26, 2014). "ELECTION 2014 (updated): Who's filed for statewide, State House, Congressional offices". The State. Retrieved October 22, 2014. 
  30. ^Chris Lavender (March 4, 2016). "Spartanburg native Chris Fedalei to challenge Gowdy". Retrieved July 24, 2016. 
  31. ^Sherman, Jake (May 13, 2012). "Right wants more from John Boehner". Politico. Retrieved June 2, 2012. 
  32. ^Brady, Jessica (December 29, 2011). "Detainee Provisions Still Cause for Concern". Roll Call. Retrieved May 9, 2012. 
  33. ^Drury, Shawn (March 1, 2012). "Rep. Trey Gowdy Awarded by Club for Growth". Mauldin Patch. Retrieved May 9, 2012. 
  34. ^"Issues". Gowdy For Congress. Archived from the original on May 22, 2012. Retrieved January 14, 2017. 
  35. ^"Contract From America". Contract From America. Retrieved May 29, 2012. 
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  37. ^"H.R. 4138 – Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved March 12, 2014. 
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  40. ^Associated Press (March 12, 2014). "House backs bill to sue president over laws". Washington Post. Retrieved March 13, 2014. 
  41. ^"Representative Gowdy's Legislation". Library of Congress. Retrieved December 13, 2014. 
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  43. ^"Member List". Republican Study Committee. Retrieved 21 December 2017. 
  44. ^Weiss, Rusty (July 29, 2015). "Trump Just Announced Possible Cabinet Members That Will Make Liberals Cringe". Headline Politics. Retrieved July 27, 2016. 
  45. ^Collins, Eliza (December 29, 2015). "Trey Gowdy endorses Marco Rubio". Politico. 
  46. ^"Scorned Trump Team Turns On Man They Once Loved". The Daily Beast. December 28, 2015. 
  47. ^"Marco Rubio is scoring some big endorsements. But do they matter?". MSNBC. December 30, 2015. 
  48. ^"Gowdy endorses Trump". May 20, 2016. 
  49. ^Eliza Collins, 15 May 2017: Rep. Trey Gowdy, a former FBI contender, keeps making Republican short lists
  50. ^Viebeck, Elise; Lee, Michelle Ye Hee (2017-12-01). "Gowdy, Benghazi panel settled wrongful firing suit with $150,000 in public funds". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2017-12-02. 
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  52. ^SC District 4 - R Runoff. Our Campaigns.
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  55. ^The votes for the Democratic candidate includes votes cast for the candidate who also ran under the Working Families Party ticket
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  57. ^"South Carolina State Election Commission". Retrieved 19 January 2017. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Trey Gowdy.


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