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Joe Garcia (Florida)

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Joe Garcia
Joe Garcia.jpg
U.S. House, Florida, District 26
Incumbent
In office
January 3, 2013-present
Term ends
January 3, 2015
Years in position 1
PartyDemocratic
PredecessorN/A
Compensation
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
Cost per vote$8.58 in 2012
First electedNovember 6, 2012
Next primaryAugust 26, 2014
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Campaign $$1,395,068
Term limitsN/A
Education
High schoolBelen Jesuit High School
Bachelor'sUniversity of Miami
J.D.University of Miami
Personal
BirthdayOctober 19, 1963
Place of birthMiami, Florida
Net worth$390,002
ReligionCatholic
Websites
Office website
Campaign website
Joe Garcia (b. October 19, 1963, in Miami, Florida) is a Democratic member of the U.S. House representing the 26th Congressional District of Florida.[1] He was first elected on November 6, 2012.[2]

Garcia is set to run for re-election to the U.S. House in 2014. If he runs, he will seek the Democratic nomination in the primary election. The general election takes place November 4, 2014.

According to a Washington Post article in December 2012, Garcia is 1 of the 10 most vulnerable incumbents in 2014.[3]

Garcia's chief of staff resigned on May 31, 2013, after he was implicated in a scheme to submit fraudulent absentee ballots during the congressman’s 2012 primary election.[4][5]

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Garcia is an average Democratic member of Congress, meaning he will vote with the Democratic Party on the majority of bills.

Biography

Education:[6]

  • 1991: University of Miami, J.D.
  • 1987: University of Miami, Political Science, History and Philosophy
  • 1984: Miami Dade
  • 1982: Belen Jesuit High School

Career

Committee assignments

U.S. House

2013-2014

Garcia serves on the following committees:[7][8]

  • Committee on Judiciary
    • Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security
    • Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial, and Antitrust Law
  • Committee on Natural Resources
    • Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources
    • Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs
    • Subcommittee on Public Lands and Environmental Regulation

Issues

Legislative actions

113th Congress

CongressLogo.png
The 113th Congress has had 55 out of 5,401 introduced bills enacted into law (1%) as of November 30, 2013. Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 1.14% of introduced bills enacted into law in the first session.[9] For more information pertaining to Garcia's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[10]

National security

DHS Appropriations

Voted "Yes" Garcia voted in favor of HR 2217 - the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act of 2014. The bill passed the House on June 6, 2013, with a vote of 245 - 182 and was largely along party lines.[11]

Keystone Pipeline Amendment

Voted "Yes" Garcia voted in favor of House Amendment 69, which would have amended HR 3 to "require that the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, in consultation with the Department of Homeland Security, conduct a study of the vulnerabilities of the Keystone XL pipeline to a terrorist attack and certify that necessary protections have been put in place." The amendment failed on May 22, 2013, with a vote of 176 - 239 and was largely along party lines.[11]

CISPA (2013)

Voted "Yes" Garcia voted in favor of HR 624 - the CISPA (2013). The bill passed the House on April 18, 2013, with a vote of 288 - 127. The bill would allow federal intelligence agencies to share cybersecurity intelligence and information with private entities and utilities.[12] The bill was largely supported by Republicans, but divided the Democratic Party.[11]

NDAA

Voted "Yes" Garcia voted in support of HR 1960 - the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014. The bill passed the House on June 14, 2013, with a vote of 315 - 108. Both parties were somewhat divided on the vote.[11]

Economy

Farm bill

Voted "Yes" On January 29, 2014, the U.S. House approved the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, H.R. 2642, also known as the Farm Bill.[13] The bill passed by a vote of 251-166. The nearly 1,000-page bill reformed and continued various programs of the Department of Agriculture through 2018. The $1 trillion bill expanded crop insurance for farmers by $7 billion over the next decade and created new subsidies for rice and peanut growers that would kick in when prices drop.[14][15] However, cuts to the food stamp program cut an average of $90 per month for 1.7 million people in 15 states.[15] Garcia voted with 88 other Democratic representatives in favor of the bill.

2014 Budget

Voted "Yes" On January 15, 2014, the Republican-run House approved H.R. 3547, a $1.1 trillion spending bill to fund the government through September 30, 2014.[16][17] The House voted 359-67 for the 1,582 page bill, with 64 Republicans and 3 Democrats voting against the bill.[17] The omnibus package included 12 annual spending bills to fund federal operations.[18] It included a 1% increase in the paychecks of federal workers and military personnel, a $1 billion increase in Head Start funding for early childhood education, reduced funding to the Internal Revenue Service and the Environmental Protection Agency and left the Affordable Care Act without any drastic cuts. Garcia joined with the majority of the Democratic party and voted in favor of the bill.[16][17]

Government shutdown
See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Voted "No" On September 30, 2013, the House passed a final stopgap spending bill before the shutdown went into effect. The bill included a one-year delay of the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate and would have also stripped the bill of federal subsidies for congressional members and staff. It passed through the House with a vote of 228-201.[19] At 1 a.m. on October 1, 2013, one hour after the shutdown officially began, the House voted to move forward with going to a conference. In short order, Sen. Harry Reid rejected the call to conference.[20] Garcia voted against the stopgap spending bill that would have delayed the individual mandate.[21]

Voted "Yes" The shutdown finally ended on October 16, 2013, when the House took a vote on HR 2775 after it was approved by the Senate. The bill to reopen the government lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funded the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies.[22] The House passed the legislation shortly after the Senate, by a vote of 285-144, with all 144 votes against the legislation coming from Republican members. Garica voted for HR 2775.[23]

Immigration

Venezuela

Garcia sent a letter to President Obama on February 24, 2014, requesting that he grant more political asylum applications from Venezuela and to stop deporting people there.[24][25]

Garcia argued that Venezuelans who have lived in the U.S. may be targeted if they return home, after Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro blamed some of the clashes between his government forces and opposition demonstrators on the U.S. and other countries.[25]

Morton Memos Prohibition

Voted "No" Garcia voted against House Amendment 136 - Prohibits the Enforcement of the Immigration Executive Order. The amendment was adopted by the House on June 6, 2013, with a vote of 224 - 201. The purpose of the amendment as stated on the official text is to "prohibit the use of funds to finalize, implement, administer, or enforce the Morton Memos." These memos would have granted administrative amnesty to certain illegal aliens residing in the United States. The vote largely followed party lines.[11]

Healthcare

Healthcare Reform Rules

Voted "No" Garcia voted against House Amendment 450 - Requires Congressional Approval for Any Rules Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The amendment was adopted by the House on August 2, 2013, with a vote of 227-185. The amendment requires all changes to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act be approved by Congress before taking effect. The vote was largely along party lines.[11]

Keep the IRS Off Your Healthcare Act

Voted "No" Garcia voted against HR 2009 - Keep the IRS Off Your Healthcare Act of 2013. The bill passed through the House on August 2, 2013, with a vote of 232-185. The bill would prevent the IRS and Treasury Secretary from enforcing the powers provided to them in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The vote largely followed party lines.[11]

Social issues

Amash amendment

Voted "No" Garcia voted against House Amendment 413 - Prohibits the National Security Agency from Collecting Records Under the Patriot Act. The amendment failed on July 4, 2013, by a vote of 205-217. The amendment would have prohibited the collection of records by the National Security Agency under the Patriot Act. Both parties were split on the vote.[11]

Controversy

Extreme members of Congress equivalent to Taliban

On October 2, 2013, Garcia implied that Republican members of Congress were afraid to vote on a clean continuing resolution because they were afraid of “this extremist element, this Taliban.”[26]

“Unfortunately they've been taken hostage by extremist elements in their party,” Garcia said. "We just need our colleagues to step up, push aside these extremist elements, this Taliban."[26]

“Congressman Joe Garcia's remarks on the floor of the United States House of Representatives, equating some of his colleagues to the Taliban, is reprehensible and disgusting,” Republican Party of Florida Chairman Lenny Curry said. “Congressman Garcia needs to apologize to his colleagues and all Floridians.”[26]

Garcia said was not specifically referring to any congressional member or group in Congress.[26]

“I’m not referring to any member. I was talking about extremism,” Garcia said. “If anyone is offended, I’m sorry.”[26]

Chief of staff and absentee ballots

Garcia's chief of staff resigned on May 31, 2013, after he was implicated in a scheme to submit fraudulent absentee ballots during the congressman’s 2012 primary election.[27][28][29][30] Garcia said in a press conference he was saddened and disappointed by the absentee ballot fraud allegations leveled against his former chief of staff, adding that he asked for the staffer's resignation and called for fixes to the "flawed voter absentee process" which left the system vulnerable.[30]

Campaign themes

2012

Garcia's campaign website listed the following issues:[31]

  • Early Voting
Excerpt: "Increased participation in Early Voting and Vote By Mail have drastically changed the timing of communication plans for candidates in FL-26. "
  • Education
Excerpt: "America needs a strong, educated class with a quality education. "
  • Equality
Excerpt: "Joe will fight for marriage and equality rights for the LGBT community. "
  • Healthcare
Excerpt: "It is imperative that we protect healthcare reforms that provide essential services and assistance to the uninsured, underinsured, and benefit the entirety of the American people. "
  • Jobs and the Economy
Excerpt: "Our number one priority should be putting people back to work and stimulating our economy. "

Elections

2014

See also: Florida's 26th Congressional District elections, 2014
BattlegroundRace.jpg

Garcia is set to run for re-election to the U.S. House in 2014. If he runs, he will seek the Democratic nomination in the primary election. The general election takes place November 4, 2014.

According to a Washington Post article in December 2012, Garcia is 1 of the 10 most vulnerable incumbents in 2014.[32]

Garcia is a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's Frontline Program. The program is designed to help protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents heading into the 2014 election.[33]

2012

See also: Florida's 26th Congressional District elections, 2012

Garcia ran in the 2012 election for the U.S. House to represent Florida's 26th District. Garcia won the nomination on the Democratic ticket.[34] Candidates wishing to run were required to file by the signature filing deadline of June 8, 2012. The primary elections were held on August 14, 2012. Garcia won the nomination in the Democratic primary on August 14, 2012.[1] He was elected on November 6, 2012.[35]

U.S. House, Florida District 26 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJoe Garcia 53.6% 135,694
     Republican David Rivera 43% 108,820
     Independent Angel Fernandez 2.3% 5,726
     Independent Jose Peixoto 1.1% 2,717
Total Votes 252,957
Source: Florida Secretary of State "Official Election Results, 2012 General Election"
U.S. House, Florida District 26 Democratic Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngJoe Garcia 53.4% 13,922
Gloria Romero Roses 30.8% 8,023
Lamar Sternad 10.9% 2,852
Gustavo Marin 4.9% 1,283
Total Votes 26,080

Endorsements

Garcia received endorsements from:[36]

  • SEIU
  • AFSCME
  • AFL – CIO
  • United Teachers of Dade
  • Florida Education Association
  • South Florida Labor Council
  • Unite Here!
  • Daily Kos[37]

Full history


Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Garcia is available dating back to 2012. Based on available campaign finance records, Garcia raised a total of $1,395,068 during that time period. This information was last updated on April 4, 2013.[40]

Joe Garcia (Florida)'s Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 U.S. House (Florida, District 26) Won $1,395,068
Grand Total Raised $1,395,068

2014

Candidates for Congress are required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Garcia's reports.[41]

Joe Garcia (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[42]June 10, 2013$46,214.21$548,226.84$(92,931.30)$501,509.75
July Quarterly[43]July 15, 2013$501,509.75$442,334.14$(142,477.45)$801,366.44
October Quarterly[44]October 13, 2013$801,366.44$410,250.32$(173,220.70)$1,038,396.06
Year-end[45]January 31, 2014$1,038,396$412,521$(109,178)$1,341,739
Running totals
$1,813,332.3$(517,807.45)

Garcia was a top freshman fundraiser in the 113th congress as a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's "Frontline" program.[46][47]

2012

Breakdown of the source of Garcia's campaign funds before the 2012 election.

Garcia won election to the U.S. House in 2012. During that election cycle, Garcia's campaign committee raised a total of $1,395,068 and spent $1,162,568.[48] This is less than the average $1.5 million spent by House winners in 2012.[49]

Cost per vote

Garcia spent $8.58 per vote received in 2012.


On October 15, 2012, quarterly reports were submitted by campaigns to the Federal Election Commission. The political blog Daily Kos did an analysis of the fundraising figures and found Democratic challenger Joe Garcia outraised Republican incumbent David Rivera in the third quarter. Garcia raised $431,000 to Rivera's $122,000.[50]

Analysis

Lifetime voting record

See also: Lifetime voting records of United States Senators and Representatives

According to the website GovTrack, Garcia missed 2 of 89 roll call votes from January 2013 to March 2013. This amounts to 2.2%, which is equal to the median of 2.2% among current congressional representatives as of March 2013.[51]

Like-minded colleagues

The website OpenCongress tracks the voting records of each member to determine with whom he or she votes most and least often. The results include a member from each party.[52]

Garcia most often votes with:

Garcia least often votes with:

Net worth

See also: Net worth of United States Senators and Representatives

Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by OpenSecrets.org, Garcia's net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $451,015 and $1,140,000. That averages to $390,002, which is lower than the average net worth of Democratic representatives in 2011 of $5,107,874. Garcia ranked as the 224th most wealthy representative in 2011.[53]

Joe Garcia Yearly Net Worth
YearAvg. Net WorthAvg. Citizen Net Worth

National Journal vote ratings

See also: National Journal vote ratings

Each year National Journal publishes an analysis of how liberally or conservatively each member of Congress voted in the previous year.

2012

Information on 2012 vote rating is unavailable.

Voting with party

2013

The website OpenCongress tracks how often members of Congress vote with the majority of the chamber caucus. According to the website, Joe Garcia has voted with the Democratic Party 86.3% of the time, which ranked 186th among the 201 House Democratic members as of June 2013.[54]

Personal

Garcia and his wife, Aileen, have one child.[55]

Recent news

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See also

External links

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References

  1. 1.0 1.1 AP Results, "U.S. House Results," accessed August 14, 2012
  2. ABC News, "2012 General Election Results," accessed November 6, 2012
  3. Washington Post, "House Democrats Face Long Odds in 2014," accessed December 7, 2012
  4. NBC Miami, "Congressman Joe Garcia's Chief of Staff Resigns Over Probe," accessed June 4, 2013
  5. Miami Herald, "Congressman Joe Garcia’s chief of staff implicated in phantom absentee-ballot requests scheme," accessed June 4, 2013
  6. Joe Garcia for Congress Facebook Page, "Info," accessed August 6, 2012
  7. CQ.com, "House Committee Rosters for the 113th Congress," accessed March 3, 2013
  8. U.S. House of Representatives, "Committee Assignments," accessed March 29, 2014
  9. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
  10. Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 11.4 11.5 11.6 11.7 Project Vote Smart, "Joe Garcia Key Votes," accessed October 16, 2013
  12. The Library of Congress, "H.R.624 CISPA (2013) (Referred in Senate - RFS)," accessed August 27, 2013
  13. Clerk of U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote 31: H.R. 2642," accessed February 12, 2014
  14. Politico, "House clears farm bill," accessed February 12, 2014
  15. 15.0 15.1 NY Times, "Senate Passes Long-Stalled Farm Bill, With Clear Winners and Losers," accessed February 12, 2014
  16. 16.0 16.1 CNN.com, "House passes compromise $1.1 trillion budget for 2014," accessed January 20, 2014
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote 21," accessed January 20, 2014
  18. Roll Call, "House passes $1.1 trillion omnibus," accessed January 20, 2014
  19. Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
  20. Buzzfeed, "Government Shutdown: How We Got Here," accessed October 1, 2013
  21. Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
  22. The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
  23. U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 550," accessed October 31, 2013
  24. WINK News, "Rep. Garcia asks to stop deportations to Venezuela," accessed February 25, 2014
  25. 25.0 25.1 Miami Herald, "Amid political unrest, Miami Congressman Joe Garcia asks President Obama to let more Venezuelans stay in U.S.," accessed February 25, 2014
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 26.3 26.4 Miami Herald, "Rep. Garcia's ‘Taliban’ comment riles GOP," accessed October 2, 2013
  27. NBC Miami, "Congressman Joe Garcia's Chief of Staff Resigns Over Probe," accessed June 4, 2013
  28. Miami Herald, "Congressman Joe Garcia’s chief of staff implicated in phantom absentee-ballot requests scheme," accessed June 4, 2013
  29. Florida Times Union, "Florida Morning: Joe Garcia defends staffer - Obama appointee's emails a mystery - Crenshaw holds IRS hearing," accessed June 4, 2013
  30. 30.0 30.1 [politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2013/06/01/congressman-denies-involvement-in-staffers-vote-fraud-attempt/ CNN, "Congressman denies involvement in staffer's alleged vote fraud attempt," accessed June 4, 2013]
  31. Campaign website, "Issues," accessed August 10, 2012
  32. Washington Post, "House Democrats Face Long Odds in 2014," accessed December 7, 2012
  33. Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, "DCCC Chairman Steve Israel Announces 2013-2014 Frontline Members," accessed March 5, 2013
  34. Florida Election Division, "Candidate List," accessed March 28, 2012
  35. ABC News, "2012 General Election Results," accessed November 6, 2012
  36. Joe Garcia 2012, "Endorsements," accessed August 6, 2012
  37. Joe Garica 2012, "Daily Kos endorses Joe: 'He's a fighter'," accessed August 6, 2012
  38. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed March 28, 2013
  39. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008," accessed March 28, 2013
  40. Open Secrets, "Joe Garcia," accessed April 4, 2013
  41. Federal Election Commission, "Joe Garcia 2014 Summary reports," accessed July 22, 2013
  42. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly" accessed July 22, 2013
  43. Federal Election Commission, "July Quarterly" accessed July 22, 2013
  44. Federal Election Commission, "October Quarterly," accessed October 23, 2013
  45. Federal Election Commission, "Year End Report," accessed February 10, 2014
  46. Boston Globe, "For freshman in Congress, focus is on raising money," accessed May 13, 2013
  47. Boston Globe, "For freshman in Congress, focus is on raising money," accessed May 13, 2013
  48. Open Secrets, "Joe Garcia 2012 Election Cycle," accessed February 22, 2013
  49. Open Secrets, "Election 2012: The Big Picture Shows Record Cost of Winning a Seat in Congress," accessed June 19, 2013
  50. Daily Kos, "Third quarter House fundraising: who's got the cash?," accessed October 18, 2012
  51. GovTrack, "Joe Garcia," accessed March 29, 2013
  52. OpenCongress, "Rep. Joe Garcia," accessed August 1, 2013
  53. OpenSecrets, "Joe Garcia (D-FL), 2012," accessed February 18, 2014
  54. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed June 6, 2013
  55. Biography from Project Vote Smart
Political offices
Preceded by
N/A
United States House of Representatives - Florida District 26
2013-present
Succeeded by
-