Ted Lieu

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Ted Lieu
Lieu pic.jpg
Current candidacy
Running for U.S. House, California, District 33
Date of primaryJune 3, 2014
General electionNovember 4, 2014
Current office
California State Senate District 28
In office
Term ends
December 16, 2014
Years in position 3
Base salary$90,526/year
Per diem$141.86/day
Elections and appointments
First electedFebruary 15, 2011
Term limits2 terms (8 years)
Prior offices
California State Assembly
Bachelor'sStanford University, 1991
J.D.Georgetown University Law Center, 1994
Campaign website
Ted W. Lieu is a Democratic member of the California State Senate, representing District 28. He won election in the special election on February 15, 2011.

Lieu was also a Democratic member of the California State Assembly, representing the 53rd District from September 2005 to 2010. On February 12, 2009, he announced his candidacy for the statewide office of Attorney General, the seat being vacated by Democrat Jerry Brown, who won election as governor in November 2010.[1] He went on to lose the Democratic nomination to San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris on Tuesday, June 8, 2010, after placing fourth with nearly eleven percent of the vote.

In June 2011, Governing Magazine named Lieu one of 12 "Democratic Legislators to Watch." Each of the legislators was selected on the basis of qualities such as leadership, ambition, and political potential.[2]

Lieu is seeking election to the U.S. House in 2014. He is looking to fill the open seat left by the retirement of Henry Waxman.[3]


Lieu earned his Bachelor's degree in computer and political science from Stanford University in 1991 and his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center in 1994.

Lieu is a Major in the United States Air Force Reserves. He previously served as an attorney in the Judge Advocate General Corps of the United States Air Force and was a Judicial Clerk in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Committee assignments


At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Lieu served on the following committees:

California Committee Assignments, 2013
Governmental Organization
Labor and Industrial Relations, Chair
Veterans Affairs


In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Lieu served on these committees:


In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Lieu served on these committees:


Lieu's sponsored legislation includes:

  • AB 32 - Public officials: personal information
  • AB 550 - California Financial Literacy Initiative
  • AB 668 - Firearms: gun-free school zones

For details and a full listing of sponsored bills, see the House site.

Political Courage test

Lieu did not provide answers to the California State Legislative Election 2008 Political Courage Test. The test informs voters how a candidate would vote on the issues if elected.[4]

Legislative scorecard

Capitol Weekly, California's major weekly periodical covering the state legislature, publishes an annual legislative scorecard to pin down the political or ideological leanings of every member of the legislature based on how they voted on an assortment of bills in the most recent legislative session. The 2009 scores were based on votes on 19 bills, but did not include how legislators voted on the Proposition 1A (2009). On the scorecard, "100" is a perfect liberal score and "0" is a perfect conservative score.[5][6]

On the 2009 Capitol Weekly legislative scorecard, Lieu ranked as an 89.[7]



See also: California's 33rd Congressional District elections, 2014

Lieu is running in the 2014 election for the U.S. House to represent California's 33rd District. Lieu advanced past the blanket primary on June 3, 2014.[8] The general election takes place November 4, 2014.[3]

U.S. House, California District 33 Primary, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngElan Carr 21.6% 23,476
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngTed Lieu 18.8% 20,432
     Democratic Wendy Greuel 16.6% 17,988
     Independent Marianne Williamson 13.2% 14,335
     Democratic Matt Miller 12% 13,005
     Republican Lily Gilani 7.1% 7,673
     Democratic Kevin Mottus 2.4% 2,561
     Republican Barbara Mulvaney 2.3% 2,516
     Democratic David Kanuth 1.4% 1,554
     Democratic Kristie Holmes 0.9% 994
     Libertarian Mark Herd 0.8% 883
     Green Michael Sachs 0.7% 732
     Democratic Michael Shapiro 0.6% 650
     Independent Tom Fox 0.5% 509
     Democratic Zein Obagi 0.4% 477
     Democratic Vince Flaherty 0.3% 345
     Democratic James Graf 0.3% 327
     Independent Brent Roske 0.2% 188
Total Votes 108,645
Source: California Secretary of State


Lieu was endorsed by Rep. Karen Bass. She said in her endorsement, "I have worked closely with Ted Lieu for many years. He helped elect me as Speaker of the California Assembly and was on my leadership team during the deep fiscal crisis in California. We made the tough choices to get the state back on track, and that's exactly what Ted will do for our country. Ted's leadership, experience and bipartisan approach to solving some of the state's largest problems is what we need more of in Washington."[9]

Lieu received the endorsement of the Democratic Party in a local vote on February 8, 2014.[10]

Lieu also received the endorsement of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) in the primary.[11]

Lieu was endorsed by former Los Angeles mayor Richard Riordan, a Republican.[12]

On March 25, 2014, Lieu gained the endorsement of the California School Employees Association, the largest classified school employees union in the United States.[13]

Lieu also received the endorsement of the California Teachers Association on April 4, 2014. CTA President Dean Vogel said, "Ted has always been a strong advocate for fully funding our public schools and colleges, which are finally beginning to heal from years of devastating cuts. We strongly endorse Ted Lieu for Congress, and look forward to his leadership in Washington."[14]

The League of Conservation Voters endorsed Lieu along with a Democratic rival, Wendy Greuel.[15]

Lieu received the endorsement of retiring incumbent Henry Waxman on June 5, 2014. Waxman said, "Ted is the son of hard-working immigrants and has served with distinction in our armed forces and in public office; his life story and experience have earned him my strong admiration. I endorse Ted Lieu because he will always work tirelessly to strengthen the middle class, make higher education more affordable, help workers save for retirement, and protect our privacy from intrusive NSA surveillance."[16]


Lieu defeated seven other opponents in the February 15 special election for Senate District 28.[17]


See also: California Attorney General election, 2010
2010 Race for Attorney General - Democratic Primary[18]
Party Candidate Vote Percentage
     Democratic Party Kamala Harris 33.1%
     Democratic Party Chris Kelly 15.9%
     Democratic Party Alberto Torrico 14.9%
     Democratic Party Ted Lieu 10.5%
     Democratic Party Rocky Delgadillo 10.1%
     Democratic Party Pedro Nava 9.9%
     Democratic Party Mike Schmier 5.6%
Total Votes 1,676,360


  • 2008 Race for State Assembly, 53rd District - Democratic Primary
    • Ted Lieu ran unopposed
2008 Race for State Assembly, 53rd District - General Election[19]
Candidates Percentage
Green check mark.jpg Ted Lieu (D) 67.4%
Thomas H. Vidal (R) 32.6%
Total votes 188,809


  • 2006 Race for State Assembly, 53rd District - Democratic Primary
    • Ted Lieu ran unopposed
2006 Race for State Assembly, 53rd District - General Election[20]
Candidates Percentage
Green check mark.jpg Ted Lieu (D) 58.5%
Mary Jo Ford (R) 36.9%
Peter Luke Thottam (Green) 2.3%
Karl Abrams (PF) 2.3%
Total votes 129,092

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Lieu is available dating back to 2006. Based on available campaign finance records, Lieu raised a total of $5,017,758 during that time period. This information was last updated on September 17, 2013.[21]

Ted Lieu's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 California State Senate, District 28 Not up for election $919,759
2011 California State Senate, District 28 Won $537,690
2010 Attorney General of California Defeated $1,517,543
2008 California State Assembly, District 53 Won $1,183,830
2006 California State Assembly, District 53 Won $858,936
Grand Total Raised $5,017,758


Candidates for Congress are required to file reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Lieu's reports.

Ted Lieu (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[22]April 15, 2014$0$621,762$(42,325)$579,436
Pre-Primary[23]May 23, 2014$579,436$278,949$(406,226)$452,160
July Quarterly[24]July 15, 2014$452,160$360,239$(607,114)$204,438
Running totals


Lieu was not up for election to the California State Senate in 2012. During that election cycle, Lieu raised a total of $919,759.
California State Senate 2012 election - Campaign Contributions
Top contributors to Ted Lieu's campaign in 2012
Longshore & Warehouse Local 13$15,600
California State Association of Electrical Workers$15,600
California State Pipe Trades Council$8,800
Zenith Insurance$7,800
Total Raised in 2012$919,759
Source:Follow the Money


Below are Lieu's top five campaign contributors in the 2008 election:[25]

Contributor 2008 total
California Democratic Party $77,883
California State Council of Service Employees $14,400
California Teachers Association $14,400
Farmers Insurance Group $11,800
California School Employees Association $11,200


See also: State legislative scorecards and State legislative scorecards in California

Legislative scorecards are used to evaluate elected public officials based on voting record. Some scorecards are created by political advocacy groups with a focus on specific issues, while others are developed by newspapers and are broad in scope. Scorecards are meant to be used as a tool for voters to have a quick picture of whether their views align with a particular legislator's record.

Because scorecards can be specific to particular issues or general to a state’s legislative term, for example, each report should be considered on its own merits. Each entity that publishes these reports uses different methodologies and definitions for the terms used.

An overview for scorecards in all 50 states can be found on this page. To contribute to the list of California scorecards, email suggestions to scorecards@ballotpedia.org.

Please see our writing guidelines if you would like to add results from an individual scorecard to this legislator's profile.


In 2013, the California State Legislature was in session from December 3, 2012 to September 13, 2013.[26]


In 2012, the California State Legislature was in session from January 4 to August 31.[27]


  • Leadership Award (1998) from the Federal Asian Pacific American Council
  • Appreciation Award (2003) from the Torrance Symphony Association
  • Appreciation Award (2003) from the Space & Missile Systems Center - Los Angeles Air Force Base
  • Installation Award (2005) from the Lomita Chamber of Commerce
  • Exemplary Community Service Award (2006) from the Switzer Learning Center
  • Impact Award (2006) from the Southern California Chinese Lawyers Association
  • Local Government Support Award (2006) from the League of California Cities
  • Spot Beam Award (2006) from the California Space Authority
  • Legislator of the Year Award (2007) from the Vietnam Veterans of America, Inc. - Chapter 53
  • Outstanding Leadership Award (2007) from the Navy Region Southwest
  • Legislative Leadership Award (2007) from the Los Angeles County Probation Officers
  • Legislator of the Year Award (2007) from the California State Commanders Veterans Council
  • Legislator of the Year Award (2007) from the CalDerm Association
  • Legislator of the Year Award (2008) from the West Basin Municipal Water District
  • Dee Hardison Award (2008) from the Torrance Performing Arts Consortium
  • Distinguished Service Award (2008) from the Southern California Chinese Lawyers Association
  • Distinguished Community Service Award (2008) from the Philippine American Bar Association
  • Outstanding Chinese American Legislator Award (2008) from the Chinese Benevolent & Women’s Association
  • Mickey Conroy Legislator of the Year Award (2008) from the California State Commanders Veterans Council
  • Distinguished Leader Award (2009) from the Greenlining Institute

Military honors

  • United States Air Force Meritorious Service Medal
  • United States Air Force Meritorious Service Medal (First Oak Leaf Cluster)

Other roles

Ted Lieu for Attorney General Campaign logo
  • Member, Friends of Madrona Marsh
  • Member, Friends of Torrance Library
  • Member, Heal the Bay
  • Member, Reserve Office Association
  • Board Member, Switzer Center School and Clinical Services
  • Member, Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Member, Torrance Historical Society
  • Board Member, Torrance/South Bay Young Men's Christian Association


Lieu and his wife, Betty, have two children - Brennan and Austin. They currently live in Torrance, California.

Recent news

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See also

External links

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  1. 8 Asians, "California Assemblyman Ted Lieu Running for California Attorney General" 12 Feb. 2009
  2. Governing, "Democratic Legislators to Watch," June 1, 2011
  3. 3.0 3.1 Ted Lieu Press Release, "Senator Ted Lieu to run for Congress," January 31, 2014
  4. Project Vote Smart, "Issue Positions," accessed March 13, 2014
  5. Capitol Weekly, "Capitol Weekly's Legislative Scorecard," December 17, 2009
  6. Fox and Hounds Daily, "Random Thoughts on the Political Scene," December 18, 2009
  7. Capitol Weekly, "2009 Capitol Weekly State Legislative Scorecard (Archived)," accessed March 13, 2014
  8. The New York Times, "California Primary Results," May 3, 2014
  9. Press Release, "Congresswoman Karen Bass endorses Ted Lieu for Congress," February 3, 2014
  10. Campaign website, "Ted Lieu Wins Vote for Democratic Party Endorsement," February 9, 2014
  11. Ted Lieu for Congress, "SEIU California Endorses Ted Lieu for Congress," accessed March 13, 2014
  12. Los Angeles Times, "Republican ex-L.A. Mayor Riordan endorses Democrat Lieu in House race," March 17, 2014
  13. Ted Lieu for Congress, "California School Employees Association Backs Ted Lieu for Congress," accessed March 26, 2014
  14. Ted Lieu campaign website, "California Teachers Association Endorses Ted Lieu for Congress," April 4, 2014
  15. Los Angeles Times, "Conservation League backs two rivals for Waxman's House seat," April 18, 2014
  16. Daily Breeze, "Rep. Henry Waxman endorses Sen. Ted Lieu in race to succeed him," June 5, 2014
  17. LA Times, "Winners avoid runoffs in two special elections for California Senate," February 16, 2011"
  18. California Secretary of State, "2010 Statewide Primary Election Results," accessed March 13, 2014
  19. CA Secretary of State: Vote 2008, "General Election Results," accessed March 13, 2014
  20. California Secretary of State, "Official 2006 General election results," accessed March 13, 2014
  21. Follow the Money, "Lieu, Ted," accessed September 17, 2013
  22. Federal Election Commission, "Ted Lieu April Quarterly," accessed May 6, 2014
  23. Federal Election Commission, "Ted Lieu Pre-Primary," accessed June 3, 2014
  24. Federal Election Commission, "Ted Lieu July Quarterly," accessed July 28, 2014
  25. Follow the Money, "2008 Campaign contributions," accessed March 13, 2014
  26. StateScape, "Session schedules," accessed July 15, 2014
  27. StateScape, "Session schedules," accessed July 15, 2014
Political offices
Preceded by
Jenny Oropeza (D)
California State Senate 28
Succeeded by
Preceded by
California State Assembly District 53
Succeeded by
Betsy Butler