Richard Neal

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Richard Neal
Richard Neal.jpg
U.S. House, Massachusetts, District 1
In office
January 3, 1989-Present
Term ends
January 3, 2015
Years in position 25
PredecessorJohn Olver (D)
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
Cost per vote$6.85 in 2012
First elected1988
Next primarySeptember 9, 2014
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Campaign $$8,254,590
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Mayor, City of Springfield, MA
Bachelor'sAmerican International College
Associate'sHolyoke Community College
Master'sUniversity of Hartford
BirthdayFebruary 14, 1949
Place of birthWorcester, MA
ProfessionTeacher and elected official
Net worth$166,505.50
ReligionRoman Catholic
Office website
Campaign website
Richard Neal (b. February 14, 1949, in Worcester, Massachusetts) is a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives representing Massachusetts' 1st Congressional District. Neal was first elected to the House in 1988 and won re-election on November 6, 2012.[1]

Neal is set to run for re-election in Massachusetts' 1st Congressional District in the general election on November 4, 2014.

Prior to his congressional career, Neal served as Mayor of Springfield, MA.[2]

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Neal is a more moderate left of center Democratic Party vote. As a result, he may break with the Democratic Party line more than his fellow members.


Neal was born in Worcester, MA. His mother died when he was 13, at which point he moved in with his grandmother. His father was an alcoholic and died a few years later.[3]

He received a Bachelor's in Political Science from American International College. He continued his education at the University of Hartford, earning a Master's in Public Administration.[4]


The following is a bulleted list of Neal's career:[5]

  • 1973-1978: Assistant to mayor William Sullivan, Springfield, MA
  • 1978-1984: Member of City Council of Springfield, MA
  • 1984-1988: Mayor of Springfield, MA
  • 1989-Present: Member, U.S. House from Massachusetts

Committee assignments

U.S. House


Neal serves on the following committees:[6][7]


Neal served on the following committees and subcommittees:[8]

Key votes

113th Congress


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 Neal's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[10]

National security


Voted "No" Neal voted in opposition 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]

DHS Appropriations

Voted "No" Neal voted in opposition of HR 2217 - the DHS Appropriations Act (2014) Act of 2014. The bill passed the House on June 6, 2013, with a vote of 245 - 182 and was largely along party lines.[12]


Farm bill

Voted "No" On January 29, 2014, the U.S. House approved the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, H.R. 2642, known as the Farm Bill.[13] The bill passed by a vote of 251-166. The nearly 1,000-page bill provides for the reform and continuation of agricultural and other 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] Neal voted with 102 other Democratic representatives against 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 three 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 protected the Affordable Care Act from any drastic cuts. Neal 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] Neal 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. Neal voted for HR 2775.[23]


Morton Memos Prohibition

Voted "No" Neal 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.[24] The vote largely followed party lines.[25]


Repealing Obamacare

Voted "No" Neal has voted against all attempts to repeal or delay the implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.[26]

Social issues


Voted "No" Neal voted against HR 1797 - Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. The resolution passed the House on June 18, 2013, with a vote of 228 - 196. The purpose of the bill is to ban abortions that would take place 20 or more weeks after fertilization.[27]

Previous congressional sessions

Fiscal Cliff

Voted "Yes" Neal voted for the fiscal cliff compromise bill, which made permanent most of the Bush tax cuts originally passed in 2001 and 2003 while also raising tax rates on the highest income levels. He was one of 172 Democrats who voted in favor of the bill. The bill was passed in the House by a 257-167 vote on January 1, 2013.[28]


On The Issues Vote Match

Richard Neal's Vote Match results from On The Issues.
See also: On The Issues Vote Match

On The Issues conducts a VoteMatch analysis of all Congressional members based on 20 issue areas. Rather than relying on incumbents to complete the quiz themselves, the VoteMatch analysis is conducted using voting records, statements to the media, debate transcripts or citations from books authored by or about the candidate. Based on the results of the quiz, Neal is a Populist-Leaning Liberal. Neal received a score of 72 percent on personal issues and 10 percent on economic issues.[29]

On The Issues organization logo.
On The Issues Vote Quiz
Economic Issues Social Issues
Issue Stance Issue Stance
Legally require hiring women & minorities Strongly Favors Abortion is a woman's unrestricted right Favors
Expand ObamaCare Strongly Favors Comfortable with same-sex marriage Favors
Vouchers for school choice Strongly Opposes Keep God in the public sphere Opposes
Absolute right to gun ownership Strongly Opposes Human needs over animal rights Opposes
Higher taxes on the wealthy Strongly Favors Stricter punishment reduces crime Opposes
Support & expand free trade Favors Pathway to citizenship for illegal aliens Strongly Favors
Stricter limits on political campaign funds Strongly Favors Maintain US sovereignty from UN Strongly Opposes
Prioritize green energy Strongly Favors Expand the military Opposes
Stimulus better than market-led recovery Strongly Favors Stay out of Iran Strongly Favors
Privatize Social Security Opposes Never legalize marijuana Strongly Opposes
Note: Information last updated in 2014.[29]

National security

American response in Syria

See also: United States involvement in Syria

Neal issued a statement regarding the situation in Syria on September 2, 2013.[30] In it he said, “I am pleased that President Obama is going to seek Congressional approval for any use of force in Syria. As someone who voted against the Iraq war, I want to see if the UN inspectors conclude that chemical weapons were used to attack and kill innocent civilians outside Damascus on August 21st. While the Syrian government needs to be held accountable for its outrageous behavior, I believe that every diplomatic option ought to be exhausted before the United States and its international partners contemplate any military action in the region.”[30]


King Amendment

Neal signed a letter sent to Collin Peterson in August 2013, asking him to keep Steve King's amendment out of the final Farm Bill.[31] The "Protect Interstate Commerce Act" amendment prevents states from applying their own laws on agricultural products to agricultural products from another state.[32]. King introduced the amendment in response to a law in California, requiring a larger size cage for egg-producing chickens. King represents Iowa, which is a large egg producer.



See also: Massachusetts' 1st Congressional District elections, 2014

Neal 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.


See also: Redistricting in Massachusetts and United States House of Representatives elections in Massachusetts, 2012

Massachusetts lost a U.S. House seat due to the updated 2010 census. Neal ran for re-election in 2012. Neal ran in Massachusetts' 1st Congressional District as he absorbed a good portion of western Massachusetts. He defeated Andrea Nuciforo, Jr. and Bill Shein in the Democratic primary on September 6, 2012. No Republicans filed to run for election in the district. Neal was unopposed in the general election on November 6, 2012.[33][34][35]

U.S. House, Massachusetts District 1 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngRichard Neal Incumbent 77.8% 261,936
     N/A All Others 1.2% 4,197
     N/A Blank Votes 20.9% 70,422
Total Votes 336,555
Source: Massachusetts Secretary of State "Return of Votes"
U.S. House, Massachusetts District 1 Democratic Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngRichard E. Neal Incumbent 65.5% 40,165
Andrea Nuciforo 24.7% 15,123
Bill Shein 9.9% 6,048
Total Votes 61,336


The organizations and individuals below officially endorsed Neal for the 2012 election.[36]

  • Bill Clinton
  • State Senator Benjamin Downing
  • National Committee to Preserve and Protect Social Security and Medicare
  • Sierra Club
  • Massachusetts AFL-CIO
  • 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East

Full history

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Neal is available dating back to 2000. Based on available campaign finance records, Neal raised a total of $8,254,590 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 16, 2013.[49]

Richard Neal's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 U.S. House (Massachusetts, District 1) Won $1,793,586
2010 U.S. House (Massachusetts, District 2) Won $2,273,405
2008 U.S. House (Massachusetts, District 2) Won $1,621,922
2006 U.S. House (Massachusetts, District 2) Won $715,000
2004 U.S. House (Massachusetts, District 2) Won $572,781
2002 U.S. House (Massachusetts, District 2) Won $557,181
2000 U.S. House (Massachusetts, District 2) Won $720,715
Grand Total Raised $8,254,590


Candidates for Congress are required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Neal’s reports.[50]

Richard E. Neal (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[51]April 15, 2013$2,066,594.00$202,193.99$(99,837.18)$2,168,950.81
July Quarterly[52]July 15, 2013$2,168,950.81$241,937.88$(207,950.03)$2,202,938.66
October Quarterly[53]October 15, 2013$2,202,938.66$226,061.38$(113,095.27)$2,315,904.77
Year-end[54]January 31, 2014$2,315,904$184,673$(138,428)$2,362,150
April Quarterly[55]April 15, 2014$2,362,150$128,110$(178,506)$2,311,754
Running totals


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

Neal won election to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2012. During that election cycle, Neal's campaign committee raised a total of $1,793,587 and spent $1,793,587.[56]

Cost per vote

Neal spent $6.85 per vote received in 2012.


Breakdown of the source of Neal's campaign funds before the 2010 election.

Neal won re-election to the U.S. House in 2010. During that election cycle, Neal's campaign committee raised a total of $2,273,405 and spent $2,304,756.[57]

U.S. House, Massachusetts District 2, 2010 - Richard Neal Campaign Contributions
Total Raised $2,273,405
Total Spent $2,304,756
Total Raised by General Election Opponent $146,857
Total Spent by General Election Opponent $143,835
Top contributors to Richard Neal's campaign committee
FMR Corp$59,800
Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance$51,500
General Electric$34,500
American College of Surgeons$15,000
New York Life Insurance$14,250
Top 5 industries that contributed to campaign committee
Securities & Investment$146,100
Health Professionals$141,700
Pharmaceuticals/Health Products$109,049

Personal Gain Index

Congressional Personal Gain Index graphic.png
See also: Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress)

The Personal Gain Index (U.S. Congress) is a four-part measurement that illustrates the extent to which members of the U.S. Congress have personally benefited from their tenure as public servants.
It consists of four different metrics pioneered by the Government Accountability Institute:

PGI: Net worth

See also: Changes in Net Worth of U.S. Senators and Representatives (Personal Gain Index) and Net worth of United States Senators and Representatives
Net Worth Metric graphic.png

Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by, Neal's net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $83,011 and $250,000. That averages to $166,505.50, which is lower than the average net worth of Democratic representatives in 2012 of $5,700,168.36. Neal ranked as the 359th most wealthy representative in 2012.[58] Between 2004 and 2012, Neal's calculated net worth[59] increased by an average of 11 percent per year. Between 2004 and 2012, the average annual percentage increase for a member of Congress was 15.4 percent.[60]

Richard Neal Yearly Net Worth
YearAverage Net Worth
Growth from 2004 to 2012:85%
Average annual growth:11%[61]
Comparatively, the American citizen experienced a median yearly decline in net worth of -0.94%.[62]
The data used to calculate changes in net worth may include changes resulting from assets gained through marriage, inheritance, changes in family estates and/or trusts, changes in family business ownership and many other variables unrelated to a member's behavior in Congress.


Ideology and leadership

See also: GovTrack's Political Spectrum & Legislative Leadership ranking

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Neal is a "rank-and-file Democrat," as of June 24, 2013.[63]

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.[64]

Neal most often votes with:

Neal least often votes with:

Lifetime voting record

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

According to the website GovTrack, Neal missed 892 of 15,356 roll call votes from Jan 1989 to Mar 2013, which is 5.8%. This is worse than the median of 2.2% among the lifetime records of representatives currently serving.[65]

Congressional staff salaries

See also: Staff salaries of United States Senators and Representatives

The website Legistorm compiles staff salary information for members of Congress. Neal paid his congressional staff a total of $1,083,877 in 2011. He ranked 62nd on the list of the highest paid Democratic representative staff salaries and ranked 81st overall of the highest paid representative staff salaries in 2011. Overall, Massachusetts ranked 2nd in average salary for representative staff. The average U.S. House of Representatives congressional staff was paid $954,912.20 in fiscal year 2011.[66]

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, as compared to other members, in the previous year. More information about the analysis process can be found on the vote ratings page.


According to the data released in 2013, Neal was ranked the 35th most liberal representative during 2012.[67]


According to the data released in 2012, Richard Neal was ranked the 60th most liberal representative during 2011.[68]

Voting with party

June 2013

The website OpenCongress tracks how often members of Congress vote with the majority of the chamber caucus. According to the website, Neal has voted with the Democratic Party 94.6% of the time, which ranked 28th among the 201 House Democratic members as of June 2013.[69]


Neal and his wife, Maureen, have four children.[70]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term Richard + Neal + Massachusetts + House

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

Richard Neal News Feed

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See also

External links


  1. Politico, "2012 Election Map, Massachusetts," accessed 2012
  2. Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, "Biography of Richard Neal," accessed November 23, 2011
  3. Boston Globe, "Neal seeks top job on Ways and Means," June 4, 2010
  4. Richard Neal Campaign website, "Meet Richie," accessed November 23, 2011
  5. Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, "Biography of Richard Neal," accessed November 23, 2011
  6., "House Committee Rosters for the 113th Congress," accessed March 3, 2013
  7. U.S. House of Representatives, "Committee assignments," accessed March 31, 2014
  8. Official Neal House Website, "Biography," accessed on November 23, 2011
  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. Project Vote Smart, "Representative Richard Neal's Voting Records on National Security," accessed September 23, 2013
  12. Vote Smart, "Neal on Defense," accessed September 23, 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 New York Times, "Senate passes long-stalled Farm Bill, with clear winners and losers," accessed February 12, 2014
  16. 16.0 16.1, "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. The Library of Congress, "H.AMDT.136," accessed August 28, 2013
  25. Project Vote Smart, "Representative Richard Neal's Voting Records on Immigration," accessed September 23, 2013
  26. Project Vote Smart, "Representative Richard Neal's Voting Records on Issue: Health and Healthcare," accessed September 23, 2013
  27. Project Vote Smart, "Neal on abortion," accessed September 23, 2013
  28. U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote on the Fiscal Cliff," accessed January 4, 2013
  29. 29.0 29.1 On The Issues, "Richard Neal Vote Match," accessed July 1, 2014
  30. 30.0 30.1 WGGB, "Congressman Neal Makes Statement on Syria," accessed September 4, 2013
  31. Vote Smart, "Letter to Ranking Member Collin Peterson, House Committee on Agriculture - Reject Rep. King's Provision on Farm Bill," accessed September 23, 2013
  32., "King Farm Bill Amendment Angers Animal Advocates," accessed September 18, 2013
  33. Associated Press, "Massachusetts Primary Results," accessed September 6, 2012
  34. Berkshire Eagle, "Berkshires may lose rural voice with Olver's retirement," October 28, 2011
  35. Berkshire Eagle, "Nuciforo renews plans for Congress," October 27, 2011
  36. Neal's Official Campaign Website, News
  37. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed March 28, 2013
  38. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008," accessed March 28, 2013
  39. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 7, 2006," accessed March 28, 2013
  40. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2004," accessed March 28, 2013
  41. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2004," accessed March 28, 2013
  42. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 7, 2000," accessed March 28, 2013
  43. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 3, 1998," accessed March 28, 2013
  44. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 5, 1996," accessed March 28, 2013
  45. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 8, 1994," accessed March 28, 2013
  46. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 3, 1992," accessed March 28, 2013
  47. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 6, 1990," accessed March 28, 2013
  48. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 8, 1988," accessed March 28, 2013
  49. Open Secrets, "Richard E. Neal," accessed May 16, 2013
  50. Federal Election Commission, "Richard E. Neal Summary Report," accessed July 25, 2013
  51. Federal Election Commission, "Richard E. Neal April Quarterly," accessed July 25, 2013
  52. Federal Election Commission, "Richard E. Neal July Quarterly," accessed July 25, 2013
  53. Federal Election Commission, "Richard E. Neal October Quarterly," accessed October 23, 2013
  54. Federal Election Commission, "Year End Report," accessed February 17, 2014
  55. Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed April 21, 2014
  56. Open Secrets, " 2012 Re-Election Cycle," accessed February 15, 2013
  57. Open Secrets, "Richard Neal 2010 Election Cycle," accessed October 30, 2011
  58. OpenSecrets, "Neal (D-MA), 2012," accessed February 18, 2014
  59. This figure represents the total percentage growth from either 2004 (if the member entered office in 2004 or earlier) or their first year in office (as noted in the chart below).
  60. This number was found by dividing each member's total net worth growth percentage by the number of years included in the calculation.
  61. This figure represents the total percentage growth divided by the number of years for which there are net worth figures for each member.
  62. This figure was calculated using median asset data from the Census Bureau. Please see the Congressional Net Worth data for Ballotpedia spreadsheet for more information on this calculation.
  63. GovTrack, "Neal," accessed June 24, 2013
  64. OpenCongress, "Richard Neal," accessed August 5, 2013
  65. GovTrack, "Richard Neal," accessed April 2013]
  66. LegiStorm, "Richard Neal"
  67. National Journal, "TABLE: House Liberal Scores by Issue Area," February 26, 2013
  68. National Journal, "Searchable Vote Ratings Tables: House," accessed February 23, 2012
  69. OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed June 6, 2013
  70. Project Vote Smart, "Summary," accessed November 23, 2011
Political offices
Preceded by
John Olver
U.S. House of Representatives - Massachusetts District 1
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Edward Boland
U.S. House of Representatives - Massachusetts District 2
Succeeded by
Jim McGovern