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Ruben Gallego

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Ruben Gallego
Ruben Gallego.jpg
U.S. House, Arizona, District 7
In office
January 3, 2015 - Present
Term ends
January 3, 2017
Years in position 0
PredecessorEd Pastor (D)
State House Assistant Minority Leader
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
Cost per vote$16.80 in 2014
First electedNovember 4, 2014
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Campaign $$1,092,033
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
Arizona House of Representatives District 27
2011-March 14, 2014
Bachelor'sHarvard University
Military service
Service/branchUnited States Marine Corps
Office website
Campaign website
Ruben Gallego is a Democratic member of the U.S. House, representing the 7th Congressional District of Arizona. Gallego was first elected in 2014. He defeated Randy Camacho, Mary Rose Wilcox and Jarrett Maupin in the Democratic primary on August 26, 2014. He then defeated Joe Cobb (L), Rebecca DeWitt (Americans Elect) and Jose Penalosa (I) in the November general election.[1]

Gallego is a former Democratic member of the Arizona House of Representatives, representing District 27 from 2011 to March 14, 2014. He resigned to focus on his congressional campaign.[2] In the 2013 session, Gallego served as Assistant Minority Leader.

Gallego has served as vice chair of the Arizona Democratic Party and as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention.


Gallego earned his bachelor's degree in international relations from Harvard University. He served in the United States Marine Corps in Iraq.[3]


Below is an abbreviated outline of Gallego's academic, professional and political career:[4]

  • 2015-Present: U.S. Representative from Arizona's 7th Congressional District
    • 2012-2014: Assistant minority leader
  • 2010-2014: Arizona House of Representatives
  • 2009: Vice chair, Arizona Democratic Party
  • 2008: Delegate, Democratic National Convention
  • 2007-2008: Public affairs consultant
  • 2002-2006: United States Marine Corps
  • 2004: Graduated from Harvard University with an A.B.

Committee assignments

U.S. House


Gallego serves on the following committees:[5]

Arizona House


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

Arizona Committee Assignments, 2013
Public Safety, Military and Regulatory Affairs
Ways and Means


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


Campaign themes


Gallego's campaign website listed the following issues:[6]

  • College Affordability: "For years, college tuition has been rising faster than inflation at a rate of two-to-one. Hundreds of thousands of college graduates start their working lives already owing the equivalent of a mortgage before even getting their first paycheck."
  • Protecting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid: "Social Security is a sacred contract between every American worker. Privatizing Social Security would endanger America’s seniors by exposing them to risks that were not part of the deal. Privatizing Social Security would be just plain wrong, and I would forcefully oppose any efforts to do so."
  • Environment: "My generation of leaders, both in the United States and throughout the world, will be judged by what we do to curb climate change. It is the single biggest long-term issue our world faces, and we are very quickly losing our opportunity to prevent the disastrous results that will come from inaction."
  • Guns: "The toll that gun violence has taken on my family and my community has been far too high. Growing up, I knew friends and cousins who were shot in gang violence and from accidents stemming from unsafe gun storage."


—Ruben Gallego's campaign website,


Gallego's website highlighted the following campaign themes:[3]

  • for Us
Excerpt: "Representative Gallego always acts with our area’s interests in mind. As our legislator, Ruben has fought for more jobs and economic development in the district, supporting expedited construction of the Loop 202 extension and turning the Salt River riverbank into one of the nation’s largest solar energy fields."
  • for Bipartisan Solutions
Excerpt: "Ruben has been a consistent voice for bipartisanship in the legislature. Of the 21 bills introduced or co-sponsored by Rep. Gallego that passed last session, all of them were sent to the governor with wide support from Democrats and Republicans."
  • for Arizona’s Veterans
Excerpt: "A Marine and veteran of the Iraq War, Ruben is known as one of Arizona’s most vocal advocates for veterans’ issues – especially for troops coming home from Afghanistan and Iraq. In the last two years, Ruben has passed multiple bills and administrative changes supporting our veterans."
  • for Better K-12 Education
Excerpt: "A tireless advocate for quality education, Ruben supports reforms that would benefit our area and all of Arizona’s school-age children, including: Year-round school in urban areas to reduce teen pregnancy rates, juvenile crime rates, and to ease financial burdens on low and middle-income families during the summer months."
  • for Quality, Affordable Higher Education
Excerpt: "As someone who relied on aid to make it through college, Ruben understands the importance of quality, affordable higher education, and recognizes the vital role that higher education plays in providing opportunities for all."


Goldwater Institute

See also: Goldwater Institute's Legislative Report Card

The Goldwater Institute releases its "Legislative Report Card" annually for all Arizona legislators. This report card tracks how legislators voted on key votes and assigns them a letter grade based on how closely their votes agree with the Institute's positions. The primary values emphasized in the ratings are whether votes expand or restrict liberty.[8]


Gallego received a score of 40 out of 100 in the 2012 report card for a grade of D- according to the Goldwater Institute’s grading scale. This score was 4 higher than his score on the 2011 report card. Gallego’s 40 in 2012 was tied for the 43rd highest grade among all 60 Arizona State Representatives.[8]



See also: Arizona's 7th Congressional District elections, 2014

Gallego won election in the 2014 election for the U.S. House to represent Arizona's 7th District. Gallego defeated Randy Camacho, Jarrett Maupin and Mary Rose Wilcox in the primary on August 26, 2014.[9] He then defeated Joe Cobb (L), Rebecca DeWitt (Americans Elect) and Jose Penalosa (I) in the November general election.[1]

The signatures on his nomination petition were challenged in June 2014, but the challenge was quickly dismissed.[10] The challenge was issued by Mary Rose Wilcox, a fellow Democratic primary competitor. She said, "I am not trying to push anyone off the ballot, and I am not hiding behind lawsuits filed by others. I am openly calling for Mr. Marinelarena or Mr. Marinelarena Gallego to put his legal surname, including his given name Marinelarena, on the ballot, so everyone has the chance to learn about his experiences and who he really is." Gallego, who was formerly known as Ruben Marinelarena, dropped the last name of his father, who abandoned his family when he was young, in 2008 prior to beginning his political career.[11]The general election took place November 4, 2014.[12]

U.S. House, Arizona District 7 General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngRuben Gallego 74.9% 54,235
     Libertarian Joe Cobb 14.8% 10,715
     Americans Elect Rebecca DeWitt 5.3% 3,858
     Independent Jose Penalosa 4.8% 3,496
     Write-in Gary Dunn 0.2% 129
     Write-in Gustavo Ortega 0% 17
     Write-in Samuel Esquivel 0% 4
Total Votes 72,454
Source: Arizona Secretary of State
U.S. House, Arizona District 7 Democratic Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngRuben Gallego 48.9% 14,936
Mary Rose Wilcox 36.3% 11,077
Randy Camacho 7.6% 2,330
Jarrett Maupin 7.2% 2,199
Total Votes 30,542
Source: Arizona Secretary of State


Gallego received the endorsement of former congressman Harry Mitchell. Mitchell said, "Since becoming a Marine, Ruben's whole life has been dedicated to public service. At the state legislature, Ruben proved himself to be one of the state's most effective public servants. I have no doubt that he would do the same in Congress."[13]

Gallego also picked up the endorsement of Rep. Raul Grijalva. He said, "I worked with Ed Pastor for many years. He was the best partner I could have asked for in Phoenix, and I couldn’t think of a better candidate to replace him than Ruben Gallego. He’ll be a force for Arizona in Congress and I can’t wait to work with him."[14]


See also: Arizona House of Representatives elections, 2012

Gallego won re-election in the 2012 election for Arizona House of Representatives District 27. He and incumbent Catherine H. Miranda defeated Reginald Bolding in the Democratic primary on August 28, 2012. He won the general election on November 6, 2012.[15][16]

Arizona House of Representatives, District 27, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngRuben Gallego Incumbent 40.5% 27,522
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngCatherine Miranda Incumbent 39.2% 26,683
     Republican Daniel Coleman 14.8% 10,088
     Green Angel Torres 5.4% 3,702
Total Votes 67,995
Arizona House of Representatives, District 27 Democratic Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngRuben Gallego Incumbent 38.1% 4,996
Green check mark transparent.pngCatherine Miranda Incumbent 36.6% 4,800
Reginald Bolding 25.4% 3,334
Total Votes 13,130


See also: Arizona House of Representatives elections, 2010

Gallego faced Cloves Campbell Jr. (incumbent), Sandra Gonzales, Cristy Lopez, Catherine H. Miranda and Jim Munoz in the August 24 primary. Gallego and Miranda advanced with 3,656 and 3,106 votes, respectively. They then defeated Michael Gular (R) and Angel Torres in the general election on November 2, 2010.[17][18]

Arizona House of Representatives, District 16 General Election (2010)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Catherine H. Miranda (D) 19,197
Green check mark transparent.png Ruben Gallego (D) 18,365
Michael Gular (R) 8,551
Angel Torres (G) 2,532
Arizona House of Representatives, District 16 Democratic Primary (2010)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png Ruben Gallego (D) 3,656
Green check mark transparent.png Catherine H. Miranda (D) 3,106
Cloves Campbell Jr. (D) 2,866
Jim Munoz, Jr. (D) 2,038
Sandra Gonzales (D) 1,744
Cristy Lopez (D) 765

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor history

Comprehensive donor information for Gallego is available dating back to 2010. Based on available campaign finance records, Gallego raised a total of $1,092,033 during that time period. This information was last updated on February 3, 2015.[19]

Ruben Gallego's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2014 U.S. House (Arizona, District 7) Won $936,188
2012 Arizona State House, District 27 Won $57,638
2010 Arizona State House, District 16 Won $98,207
Grand Total Raised $1,092,033


Gallego won election to the U.S. House in 2014. During that election cycle, Gallego's campaign committee raised a total of $936,188 and spent $911,026.[20] This is less than the average $1.45 million spent by House winners in 2014.[21]

Cost per vote

Gallego spent $16.80 per general election vote received in 2014.

U.S. House, Arizona District 7, 2014 - Ruben Gallego Campaign Contributions
Total Raised $936,188
Total Spent $911,026
Total Raised by Election Runner-up $1,288
Total Spent by Election Runner-up $1,288
Top contributors to Ruben Gallego's campaign committee
Snell & Wilmer$11,800
Human Rights Campaign$10,475
Communications Workers of America$10,250
United Food & Commercial Workers Union$10,250
Credit Union National Assn$10,000
Top 5 industries that contributed to campaign committee
Lawyers/Law Firms$75,750
Leadership PACs$43,500
Real Estate$39,725
Public Sector Unions$34,000

Below are Gallego's FEC reports.


Gallego won re-election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2012. During that election cycle, Gallego raised a total of $57,638.


Gallego won election to the Arizona House of Representatives in 2010. During that election cycle, Gallego raised a total of $98,207.

Recent news

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Ruben Gallego News Feed

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External links

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  1. 1.0 1.1 The Huffington Post, "Election 2014," November 4, 2014
  2., "Rep. Gallego resigns from Arizona House," March 14, 2014
  3. 3.0 3.1 Campaign website, "Issues," accessed August 10, 2014
  4. Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, "GALLEGO, Ruben, (1979 - )," accessed January 21, 2015
  5. U.S. House of Representatives, Office of the Clerk, "Committee Information," accessed February 18, 2015
  6. Campaign website, "Issues," accessed June 11, 2014
  7. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Goldwater Institute, "2012 Legislative Report Card for Arizona's 50th Legislature, First Regular Session," August 15, 2012
  9. Politico, "2014 Arizona House Primaries Results," accessed August 26, 2014
  10. Arizona Daily Independent, "2014 Nomination Petition Challenges," accessed June 13, 2014
  11. Daily Kos, "Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest: Luntz says GOP pollsters suck. Wehby helps prove his point.," June 13, 2014
  12. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named tweet
  13. azcentral, "Mitchell endorses Gallego in AZ07," March 11, 2014
  14. Politico, "Raul Grijalva takes sides in Arizona primary," March 19, 2014
  15. Arizona Secretary of State, "2010 Primary candidate list," accessed December 20, 2013
  16. Arizona Secretary of State, "Official 2012 Primary Results," accessed December 20, 2013
  17. Arizona Secretary of State, "2010 Primary results," accessed December 20, 2013
  18. Arizona Secretary of State, "General election results," accessed December 13, 2013
  19. Open Secrets, "Gallego, Ruben," accessed February 3, 2015
  20. Open Secrets, "Ruben Gallego 2014 Election Cycle," accessed February 24, 2015
  21. Open Secrets, "Winning vs. Spending," accessed February 23, 2015
  22. Federal Election Commission, "Ruben Gallego April Quarterly," accessed April 30, 2014
  23. Federal Election Commission, "Ruben Gallego July Quarterly," accessed July 24, 2014
  24. Federal Election Commission, "Ruben Gallego Pre-Primary," accessed October 22, 2014
  25. Federal Election Commission, "Ruben Gallego October Quarterly," accessed October 22, 2014
Political offices
Preceded by
Ed Pastor
U.S. House - Arizona District 7
Succeeded by