Yvette Clarke

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Yvette D. Clarke
Yvette Clark.jpeg
U.S. House, New York, District 9
In office
January 3, 2007-Present
Term ends
January 3, 2015
Years in position 7
PredecessorBob Turner (R)
Base salary$174,000/year
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
Cost per vote$4.15 in 2012
First electedNovember 7, 2006
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Campaign $$2,643,892
Term limitsN/A
Prior offices
U.S. House, New York, District 11
January 3,2007-January 3, 2013
New York City Council
Bachelor'sOberlin College (did not complete degree)
BirthdayNovember 21, 1964
Place of birthBrooklyn, New York
ProfessionEconomic Development Specialist
Net worth$105,003.50
ReligionAfrican Methodist Episcopal
Office website
Campaign website
Yvette D. Clarke (b. November 21, 1964, in Brooklyn, NY) is a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives representing New York's 9th Congressional District. Clarke was first elected to the House in New York's 11th Congressional District in 2006. Due to 2012 redistricting, she ran in New York's 9th District in 2012. Clarke is currently serving her 4th term in office.

Clarke is a 2014 Democratic and Working Families Party candidate seeking re-election to the U.S. House to represent the 9th Congressional District of New York.[1] Clarke ran unopposed for both nominations in the primary on June 24, 2014.[2]

Before her successful bid for Congress in 2006, Clarke was a member of the New York City Council.

Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Clarke is one of the most reliable Democratic votes, meaning she can be considered a safe vote for the Democratic Party in Congress.


Clarke was born in Brooklyn, New York. She attended Oberlin College from 1982 to 1986, but did not finish her degree.[3]


Prior to her election to the New York City Council, Clarke served as Director of Business Development for the Bronx Empowerment Zone (BOEDC).[4]

Committee assignments

U.S. House


Clarke serves on the following committees:[5]


Clarke served on the following committees:[6]

  • Homeland Security Committee
    • Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies (Ranking Member)
    • Subcommittee on Oversight, Investigations, and Management
  • Small Business Committee
    • Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Tax and Capital Access
    • Subcommittee on Contracting and Workforce

Key votes

113th Congress


The 113th Congress has had 55 out of 5,401 introduced bills enacted into law (1 percent) as of November 30, 2013. Comparatively, the 112th Congress had 1.14 percent of introduced bills enacted into law in the first session.[7] For more information pertaining to Clarke's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.[8]

National security

HR 644

See also: Bowe Bergdahl exchange

Neutral/Abstain On September 9, 2014, the Republican-run House approved H.R. 644, a resolution condemning President Barack Obama's act of exchanging five Guantanamo Bay prisoners for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.[9][10] The House voted 249-163 for resolution, with all Republicans and 22 Democrats supporting the bill. Fourteen Democrats and five Republicans did not vote on the resolution, while all other Democrats opposed its passage.[10] Clarke did not vote on the resolution.[9][10]

American response in Syria

See also: United States involvement in Syria

On August 29, 2013, more than 50 House Democrats signed a letter written by California Rep. Barbara Lee that called for a congressional resolution on strikes, and cautioned that the dire situation in Syria "should not draw us into an unwise war—especially without adhering to our constitutional requirements."[11][12] The letter also called on the Obama administration to work with the U.N. Security Council “to build international consensus” condemning the alleged use of chemical weapons. Clarke was one of the 50 Democrats in the House to sign the letter.[11][12]


Nay3.png Clarke 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.[13]

DHS Appropriations

Nay3.png Clarke 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.[13]

Keystone Pipeline Amendment

Yea3.png Clarke 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.[13]

CISPA (2013)

Yea3.png Clarke voted in support of HR 624 - the CISPA (2013). The bill passed the House on April 18, 2013, with a vote of 288 - 127. The bill permitted federal intelligence agencies to share cybersecurity intelligence and information with private entities and utilities.[14] The bill was largely supported by Republicans, but divided the Democratic Party.[13]


Farm Bill

See also: United States Farm Bill 2013

Nay3.png Clarke voted against the Farm Bill on July 11, 2013. The bill passed in a 216-208 vote.[15] The bill passed included farm policy, but did not include food stamps.[16]

King Amendment

Clarke signed a letter sent to Collin Peterson in August 2013, asking him to keep Steve King's amendment out of the final Farm Bill.[17] The "Protect Interstate Commerce Act" amendment prevents states from applying their own laws on agricultural products to agricultural products from another state.[18]. 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.

Government shutdown

See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Nay3.pngOn 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] Clarke voted against the stopgap spending bill that would have delayed the individual mandate.[19]

Yea3.png The shutdown 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.[21] 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. Clarke voted for HR 2775.[22]


Source: This graphic was generated by Find The Best.

Morton Memos Prohibition

Nay3.png Clarke 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.[23] The vote largely followed party lines.[24]


Repealing Obamacare

Nay3.png Clarke has voted against all attempts to repeal or delay the implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.[25]

Social issues


Nay3.png Clarke 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 was to ban abortions that would take place 20 or more weeks after fertilization.[26]

Previous congressional sessions

Fiscal Cliff

Yea3.png Clarke 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. She was 1 of 172 Democrats that voted in favor of the bill. The bill was passed in the House by a 257 - 167 vote on January 1, 2013.[27]


On The Issues Vote Match

Yvette Clarke's Vote Match results from On The Issues.
See also: On The Issues Vote Match

On The Issues conducts a VoteMatch analysis of elected officials 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, Clarke is a Populist-Leaning Liberal. Clarke received a score of 70 percent on social issues and 6 percent on economic issues.[28]

On The Issues organization logo.

The table below contains the results of analysis compiled by staff at On The Issues.

On The Issues Vote Quiz[29]
Economic Issues Social Issues
Issue Stance Issue Stance
Legally require hiring women & minorities Strongly Favors Abortion is a woman's unrestricted right Strongly Favors
Expand ObamaCare Strongly Favors Comfortable with same-sex marriage Favors
Vouchers for school choice Opposes Keep God in the public sphere Neutral
Absolute right to gun ownership Strongly Opposes Human needs over animal rights Opposes
Higher taxes on the wealthy Favors Stricter punishment reduces crime Strongly Opposes
Support & expand free trade Opposes 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 Neutral
Stimulus better than market-led recovery Strongly Favors Stay out of Iran Strongly Favors
Privatize Social Security Strongly Opposes Never legalize marijuana Strongly Opposes
Note: Information last updated: 2014.[28]

Campaign themes


Clarke listed the following campaign themes on her website:[30]

  • Increase rent assistance from HUD to low and moderate income households
  • Expand and preserve public housing programs
  • Ease the credit crunch affecting current and prospective homeowners
  • Pass an economic stimulus plan
  • Provide tax-relief for the middle-class and small businesses
  • Help promote business opportunities, especially for women and minorities
  • Reform and fully fund No Child Left Behind
  • Provide 21st training for teachers and school administrators
  • Increase funding for college education
  • Invest more resources in safeguarding America’s infrastructure
  • Improve the communication system for first responders
  • Reform the center that oversees the terrorist watch list
  • Reform immigration policy in the spirit of the American Dream
  • Uphold the American tradition of an open border
  • Stop deporting the parents of citizens, leaving them orphaned
  • Work with the Obama Administration to accomplish the goals of the recent Immigration Policy Change.
  • Preserve the freedom to organize
  • Improve workplace safety
  • Protect workers from the effects of a changing economic climate



See also: New York's 9th Congressional District elections, 2014

Clarke is running in the 2014 election for the U.S. House to represent New York's 9th District. Clarke ran unopposed for the Democratic and Working Families Party nominations in the primary on June 24, 2014. The general election takes place November 4, 2014.


See also: New York's 9th Congressional District elections, 2012

Clarke won re-election in 2012, but due to New York's redistricting, she ran in the newly redrawn 9th District. Attorney Sylvia Kinard challenged Clarke in the June 26 Democratic primary. Clarke won the primary and defeated Daniel Cavanagh (R) and Vivia Morgan (G) in the general election on November 6, 2012.[31][32]

President Barack Obama backed Clarke.[33] He said that Clarke had worked "to give a voice to the voiceless, whether it was improving educational opportunity for children, expanding access to healthcare for women in need, or helping small businesses expand and add new jobs."[34]

U.S. House, New York District 9 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngYvette Clarke Incumbent 77.9% 186,141
     Republican Daniel Cavanagh 10.1% 24,164
     Green Vivia Morgan 1.3% 2,991
     N/A Blank/Void/Scattering 10.7% 25,661
Total Votes 238,957
Source: New York State Board of Elections "U.S. House of Representatives Results"
U.S. House, New York District 9 Democratic Primary, 2012
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngYvette Clarke Incumbent 88.3% 11,903
Sylvia Kinard 11.7% 1,584
Total Votes 13,487

Full history

Campaign donors

Fundraising events

The below chart from Find The Best tracks the fundraising events Clarke attends.

Source: This graphic was generated by Find The Best.

Comprehensive donor history

Comprehensive donor information for Clarke is available dating back to 2006. Based on available campaign finance records, Clarke raised a total of $2,643,892 during that time period. This information was last updated on March 23, 2013.[38]

Yvette Clarke's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 U.S. House of Representatives (New York, District 9) Won $736,310
2010 U.S. House of Representatives (New York, District 11) Won $732,674
2008 U.S. House of Representatives (New York, District 11) Won $534,750
2006 U.S. House of Representatives (New York, District 11) Won $640,158
Grand Total Raised $2,643,892

Source: This graphic was generated by Find The Best.

Individual breakdown


Candidates for Congress are required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Clarke’s reports.[39]

Yvette D. Clarke (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[40]April 15, 2013$3,988.52$46,268.68$(28,761.00)$21,495.50
July Quarterly[41]July 15, 2013$25,188.29$60,231.00$(51,459.26)$33,960.03
October Quarterly[42]October 15, 2013$30,267.24$87,905.00$(61,119.19)$57,053.05
Year-End Quarterly[43]April 15, 2014$57,053.05$95,948.00$(58,856.39)$94,144.66
April Quarterly[44]April 15, 2014$94,144.66$73,133.21$(69,752.34)$97,525.53
Running totals


Clarke won election to the U.S. House in 2012. During that election cycle, Clarke's campaign committee raised a total of $736,310 and spent $772,480.[45]

Cost per vote

Clarke spent $4.15 per vote received in 2012.


Clarke was re-elected to the U.S. House in 2010 for a third term. Her campaign committee raised a total of $732,674 and spent $714,585.[46]

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 prospered during their tenure as public servants.
It consists of four different metrics:

PGI: Change in 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 OpenSecrets.org, Clarke's net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $35,007 and $175,000. That averages to $105,003.50, which is lower than the average net worth of Democratic representatives in 2012 of $5,700,168.36. Clarke ranked as the 380th most wealthy representative in 2012.[47] Between 2007 and 2012, Clarke's calculated net worth increased from $0 to $105,003. Between 2004 and 2012, the average annual percentage increase for a member of Congress was 15.4 percent.[48]

Yvette Clarke Yearly Net Worth
YearAverage Net Worth
Growth from 2007 to 2012:N/A
Average annual growth:N/A
Comparatively, the American citizen experienced a median yearly decline in net worth of -0.94%.[49]
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.

PGI: Donation Concentration Metric

See also: The Donation Concentration Metric (U.S. Congress Personal Gain Index)

Filings required by the Federal Election Commission report on the industries that give to each candidate. Using campaign filings and information calculated by OpenSecrets.org, Ballotpedia calculated the percentage of donations by industry received by each incumbent over the course of his or her career (or 1989 and later, if elected prior to 1988). Clarke received the most donations from individuals and PACs employed by the Building Trade Unions industry.

From 2003-2014, 22.02 percent of Clarke's career contributions came from the top five industries as listed below.[50]

Donation Concentration Metric graphic.png
Yvette Clarke Campaign Contributions
Total Raised $3,235,824
Total Spent $3,122,487
Top five industries that contributed to campaign committee
Building Trade Unions$169,950
Public Sector Unions$164,451
Lawyers/Law Firms$141,410
Health Professionals$125,927
Real Estate$110,785
% total in top industry5.25%
% total in top two industries10.33%
% total in top five industries22.02%


Ideology and leadership

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

Based on an analysis of bill sponsorship by GovTrack, Clarke is a "far-left Democrat" as of August 2014.[51] This was the same rating Clarke received in June 2013.

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]

Clarke most often votes with:

Clarke least often votes with:

Source: This graphic was generated by Find The Best.

Lifetime voting record

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

According to the website GovTrack, Clarke missed 339 of 6,257 roll call votes from January 2007 to August 2014. This amounts to 5.4 percent, which is worse than the median of 2.5 percent among current congressional representatives as of August 2014.[51]

Congressional staff salaries

See also: Staff salaries of United States Senators and Representatives

The website Legistorm compiles staff salary information for members of Congress. Clarke paid her congressional staff a total of $1,056,244 in 2011. Overall, New York ranked 28th in average salary for representative staff. The average U.S. House of Representatives congressional staff was paid $954,912.20 in fiscal year 2011.[53]

Staff bonuses

According to an analysis by CNN, Clarke was one of nearly 25 percent of House members who gave their staff bonuses in 2012. Clarke's staff was given an apparent $36,375.20 in bonus money.[54]

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. Click the link above for the full ratings of all members of Congress.


Clarke ranked 59th in the liberal rankings in 2013.[55]


Clarke ranked 1st in the liberal rankings in 2012.[56]


Clarke ranked 26th in the liberal rankings in 2011.[57]

Voting with party

The website OpenCongress tracks how often members of Congress vote with the majority of the chamber caucus.


Clarke voted with the Democratic Party 94.3 percent of the time, which ranked 60th among the 204 House Democratic members as of August 2014.[58]


Clarke voted with the Democratic Party 93.9 percent of the time, which ranked 92nd among the 201 House Democratic members as of June 2013.[59]


Clarke currently resides in the neighborhood where she grew up, the Flatbush section of Brooklyn.[60]

Recent news

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See also

External links

Political Tracker has an article on:
Yvette Clarke


Political offices
Preceded by
Bob Turner
U.S. House of Representatives - New York, District 9
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Major Owens
U.S. House of Representatives - New York District 11
Succeeded by
Michael Grimm
Preceded by
New York City Council
Succeeded by