|U.S. House, Wisconsin, District 2|
|January 3, 2013- Present|
|January 3, 2015|
|Years in position||1|
|Predecessor||Tammy Baldwin (D)|
|Elections and appointments|
|Last election||November 6, 2012|
|Cost per vote||$4.10 in 2012|
|First elected||November 6, 2012|
|Next primary||August 12, 2014|
|Next general||November 4, 2014|
|Wisconsin State Assembly|
|Bachelor's||University of Wisconsin, Madison, 1986|
|Place of birth||Kenosha, WI|
|Profession||Owner, Budget Signs and Specialties|
- 1 Biography
- 2 Committee assignments
- 3 Issues
- 3.1 Legislative actions
- 3.2 National security
- 3.3 Economy
- 3.4 Immigration
- 3.5 Healthcare
- 3.6 Social issues
- 4 Elections
- 5 Campaign donors
- 6 Personal Gain Index
- 7 Analysis
- 8 Personal
- 9 Recent news
- 10 See also
- 11 External links
- 12 References
He was previously a member of the Wisconsin State Assembly, representing the 78th District from 1999 to 2013. He won election to the U.S. House to represent the 2nd Congressional District of Wisconsin in 2012. Pocan also previously served on the Dane County Board of Supervisors from 1991-1996.
Based on analysis of multiple outside rankings, Pocan is an average Democratic member of Congress, meaning he will vote with the Democratic Party on the majority of bills.
Pocan is the owner of Budget Signs and Specialties.
He is a member of a number of organizations, including 1000 Friends of Wisconsin, Action Wisconsin, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Clean Wisconsin, Colombia Support Network/Apartadó Sister City Organization, Midwest States Center, Painters and Allied Trades Union - American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) and Wisconsin Environmental Decade.
- Committee on Budget
- Committee on Education and the Workforce
- Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Job Creation, and Regulatory Affairs
- Subcommittee on Government Operations
Wisconsin State Assembly
In the 2011-2012 Wisconsin legislative session, Pocan served on these committees:
In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Pocan served on these committees:
- Audit Committee
- Finance Committee (Chair)
- Audit Committee, Wisconsin State Legislature
- Finance Committee, Wisconsin State Legislature (Co-Chair)
- Employment Relations Committee, Wisconsin State Legislature
- Joint Legislative Council Committee, Wisconsin State Legislature
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. For more information pertaining to Pocan's voting record in the 113th Congress, please see the below sections.
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." 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. Pocan was one of the 50 Democrats in the House to sign the letter.
Pocan voted against 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.
Pocan voted against 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 that was largely along party lines.
Keystone Pipeline Amendment
Pocan voted for 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.
Pocan voted against 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. The bill was largely supported by Republicans, but divided the Democratic Party.
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. 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. However, cuts to the food stamp program cut an average of $90 per month for 1.7 million people in 15 states. Pocan voted with 102 other Democratic representatives against the bill.
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. The House voted 359-67 for the 1,582 page bill, with 64 Republicans and three Democrats voting against the bill. The omnibus package included 12 annual spending bills to fund federal operations. It included a 1 percent 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. Pocan joined with the majority of the Democratic party and voted in favor of the bill.
- See also: United States budget debate, 2013
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. 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. Pocan voted against the stopgap spending bill that would have delayed the individual mandate.
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. 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. Pocan voted for HR 2775.
Morton Memos Prohibition
Pocan 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.
Healthcare Reform Rules
Pocan 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 that all changes to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act be approved by Congress before taking effect. The vote was largely along party lines.
- See also: United States Farm Bill 2013
In June 2013, more than two dozen House Democrats, including Pocan, took part in a SNAP challenge, feeding themselves for a week on the average benefit level of a SNAP recipient. Participants agreed to eat all meals from a limited food budget comparable to that of a SNAP participant, approximately $1.50 per meal, or $4.50 a day.
Pocan 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 that largely followed party lines. The purpose of the bill is to ban abortions that would take place 20 or more weeks after fertilization.
Fast food worker strikes
In December 2013, Pocan tweeted his support for raising the minimum wage for fast food workers. He tweeted, "#MinimumWage in 1968 was $10.60 in 2013 dollars. Today it is $7.25. Past time we #raisethewage."
Pocan sought election to represent Wisconsin's 2nd District in the United States House of Representatives in 2012. He defeated Kelda Helen Roys, Matt Silverman and Dennis Hall in the August 14 Democratic primary. He defeated Republican Chad Lee in the general election.
|U.S. House, Wisconsin District 2 General Election, 2012|
|Source: Wisconsin Government Accountability Board "Official Election Results, 2012 General Election" (dead link)|
|Wisconsin's 2nd Congressional District Democratic Primary, 2012|
- See also: Wisconsin State Assembly elections, 2010
| Wisconsin State Assembly, District 78
Democratic primary (2010)
Comprehensive donor information for Pocan is available dating back to 2012. Based on available campaign finance records, Pocan raised a total of $1,143,296 during that time period. This information was last updated on April 5, 2013.
|Mark Pocan's Campaign Contribution History|
|2012||US House (Wisconsin, District 2)||$1,143,296|
|Grand Total Raised||$1,143,296|
|Mark Pocan (2014) Campaign Finance Reports|
|Report||Date Filed||Beginning Balance||Total Contributions|
for Reporting Period
|Expenditures||Cash on Hand|
|April Quarterly||April 15, 2013||$52,936.10||$100,629.25||$(68,095.08)||$85,470.27|
|July Quarterly||July 15, 2013||$85,470.27||$156,065.09||$(109,497.73)||$132,037.63|
|October Quarterly||October 15, 2013||$132,037.63||$126,627.87||$(75,424.25)||$183,241.25|
|Year-end||January 31, 2014||$183,241||$129,269||$(87,359)||$225,251|
|April Quarterly||April 15, 2014||$225,251.35||$76,778.03||$(68,675.16)||$233,354.22|
|July Quarterly||July 25, 2014||$233,354.22||$167,821.85||$(98,676.18)||$302,499.89|
|October Quarterly||October 15, 2014||$309,874.85||$166,499.40||$(283,283.96)||$193,090.29|
Pocan won re-election to the U.S. House in 2012. During that re-election cycle, Pocan's campaign committee raised a total of $1,143,420 and spent $1,087,264.
Cost per vote
Pocan spent $4.10 per vote received in 2012.
|U.S. House of Representatives, Wisconsin, 2nd District, 2012 - Mark Pocan Campaign Contributions|
|Total Raised by Election Runner-up||$91,144|
|Total Spent by Election Runner-up||$90,316|
|Top contributors to Mark Pocan's campaign committee|
|University of Wisconsin||$12,000|
|American Assn for Justice||$11,500|
|National Assn of Realtors||$11,000|
|National Education Assn||$10,700|
|Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund||$10,500|
|Top 5 industries that contributed to campaign committee|
|Building Trade Unions||$79,000|
|Public Sector Unions||$68,450|
In 2010, Pocan received $15,710 in campaign donations. The top contributors are listed below.
|Wisconsin State Assembly 2010 election - Campaign Contributions|
|Top contributors to Mark Pocan's campaign in 2010|
|Capital Area Uniserv North||$1,000|
|Wisconsin Pipe Trades||$500|
|Wisconsin Health & Hospital Association||$500|
|Service Employees Local 150||$500|
|Federation Of Teachers Local 212||$500|
|Total Raised in 2010||$15,710|
The top 5 donors to Pocan's 2008 campaign were professional and labor organizations. Here are Pocan's top 5 donors:
|Managed Health Services Insurance Corp||$500|
|Northwestern Mutual Life||$500|
|Sprinkler Fitters Local 183||$500|
|School Administrators Alliance||$500|
|WI Petroleum Marketers & Convenience Store Assoc||$500|
Personal Gain Index
The aim of the Personal Gain Index (PGI) is to shine a light on how members of the U.S. Congress may benefit from their tenure as public servants. Researchers at the Government Accountability Institute will look at four different metrics pointing to aspects of self-enrichment.
The PGI will consist of the following metrics:
- Net worth
- How much did a member's net worth increase or decrease over a specified period?
- The K-Street metric (coming soon)
- What percentage of a member's staff were previously lobbyists?
- Donation concentration (coming soon)
- What industries are contributing the most to each member?
- Stock trading (coming soon)
- What stocks are each member holding in their portfolio?
PGI: Net worth
Based on congressional financial disclosure forms and calculations made available by OpenSecrets.org, Pocan's net worth as of 2012 was estimated between $467,005 to $1,064,999. That averages to $766,002, which is lower than the average net worth of Democratic House members in 2012 of $5,700,168.36. Pocan ranked as the 231st most wealthy representative in 2012. Between 2011 and 2012, Pocan‘s net worth increased by 29.8 percent. Between 2004 and 2012, the average annual increase in the net worth of a congressman was 15.4 percent.
|Mark Pocan Yearly Net Worth|
|Year||Average Net Worth|
|Growth from 2011 to 2012:||30%|
|Average annual growth:||30%|
|Comparatively, the American citizen experienced a median yearly decline in net worth of -0.94%.|
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.
Pocan most often votes with:
Pocan least often votes with:
Voting with party
Mark Pocan voted with the Democratic Party 94.8% of the time, which ranked 90th among the 201 House Democratic members as of June 2013.
Lifetime voting record
According to the website GovTrack, Pocan missed 0 of 96 roll call votes from January 2013 to April 2013. This amounts to 0%, which is better than the median of 2.1% among current congressional representatives as of April 2013.
Pocan married his partner, Phil, in 2006 in Canada. They reside in Madison.
This section displays the most recent stories in a google news search for the term "Mark + Pocan + Wisconsin + Congress"
- All stories may not be relevant to this legislator due to the nature of the search engine.
- Wisconsin's 2nd Congressional District
- Wisconsin's 2nd Congressional District elections, 2014
- United States congressional delegations from Wisconsin
- Social media:
- Political profiles:
- Financial (federal level):
- Financial (state level):
- Interest group ratings:
- Issue positions:
- Public statements:
- Voting record:
- Media appearances:
- Campaign 2008 campaign contributions at Wisconsin Democracy Campaign
- Wisconsin Democracy Campaign profile
- Representative Pocan's Freedom Speaks profile
- Representative Pocan's blog, last entry February 2012
- Meet Mark Pocan, the Original ALEC Spy, Molly Redden, The New Republic, July 25, 2012 | 9:05
- Politico, "2012 House Race Results," accessed November 6, 2012
- Project Vote Smart, "Assemblyman Pocan"
- Huffington Post, "Democracy For America Names Top 10 Progressive House Candidates For 2012," accessed February 16, 2012
- CQ.com, "House Committee Rosters for the 113th Congress," accessed March 3, 2013
- U.S. House of Representatives, "Committee assignments," accessed March 31, 2014
- Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, First Session of the 112th Congress," accessed September 5, 2013
- Congressional Record, "Resume of Congressional Activity, Second Session of the 113th Congress," accessed March 4, 2014
- Office of Barbara Lee, "Lee Letter to President Obama," accessed September 2, 2013
- Washington Post, "More than 50 House Democrats also want Syria strike resolution," accessed September 2, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "HR 1960 - National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014 - Voting Record," accessed September 16, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "HR 2217 - DHS Appropriations Act (2014) Act of 2014 - Voting Record," accessed September 16, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "H Amdt 69 - Requires Threat Assessment of Pipeline Vulnerabilities to a Terrorist Attack - Voting Record," accessed September 16, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "HR 624 - CISPA (2013) - Voting Record," accessed September 16, 2013
- Clerk of U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote 31: H.R. 2642," accessed February 12, 2014
- Politico, "House clears Farm Bill," accessed February 12, 2014
- New York Times, "Senate passes long-stalled Farm Bill, with clear winners and losers," accessed February 12, 2014
- CNN.com, "House passes compromise $1.1 trillion budget for 2014," accessed January 20, 2014
- U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote 21," accessed January 20, 2014
- Roll Call, "House passes $1.1 trillion omnibus," accessed January 20, 2014
- Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
- Buzzfeed, "Government Shutdown: How We Got Here," accessed October 1, 2013
- Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
- The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
- U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 550," accessed October 31, 2013
- The Library of Congress, "H.AMDT.136," accessed September 16, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "H Amdt 136 - Prohibits the Enforcement of the Immigration Executive Order - Voting Record," accessed September 16, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "H Amdt 450 - Requires Congressional Approval for Any Rules Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act - Voting Record," accessed September 16, 2013
- U.S. House.gov, "Full Member List of Congressional Snap Challenge," accessed September 25, 2013 (dead link)
- Feeding America, "Taking the SNAP Challenge," accessed September 25, 2013
- Project Vote Smart, "HR 1797 - Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act - Voting Record," accessed September 16, 2013
- Politico, "Pols back #FastFoodStrikes," accessed December 6, 2013
- Wisconsin State Journal, "State Reps. Kelda Helen Roys, Mark Pocan to run for Congress," September 7, 2011
- AP, "Primary Results 2012," accessed May 30, 2013
- Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "Candidates registered by office," accessed June 10, 2012
- WISN, "Primary Results"
- Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "Official 2010 Primary election results," accessed April 25, 2014
- Open Secrets, "Career Fundraising for Mark Pocan," accessed April 5, 2013
- Federal Election Commission, "Pocan 2014 Summary reports," accessed July 25, 2013
- Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed July 25, 2013
- Federal Election Commission, "July Quarterly," accessed July 25, 2013
- Federal Election Commission, "October Quarterly," accessed October 30, 2013
- Federal Election Commission, "Year-End Report," accessed February 19, 2014
- Federal Election Commission, "April Quarterly," accessed April 18, 2014
- Federal Election Commission, "July Quarterly," accessed October 24, 2014
- Federal Election Commission, "October Quarterly," accessed October 24, 2014
- Open Secrets, "Pocan Campaign Contributions," accessed February 26, 2013
- Follow the Money, "2010 contributions," accessed December 23, 2013
- Follow the Money "2008 Campaign Contributions"
- OpenSecrets, "Pocan, 2012," accessed January 14, 2014
- Or, the total percentage growth divided by the number of years for which there are net worth figures for each member.
- This figure represents the total percentage growth divided by the number of years for which there are net worth figures for each member.
- 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.
- OpenCongress, "Mark Pocan," accessed August 6, 2013
- OpenCongress, "Voting With Party," accessed July 2014
- GovTrack, "Pocan," accessed April 11, 2013
- Pocanforcongress.com, "About," accessed January 3, 2014
Tammy Baldwin (D)
|U.S. House of Representatives - Wisconsin, 2nd District
| Succeeded by|
|Wisconsin State Assembly District 78
| Succeeded by|
Brett Hulsey (D)