Jared Huffman was born on February 18, 1964, in Independence, Missouri. He earned a BA in political science from UC Santa Barbara in 1986, and a JD from Boston College Law School in 1990. In 1988 Huffman volunteered for Democrat Senator Paul Simon's presidential campaign, and three years later he was a member of the Northern California steering committee for Barbara Boxer's U.S. Senate bid. Professionally, Huffman was an associate attorney and/or managing partner with three law firms between 1990 and 2001, and was a senior attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council from 2001-06. After subsequently serving six years in the California State Assembly, Huffman was elected in November 2012 to represent California's 2nd Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He continues to hold this seat and is a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
Over the course of his legislative career, Huffman has voted:
- against the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, a bill requiring healthcare practitioners who are present when an infant survives an attempted abortion, to exercises the same degree of care as would be provided to any infant born at the same gestational age;
- against the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Acts of 2013 and 2015, which sought to prohibit abortions from being performed on any fetus that had reached the 20th week of its gestation period—except in cases where a pregnancy endangered the mother's life or was the result of rape or incest;
- against a proposal to prohibit the federal funding of any abortion services or any health insurance plans that cover such services;
- against the Restoring Americans' Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act of 2015, which would have repealed certain provisions of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and rescinded funds from abortion providers;
- against 2014 and 2015 bills authorizing the construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, which would have transported petroleum from Canadian oil sands to U.S. refineries;
- against a 2013 bill to increase the number of lease sales for offshore oil and gas exploration;
- against the Responsibly And Professionally Invigorating Development (RAPID) Act of 2015, which aimed to bar federal agencies from considering the “social cost” of carbon emissions in environmental reviews;
- against a 2015 bill to suspend—until after the end of President Barack Obama's second term in office—the authority of the president to waive, suspend, reduce, or otherwise limit the application of sanctions pursuant to an agreement related to Iran's nuclear program;
- against a 2013 bill designed to prohibit any individual who has a delinquent tax debt from being an employee of the federal government;
- against a 2015 bill to repeal the estate tax (a.k.a. the “death tax”); and
- against the Enforce the Law for Sanctuary Cities Act, which called for the cessation of federal funding to any state or local governments that restricted law enforcement from looking into the citizenship or immigration status of criminal suspects within their jurisdiction;
For additional details of Huffman's voting record and issue positions on a wide range of key matters, click here, here, and here.
Huffman supported President Barack Obama's executive amnesty orders—i.e., “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” (DACA, 2012) and “Deferred Action for Parental Accountability” (DAPA, 2014)—which together shielded millions of illegals from potential deportation.
Huffman strongly favors: government-enforced affirmative action policies designed to compensate nonwhites and women for the effects of past and present discrimination; the notion that abortion should be regarded as an unrestricted right for all women and should be funded by federal government subsidies; a steeply progressive income-tax structure where high earners pay hugely disproprtionate rates; an expansion of Obamacare, with an incremental progression toward a single-payer system; and the implementation of carbon taxes, higher CAFE standards for automobiles, and massive federal funding for the research-and-development of wind and solar power.
By contrast, Huffman opposes: (a) the voluntary privatization of even a small portion of the Social Security program; (b) the expansion of the U.S. military or its budget, in light of Huffman's belief that taxpayer dollars can often be used to fund more important priorities like social welfare programs; and (c) school voucher initiatives that would empower low-income, inner-city parents to send their children to private schools rather than to the mostly abysmal public schools in their local neighborhoods.
On March 3, 2015, Huffman attended Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech to Congress regarding the gravity of the growing Iranian nuclear threat and his (Netanyahu's) “profound disagreement” with the “bad” nuclear deal that the Obama Administration was pursuing with Iran. In the course of his address, the prime minister repeatedly exhorted the U.S. to push for “a better deal that doesn’t leave Iran with a vast nuclear infrastructure and such a short break-out time,” and “a better deal that keeps the restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program in place until Iran’s aggression ends.” Nevertheless, Huffman subsequently told reporters, inaccurately, that Netanyahu's position was that “we should give up on any diplomatic path.”
Huffman was one of dozens of Congressional Democrats who elected to boycott the January 20, 2017 inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump. To view a complete list of those who chose to boycott the event, click here.