Gerry Connolly - VA11Gerry Connolly VA-11

Current Position: US Representative of US House District 11 since 2009
Affiliation: Democrat
Former Position: Board of Supervisors – Fairfax County from 1995 – 2007
District: Comprises most of Fairfax County and the entirety of Fairfax City.
Upcoming Election:

Pinned Tweet 2/24/22: Sorry, you lose the right to complain about partisanship once you’ve fanned the flames of violent insurrection.

Connolly worked from 1979 to 1989 with the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, where he managed committee oversight of international economic issues, international narcotics control, and United Nations and Middle East policies, and published reports on U.S. policy in El Salvador, Central America, Israel, and the Persian Gulf region.[2] From 1989 to 1997, he was Vice President of the Washington Office of SRI International. He was also Director of Community Relations for SAIC (Science Applications International Corporation).

Learn About Gerry Connolly in one minute

Summary

Current Position: US Representative of US House District 11 since 2009
Affiliation: Democrat
Former Position: Board of Supervisors – Fairfax County from 1995 – 2007
District: Comprises most of Fairfax County and the entirety of Fairfax City.
Upcoming Election:

Pinned Tweet 2/24/22: Sorry, you lose the right to complain about partisanship once you’ve fanned the flames of violent insurrection.

Connolly worked from 1979 to 1989 with the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, where he managed committee oversight of international economic issues, international narcotics control, and United Nations and Middle East policies, and published reports on U.S. policy in El Salvador, Central America, Israel, and the Persian Gulf region.[2] From 1989 to 1997, he was Vice President of the Washington Office of SRI International. He was also Director of Community Relations for SAIC (Science Applications International Corporation).

Learn About Gerry Connolly in one minute

News

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Highly Effective Democratic Lawmakers
Center for Effective Lawmaking

The following table identifies the top ten highest-scorers in the 117th House of Representatives among majority-party Democrats. Unsurprisingly, given the power of committee and subcommittee chairs, nine of the top ten held such important positions.

Topping our list is Rep. Gerald Connolly of Virginia, with a Legislative Effectiveness Score more than seven times the average member of the House. Rep. Connolly was Chair of the Government Operations subcommittee of the House Oversight and Reform Committee in the 117th Congress, where he was serving his 7th term. He sponsored 51 bills, 11 of which passed the House, and 3 of which became law as standalone measures. In contrast, the average member of the House sponsored 21 bills, with only one law produced for every two House members. In addition to sponsoring the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023, Rep. Connolly was the sponsor of the First Responder Fair RETIRE Act, which allowed disabled first responders to collect federal retirement benefits in a manner equivalent to non-disabled federal first responders.  Rep. Connolly was also the sponsor of two bills, the Enhanced Whistleblower Engagement Act, and the FedRAMP Authorization Act, that had their language substantially incorporated into the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023, which was signed into law in December 2022.

While he used his position as committee chair to advance numerous pieces of legislation in the 117th Congress, Rep. Connolly has been an effective lawmaker throughout his career, even as a rank-and-file Representative, and when in the minority party. For example, he was in our “Exceeds Expectations” grouping in five of the seven Congresses in which he served, beginning with his third term in Congress, and every term thereafter (including the 117th Congress).

10 Ten House Dem - 117th image

Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA) introduced the Federal Firefighter Pay Equity Act, bipartisan legislation to ensure federal firefighters are eligible for the same full and fair retirement benefits as their state and local counterparts.

Every day, federal firefighters put their lives at risk to protect our nation’s most critical assets – including the families, homes, and infrastructure on military installations across the country. Yet under current law, these brave first responders are denied the robust retirement package they deserve. Unlike their counterparts in state and local government, federal firefighters are not credited with the additional income from mandatory overtime for the purposes of calculating their retirement benefits.

The Federal Firefighter Pay Equity Act would correct this injustice. By taking into account the number of overtime hours worked by federal firefighters each year, this bill would allow for a more accurate and equitable retirement calculation for our nation’s federal firefighters.

“These courageous men and women work grueling hours in the most difficult of circumstances,” said Connolly. “It is our absolute responsibility to provide them with a retirement worthy of the sacrifices they have made in service to the United States. Our bipartisan legislation fulfills that responsibility, and ensures that our retired federal firefighters are compensated fairly and fully.”

“Federal firefighters put themselves directly in harm’s way and save lives on a daily basis – all while working 72 hours per week. It’s time they are paid a fair wage for their work, not one-third less than their state and local counterparts. Requiring federal firefighters to work such a grueling schedule exacerbates their risk for occupational injuries and burnout, and reduces their retirement earnings,”  said Edward A. Kelly, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters.  “I thank Representative Gerry Connolly for introducing the Federal Firefighters Pay Equity Act which will ensure our federal firefighters receive a living wage and a fair work schedule. This critical bill will also strengthen federal firefighters’ retirement by counting their overtime hours when calculating their retirement earnings. I call on Congress to pass this bill immediately and give federal firefighters the recognition and compensation that they have earned while protecting our nation.”

Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA), a senior member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and President Emeritus of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, led 34 Members of Congress in sending a bipartisan letter to USAID Administrator Samantha Power urging continued assistance for Türkiye and Syria following the devastating earthquakes that have claimed tens of thousands of lives across both countries.

“We commend USAID and the United States government’s swift response to the humanitarian crisis,” wrote the Members. “By deploying a Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) and courageous Urban Search and Rescue Teams from Los Angeles County, California and Fairfax County, Virginia, within hours of the earthquake, your agency’s rapid action will unquestionably save lives.”

The Members identified the following urgent needs on the ground:

  1. Heavy machinery for the removal of debris
  2. Additional tents, sleeping bags, isolation sheets and Non-Food Items
  3. Items to protect against freezing temperatures such as winter coats, winter pants, winter boots, portable and pocket heaters
  4. The provision of energy supplies, including for hospitals and health centers
  5. Emergency food assistance
  6. Water trucks and sanitation services for temporary shelters to house displaced people
  7. Further ambulances and medicine provisions (especially trauma supplies). Such supplies include Electrocardiogram (ECG) devices, defibrillators, portable ultrasound machines, glucometers, surgical kits, power generation for hospital and other humanitarian needs
  8. The establishment of safe spaces equipped with basic needs for women
  9. Increased cash distributions
  10. Full funding of the Syria Humanitarian Response Plan (2022-2023), a plan already severely underfunded with less than 50% of the required $4 billion fulfilled

Reps. Gerry Connolly (VA-11) and Scott Franklin (FL-18) today introduced the Cardiac Arrest Survival Act. This bipartisan bill would save lives by establishing a uniform base of liability protection for businesses that acquire automated external defibrillators (AEDs) and the good Samaritans who use them. AEDs are used to assist victims of out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrests (SCA). Deployment of AEDs is currently limited due to conflicting state laws that discourage their use through the threat of lawsuits. This liability protection will encourage higher use of AEDs, which increases the survival rate from sudden cardiac arrest (SCA).

“Access to AEDs is critical to saving lives during a cardiac emergency,” said Rep. Connolly. “As Chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors I made it a priority that County buildings and schools deploy this lifesaving technology, and that staff have the knowledge and training to use these tools effectively. This legislation will ensure we don’t allow fear of liability or a patchwork of differing protections across the states to prevent an individual or business from taking all necessary measures to save a life.”

“Sudden Cardiac Arrest is the third leading cause of death in America,” said Rep. Franklin. “The recent shocking incident involving Buffalo Bills player Damar Hamlin demonstrated how sudden and critical a cardiac arrest event can be. Quick deployment of an AED saved his life. Conflicting state laws and concerns over lawsuits have prevented wider access to this life-saving technology. We need nationwide uniformity in protections to encourage higher use of AEDs in the event of an emergency. I thank my colleague, Gerry Connolly for joining me in this effort to save lives.”

According to the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation, roughly 356,000 people of all ages experience EMS-assessed out-of-hospital non-traumatic SCA each year and nine out of 10 victims die. When bystanders intervene immediately by giving CPR, survival rates double or triple. State laws differ dramatically on who is eligible for immunity. In some states, only trained AED users are protected from liability. The Franklin bill does not obligate businesses to acquire an AED and adds no cost to American taxpayers. The bill does not indemnify device manufacturers or create liability protections that don’t already exist.

Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA) and Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) introduced the Saving the Civil Service Act to protect the federal workforce from politicization and political manipulation. The bipartisan legislation includes and builds on Connolly and Fitzpatrick’s Preventing a Patronage System Act, which passed the House in September 2022. The legislation is cosponsored by Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger (D-VA).

“The civil servants who make up our federal workforce are the engine that keeps our federal government running,” said Congressman Connolly.  “They are our country’s greatest asset. We rely on their experience and expertise to provide every basic government service—from delivering the mail to helping families in the wake of natural disasters.  The former President’s attempt to remove qualified experts and replace them with political loyalists was a direct threat to our national security and our government’s ability to function the way the American people expect it to.  Expertise, not political fealty, must define our civil service.”

“Civil service employment should always be based upon merit and expertise, not political connections,” said Congressman Fitzpatrick. “The security of our nation depends upon an efficient and competent federal workforce. This legislation would ensure that political loyalties play no significant role in hiring federal employees, and I’m proud to co-lead this effort to further ensure that our workforce consists of the best and brightest individuals.”

On October 21, 2020, President Trump signed Executive Order 13957 creating Schedule F in the excepted service. This executive order would undermine the merit system principles of our federal workforce by requiring agency heads to reclassify “policy-determining, policy-making, or policy-advocating” positions to a newly created Schedule F category of federal employees that removes their due process rights and civil service protections.

The Saving the Civil Service Act would ensure the civil service system cannot be politically manipulated by:

Preventing any position in the federal competitive service, created after September 30, 2020, from being reclassified outside of merit system principles without the express consent of Congress.

Installing a cap on the number of conversions to the frozen excepted service schedule (Schedule C). Furthermore, that cap cannot exceed more than one percent of the total number of employees at such agency as of the first day of such term, or five employees, whichever is greater.

Requiring that anyone who is converted provide consent for that conversion, and a report to Congress on any conversions.

The Saving the Civil Service Act is endorsed by the following organizations: The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU), National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE), Professional Managers Association, American Society for Public Administration (ASPA), National Active and Retired Federal Employees Union (NARFE), Senior Executives Association, International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers (IFPTE), National Association of Assistant US Attorneys, National Weather Service Employees Organization, Patent Office Professional Association.

“We commend Representative Connolly and Senator Kaine – two true friends of federal workers – for introducing the ‘Saving the Civil Service Act’ to prevent a return to 19th century patronage hiring. This legislation would finally slam the door shut on one the last administration’s worst ideas, which was to unilaterally declare untold thousands of existing career civil servants to be at-will political appointees.  The bill would wisely make it illegal for any president to try that in the future and deserves swift passage. We hope both parties see the value of a highly skilled, apolitical civil service hired for what they know and not who they know,” said Everett Kelley, National President, American Federation of Government Employees.

“The Saving the Civil Service Act provides a bipartisan, congressional check on misuse of executive powers by limiting the ability of any president to bypass the merit-based civil service framework through broad new exceptions to longstanding rules. The merit-based civil service system provides continuity through changing administrations, preserves institutional knowledge and expertise within the federal government, and protects the rule of law. It ensures federal employees are hired and fired based on their ability to perform the job – or not – and not based on political connections. NARFE is grateful that Congressman Connolly and Senator Kaine are leading the way on this effort to preserve a critical institutional safeguard for democracy.” said William Shackelford, National President, National Active and Retired Federal Employees Union.

“The federal civil service is the backbone of our government – a system designed to ensure that employees are selected for their jobs based on merit rather than political patronage. However, at the end of his term in office Donald Trump tried to dismantle this system and replace it with one based on patronage and partisanship” said Debra Perlin, Policy Director at Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW). “Rep. Connolly and Rep. Fitzpatrick’s Saving the Civil Service Act is a necessary step to uphold protections for federal workers and reduce the possibility for patronage-based hiring in the future. For the sake of our democracy we urge Congress to pass this legislation as soon as possible and send it to President Biden for his signature.”

“NTEU strongly supports the Saving the Civil Service Act introduced by Sen. Kaine, Rep. Connolly and Rep. Fitzpatrick. It is essential that Congress proactively block any future attempt to turn the professional federal workforce into one of political patronage. When it comes to staffing federal agencies and delivering government services to all Americans, we cannot put partisan loyalty over the skills and qualifications of those who have dedicated their careers to service. NTEU is proud to endorse this bipartisan legislation because it protects the civil service as well as the public’s faith in it,” said Tony Reardon, National President of the National Treasury Employees Union.

“NFFE strongly supports the Saving the Civil Service Act,” said Randy Erwin, National President, National Federation of Federal Employees. “This bipartisan legislation will protect the merit system principles of the federal workforce by preventing a U.S. president from requiring political loyalty from the apolitical career ranks of federal civil service. Federal labor, executives, and professional associations all agree with political appointees from former Democratic and Republican administrations that this bill is critical to ensuring the government remains in the hands of the American people and not some political despot, even if that despot is a president.  Every member of Congress must choose: You either support transparency and accountability through this bill or you support rogue political operatives who covertly run private agendas while on the Taxpayer’s dime.  You cannot have it both ways.”

“The Saving the Civil Service Act is vital to protecting government employees who serve the American public fairly, with integrity, and are beholden only to upholding and defending the Constitution.  Without this legislation, political partisans will use Schedule F to drive government service by fear and the use of politically motivated retribution to serve partisan interests,” said Mitch MacDonald, President of the NOAA Attorneys Guild.

“The Saving the Civil Service Act will help prevent partisan politics from bleeding into government service by thwarting any President from instilling a cadre of loyalists in the federal workforce. In doing so, it ensures the workforce remains loyal to only the Constitution and the law. This bill also promotes both efficiency and reliability. At the Internal Revenue Service, career leaders have significant knowledge about complex tax laws and vast congressional mandates. Their knowledge expedites the onboarding process for political appointees, provides expert insight for other employees, and ensures timely, accurate information is relayed to stakeholders. We applaud Senator Kaine, Representative Connolly, and Representative Fitzpatrick for leading this effort on behalf of the American people who rely on the equal and efficient delivery of government services,” said Chad Hooper, Executive Director, Professional Managers Association.

“The dedicated professionals protected under the Saving the Civil Service Act are subject matter experts with a long history of serving our nation. They are the linchpin to making our government and public programs operate effectively, efficiently and equitably. And, they are the institutional backbone to maintaining consistency in administering these programs across administrations, amidst changing cultural trends, and so often in the face of partisanship and unnecessary attack. The American Society for Public Administration wholeheartedly supports their work; this legislation helps prevents their loyal service from being distorted for partisan goals,” said William Shields, Jr., Executive Director and CEO, American Society for Public Administration.

“Under current law, any president can seize control over the non-partisan career workforce, and through this control, manipulate the equal and apolitical delivery of government services to promote their own ends. Any president could revert thousands of federal positions back to the spoils the American people rejected over 130 years ago. We applaud Representative Connolly and Representative Fitzpatrick for introducing this bill to protect the American people from this politicization and defend the apolitical government workforce,” said Marcus Hill, Board Chair, Senior Executives Association.

“We applaud Congressman Gerry Connolly and Senator Tim Kaine for sponsoring the Saving Our Civil Service Act to prevent any presidential administration from politicizing competitive civil service positions, undermining the professionalism of our federal government, circumventing merit principles and due process, and jeopardizing the continuity of government across changing administrations,” said Matthew Biggs, President of the International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers (IFPTE). “The Saving Our Civil Service Act is sensible legislation that would protect a core institution in our federal government so that it continues to serve the best interests of the American public and not personal and political allegiance. Federal employees working in the nonpartisan competitive civil service play critical roles in national defense, economic security, scientific progress, public safety, and providing essential services that Americans count on.”

Connolly Named Ranking Member of House Oversight
MeriTalk, Grace DilleJanuary 31, 2023

Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., will serve as ranking member of the House Oversight and Accountability Committee’s Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Information Technology, and Government Innovation, a Capitol Hill source told MeriTalk today.

Last Congress, Rep. Connolly – long one of the prime movers in Congress on Federal IT modernization issues – chaired the Government Operations Subcommittee, which has now been split into two new subcommittees.

The Government Operations subcommittee – one of the most active in Congress on the Federal IT front – was perhaps best known for its work in creating the semiannual FITARA Scorecard that ranks Federal agencies on their IT progress.

Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA), President Emeritus of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly and a senior member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and Congressman Joe Wilson (R-SC), also a senior member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, reintroduced the Crimea Annexation Non-recognition Act. This bipartisan legislation would prohibit any federal agency from taking any action or extending any assistance that recognizes or implies recognition of Russia’s sovereignty over Crimea, its airspace, or its territorial waters.

“The United States must not acquiesce to Russia’s illegal and forcible annexation and occupation,” Congressman Connolly said. “We must repeat time and again, for however long it takes, that we will never recognize Russia’s forcible and illegal annexation of Crimea. I want to thank my friend Joe Wilson for his partnership on this issue, even as I sincerely hope this is the last time we need to introduce this bill. It is long past time for it to become law.”

“In 2014, the war criminal Putin took his first major step of aggression against the sovereign nation of Ukraine when he violated international law by invading and illegally annexing Crimea,” said Congressman Wilson. “The U.S. government must be clear that any failure to acknowledge the occupation of Crimea as illegal will not be tolerated. I thank Congressman Connolly, the President Emeritus of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, for his longtime leadership on this critical issue.”

National Defense Authorization Acts and appropriations bills from FY 2016-2023 include similar language to this bill and prohibit those funds from being used on any action that recognizes Russian sovereignty over Crimea. This legislation, which passed the House in the 116th Congress (417-1), would codify that prohibition until Ukrainian sovereignty over Crimea is fully restored.

A string of new polls show Donald Trump’s support among voters slipping after his lackluster campaign kick-off. MSNBC’s Michael Steele spoke to Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA) about Trump’s 2024 bid, possible criminal referrals from the January 6th Committee, and how Democrats plan to combat a wave of investigations from Republicans when the Party takes control of the House next year.

About

Gerry Connolly VA-11Congressman Gerald E. “Gerry” Connolly is serving his eighth term in the U.S. House of Representatives from Virginia’s 11th District, which includes Fairfax County and the City of Fairfax. Prior to his election to Congress, he served 14 years on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, including five years as Chairman. Throughout his career, protecting and growing Northern Virginia’s economy has been his top priority.

In Congress, he has played a key role in securing federal dollars for transportation improvements in Northern Virginia, including completion of the Fairfax County Parkway, widening the Prince William County Parkway, providing ongoing support for Rail to Dulles, and securing the annual federal commitment of $150 million for the regional Metro system.

Congressman Connolly is a senior member of the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability and serves as the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Information Technology, and Government Innovation. In this role, he is responsible for shaping government-wide policy on issues related to information security, including cybersecurity and privacy; government-wide federal information technology management and innovation; and procurement.

He also serves on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. Using his extensive background in foreign policy, including as a senior staff member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he has become a leading voice on foreign assistance reform, war powers, embassy security, and democracy promotion abroad.

Congressman Connolly co-authored the bipartisan Issa-Connolly Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA), which was signed into law in 2014, and represents the first major overhaul of the federal laws governing IT management since enactment of the Clinger-Cohen Act of 1996. In 2016, he passed the Land Management Workforce Flexibility Act, which allows temporary employees of land management agencies to now be eligible for civil servant positions. He also helped pass the Telework Enhancement Act, which requires the federal government to increase the use of telework by federal employees to ensure continuity of operations by federal agencies during emergency situations, enhance recruitment of a quality federal workforce, reduce traffic congestion, and improve the region’s air quality.

Congressman Connolly received an M.A. in Public Administration from Harvard University in 1979. He received a B.A. in Literature from Maryknoll College in Glen Ellyn, Illinois.

He resides in Fairfax with his wife Smitty and has a daughter Caitlin.

Personal

Full Name:  Gerald ‘Gerry’ Edward Connolly

Gender:  Male

Family:  Wife: Cathy; 1 Child: Caitlin

Birth Date:  03/30/1950

Birth Place:  Boston, MA

Home City: Fairfax, VA

Religion: Catholic

Source: Vote Smart

Education

MPA, Harvard University, 1979

BA, Literature, Maryknoll College, 1971

Political Experience

Representative, United States House of Representatives, Virginia, District 11, 2008-present

Chair, Board of Supervisors, Fairfax County, 2003-2007

Providence District Supervisor, Board of Supervisors, Fairfax County, 1995-2003

Source:

Professional Experience

Former Vice President, Community Relations, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC)

Vice President, Washington Office, SRI International, 1989-1997

Staff, United States Senate Foreign Relations Committee, 1979-1989

Offices

Congressman Gerry Connolly has two offices to serve you: our office on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. and our District Office in Fairfax.

Washington DC Office
2265 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-1492

Fairfax District Office
10680 Main Street
Suite 140
Fairfax, VA 22030
Phone: (703) 256-3071
Fax: (703) 354-1284

Contact

Email: Government Office

Web Links

Videos

Chairman Gerry Connolly’s Opening Statement: Future of Federal Work II

July 21, 2022 (08:30)

Politics

Source: none

Election Results

To learn more, go to the Wikipedia section in this post.

Finances

Source: Open Secrets

Committees

Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-VA) serves on two House committees,  the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, as well as four subcommittees that deal with issues affecting the 11th Congressional District, Northern Virginia, the local and national economy, and world affairs.

House Committee on Oversight and Accountability
The Committee on Oversight and Accountability is the main investigative committee in the U.S. House of Representatives. It has jurisdiction to investigate any federal program and any matter with federal policy implications.

Ranking Member, Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Information Technology, and Government Innovation
Legislative and oversight jurisdiction over issues related to information security, including cybersecurity and privacy; government-wide federal information technology management and innovation; and procurement.

Subcommittee on Government Operations and the Federal Workforce
Legislative and oversight jurisdiction over the federal civil service, including compensation, classification, and benefits; federal property disposal; public information and records, including the Freedom of Information Act, the National Archives and Records Administration, and the Presidential Records Act; government reorganizations and operations, including transparency, performance, grants management, and accounting measures generally; and the relationship between the federal government to the states and municipalities, including unfunded mandates.

House Committee on Foreign Affairs
The Committee is responsible for oversight and legislation relating to: foreign assistance; the Peace Corps; national security developments affecting foreign policy; strategic planning and agreements; war powers, treaties, executive agreements, and the deployment and use of United States Armed Forces; peacekeeping, peace enforcement, and enforcement of United Nations or other international sanctions; arms control and disarmament issues; the United States Agency for International Development; activities and policies of the State, Commerce and Defense Departments and other agencies related to the Arms Export Control Act, the Foreign Assistance Act; international law; promotion of democracy; international law enforcement issues; Broadcasting Board of Governors; embassy security; international broadcasting; and public diplomacy. The Committee also has jurisdiction over legislation with respect to the administration of the Export Administration Act, including the export and licensing of dual-use equipment and technology and other matters related to international economic policy and trade.

Subcommittee on Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia
The subcommittee has jurisdiction over the following within the Middle East and North Africa: (1) Matters affecting the political relations between the United States and other countries and regions, including resolutions or other legislative measures directed to such relations; (2) Legislation with respect to disaster assistance outside the Foreign Assistance Act, boundary issues, and international claims; (3) Legislation with respect to region- or country-specific loans or other financial relations outside the Foreign Assistance Act; (4) Legislation and oversight regarding human rights practices in particular countries; (5) Oversight of regional lending institutions; (6) Oversight of matters related to the regional activities of the United Nations, of its affiliated agencies, and of other multilateral institutions; (7) Identification and development of options for meeting future problems and issues relating to U.S. interests in the region; (8) Oversight of base rights and other facilities access agreements and regional security pacts; (9) Concurrent oversight jurisdiction with respect to matters assigned to the functional subcommittees insofar as they may affect the region; (10) Oversight of foreign assistance activities affecting the region, with the concurrence of the Chairman of the full Committee; and (11) Such other matters as the Chairman of the full Committee may determine.

Subcommittee on the Indo-Pacific
The subcommittee has jurisdiction over the following within Asia and the Pacific: (1) Matters affecting the political relations between the United States and other countries and regions, including resolutions or other legislative measures directed to such relations; (2) Legislation with respect to disaster assistance outside the Foreign Assistance Act, boundary issues, and international claims; (3) Legislation with respect to region- or country-specific loans or other financial relations outside the Foreign Assistance Act; (4) Legislation and oversight regarding human rights practices in particular countries; (5) Oversight of regional lending institutions; (6) Oversight of matters related to the regional activities of the United Nations, of its affiliated agencies, and of other multilateral institutions; (7) Identification and development of options for meeting future problems and issues relating to U.S. interests in the region; (8) Oversight of base rights and other facilities access agreements and regional security pacts; (9) Concurrent oversight jurisdiction with respect to matters assigned to the functional subcommittees insofar as they may affect the region; (10) Oversight of foreign assistance activities affecting the region, with the concurrence of the Chairman of the full Committee; and (11) Such other matters as the Chairman of the full Committee may determine.

Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government

New Legislation

Sponsored Bills

Co-Sponsored Bills

Issues

Source: Government page

Economy & Jobs

With a professional background in the private sector and more than a decade of service in local government, Congressman Connolly’s top priority has always been delivering results for the Northern Virginia economy. Congressman Connolly has helped develop our region into an economic engine for the Commonwealth by championing the growth of local industries, fighting the dangerous and indiscriminate cuts of sequestration, and protecting the health of a productive federal workforce. Northern Virginia is now home to numerous Fortune 500 companies and has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation.

Congressman Connolly wants every family in Northern Virginia to have an opportunity to share in the prosperity of our region. He remembers the images of Robert Kennedy’s tour of poverty in America and was inspired to begin his professional career working for anti-hunger and anti-poverty nonprofit organizations. He understands the human cost of increasing income inequality in America, and he has spent his career in public life expanding access to economic opportunity and ensuring the public safety net is there for those who need it most.

Amid the pandemic, Congressman Connolly has made one of his top priorities funding for local governments, services, and schools. As a result of his advocacy, local jurisdictions in Northern Virginia have received nearly $2 billion in direct assistance to help local small business and nonprofits, prevent public sector layoffs, and maintain critical services that support our local economy.

Federal Employees

As a senior member of the House Oversight and Accountability Committee and of the Subcommittee on Government Operations, Congressman Connolly is a passionate and effective advocate for active and retired federal employees. In recent Congresses, federal employees have been demonized, demoralized, and politicized. Congressman Connolly is a vocal opponent of policies that seek to curtail federal employee pay, leave, and retirement benefits. A leading proponent of telework, he believes that the federal government should be investing in its most valuable resource – its talented workforce – in order to modernize the federal government.

Congressman Connolly believes the federal workforce is one of the nation’s greatest asset. During an unprecedented global pandemic, the federal workforce ramped up its efforts to ensure that the public continued to have access to critical, life-saving services. The federal government must be prepared to attract and retain an effective workforce. That is why Congressman Connolly has introduced legislation to improve the Office of Personnel Management, the center of federal human capital, so that it can efficiently serve both current and retired federal employees. Congressman Connolly has also led efforts to ensure the federal government is well positioned to recruit the next generation of federal employees, which includes helping agencies better leverage their internship programs.

Each year, Congressman Connolly introduces the FAIR Act, which provides a pay raise to federal employees. He has also led bipartisan letters urging Appropriators to increase pay for federal civilian employees commensurate with pay increases provided for members of the military. In the last several years, federal workers have endured pay freezes, wage-reducing furloughs, sequester cuts, government shutdowns, payroll tax deferrals, and incurred more than $182 billion in pay and benefit cuts. Furthermore, federal wages have continuously lagged far behind the private sector, with federal employees making roughly 20% less than their private-sector counterparts. Congressman Connolly believes that our nation’s dedicated civil servants deserve respect and fair compensation.

Finally, Congressman Connolly hosts an annual forum for federal employees to help them understand their benefits and make changes to their health plans during the federal government’s Open Season. He welcomes federal employees to contact his district office if they are experiencing problems with the administration of their benefits at 703-256-3071.

Energy & Environment

Climate Change & Clean Energy

As a founding member and Chair Emeritus of the House Sustainable Energy and Environment Caucus (SEEC), Congressman Connolly plays a leadership role in efforts to protect America’s environment and public health and push for investment in clean and renewable energy. He has led the call for the long-term extension and expansion of clean energy tax credits, a carbon price or a clean energy performance program, and electrification investments.

In Congress, he helped pass the largest investment in clean energy in American history and supported legislation to reduce global carbon emissions. He supports a Green New Deal and legislation investing in sustainable infrastructure.

Congressman Connolly fought President Trump’s all-out assault on the environment and science. He worked with colleagues from around the region to fight proposals to eliminate Chesapeake Bay Restoration funding and supports comprehensive legislation to restore the Bay. He has also opposed efforts to slash funding for the Environmental Protection Agency. He has led efforts to oppose drilling off the coast of Virginia or in the Chesapeake Bay and fought to protect the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and to require oil companies to pay the full cost of oil spill cleanups. He will continue to oppose efforts to repeal or weaken the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Antiquities Act, the Clean Power Plan, the Paris Climate Agreement, and other important environmental legislation.

Congressman Connolly believes we must confront and dismantle the environmental racism that has forced communities of color to bear the brunt of air and water pollution and the resulting devastating health consequences. Now, these communities are on the front lines of the climate crisis as rising temperatures intensify soot and smog pollution and allergy seasons. He supports legislation that requires Federal agencies to create a working group on environmental justice compliance and enforcement; requires Federal agencies to consider cumulative health impacts under the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act when making permitting decisions and helps ensure that new projects do not harm health; and invests in research that will reduce health disparities and improve public health. He fought the Trump administration’s decision to maintain inadequate standards regulating soot pollution, which will needlessly subject communities of color to toxic pollution. He will continue fighting to achieve clean air and water for all.

He has also been a leader in expanding federal conservation efforts, including supporting the reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund and fully funding our National Park System. His legislation to designate the September 11th National Memorial trail route–a 1,300-mile system of trails and roadways that connects all three sites attacked on September 11, 2001– was signed into law shortly after the 20th anniversary of September 11th, 2001. It serves as a natural embodiment of our pledge to never forget the heroes and victims of that day. In addition, Congressman Connolly has continued his efforts to establish powerful voluntary tax incentives to complete America’s 11 National Scenic Trails.

Locally, he has worked with community stakeholders to complete missing segments of the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail, and open Featherstone National Wildlife Refuge to the public. These efforts complement his advocacy as a local government official, where he led the effort to build the 41-mile-long Gerry Connolly Cross County Trail and helped protect 10% of Fairfax County as county-owned parkland. He helped design and implement the county’s first comprehensive environmental plan which subsequently won a national award. Congressman Connolly was recently recognized as the “Protector of Potomac” by the Riverkeeper Network for his efforts on strengthening federal coal ash regulations.

Healthcare

Congressman Connolly believes health care should be a right for all Americans. He is committed to expanding access and improving the quality of care for all his constituents. In order to advance this critical priority, Congressman Connolly will fight to defend the Federal Employee Health Benefits program (FEHBP), protect the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and guard against misguided efforts to weaken, privatize, or overhaul our nation’s most successful health care programs in history, Medicare and Medicaid.
As a result of the Affordable Care Act, Virginia’s uninsured rate has decreased to a historic low since 2010, providing Virginians access to health care coverage they would otherwise have been unable to obtain or afford. In addition to expanding coverage, the ACA protects millions of Virginians who, prior to the ACA’s elimination of punitive annual and lifetime limits, lived under the threat of having their inadequate health insurance cut off if they got too sick. Insurance companies can no longer indiscriminately deny an individual coverage due to a pre-existing condition, and thanks to reforms that allow children to stay on their parent’s health plan until the age of 26, nearly 59,000 young adults have health care coverage. The ACA also mandates coverage of many important services including mental health screenings, and free preventive care coverage, such as flu shots, cancer screenings, contraception, and mammograms.

Congressman Connolly strongly opposes partisan efforts to repeal the ACA. Republicans have relentlessly tried to sabotage the Affordable Care Act, including eliminating the individual mandate, cutting the Open Enrollment period in half, discontinuing much of the advertisement and outreach activities to boost ACA enrollment, encouraging short-term junk plans, and rescinding cost sharing reductions payments. These actions have resulted in higher premiums, fewer choices, and more uninsured Americans.

There is still much to do in ensuring that all Americans have access to health care and Congressman Connolly believes there are improvements to the ACA that can and should be adopted. He supports adding a public option, expanding tax credits to allow more individuals and families to qualify for subsidies, supporting state innovation to decrease the uninsured rate and lower premiums, and finding new ways to encourage younger Americans to join the marketplaces.

Congressman Connolly is a strong supporter of Medicaid expansion in Virginia, which provides health coverage for more than 450,000 Virginians and has dropped our uninsured rate to a historic low since the Governor signed it into law. He also fought for the reauthorization of the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which covers more than 200,000 children in the Commonwealth.

Additionally, he supported legislation to incentivize states to extend Medicaid coverage for new moms through the entire postpartum period. Medicaid is already the largest single payer of maternity care and is a powerful tool that we must deploy in our mission to improve maternal health. States that have expanded Medicaid have lower maternal mortality rates with 1.6 fewer maternal deaths per 100,000 women. Rep. Connolly also supports legislation like the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act, which takes a comprehensive approach to addressing the Black maternal mortality crisis through investments in data collection, social determinants of health, maternal behavioral health, the perinatal workforce, and community-based organizations.

Congressman Connolly is also fighting to make prescription drugs more affordable. In passing the ACA, we closed the Medicare prescription drug donut hole. As a senior member of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, Congressman Connolly is supporting investigations into egregious price-gouging by pharmaceutical companies and holding them accountable for indefensible skyrocketing drug costs. He supports reforms that will help lower prescription drug prices like empowering the Secretary of Health and Human Services to negotiate the price of drugs, creating an out-of-pocket limit on prescription drug costs for Medicare beneficiaries, and requiring drug manufacturers to issue a rebate back to Medicare if they increase prices faster than inflation. He supports reinvesting the savings from these reforms in dental, vision, and hearing benefits for Medicare beneficiaries and research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Since coming to Congress, he has championed greater investment in scientific and biomedical research that will lead to new breakthroughs in medicine and treatments. Each year, he has advocated for robust funding for the NIH and helped pass the 21st Century Cures Act, which would help unleash research and development.

Congressman Connolly steadfastly protects women’s freedom to make their own health care choices. He strongly opposes partisan efforts to have the Federal government control individual health care decisions, and he has stood up to those in Congress who have attacked organizations such as Planned Parenthood, which provide vital health services to millions of Americans of all genders, races, and ages. He supports legislation that ensures affordable abortion coverage and care for every woman, no matter their income, insurance, or home state. He also believes we must establish a national standard protecting the right to abortion access in every state by prohibiting unnecessary restrictions on women and providers that do not promote women’s health and safety, and that limit a woman’s access to abortion services.

Veterans

Congressman Connolly is proud to represent more than 80,000 veterans and their families in Northern Virginia. He has fought to make sure our veterans have quality health care, better pay, and access to services throughout their lives and to ensure quality and consistent services during the COVID-19 pandemic. In recognition of his efforts, Our Military Kids, an organization dedicated to helping military children, awarded him the “Friend of Military Kids” award for his work on behalf of military families. In addition, Congressman Connolly has consistently received a perfect score from the Military Officers Association of America.

Since coming to Congress, he has fought for more reliable funding for veteran health care, new investments in treating traumatic brain injuries sustained by our servicemembers, and improved assistance for homeless veterans. Congressman Connolly has introduced legislation and helped advance legislative efforts on behalf of veterans:

  • The Federal Worker Leave Fairness Act, which would ensure disabled veterans are able to fully utilize their benefits amid disruptions in veterans’ health care during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The Military and Veteran Caregiver Student Loan Forgiveness Act, which would allow primary family caregivers of veterans to be eligible for student loan forgiveness under the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program.
  • The Families of Fallen Servicemembers First Act, which ensures the immediate payment of military death benefits to survivors of fallen servicemembers during a lapse in appropriations and expand the transferability of education assistance to veterans’ dependents. This legislation was enacted as part of the 2019 Department of Defense Appropriations Act.
  • The Veteran Fraud Reimbursement Act, legislation that would streamline VA efforts to make whole any veterans who are defrauded of their benefits by their fiduciary.

Congressman Connolly has helped advance legislation to minimize increases to TRICARE premiums, supported a grace period for beneficiaries in need, and ensured these fees do not apply to active-duty family members, transitional survivors, and medically retired retirees or family members. He has supported legislation to provide free postal benefits for troops in combat zones, provide disability compensation for PTSD, allow military retirees to pay their health care premiums with pre-tax dollars, expand the eligibility for concurrent receipt of military retired pay and veterans’ disability compensation, and provide education and respite care support services for family caregivers.

Congressman Connolly believes that we have a sacred obligation to ensure that the men and women who sacrifice so much to defend our freedoms receive the services and benefits that they have earned. That starts with a functional and well-run Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). As Chairman of the Subcommittee on Government Operations, he has led Congressional oversight efforts to improve management accountability at the VA, reduce VA backlogs, and help veterans access care at private facilities when they are unable to do so at VA centers in a timely manner. He also has supported legislation that directs the VA to establish a “Buddy Week” and provide additional resources for peer-to-peer support to veterans in need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Any veteran who finds him or herself in need of assistance should know that Congressman Connolly’s door is always open

Global Affairs

Foreign Policy

Congressman Connolly is a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and previously spent 10 years as a staff member on the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He believes that while a strong military is a vital tool in our security toolbox, we cannot ignore the increasingly important role diplomacy and development play in meeting our most pressing security challenges and in demonstrating American leadership in global affairs.

Our diplomacy and development efforts are complementary to U.S. military operations. As has been the lesson in Iraq, Afghanistan, and countless other interventions, a permanent U.S. military footprint is rarely a tenable proposal for the American public. Instead, investments in democracy and governance, rule of law, and economic development are the key to turning stagnant societies mired in corruption and violence into more stable, resilient, and prosperous countries. When we fail to make those investments, we are often left conducting triage when the bills come due for our neglected international funding priorities.

In November 2020, he was elected President of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Parliamentary Assembly (NATO PA), an interparliamentary organization for the members of parliament from across the Alliance to discuss and inform decisions on Alliance security. During his two-year term, President Connolly sought to help reestablish U.S. leadership within NATO, strengthen the founding democratic values of the Alliance, and enhance NATO PA’s contributions to Alliance strategic planning. He spearheaded an initiative to establish a Center for Democratic Resilience within the NATO Headquarters, to serve as a resource of best practices, networking and cross-fertilization for NATO members, partners and aspirant countries.

The global COVID-19 pandemic has underscored not only the need for a robust federal response to such a crisis, but also the importance of investing in global health security around the world. As diseases do not stop at borders, saving lives from the next global pandemic starts with investing in preparedness before it strikes. That is why Congressman Connolly introduced the Global Health Security Act, which recognizes the critical role of U.S. leadership in international health security, and ensures that there is a permanent designated official responsible for coordinating the federal response to a global health security emergency. The House of Representatives has passed this legislation with overwhelming bipartisan support.

U.S. foreign assistance programs work to end extreme poverty and build democratic societies that respect and promote human rights and fundamental freedoms. These efforts are fundamental safeguards against the development of instability and security threats overseas. Congressman Connolly introduced and passed the Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act, which directs the President to establish monitoring and evaluation guidelines for U.S. development and economic assistance programs. He has also introduced the Global Partnerships Act, which would provide a comprehensive reauthorization of U.S. foreign aid programs for the first time since 1985. He has championed human rights and spoken out on behalf of activists, dissidents, and the voiceless from Asia to the Middle East. Congressman Connolly introduced the Protection of Saudi Dissidents Act, which passed the House of Representatives. This legislation would hold Saudi Arabia accountable for the murder of VA-11 constituent Jamal Khashoggi and other attacks on critics of the Kingdom.

Serious, credible, and ambitious diplomacy can resolve the world’s most intractable challenges, and development investments have proven capable of unleashing economic growth and promoting stability. Together, diplomacy and development keep us safe, and Congressman Connolly believes we should fund them in a manner commensurate with the premium we place on our national security.

Congressman Connolly holds several foreign policy-related leadership positions in the House of Representatives. He serves as a co-chair of the Korea Caucus, Georgia Caucus, Morocco Caucus, Taiwan Caucus, and the Congressional Caucus on U.S.-Turkey Relations and Turkish Americans. He also serves as a member of the House Democracy Partnership (HDP), which supports the development of democratic legislative bodies in partner countries.

Public Safety

Criminal Justice Reform

Congressman Connolly is a member of a bipartisan group of lawmakers committed to addressing the complex challenges facing our nation’s dysfunctional criminal justice system. He supports strategies that reduce recidivism, increase public safety, and decrease corrections costs for state and local governments. He also supports permitting courts to reduce or amend mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent defendants.

Congressman Connolly is a cosponsor of a number of bills that will improve transparency and training in law enforcement, combat systemic racism, and build trust between communities and law enforcement:

  • The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which would address a wide range of policies and issues regarding policing practices and law enforcement accountability. It includes measures to increase accountability for law enforcement misconduct, to enhance transparency and data collection, and to eliminate discriminatory policing practices. The bill establishes a framework to prohibit racial profiling at the federal, state, and local levels.
  • The Stop Militarizing Law Enforcement Act, which would end the transfers of certain military equipment to local law enforcement. In 2017 President Trump fully restored the Pentagon’s excess property, or “1033 program.” Under this program, the Department of Defense transferred more than $6 billion in excess military equipment—often from war zones overseas—to our streets.
  • The End Racial Profiling Act, which prohibits federal, state, and local law enforcement from racial profiling. This prohibition would be enforceable by declaratory or injunctive relief. The bill also mandates training on racial profiling issues as part of Federal law enforcement training, the collection of data on all routine or spontaneous investigatory activities that is to be submitted through a standardized form to the Department of Justice (DOJ). The DOJ will be authorized to provide grants for the development and implementation of best policing practices, such as early warning systems, technology integration, and other management protocols that discourage profiling.
  • The Eric Garner Excessive Use of Force Prevention Act, which makes the use of chokeholds by law enforcement unlawful through an amendment to civil rights statute entitled “Deprivation of Rights Under Color of Law.”
  • The National Statistics on Deadly Force Transparency Act, which would require federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies to collect and publish data on the use of deadly force by law enforcement officers. DOJ must reduce by 10% the allocation of funds under the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program for a state or local government that fails to substantially comply. There is no official tally or database of statistics on law enforcement use of deadly force. Bringing transparency and accountability to law enforcement and policing tactics will be an important step towards ending police brutality and helping us understand what policies may be needed to address it.
  • The Private Prison Information Act of 2021, which requires private prison, correctional, or detention facilities to disclose information under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
  • The Police Training and Independent Review Act, which authorizes the DOJ to award grants to States that require law enforcement officers to be trained on ethics and racial bias, cultural diversity, and police interaction with the disabled, mentally ill, and new immigrants. The bill also requires an independent prosecutor to be appointed to investigate and prosecute an alleged offense involving the use of deadly force by a law enforcement officer that results in a death or injury.
  • The Justice is Not For Sale Act of 2021, which prohibits private for-profit prisons.
  • The Preventing Tragedies Between Police and Communities Act requires a state or local government that receives funding under the JAG program to train law enforcement officers on de-escalation techniques and require law enforcement to use such techniques. DOJ may reduce the JAG allocation of a state or local government that fails to comply with the training requirement.
  • The Law Enforcement Trust and Integrity Act is designed to provide incentives for local police departments to voluntarily adopt performance-based standards to minimize incidents of misconduct, improve operations and enhance community accountability.
  • The Police Exercising Absolute Care for Everyone (PEACE) Act would change the use of force standard for federal officers to require that force must be necessary, as a last resort, to prevent imminent death or serious bodily injury, and no reasonable alternatives were available, prohibit the gross negligence of an officer to precipitate the need for such force, and incentivize states, municipalities, and police departments to adopt a comparable standard by placing conditions on specified federal assistance.

As Chairman of Fairfax County, he has seen firsthand the value of modernizing criminal justice initiatives and remains a strong advocate of innovative reform programs, such as Veterans Treatment Courts. These courts provide eligible veterans with an alternative to jail, promote community collaboration, and can connect veterans with the programs and benefits they have earned. Fairfax County established the Commonwealth of Virginia’s first such program, known as the Veterans Treatment Docket.

Immigration

Congressman Connolly believes Congress must be a partner in solving our immigration challenge. He has fought for comprehensive immigration reform that would provide a path to citizenship, keep families together, and secure our borders. Congressman Connolly supports a pragmatic and results-oriented approach to border security that protects the rights and dignity of immigrants and refugees.

He is a strong supporter of the DREAM Act and programs like the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA), and Temporary Protected Status (TPS). Northern Virginia is home to many talented DREAMers and TPS holders and Congressman Connolly has seen firsthand how much they contribute to the success of our community. Immigrants enrichen our community, strengthen our economy, and provide the United States with an entire generation of diverse, future leaders.

As the former Executive Director of the United States Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, Congressman Connolly firmly believes that America’s doors must remain open to those fleeing injury, violence, or persecution. He led the fight in Northern Virginia against efforts to bar refugees and has introduced legislation to establish a minimum goal for the number of refugees resettled in our country.

 

More Information

Services

Source: Government page

District

Source: Wikipedia

Gerry Connolly VA-11 1
Virginia’s 11th congressional district is a U.S. congressional district in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Situated in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., the district comprises most of Fairfax County and the entirety of Fairfax City. The district is represented by Democrat Gerry Connolly.

The Hill newspaper quotes census data to conclude that Virginia’s 11th district was the wealthiest congressional district in the nation from 2003 to 2013. The article attributed the wealth to the many lobbyists and two-career couples in Northern Virginia.

The district last existed in what is now West Virginia’s 1st district and was held by Jacob B. Blair before the events of the U.S. Civil War. Virginia did not have an 11th district until it was re-created after the 1990 United States census from portions of the old 8th and 10th districts because of explosive growth in Northern Virginia. It was intended to be a “fair fight” district; indeed, it encompassed most of the more Democratic portions of the old 10th district and the more Republican portions of the old 8th district.

George W. Bush only narrowly defeated John Kerry here in 2004, while Democratic Governor Tim Kaine and Democratic Senator Jim Webb both carried this district, in 2005 and 2006 respectively. In 2008, Barack Obama won this district over Republican Senator John McCain. Democrat Leslie L. Byrne briefly held the seat for the first election cycle of the new district, but was quickly defeated in 1994 by Republican Tom Davis. Davis established a secure hold on the district during his tenure (1995–2008), but Democrat Gerald Connolly won it when Davis stepped down.

Both Davis and Connolly may have been aided by their previous service on the Board of Supervisors of Fairfax County, where most of the 11th district’s population is concentrated. 61.5% of 11th congressional district residents live in Fairfax County. The results of the 2010 United States census showed this district’s population continued to grow, and due to redistricting covered more urban areas in Northern Virginia to favor the incumbent, Connolly.

Wikipedia

Gerald Edward Connolly (born March 30, 1950) is an American politician serving as the U.S. representative for Virginia‘s 11th congressional district, first elected in 2008. The district is anchored in Fairfax County, an affluent suburban county west of Washington, D.C. It includes all of Fairfax City and part of Prince William County. Connolly is a member of the Democratic Party.

Early life and education

Connolly graduated from Maryknoll College in Glen Ellyn, Illinois,[1] with a B.A. in literature in 1971, and completed a Master of Public Administration from Harvard Kennedy School in 1979.

Career

U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations

Connolly worked from 1979 to 1989 with the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, where he managed committee oversight of international economic issues, international narcotics control, and United Nations and Middle East policies, and published reports on U.S. policy in El Salvador, Central America, Israel, and the Persian Gulf region.[2] From 1989 to 1997, he was Vice President of the Washington Office of SRI International. He was also Director of Community Relations for SAIC (Science Applications International Corporation).[3]

In local politics, Connolly served on the Fairfax Government Reorganization Commission from 1992 to 1993. In 1995, he was elected Providence District Supervisor, serving for nine years.

Fairfax County Board of Supervisors

Connolly during 2015 Fairfax City Independence Day parade

Connolly’s career as a public official began on March 28, 1995, when he won a special election for the Providence District seat on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, defeating Republican Jeannemarie A. Devolites.[4] A rematch against Devolites in November of that same year saw Connolly reelected to a full four-year term on the board.[5] Connolly ran unopposed for reelection in November 1999. He was elected Chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors in 2003 and reelected in 2007.

As chairman of the ten-member board, Connolly balanced a $4.5 billion budget and managed a county that would be the nation’s 13th-largest city, 12th-largest school district, and sixth-largest office market. He served as chairman of the county’s Legislative Committee and vice-chair of the Economic Advisory Committee. Connolly also served as chairman of the board of the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission (NVTC), chairman of the Northern Virginia Regional Commission (NVRC), and was chairman of the board of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG). He also chaired the region’s Emergency Preparedness Taskforce and represented Fairfax County on the board of the Virginia Association of Counties (VaCo), where he also served as president.[citation needed]

U.S. House of Representatives

Committee assignments

Past committee assignments

Caucus memberships

Legislation sponsored

Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (H.R. 1232; 113th Congress) As the ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Connolly co-sponsored this bill with Darrell Issa. It is a proposed bill that would make changes and reforms to the current framework that manages how the federal government buys new technology.[13] One of the requirements would be that the government develop a streamlined plan for its acquisitions.[14] The bill would increase the power of existing chief information officers (CIO) within federal agencies so that they could be more effective.[15] Each agency would also be reduced to having only one CIO in the agency, who is then responsible for the success and failure of all IT projects in that agency.[16] The bill would also require the federal government to make use of private sector best practices.[15] The bill is intended to reduce IT procurement related waste.[17] Explaining the bill, Connolly said that “there are more than 250 identified CIOs in the federal government, yet none possess the necessary authority to effectively manage IT investments” which has “resulted in duplicative and wasteful IT spending.”[15] It passed the House in a voice vote on February 25, 2014.[14]

Government Reports Elimination Act of 2014 (H.R. 4194; 113th Congress) As the ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Connolly co-sponsored this bill with Darrell Issa. It is a proposed bill that would eliminate approximately 100 required federal agency reports that are considered redundant or wasteful.[18] Connolly argued that “in today’s challenging fiscal environment, it is incumbent that we leverage every opportunity to streamline or eliminate antiquated agency reporting requirements that are duplicative, irrelevant or simply ignored.”[19] The bill passed in the House in a voice vote on April 28, 2014.[20]

Political positions

Connolly votes with President Joe Biden’s stated position 100% of the time, according to FiveThirtyEight analysis completed in January 2023.[21]

Abortion

Connolly is pro-choice.[22] He voted against the Stupak Amendment to the Affordable Care Act, which placed stringent limits on health insurance companies offering abortion services. During the budget amendments process in 2011, he voted against an amendment that would have prevented taxpayer funds from going to Planned Parenthood.[23]

Donald Trump

Connolly voted in favor of the articles of the first impeachment of Donald Trump. He said during debate on the articles that extorting “a foreign country to investigate your political opponent is an unconstitutional abuse of power. To solicit foreign interference in an American election is an unconstitutional abuse of power.”[24]

He criticized a Republican-backed bill to rename Dulles International Airport after Trump. Referencing Trump’s several felony charges, he said “If Republicans want to name something after him, I suggest they find a federal prison.”[25]

Civil liberties

Connolly has voted for the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 regarding funding the US Armed Forces, including the paychecks delivered to soldiers but also including a controversial provision that allows the government and the military to detain anyone “who was part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners”, and anyone who commits a “belligerent act” against the United States or its coalition allies in aid of such enemy forces, under the law of war, “without trial, until the end of the hostilities authorized by the Authorization of Use of Military Force.” The law would not grant new powers to the President but does codify federal court rulings on this issue and the detainment of unlawful combatants until hostilities are over is in accordance to the Geneva Conventions.[26][27]

Economics

Connolly has voted for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009,[28] the Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009,[29] the supplemental appropriations bill that established Cash for Clunkers,[29] and the Cash for Clunkers Extension.[30] Additionally, he voted for all of the 2010 governmental appropriations bills,[31][32][33][34][35][36] and he voted for the Continuing Appropriations Act for 2011.[37] He has voted against some large spending bills, including the release of $350 billion in bank bailout funds[38] and a $154 billion spending bill[39] because of concerns these would add to the federal deficit.[40]

He was a cosponsor of pay-as-you-go (PAYGO) budget legislation that was signed into law in February 2010.[41]

In May 2011, Connolly voted to increase the debt ceiling, but the measure failed by a significant margin.[42] It was his third such vote.[43]

Connolly was among the 46 Democrats who voted against final passage of the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023 in the House.[44]

Energy

Connolly voted in favor of the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009,[45] saying it would strengthen national security while spurring innovation in the energy industry.[46] In 2010, he voted in favor of ending a moratorium on deepwater drilling rigs that met certain safety standards.[47] Connolly is one of the 35 congressmen who founded the Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition.[48]

LGBT issues

Connolly supports gay rights, having campaigned against the Marshall-Newman Amendment to the Virginia Constitution, which banned all gay unions from being performed or recognized in Virginia.[49] In Congress, he voted in favor of repealing the contentious “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law that prohibited gays from serving openly in the military. He has also co-sponsored a few bills that would repeal portions of the Defense of Marriage Act—a federal law that had effectively banned same-sex marriage across the country.[50]

Guns

While on the Board of Supervisors for Fairfax County, Connolly sponsored an ordinance that would have made it illegal to transport a loaded shotgun in the back of one’s car.[51] In Congress, Connolly signed on to a measure that would have closed the gun show loophole by requiring that private sellers of firearms at gun shows engage in the same background check and reporting requirements as registered firearms dealers.[52] Connolly opposes allowing concealed weapons in schools and on college campuses.[53]

In November 2011, Connolly voted against the National Right to Carry Reciprocity Act, which would have exempted non-residents of states that prohibit concealed weapons from those restrictions.[54]

Health care

In 2009, Connolly was an early supporter of the Democratic health care plan, which ultimately became the America’s Affordable Health Choices Act, as well as the public health insurance option, saying at a live chat with constituents in September to a woman from Washington, D.C. that “One of my principles for health care reform is that it increases the choices you have. By setting up a health insurance exchange, we can give your family more insurance choices, hopefully including one that your daughter’s doctor chooses to accept”. Connolly voted against the Stupak-Pitts Amendment,[55] and in 2010 for the America’s Affordable Health Choices Act.

Connolly cited deficit reduction in explaining his health care vote.[56][57]

Marijuana

Connolly supports rescheduling marijuana to expand its availability for research and medicine.[58]

Military veterans

Connolly was a cosponsor of the Helping Active Duty Deployed Act[59] and the Veterans Health Care Budget Reform and Transparency Act.[60]

Syria

Connolly supported military intervention in Syria.[61]

Israel

Connolly voted to provide Israel with support following 2023 Hamas attack on Israel.[62][63] In the wake of the attack, he voted against recognizing anti-Zionism as a form of antisemitism.[64]

Political campaigns

2008

Connolly scored a 24-point victory over his closest opponent, former Congresswoman Leslie L. Byrne, in the 2008 Democratic primary. He then defeated Republican nominee Keith Fimian by more than ten points for the open seat held by Republican incumbent Tom Davis.[65] The Independent Green Party candidate was Joseph P. Oddo.

2010

Connolly was challenged again by Fimian in 2010. Also running were Libertarian David L. Dotson, Independent Green David William Gillis, Jr., and Independent Christopher F. DeCarlo. Connolly won by fewer than a thousand votes.[66]

2012

Connolly was challenged by Republican nominee Chris Perkins, Green nominee Joe Galdo and independent candidates Peter Marchetti, Chris DeCarlo and Mark Gibson. He received 61% of the vote.[67] Connolly was significantly aided by redistricting. The old 11th had been reckoned a swing district, though Davis had held it without serious difficulty due to his popularity in the area. Redistricting made the 11th significantly more Democratic than its predecessor. Barack Obama carried the old 11th with 57% of the vote in 2008, but would have carried it with 61% of the vote under the new lines—making it one of the most Democratic white-majority districts in the South.

2014

Connolly faced Republican Suzanne Scholte, Green Joe Galdo, and Libertarian Marc Harrold in his reelection bid, winning with 56.86% of the vote.[68]

2016

Connolly ran unopposed for reelection in 2016.[69][70] He was reelected with 87.89% of the vote.[71]

2018

Connolly faced Republican challenger, U.S. Army veteran Jeff Dove and Libertarian Stevan Porter in the 2018 election.[72]

2020

Connolly faced a progressive primary challenger, Zainab Mohsini, ahead of the general election, his first primary challenger. Connolly won the Democratic primary against Mohsini. Connolly defeated Republican Manga Anantatmula in the 2020 election.[73]

Electoral history

Fairfax County Board of Supervisors: Results 1995—2007
YearSubjectPartyVotes%OpponentPartyVotes%OpponentPartyVotes%
1995-SpecialGerald ConnollyDemocratic4,47859.0Jeannemarie Devolites DavisRepublican3,10440.9
1995Gerald ConnollyDemocratic10,57855.8Jeannemarie Devolites DavisRepublican8,37144.1
1999Gerald ConnollyDemocratic14,309100.0Unopposed
2003Gerald ConnollyDemocratic98,41953.1Mychele B. BricknerRepublican81,31943.9Other5,4652.9
2007Gerald ConnollyDemocratic113,83059.5Gary H. BaiseRepublican68,40335.8Gail ParkerIndependent Green8,9904.7
Virginia’s 11th congressional district: Results 2008—2022
YearSubjectPartyVotes%OpponentPartyVotes%OpponentPartyVotes%
2008Gerald ConnollyDemocratic196,59854.7Keith FimianRepublican154,75843.0Joseph P. OddoIndependent Green7,2712.0
2010Gerald ConnollyDemocratic111,72049.2Keith FimianRepublican110,73948.8Others4,4922.0
2012Gerald ConnollyDemocratic202,60661.0Christopher PerkinsRepublican117,90235.5Others11,7353.5
2014Gerald ConnollyDemocratic106,78056.9Suzanne ScholteRepublican75,79640.4Others5,2292.8
2016Gerald ConnollyDemocratic247,81887.9UnopposedOthers34,18512.1
2018Gerald ConnollyDemocratic219,19171.1Jeff DoveRepublican83,02326.9Others6,0522.0
2020Gerald ConnollyDemocratic280,72571.4Manga AnantatmulaRepublican111,38028.3Others1,1360.3
2022Gerald ConnollyDemocratic193,19066.7Jim MylesRepublican95,63433.0Others8520.3
Connolly and his daughter Caitlin during 2015 Fairfax City 4th of July parade

Personal life

Connolly and his wife Cathy have lived in Mantua since 1979.[citation needed]

Connolly is also a company member of The Providence Players of Fairfax, a community theatre in Fairfax County, having acted in several of their shows.[74]

Legal issues

In 2004, Connolly was charged with “a misdemeanor count of hit and run” after causing an estimated $500 worth of property damage to a 2003 Ford Explorer and Connolly’s 2003 Toyota Camry.[75] Connolly claims he did not realize a collision took place when he swerved and then immediately stalled, forcing the Explorer to collide into Connolly’s left front wheel.[75] The Fairfax County Police Department was criticized for giving Connolly special treatment and potentially saving him from being forced to resign for a felony instead of a misdemeanor charge.[75] Judge Craig Johnston later dismissed the misdemeanor charge against Connolly, saying Connolly’s “position and his duties have caused him to be oblivious to what is going on in his car”.[76] David Freddoso criticized the judge’s ruling in the Washington Examiner.[77]

2023 attack

On May 15, 2023, two of Connolly’s staffers were injured with a baseball bat when a man walked into his Fairfax, Virginia, office and attacked them. The U.S. Capitol Police identified the man as 49-year-old Xuan Kha Tran Pham, of Fairfax. Connolly was not in the office at the time of the attack.[78] Pham was also charged with a racial hate crime for an incident that had occurred several hours earlier when he smashed a car windshield after asking the occupant if she was white.[79]

References

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Further reading

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia’s 11th congressional district

2009–present
Incumbent
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by

President of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly
2020–2022
Succeeded by

U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by

United States representatives by seniority
82nd
Succeeded by


X

Gerry Connolly VA-11

Current Position: US Representative of US House District 11 since 2009
Affiliation: Democrat
Former Position: Board of Supervisors – Fairfax County from 1995 – 2007
District: Comprises most of Fairfax County and the entirety of Fairfax City.
Upcoming Election:

Pinned Tweet 2/24/22: Sorry, you lose the right to complain about partisanship once you’ve fanned the flames of violent insurrection.

Connolly worked from 1979 to 1989 with the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, where he managed committee oversight of international economic issues, international narcotics control, and United Nations and Middle East policies, and published reports on U.S. policy in El Salvador, Central America, Israel, and the Persian Gulf region.[2] From 1989 to 1997, he was Vice President of the Washington Office of SRI International. He was also Director of Community Relations for SAIC (Science Applications International Corporation).

Learn About Gerry Connolly in one minute

2022 VA11 – US House Race

The 11th district encompasses portions of suburban Washington, D.C., including the city of Fairfax and portions of Fairfax County. The incumbent is Democrat Gerry Connolly, who was re-elected with 77.6% of the vote in 2020.

Source: Wikipedia

OnAir Post: 2022 VA11 – US House Race

Jim Myles

Current Position: US Senator
Affiliation: Republican
Candidate: 2022 US Representative for District 11
Former Position: Federal United States Administrative Law Judge

I am pro-life, a member of the NRA, and a supporter of the second amendment. I also believe that the government cannot favor any religion or non-religion, all have a first amendment right that the government must respect.

Source: Campaign page

OnAir Post: Jim Myles

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