California New Members 2019

California New Members 2019

Rep.-elect Josh Harder (D-Calif.-10)

DATE OF BIRTH: Aug. 1, 1986
RESIDENCE: Turlock, Calif.
OCCUPATION: Businessman, teacher
EDUCATION: B.A., Stanford University; MBA, M.P.P., Harvard University
FAMILY: Wife, Pamela

At 32, political newcomer Josh Harder is heading to Congress having defeated four-term incumbent Rep. Jeff DenhamJeffrey (Jeff) John DenhamEx-GOP Rep. Roskam joins lobbying firm Ex-GOP Rep. Denham heads to lobbying firm Crazy California an outlier? No, we are the canary in the coal mine MORE (R) to represent the district centered on Modesto.

Harder is coming to politics from a business background. He first worked at Boston Consulting Group and later in venture capital at Bessemer Venture Partners in San Francisco. Between his time at those firms, Harder did a stint in Africa working for the Gates Foundation and other nonprofits to help farmers.

Harder eventually left the venture capital world to return to the Central Valley and began teaching business at a local community college.

Harder focused his campaign on tapping into his technology industry ties and the impact of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTed Cruz knocks New York Times for 'stunning' correction on Kavanaugh report US service member killed in Afghanistan Pro-Trump website edited British reality star's picture to show him wearing Trump hat MORE’s policies on immigration and health care in the agriculture-heavy area.


Rep.-elect Katie Hill (D-Calif.-25)

DATE OF BIRTH: Aug. 25, 1987
RESIDENCE: Agua Dulce, Calif.
OCCUPATION: Nonprofit executive
EDUCATION: B.A., M.P.A., M.A., California State University, Northridge
FAMILY: Husband, Kenny

Katie Hill defeated two-term Rep. Steve KnightStephen (Steve) Thomas KnightRepublican fighter pilot to challenge freshman Dem in key California race Freshman Dem endorses Harris’s 2020 bid GOP trading fancy offices, nice views for life in minority MORE (R) to give California’s 25th District its first Democratic representative in more than 20 years.

The north Los Angeles County district is almost evenly split among registered Democrats and Republicans and voted for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTrump's economic approval takes hit in battleground states: poll This is how Democrats will ensure Trump's re-election The Hill's Morning Report - Trump takes 2020 roadshow to New Mexico MORE in the 2016 election. 

Hill, a centrist, grew up in the district. In her campaign, she argued she could best represent the purple district.

Prior to her candidacy, Hill served as the executive director of People Assisting the Homeless, a California nonprofit that provides services to the homeless.

Hill identifies as bisexual and made LGBT issues a central part of her campaign. She also ran on a platform of supporting affordable health care, questioning Knight at a town hall in 2017 about his support of the effort to repeal ObamaCare.



Rep. Jimmy GomezJimmy GomezHouse Democrats blur lines on support for impeachment Here are the 95 Democrats who voted to support impeachment Lawmakers call for 'time out' on facial recognition tech MORE (D-Calif.-34)

DATE OF BIRTH: Nov. 25, 1974
RESIDENCE: Eagle Rock, Calif.
EDUCATION: B.A., University of California, Los Angeles; M.A., John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University
FAMILY: Wife, Mary Hodge

Rep. Jimmy Gomez will return to the House of Representatives after taking over the seat left open last year by former Rep. Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraTrump administration rolls back Obama-era lightbulb rules 20 states sue Trump administration over Flores rule California leads states in lawsuit over Trump public charge rule MORE (D-Calif.), who went on to become California’s attorney general.

In the California State Assembly, Gomez rose to become chairman of the powerful Appropriations Committee and majority whip.

Gomez’s election to replace Becerra generated some controversy, as Gov. Jerry Brown (D) tried to delay Gomez’s swearing-in until after a crucial vote in the Assembly.

But in Washington, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyTrump touts Washington Post story on GOP support Pence extends olive branch to Cummings after Trump's Baltimore attacks Marijuana industry donations to lawmakers surge in 2019: analysis MORE (R-Calif.) pushed to accelerate Gomez’s swearing-in, and successfully forced the move before the California vote.

Before his election to the Assembly, Gomez served as political director for the United Nurses of California.

Gomez is the son of Mexican immigrants.


Rep.-elect Harley Rouda (D-Calif.-48)

DATE OF BIRTH: Dec. 10, 1961
RESIDENCE: Laguna Beach, Calif.
OCCUPATION: Businessman
EDUCATION: B.S., University of Kentucky; J.D., Capital University; MBA, Ohio State University
FAMILY: Wife, Kaira; four children

Only 125 votes helped Harley Rouda secure the second spot in the primary for California’s 48th District. That slim margin allowed him to move on to the general election, where he beat a GOP giant.

Rouda defeated 15-term Rep. Dana RohrabacherDana Tyrone RohrabacherThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump, Biden go toe-to-toe in Iowa Ex-GOP lawmakers are face of marijuana blitz Former GOP Rep. Rohrabacher joins board of cannabis company MORE to flip the staunchly Republican district to the Democratic column.

Rouda was a Republican for decades before he switched parties. He largely funded his own campaign against Rohrabacher, a vocal Trump supporter, in the Southern California district.

Democrats saw an opening after the district voted for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton in 2016, even though it had favored Rohrabacher by double digits for years.

Rouda emerged from the brutal primary in which Democrats questioned his vote for John Kasich in the 2016 presidential election and his 2017 party switch.

A first-time candidate, he entered politics after a prominent business career as the head of real estate services firm Trident Holdings Inc.


Rep.-elect Mike Levin (D-Calif.-49)

DATE OF BIRTH: Oct. 28, 1978
RESIDENCE: San Juan Capistrano, Calif.
EDUCATION: B.A., Stanford University; J.D., Duke University School of Law
FAMILY: Wife, Chrissy; two children

Mike Levin is taking over retiring Republican Rep. Darrell IssaDarrell Edward IssaThe Hill's Campaign Report: Democrats clash over future of party in heated debate Issa says he will run for Congress if not confirmed to trade post by Nov. 3 The Hill's Campaign Report: Pressure builds for Democrats who missed third debate cut MORE’s seat in Congress.

Levin, an environmental attorney and former head of the Orange County Democratic Party, defeated California State Board of Equalization member Diane Harkey (R) in the general election to put the Southern California district in the Democratic column.

Levin had announced his bid before Issa made public his plans to retire. Issa’s decision to retire from the district he has held since 2001, though, set off a hotly contested primary with 16 candidates.

Levin was raised in Southern California before going to Stanford University. After law school at Duke University, he returned to the Golden State to be an environmental lawyer. Levin has pushed for California to adopt clean energy initiatives and serves on the board of the Center for Sustainable Energy in San Diego.

Levin, whose mother is Mexican-American, received the endorsement of Bold PAC, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus’s campaign arm.