Jared Huffman

Jared William Huffman (born February 18, 1964) is an American politician who has been the U.S. Representative for California's 2nd congressional district since 2013. He is a member of the Democratic Party.

Jared Huffman
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 2nd district
Assumed office
January 3, 2013
Preceded byWally Herger
Member of the California State Assembly
from the 6th district
In office
December 4, 2006  November 30, 2012
Preceded byJoe Nation
Succeeded byBeth Gaines
Personal details
Jared William Huffman

(1964-02-18) February 18, 1964
Independence, Missouri, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Susan Huffman
EducationUniversity of California, Santa Barbara (BA)
Boston College (JD)
WebsiteHouse website

From 2006 to 2012, Huffman was a member of the California State Assembly, representing the 6th district. Huffman chaired the Assembly Water, Parks & Wildlife Committee and also chaired the Assembly Environmental Caucus. He was elected to Congress in November 2012 with more than 70% of the vote, defeating Republican candidate Dan Roberts.[1] His congressional district covers the North Coast from the Golden Gate Bridge to the Oregon border.

Huffman graduated from William Chrisman High School in 1982 and later received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science magna cum laude from University of California, Santa Barbara, where he was a member of the Phi Delta Theta Fraternity. At UCSB, Huffman was a three-time All-American volleyball player. Huffman was a member of the USA Volleyball Team in 1987 when the team was ranked #1 in the world and had recently won the World Championship. He went on to graduate cum laude from Boston College Law School in 1990.[2]

Huffman became a consumer attorney specializing in public interest cases. Among his court victories was a case on behalf of the National Organization for Women, which required all California State University campuses to comply with Title IX.[3] Huffman was a senior attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council. He was also a publicly elected director of the Marin Municipal Water District for twelve years, including three terms as board president.[2]

California State Assembly


Huffman won the Democratic nomination for the 6th district in a hotly contested primary in June 2006 in which he surprised the political establishment with a victory over opponents Pamela Torliatt, a Petaluma city councilwoman, and Cynthia Murray, a Marin County Supervisor who was initially considered the frontrunner. Huffman also defeated Assistant State Attorney General Damon Connelly, Marin County Democratic Chairman John Alden, and sociologist Alex Easton-Brown.

Huffman defeated Republican opponent Dr. Michael Hartnett by a more than 2:1 margin in the general election on November 7, 2006.

Huffman faced two opponents in the November 2008 general election: Republican Paul Lavery and Libertarian Timothy Hannan. He won with 70% of the vote and the 137,873 votes he received were among the most by any California Assembly candidate in 2008. In the Democratic primary, Huffman was unopposed and received 57,213 votes—the most of any California Assemblymember in that election.

In the June 2010 California primary, Huffman easily defeated[4] a fellow Democratic challenger Patrick Connally.[5] Huffman faced Republican nominee Robert Stephens in the November 2010 general election.[4] He won overwhelmingly with more than 70% of the vote—the highest winning margin of any candidate on the ballot in the North Bay that year. Due to California term limits, Huffman would have been unable to seek a fourth Assembly term in 2012.


In his first four years as a legislator, Huffman authored and passed more than 40 pieces of legislation.[6]

In 2008, Huffman sponsored a bill (AB 2950), which he wrote with internet attorney Daniel Balsam that aimed to close what its proponents characterized as loopholes in the CAN-SPAM Act which made it more difficult to bring lawsuits against deceptive spammers.[7] Although the bill passed the State Assembly and Senate, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed the bill.[8][9] On February 14, 2011, Jared Huffman cosponsored a bill with Paul Fong, California Assembly Bill 376, to make it illegal to possess, distribute, or sell shark fins, unless for research or commercial purposes.[10]

Committee assignments

Upon his swearing-in on December 4, 2006, Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez immediately named Huffman the Chairman of the Committee on Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials. In August 2008, the new Assembly Speaker Karen Bass named Huffman to Chair the Water, Parks & Wildlife Committee.

U.S. House of Representatives

2012 election

After 20-year Democratic incumbent Lynn Woolsey announced her retirement, Huffman entered the race to run for her seat in the 2nd District, which had been renumbered from the 6th in redistricting.[11] California's 2nd congressional district now covers six counties: Marin, Sonoma, Mendocino, Trinity, Humboldt, and Del Norte.

Huffman finished first in the top-two primary with 37% of the vote.[12] In November, Huffman defeated Republican candidate Dan Roberts 71%–29%.[13][14]

Subsequent elections

In his first re-election campaign in 2014, Huffman dominated the open primary, receiving 67.9% of the vote against 22.3% for second-place finisher Dale Mensing, a Republican. Huffman went on to defeat Mensing in the fall general election by 75 to 25%.[15] The 2016 results were similar, with Huffman receiving 68.3% of the primary vote against 15.7% for Mensing, who again finished second, and defeating Mensing in the general election by 76.5% to 23.5%.[16] In the June 2018 open primary, Huffman received 72.5% of the vote; Mensing finished second with 20.9%.[17] The two faced each other in the November 2018 runoff, where Huffman was re-elected with 77.0% of the vote.[18]


In April 2018, Huffman, together with Jerry McNerney, Jamie Raskin, and Dan Kildee, launched the Congressional Freethought Caucus. Its stated goals include "pushing public policy formed on the basis of reason, science, and moral values", promoting the "separation of church and state," opposing discrimination against "atheists, agnostics, humanists, seekers, religious and nonreligious persons", among others. Huffman and Raskin will act as co-chairs.[19]

Proposed legislation

The following is a partial list of legislation introduced by Huffman.

Opposed legislation

  • Preventing Government Waste and Protecting Coal Mining Jobs in America – is a bill that would "amend the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 to require state programs for regulation of surface coal mining to incorporate the necessary rule concerning excess spoil, coal mine waste, and buffers for perennial and intermittent streams published by the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement on December 12, 2008."[23] Huffman opposed the bill, arguing that it should be opposed because the supporters "believe coal companies should be allowed to blow the tops off mountains and dump the waste into streams, no matter what the science says about the consequence for our environment and the public health."[24]
  • Water Rights Protection Act – a bill that would prevent federal agencies from requiring certain entities to relinquish their water rights to the United States in order to use public lands.[25] The bill was a reaction to the United States Forest Service's decision to pursue a "new regulation to demand that water rights be transferred to the federal government as a condition for obtaining permits needed to operate 121 ski resorts that cross over federal lands."[26] Huffman opposed the bill and accused the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water and Power of being unnecessarily "adversarial" and having "unfairly vilified" the Forest Service after a committee hearing about the bill.[26]

Committee assignments

Caucus memberships

Personal life

Huffman lives in San Rafael with his wife Susan and their two children, a daughter, Abigail (born c. 2000) and a son, Nathan (born c. 2003).[29]

Huffman's hobby is winemaking.[30]

In an interview with The Washington Post's Michelle Boorstein published November 9, 2017, Huffman stated "I suppose you could say I don't believe in God."[31] Huffman stopped short of saying he was an atheist but rather describes himself as a non-religious humanist.[32]

Electoral history

California Assembly 6th District Democratic Primary Election, 2006
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman 22,544 32.5
Democratic Pamela Torliatt 19,518 28.2
Democratic Cynthia Murray 12,617 18.2
Democratic Damon Connolly 8,470 12.1
Democratic John Alden 5,150 7.4
Democratic Alex Easton-Brown 1,135 1.6
California Assembly 6th District Election, 2006
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman 106,589 65.9
Republican Michael Hartnett 43,864 27.1
Green Cat Woods 6,922 4.3
Libertarian Richard Olmstead 4,519 2.7
California Assembly 6th District Election, 2008
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman (inc.) 145,142 69.5
Republican Paul Lavery 50,053 24.0
Libertarian Timothy Hannan 13,790 6.5
California Assembly 6th District Democratic Primary Election, 2010
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman (inc.) 53,534 81.8
Democratic Patrick Connally 11,938 18.2
California Assembly 6th District Election, 2010
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman (inc.) 119,753 70.5
Republican Bob Stephens 50,218 29.5
California 2nd Congressional District Primary Election, 2012
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman 63,922 37.5
Republican Daniel Roberts 25,635 15.0
Democratic Norman Solomon 25,462 14.9
Democratic Stacey Lawson 16,946 9.9
Democratic Susan Adams 14,041 8.2
Republican Mike Halliwell 10,008 5.9
Independent Brooke Clarke 3,715 2.2
Democratic Tiffany Renée 3,033 1.8
Independent John Lewallen 2,488 1.5
Democratic William Courtney 2,385 1.4
Democratic Andy Caffrey 1,737 1.0
Democratic Larry Fritzlan 1,151 0.7
California 2nd Congressional District Election, 2012
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman 226,216 71.2
Republican Daniel Roberts 91,310 28.8
California 2nd Congressional District Primary Election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman (inc.) 99,186 67.9
Republican Dale Mensing 32,614 22.3
Democratic Andy Caffrey 14,245 9.8
California 2nd Congressional Election, 2014
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman (inc.) 163,124 75.0
Republican Dale Mensing 54,400 25.0
California 2nd Congressional District Primary Election, 2016
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jared Huffman (inc.) 157,897 68.3
Republican Dale Mensing 36,187 15.7
Democratic Erin Schrode 20,998 9.1
Independent Matthew Robert Wookey 16,092 7.0
Democratic/Write-in Andrew Augustine Caffrey 6 0.0


  1. Halstead, Richard. "Assemblyman Jared Huffman easily defeats Roberts". Marin Independent Journal. Archived from the original on April 1, 2013. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
  2. "Full Biography". Congressman Jared Huffman. Retrieved December 11, 2015.
  3. "Board Members". Central Valley Flood Protection Board. Archived from the original on December 22, 2015. Retrieved December 11, 2015.
  4. Richard Halstead (June 8, 2010). "Huffman leads comfortably in early returns". Marin Independent Journal. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  5. Huffman faces challenger in Democratic race Sonoma Index-Tribune (June 3, 2010) Archived June 6, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  6. assembly.ca.gov
  7. Deborah Gage (April 18, 2008). "Bill toughening anti-spam law in works". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  8. Nancy Isles Nation (August 18, 2008). "Huffman's anti-spam bill passes". Marin Independent Journal. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  9. Shane Goldmacher (October 1, 2008). "BillWatch: Action on the final bills". The Sacramento Bee Capitol Alert blog. Archived from the original on February 25, 2013. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  10. "Bill Text: CA AB376 #124; 2011-2102 | Regular Session | Introduced". legiscan.com. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  11. "Campaign News and Updates". Archived from the original on January 2, 2014. Retrieved February 5, 2011.
  12. "CA - District 02 - Open Primary". Our Campaigns. July 13, 2013. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  13. "CA - District 02". Our Campaigns. December 14, 2012. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  14. Halstead, Richard. "Assemblyman Jared Huffman easily defeats Roberts". Marin Independent Journal. Archived from the original on January 28, 2013. Retrieved December 4, 2012.
  15. "General Election - Statement of Vote - November 4, 2014" (PDF). California Secretary of State. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
  16. Kovner, Guy (November 8, 2016). "Mike Thompson, Jared Huffman easily win re-election to Congress". Santa Rosa Press Democrat. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
  17. "2018 Statement of Vote - June 5, 2018" (PDF). California Secretary of State. Retrieved September 5, 2018.
  18. Almukhtar, Sarah; et al. "California Election Results: Second House District". Election 2018. The New York Times. Retrieved April 6, 2019.
  19. Manchester, Julia. "Dem lawmakers launch 'Freethought' congressional caucus". The Hill. Retrieved April 30, 2018.
  20. "CBO - H.R. 1411". Congressional Budget Office. Retrieved July 22, 2013.
  21. LOrion (July 22, 2013). "CA Freshman Congressman gets First House Bill passed by 113th!.. protecting environment yet". Daily Kos. Retrieved July 23, 2013.
  22. "House of Representatives Passes Congressman Huffman's First Bill". Representative Huffman's Office. Retrieved July 23, 2013.
  23. "H.R. 2824 - Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved February 28, 2014.
  24. Beans, Laura (August 8, 2013). "House Republicans Use Fear Mongering In Fight for Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining". EcoWatch. Retrieved March 5, 2014.
  25. "H.R. 3189 - CBO". Congressional Budget Office. Retrieved March 11, 2014.
  26. Hudson, Audrey (October 11, 2013). "Tipton Bill Seeks to Stop Feds from Trampling Water Rights". The Colorado Observer. Retrieved March 12, 2014.
  27. "Caucus Members". Congressional Progressive Caucus. Retrieved January 30, 2018.
  28. "Membership". Congressional Arts Caucus. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
  29. "Congressman Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael)". jaredhuffman.com. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
  30. McCutcheon, Michael; Barone, Chuck (2013). 2014 Almanac of American Politics. The University of Chicago Press.
  31. Michelle Boorstein (November 9, 2017). "This lawmaker isn't sure that God exists. Now, he's finally decided to tell people". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 11, 2017.
  32. David Ferguson (November 9, 2017). "Congressman Jared Huffman comes out as a non-believer — and rips Trump's phony religious pandering". The Raw Story. Retrieved November 11, 2017.

Further reading

  • Jim Wood (March 2009). "Jared Huffman". Marin Magazine. Retrieved March 10, 2013.
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Wally Herger
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 2nd congressional district

U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Richard Hudson
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Hakeem Jeffries
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