Prior to serving in Congress, Mike Capuano was the Mayor of Somerville, MA from January of 1990 through December of 1998. He was born in Somerville in 1952 to Andrew Capuano of Somerville and Rita Garvey Capuano of Allston-Brighton and Dorchester. He graduated from Somerville High School, received a Bachelor of Arts from Dartmouth College in 1973, and a law degree from Boston College Law School in 1977. He passed the Massachusetts Bar in 1977.
He is married to Barbara Teebagy Capuano, who also graduated from Somerville High School, received her B.S. from Boston State College in 1974 and earned her MBA from Babson College in 1976. Barbara became a Certified Public Accountant in 1978. They have two sons, Michael and Joseph. Both graduated from Massachusetts colleges and are currently working in the Commonwealth.
Michael Everett Capuano is serving his eighth term as a Representative in Congress for Massachusetts' 7th District, which includes Cambridge, Chelsea, Somerville and approximately 75% of Boston. He is a member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and the House Committee on Financial Services. In November of 2006, Mike was appointed to head the Transition by then Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi as Democrats prepared for a majority role in the 110th Congress. In January of 2007, Speaker Pelosi appointed Mike to chair the Special Task Force on Ethics Enforcement. In March of 2008, a resolution establishing an Office of Congressional Ethics was passed, involving non-Members of the House in ethics matters for the first time in history.
On the local level, as Massachusetts' only Member of the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, he fought to protect Massachusetts' share of federal transportation dollars. Through his efforts, Massachusetts received more than $5 billion over six years. As a Member of the Financial Services Committee, Mike succeeded in providing assistance for the development of new intergenerational housing for grandparents raising their grandchildren and he significantly expanded the number of Massachusetts citizens eligible for affordable home loans.
Health Care Access resolution
John Conyers promoted House Concurrent Resolution 99 (H. Con Res. 99) Directing Congress to enact legislation by October 2004 that provides access to comprehensive health care for all Americans. IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES April 4, 2001.
Sponsors:John Conyers (for himself), Jan Schakowsky, John Tierney, Barbara Lee, Donna Christensen, David Bonior, Dennis Kucinich, Earl Hilliard, Maurice Hinchey, Jerry Nadler, Donald Payne Chaka Fattah, Peter DeFazio, John Lewis Tammy Baldwin, Stephanie Tubbs Jones, Barney Frank, Henry Waxman, Cynthia McKinney, Jim Langevin, George Miller Alcee Hastings, Patsy Mink, John Olver , Bennie Thompson, Pete Stark, Julia Carson, and Mike Capuano submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce;
- Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), that the Congress shall enact legislation by October 2004 to guarantee that every person in the United States, regardless of income, age, or employment or health status, has access to health care..
Long term political consequences of the Hughes campaign
Opposing Ted Kennedy in the 1962 Massachusetts Democratic Primary was Edward McCormack, nephew of House Speaker John McCormack; Kennedy's Republican opponent was Yankee scion George Cabot Lodge; and on the left was Independent peace candidate Harvard Prof. H. Stuart Hughes, chair of the Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy.
- Hughes needed 72,000 signatures, a purposely prohibitive number in that era of McCarthyism and nobody in fact had tried to reach it since the law had first been passed.
- In this talented field, Hughes polled 50,013 votes, 2.3% of the votes cast. However, we collected a startling 149,000 signatures in ten weeks for a "peace candidate." The Cuban Missile Crisis arrived in October just before the election. With the integrity that was his hallmark, Hughes went against the popular hysteria: he accused President Kennedy of acting over hastily in imposing the blockade of Cuba, of bypassing the United Nations, and unnecessarily stirring up an atmosphere of national emergency. His position cost Hughes thousands of votes.
- In the process we built a town-by-town organization all over the state, a structure that remains in place today. A clear result has been the election over recent decades of so many progressive voices to the state's first-rate Congressional delegation, including Michael Harrington, Father Robert Drinan, Gerry Studds, Jim McGovern, Barney Frank, Ed Markey, John Tierney, Michael Capuano and John Kerry.
Supported "single payer"
The movement for universal single-payer healthcare is growing, announced Kentuckians for Single Payer Healthcare in December 2005. Six new co-sponsors added their names to John Conyers' "single payer" bill HR 676: Grace Napolitano (D-Calif.), Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-Ohio), Corrine Brown (D-Fla.), Xavier Becerra (D-Calif.), Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) and Michael Capuano (D-Mass.). The total number of co-sponsors was now 57.
Staffer's 2001 trip to Cuba
In May 2001, Michelle Mancini from the office of Congressman Michael Capuano spent seven days in Havana, Cuba, for the purpose of "meeting with officials and discussing embargo and human rights". The trip cost $1,923.32 and was paid for by the Christopher Reynolds Foundation.
Relationship to Democratic Socialists of America
Mike Capuano appears to have a relationship with the Boston local of Democratic Socialists of America. In 2002 Boston DSA held their 24th annual Debs-Thomas-Bernstein awards.
- Thanks to everyone who helped make this evening a success, including Barbara Ackermann of MASS-CARE, Jim St. George of TEAM, and longtime DSAers Fran and Jake Schlitt for their eloquent introductions... and Congressmen Mike Capuano and Jim McGovern, Senator John Kerry, and last year’s awardee Dessima Williams, who sent greetings.
Congressional Progressive Caucus
As of February 20 2009 Michael Capuano was listed as a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
Progressive Democrats of America support
In 2009, Mike Capuano was endorsed by Progressive Democrats of America, during his unsuccessful run for the U.S. Senate.
- "Members of the Progressive Democrats of America feel that Mike's strong progressive record as a Member of Congress and his forthright, commonsense positions on a range of critical issues from support for single payer to his vote against the resolution authorizing the use of force in Iraq set him apart from the other candidates," said National Executive Director Tim Carpenter… "There is tremendous enthusiasm for Mike's candidacy."
- "I appreciate the endorsement of the Progressive Democrats of America," stated Congressman Capuano. "It is an honor to receive recognition for my steadfast commitment to progressive principles and for my efforts to advance the important issues of our time, from ending the wars and bringing our men and women in uniform home, to fighting for real health care reform."
</ref>[http://somervillenews.1upprelaunch.com/main.asp?SectionID=15&SubSectionID=15&ArticleID=2448&TM=63826.12, 11/9/2009 1:46:00 PM The Progressive Democrats of America Endorse Michael Capuano for Senate]</ref>
Reception Honoring Martha Coakley
On Jan. 12, 2010 a reception honoring Martha Coakley was held at the Sonoma Restaurant, 223 Pennsylvania Ave, Washington D.C. Among those present were Senator John Kerry and Representatives, Ed Markey, Richard Neal, William Delahunt, John Tierney, Stephen Lynch, Barney Frank, John Olver, Jim McGovern, Michael Capuano and Niki Tsongas.
Hosts of the reception donated $10,000 and included Nick Allard, Thomas Hale Boggs Jr., the Boston Scientific Political Action Committee, Chuck Brain, Susan Brophy, Mary Beth Cahill, Steve Champlin, Licy Do Canto, Gerald S. J. Cassidy, David Castagnetti, Steve Elmendorf, Candy Ergen, Cahrlie Ergen, Shannon Finley, Larry Harris, Tom Hogan, Carol Kenner, Stephanie Markiewicz, Andy Miller, Heather Podesta, Tony Podesta, Robert Raben, Linda Singer and Bill Titelman.
Co-hosts of the reception donated $5,000 and included Marty Bienenstock, Sheryl Cohen, Chad Dale, Joe Eyer, Jamie Gorelick, Robin Leeds, Fred Liowther, Bernie Nash, Frank Purcell of the CRNA (Nurse Anesthetists) Political Action Committee and Melissa Schulman.
Calling on Israeli Govt. to lift Gaza Travel Ban
On Dec. 22, 2009, thirty-three U.S. Representatives wrote to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, calling on her to request that the Israeli Government end the ban on student travel from Gaza to the West Bank. Mike Capuano was one of the signatories of the letter. The entire letter together with a complete list of signatories can be read by clicking here.
Supported Lifting the Gaza Blockade
On Jan. 27, 2010, U.S. Representatives Keith Ellison and Jim McDermott led 52 other members of Congress in signing a letter addressed to President Barack Obama, calling for him to use diplomatic pressure to resolve the blockade affecting Gaza. Mike Capuano was one of the signatories of the letter.  The entire letter together with a complete list of signatories can be read by clicking here.
Get "a little bloody"
In Feb. 2011, Rep. Michael Capuano (D-Mass.) fired up a group of union members in Boston with a speech urging them to work down in the trenches to fend off limits to workers' rights like those proposed in Wisconsin.
"I’m proud to be here with people who understand that it’s more than just sending an email to get you going," Capuano said. "Every once and awhile you need to get out on the streets and get a little bloody when necessary."
Anti-Fracking legislation endorser
On March 14, 2013, Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO) and Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA) have introduced the Bringing Reductions to Energy’s Airborne Toxic Health Effect (BREATHE) Act, and the Focused Reduction of Effluence and Stormwater runoff through Hydraulic Environmental Regulation (FRESHER) Act, in order to ensure that the hydraulic fracking industry follows the same rules that other industries do in preserving our natural resources. This legislation is focused on ensuring the safety and the health of the communities where the hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, process is already taking place.
The BREATHE Act would ensure that we close the oil and gas industry’s loophole to the Clean Air Act’s aggregation provision, in addition to adding hydrogen sulfide—a chemical associated with nausea, vomiting, headaches, and irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat—to the Clean Air Act’s federal list of hazardous air pollutants.
The BREATHE Act has the following original co-sponsors including: Reps. Rush Holt, Jr., Raul Grijalva, John Sarbanes, James Moran, Michael Quigley, Earl Blumenauer, Gerald Connolly, Zoe Lofgren, Michael Honda, Paul Tonko, Barbara Lee, David Price, Carolyn Maloney, Michael Capuano, Mark Pocan, Jim McDermott, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Alcee Hastings, Keith Ellison, Niki Tsongas, William Keating, Adam Smith, Jim Langevin, Chellie Pingree, Judy Chu, Louise Slaughter, Jerrold Nadler, Grace Meng, Jan Schakowsky, Nita Lowey, Jared Huffman, Gary Peters and Alan Lowenthal.
The following organizations have endorsed this legislation and are actively working to garner support within Congress and throughout the country: Physicians for Social Responsibility, Natural Resources Defense Council, Earthjustice, Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, Sierra Club, Earthworks, Breast Cancer Action, Clean Water Action, Environment America, Greenpeace, Nature Abounds, Oil Change International, Citizens for a Healthy Community, Citizens for Huerfano County, Clean Water Action Colorado, Erie Rising, Grassroots Energy Activist Network, Holy Terror Farm, San Luis Valley Ecosystem Council, SOS Foundation, Western Colorado Congress of Mesa County, Western Slope Conservation Center and Wilderness Workshop.
Fred Ross award campaign
In early 2013, mainly Democratic Socialists of America aligned activists, together with many elected officials across the United States came together to urge President Barack Obama to award posthumously the Presidential Medal of Freedom to the legendary organizer, Fred Ross, Sr.. The Saul Alinsky trained radical was the first to organize people through house meetings, a mentor to both Cesar Chavez and DSAer Dolores Huerta, and a pioneer in Latino voter outreach since 1949 when he helped elect Communist Party USA affiliate Ed Roybal as Los Angeles’s first Latino council member, "Ross’ influence on social change movements remains strong two decades after his death in 1992".
Congressional endorsers of the proposal included Mike Capuano.
Lifting travel ban on Cuba
- Due to your action/emails/phone calls we have 59 signatures from House representatives urging President Obama to support travel to Cuba by granting general licenses for ALL current categories of travel.
- By eliminating the laborious license application process, especially for people-to-people groups, that is managed by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), the majority of the bureaucratic red tape that holds up licensable travel to Cuba would disappear and actually facilitate what the President wanted to see in 2011, liberalized travel regulations.
Signatories included Rep. Mike Capuano.
Congressional Letter for Neutrality, 2014 Salvadoran Elections
On Monday December 16, 2014 Reps. Juan Vargas (D-CA), Mike Honda (D-CA) and Mark Pocan (D-WI) sent a letter to Sec. of State John Kerry – signed by 51 Members of Congress – calling for a public statement of neutrality by the State Department before the first round of El Salvador’s presidential elections on February 2, 2014.
The letter, , highlighted several “important steps” that the current government has taken to “strengthen its democratic system and expand the right to vote to all citizens,” including those living outside of the country, who will be voting by absentee ballot for the first time in February. Since the election of Mauricio Funes, the first President from the Marxist Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN) party, the government has increased the number of polling places four-fold to increase accessibility, especially in rural areas.
“We’re glad to see so many Members of Congress expressing respect for the right of the Salvadoran people to determine their own future. That’s an attitude that’s sorely lacking in much of the US’ policy in Central America, especially with regard to economic policy,” said Alexis Stoumbelis, Executive Director for the pro-communist Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES), in Washington, DC, which has observed every post-war election in El Salvador, starting in 1994.
Signatories included Rep. Mike Capuano ..
The following have worked as staff members for Mike Capuano:
- Michelle Theresa Adams
- Katherine Auspitz (Kate)
- Raymond P. Bennett (Ray)
- Christine T. Bent
- Steven Carlson
- Katherine R. Chang
- Jared Cohen
- Mary C. Cronin
- Mary J. Doherty
- Sandra J. Dumas
- Andrew R. Eaton
- Langston C. Emerson
- Egobudike E. Ezedi
- Kathleen Faulkner
- Kristen M. Franks
- Brett Freedman
- Heather R. Gasper
- J. William Goold
- Michael J. Gorman
- Lucy Heenan
- Christopher Huckleberry
- Nicole A. Isaac
- Mathew S. Jacob
- Hyun Kim
- Christine E. Kontra
- Jonathan A. Lenicheck
- Robin J. Linton Turner
- Christine S. Locke
- Michelle Mancini
- Andrea D. Martin
- Kaitlin M. McColgan
- Noelle Melton
- Alison M. Mills
- Daniel R. Muroff
- Gregg P. Nolan
- Robert E. Primus
- Lucinda Rivera
- Daniel J. Ryan
- Candace Sealey
- Mark C. Simon
- Jon K. Skarin
- Christina N. Tsafoulias
- Jose S. Vaquerano
- ↑ Capuano's campaign website
- ↑ official congressional biography accessed August 11, 2011
- ↑ official congressional biography accessed August 11, 2011
- ↑ Dem. Left, Summer 2002
- ↑ Jerome Grossman Ted Kennedy: His First Election Monday, February 16, 2009, The Relentless Liberal blog
- ↑ Peoples World, This week in labor, December 3, 2005
- ↑ American Radio Works website: Trips sponsored by the Christopher Reynolds Foundation
- ↑ The Yankee Radical, Sep./Oct. 2002
- ↑ Congressional Progressive Caucus website: Caucus Member List
- ↑ Invitation to Reception Honoring Martha Coakley, Jan. 12, 2010
- ↑ John Dingell's House website: Letter to Hillary Clinton, Dec. 22, 2009
- ↑ The Minnesota Independent: Ellison, McCollum and Oberstar urge Obama to lift Gaza blockade, Jan. 26, 2010 (accessed on March 14, 2011)
- ↑ The Hill's Blog Briefing Room, Democrat urges unions to 'get a little bloody when necessary'By Michael O'Brien - 02/23/11
- ↑ Polis website. Polis, Cartwright Introduce Legislation to Hold Fracking Industry Accountable,
- ↑ Momentum Builds for Honoring Legendary Organizer Fred Ross, by Randy Shaw, 2013-03-05
- ↑ Update on Cuba Travel: We Gathered 59 Signatures, The LAWG Cuba Team: Mavis, Emily and Karina on May 03, 2013
- ↑ CISPES press release, Press Statement: 51 Members of Congress Call for US Neutrality in Salvadoran Elections December 16, 2013
- ↑ Legistorm: Mike Capuano (accessed on Aug. 24, 2010)