Tom Udall

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Tom Udall


Tom Udall is a Democratic member of the United States Senate, representing New Mexico.

Background

Tom Udall was born to Stewart Udall and Lee Udall in Tucson, Arizona on May 18, 1948.

In 1970, Tom Udall began attending Prescott College in Arizona, where he earned his undergraduate degree. After receiving his Bachelor of Laws Degree from Cambridge University in 1975, Tom chose to make New Mexico his permanent home. He attended University of New Mexico Law School and graduated in 1977. Tom then served as a Law Clerk to Chief Justice Oliver Seth of the U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals and became a federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney's criminal division. As Chief Counsel to the New Mexico Department of Health and Environment.

Tom Udall is married to Jill Cooper and they have one grown daughter.[1]

NM Attorney General

In 1990, New Mexicans chose Tom Udall as their Attorney General. Elected with broad support, he made fighting DWI and domestic violence a priority and working with the Legislature, enacted tougher laws against offenders. He also worked to protect consumers, especially senior citizens, from rampant telemarketing and other forms of fraud. Additionally, Tom made ethics a trademark issue, increasing transparency in government and prosecuting corrupt politicians, even members of his own party. In 1994, Tom was elected to a second term as Attorney General.[2]

Congress

In 1998, Udall was elected to represent the 3rd Congressional District of New Mexico in the U.S. House of Representatives. In the House, Udall wrote and passed legislation to establish a national renewable electricity standard, which would spur the creation of good jobs, reinvigorate our economy, and reduce global warming emissions. He has been a champion of expanding preventive health care. He voted against the Iraq War and is a leading proponent for an accelerated transition in the Afghanistan War to an Afghan-led effort. Udall has also consistently championed tougher ethics laws both as Attorney General and in Congress, where he voted to create an independent commission to investigate corruption among members of Congress.[3]

Green Party endorsement

Abraham Gutmann, co-founder of the Green Party of New Mexico, endorsed Democrat Tom Udall to represent the 3rd District. He believed state Attorney General Udall basically adheres to a Green platform.[4]

Senate

A decade later, Tom Udall was elected and sworn in as New Mexico's junior senator. In the Senate, he serves on five committees: the Committee on Foreign Relations; the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation; the Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW); the Committee on Indian Affairs; and the Committee on Rules and Administration.

As a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, Tom is charged with congressional oversight of U.S. operations and programs beyond our borders, aiming to keep America safe, promote democracy and foster international development and conservation. Tom's work on the Commerce Committee focuses on a variety of issues ranging from greater broadband deployment and consumer protection to encouraging innovation and promoting science, and oversight and expansion of the nation's communications infrastructure. In his role on EPW, Udall continues his work on energy and environmental issues. On the Indian Affairs Committee, he carries on his longtime mission of helping shape the unique matters concerning Native Americans, including economic development, trust responsibilities, land management, Indian education and health programs. Through the Rules Committee, Tom is working to reform government and Congress to "better work for the American people, not the special interests".[5]

Congressional Progressive Caucus

As of February 20 2009 Tom Udall was briefly listed as one of only two Senate members (with Bernie Sanders) of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.[6]

Planned Parenthood

Udall received $10,000 in lobbying funds from Planned Parenthood in 2008.

Foreman fundraiser

In 2006, Rep. Tom Udall led a fundraiser for Dave Foreman’s wilderness group.[7]

Supported by Council for a Livable World

The Council for a Livable World, founded in 1962 by long-time socialist activist and alleged Soviet agent, Leo Szilard, is a non-profit advocacy organization that seeks to "reduce the danger of nuclear weapons and increase national security", primarily through supporting progressive, congressional candidates who support their policies. The Council supported Tom Udall in his successful 2008 Senate run as candidate for New Mexico.[8] He has also been previously supported by the Council in his successful House of Representatives run as candidate for New Mexico.[9]

Council for a Livable World, 50th Anniversary

On June 6, 2012, Council for a Livable World, along with its sister organizations Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation and Council for a Livable World’s PeacePAC, celebrated the 50th Anniversary of their founding by Leo Szilard in 1962.

An evening celebration was held at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. Congressman Barney Frank acted as the Master of Ceremonies and, in the process, received a lifetime achievement award from former Rep. Tom Downey, a member of the Council’s Board of Directors. The Robert F. Drinan Peace and Human Award was presented to former Representative and PeacePAC Chairman David Bonior and the late Edith Wilkie, a longtime advocate and leader for peace and justice.

Six sitting Senators joined CLW in an afternoon national security forum in the U.S. Capitol to speak on the issues Council has been working on for 50 years. Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI), Sen. John Kerry (D-MA), Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM), Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI) and Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) all spoke eloquently on these pressing issues.[10]

Council for a Livable World has a long and close relationship with each of the Senators. They have all been leading advocates in the Senate for sensible national security policies, such as reducing the dangers posed by weapons of mass destruction, reigning in the bloated defense budget, and bringing an end to the War in Afghanistan.
Senator Udall discussed the war in Afghanistan and stated that the US has already achieved the goals for which it originally went to war and that what has transpired since is an example of mission creep. He made the case that in future conflicts we must more clearly define our objectives and a strategy for achieving them in order to prevent mission creep. Senator Udall also spoke about the importance of reforming the filibuster rule in the Senate, a rule that has hindered legislative progress.[11]

2014 endorsement

The Council wrote of Udall;

Tomudall.JPG
During his time in the U.S. Senate, Udall has stayed true to his principles and been an advocate of progressive policies, arms control and issues of war and peace. He has maintained a perfect 100% score on Council for a Livable World’s voting scorecard for his votes on the ratification of New START, the nuclear arms reduction treaty, Sen. Jeff Merkley’s (D-OR) amendment to accelerate troop withdrawal from Afghanistan and many others.
On the importance of New START, Senator Udall made the following statement:
“We cannot allow partisan politics to get in the way of one of our most crucial national security issues. The threat of loose nukes is real, and the existence of large unneeded stockpiles only increases the plausibility that nuclear weapons could fall in the hands of extremists.…I call on my Senate colleagues to put aside political posturing and ratify a treaty that takes necessary steps toward monitoring and reducing the most dangerous weapons on earth.”
In addition to Senator Udall’s excellent record on the issues Council for a Livable World works on, he has also shown his commitment to the progressive agenda across the board with votes to overturn Citizens United, to repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, in favor of the DREAM Act , the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and many others.
Sen. Udall’s win in 2008 was a major victory for progressives across the country. Although he does not currently have a top tier Republican challenger, early support is necessary to show that Senator Udall has a strong base for his reelection effort. Senator Udall serves on the important committees on appropriations and foreign relations and it is critical that we keep this tested, trustworthy and effective Senator in office for another term.[12]

21st Century Democrats support

21st Century Democrats is a Political Action Committee that has stood for Progressive causes for over 20 years. Founded in 1986 by Institute for Policy Studies affiliate, Iowa Senator Tom Harkin, Democratic Socialists of America affiliates, former Texas Agriculture Secretary Jim Hightower, and former Illinois Congressman Lane Evans. Its three main goals are to help elect progressive candidates, train young people about grassroots organizing, and lastly, to continue to support our elected officials after Election Day "through our comprehensive progressive network".

Long time Board chair was Democratic Socialists of America member Jim Scheibel, a former Mayor of Saint Paul, Minnesota.

The mission of 21st Century Democrats is to build a "farm team" of progressive populists who will be the future leaders of the Democratic Party.

In each election cycle, we endorse a diverse array of candidates who exemplify our values and show unusual promise to advance our progressive goals. We invest in some of the most competitive races as well as in some of the most challenging – those in which the candidates are outstanding but the traditional Democratic supporters are most reticent. We back candidates in primaries as well as general election races, and we focus the bulk of our resources on electing challengers and protecting vulnerable incumbents.[13]

Udall was one of 71 key progressives endorsed by 21st Century Democrats in the 2008 election cycle, second round. [14]

The Wilderness Society

On April 29, 2010, The Wilderness Society held a celebration for the 50th anniversary of Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The Society's president, William H. Meadows joined Senators Tom Udall (D-NM) and Mark Udall (D-CO), together with Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) in addressing the event. Also speaking were Luci Beach, Tom Campion, Brian Moore, Evan Hirsche, Mary Beth Beetham and Debbie Sease.[15]

America's Future Now!

Tom Udall was one of the 148 speakers who addressed the 2010 America's Future Now Conference. The Conference was hosted by the Institute for Policy Studies, and Democratic Socialists of America dominated Campaign for America's Future, and held from June 7 - 9 at the Omni Shoreham Hotel, 2500 Calvert Street, Washington D.C.[16][17]

Albuquerque Center for Peace and Justice

Udalllll.JPG

The Albuquerque Center for Peace & Justice was part of an 8 member coalition of faith-based, veterans, labor and anti war activists who met with Senator Tom Udall's staff, September 5, 2013, saying No to Bombing Syria.

Thank you Senator Udall for your leadership and asking tough questions at yesterday's Congressional Hearing on using military force against Syria.

Those pictured include representatives from the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, the United Nations Association Albuquerque chapter, the ANSWER coalition, the Central Labor Council, Veterans for Peace, the Albuquerque Peace & Justice Center and an ordained pastor of the Mennonite church.

Honoring Cesar Chavez

Friday, March 29, 2013- U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich released the following statements after introducing a resolution honoring the accomplishments and legacy of civil rights leader César Estrada Chávez, and recognizing March 31 as "César Chávez Day."

"In the long march of human rights, César Chávez is a towering figure," said Udall. "On the anniversary of his birthday, we honor his compassion, sacrifice and dedication to the rights of workers and the dignity of every human being. With remarkable courage, and humility, César Chávez gave a voice to those who were so often unheard. This great American continues to inspire us, and we truly honor him when we remember that his cause endures and the promise of America moves forward."

"It is an honor to pay tribute to César Chávez, a true American hero and a remarkable public servant," said Heinrich. "César Chávez is revered by people throughout the world as a humble activist who led a monumental fight to achieve fair wages, worker protections, human rights, and human dignity for the most underrepresented in our society. Let us continue to meet each challenge the way César Chávez did, with hope, determination, and service to others. And to always remember his great rallying cry, ¡Sí, se puede!"

New Mexico is one of 10 states to honor the life and legacy of César Chávez on March 31 of each year. In New Mexico, César Chávez Day brings communities together to celebrate and contribute to service and learning projects across the state.

The Senate Resolution is backed by the Senate Democratic Hispanic Task Force, which both Senators serve on.[18]

JStreet endorsement

The socialist infiltrated, anti-Israel "two state solution" JStreet PAC endorsed Tom Udall in his 2014 Senate run from New Mexico. [19]

JStreet endorsed him again in 2016.

He has shown strong support for Israel by consistently supporting foreign aid, and advocating in favor of US-led efforts to broker a permanent Israeli-Palestinian peace through a two state solution.[20]

Recovery of the Mexican wolf

October 15, 2015 US Senators Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall wrote to US Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe on Oct. 8, encouraging the agency to "take actions that are necessary to secure the recovery of the Mexican wolf as required by your responsibilities under the [Endangered Species Act]." They also asked federal officials to continue to openly communicate with the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, and to pursue cooperation. They had been joined in that call for action by representatives from the Center for Biological Diversity, Wolf Conservation Center, American Society of Mammalogists, Sierra Club and WildEarth Guardians. The Fish and Wildlife Service says the hope is that New Mexico will choose to reengage with these efforts in the future, and continue to collaborate on work on other threatened and endangered species in the meantime.[21]

"No war in Syria"

Albuquerque activists gathered on Central Avenue Saturday August 31 2014 to demonstrate their outrage at the Obama administration plan for military intervention in the Syrian civil war.

The action drew nearly 100 activists who held signs, chanted and spoke out on the busy street with much supportive horn honking from the passing cars. Speakers included Ellen Robinson, Raging Grannies, Preston Wood, ANSWER Coalition, Sayrah Namaste, (Un)occupy Albuquerque, Lizzie Perkel, Students for Justice in Palestine, Charles Powell, Albuquerque Chapter President, Veterans for Peace, Bob Anderson, Stop the War Machine, ANSWER Coalition organizer Joel Gallegos.

Building on Saturday’s gathering, an ad hoc coalition including (Un)occupy Albuquerque, Veterans for Peace, the Peace and Justice Center, the ANSWER Coalition, Stop $30 Billion to Israel and Students for Justice in Palestine filled the week with follow-up actions, including confronting an aide to Senator Martin Heinrich at a union gathering on Labor Day and meeting with Senator Tom Udall’s staff on Wednesday. A delegation als met with Senator Heinrich’s staff and with the staff of Representative Michelle Lujan Grisham.

As we prepare to post, the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations has just passed (10 to 7) a resolution approving U.S. military action in Syria, with committee member Tom Udall voting against. In a statement, Udall said “I personally have received hundreds of calls and letters from New Mexicans. I’ve talked to scores myself over the last couple of weeks. Over 90 percent of the calls and letters have been opposed to escalating our involvement in Syria. New Mexicans are tired of war. Americans are tired of war. They’re worried about the stress it puts on our economy and our military. They’re worried about the safety of our troops – their husbands, wives, son and daughters.”[22]

Cuba trip

After returning from a three-day Senate Foreign Relations Committee trip to Cuba, in November 2014, U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-NM) and Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) pledged to continue working together in the Senate to open U.S. travel to and trade with Cuba, a potential new market for New Mexico, Arizona and other states. During the visit, the senators met with Cuban officials, including Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez Parilla, and religious and business leaders to discuss the impacts of the embargo and travel restrictions on American and Cuban families. The senators also visited Alan Gross, an American who has been held in a Cuban jail since 2009. In conversations with Cuban officials and American media outlets, the senators stressed that Alan Gross wants to come home.

"New Mexicans are anxious to meet and work with Cubans, and the time is right to rebuild business and cultural ties between the United States and Cuba," Udall said. "The Cuban regime is antidemocratic and has many flaws, but our current policy has proven ineffective and has primarily served to isolate the people of Cuba. It's time for a 21st century approach that opens up opportunities for New Mexicans and other American interests. We'll continue working as members of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee to push for the release of Alan Gross and continued steps to normalize relations with Cuba. I urge the Obama administration to act by relaxing travel restrictions and working with the telecommunications industry to improve the ability for the people of the world to communicate with Cuba."[23]

Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015

S 299, the Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015, principal sponsors are Sens. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., and Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.[24]

By May 20, it had accumulated 33 co-sponsors, including 26 Democrats - Sheldon Whitehouse, Tom Udall, Dick Durbin, Thomas Carper, Amy Klobuchar, Barbara Boxer, Jack Reed, Debbie Stabenow, Jeff Merkley, Chris Murphy, Benjamin Cardin, Chris Coons, Dianne Feinstein, Jeanne Shaheen, Sherrod Brown, Mazie Hirono, Brian Schatz, Tammy Baldwin, Ed Markey, Heidi Heitkamp, Jon Tester, Claire McCaskill, Ron Wyden, Tim Kaine, Al Franken, Elizabeth Warren, Michael Bennet, Martin Heinrich . [25]

2015 Cuba trip

Larson, Udall, Franken, Grijalva

On May 25th 2015. U.S. Senator Tom Udall (Dem., NM), the author of a bill to expand U.S. telecommunications trade with Cuba (S.1389),[2] led a delegation of fellow Democrats on a visit to Cuba: Senator Al Franken (MN) and Congressmen Raul Grijalva (AZ) and John B. Larson (CT), all of whom support ending the U.S. embargo of Cuba. Their visit included a meeting with Cuba’s Foreign Minister, Bruno Rodriguez Parrilla, as well as meetings with Cuba’s Ministries of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment and Agriculture as well as self-employed members of small cooperatives and investors from foreign countries.

At a May 27th press conference in Havana at the end of their trip, Senator Udall noted that the U.S. designation of Cuba as a “state sponsor of terrorism” would end in two days (May 29th) and asserted his belief that “it will be a matter of weeks when we have restored diplomatic relations.”[26]

2016 Cuba visit

Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and 16 other House Democrats will join President Barack Obama on his historic trip to Cuba March 20-22.

Obama will be the first president to visit Cuba in 88 years, and the trip is a symbolic next chapter in his attempts to normalize relations with the country.

The House members will attend along with several senators who previously announced they will make the trip.

The House delegation includes Reps. Karen Bass, Cheri Bustos, Sam Farr, Rosa DeLauro, Barbara Lee, Charles Rangel, Kathy Castor, David Cicilline, Steve Cohen, Jan Schakowsky, Peter Welch, Alan Lowenthal, Jim McGovern and Lucille Roybal-Allard. House Democratic Caucus Chairman Xavier Becerra of California will also travel to Cuba along with Eliot Engel, the top Democrat on the Foreign Affairs Committee.

Democratic Sens. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, Dick Durbin of Illinois, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Patrick Leahy of Vermont, and Tom Udall of New Mexico are slated to join the trip. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), who has been a leading advocate for normalizing relations with Cuba, will also attend. Additional House Republicans may also join.

Pelosi previously led the first official House delegation trip to the country after Obama announced the change in U.S. policy toward Cuba in 2014.[27]

2017 Cuba visit

A delegation of four senators and one representative of the United States Congress traveled to Cuba on Sunday, exactly a month after the arrival of a new president to the White House. One of the senators is a strong ally of President Trump.

Republican Thad Cochran, from Mississippi, who has decisively endorsed Trump’s initial decisions in the Senate, is among the delegation. The legislators are led by one of the main proponents of normalized relations with Cuba, Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy (Vermont), notes the Cuban-US Economic and Trade Council.

The remaining members of the delegation are Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colorado) and Tom Udall (D-New Mexico), as well as Rep. Jim McGovern (D- Massachusetts).

Except for Cochran and Bennet, the remaining legislators have visited the island on previous occasions.

The program for their visit to Cuba was not disclosed. The group is scheduled to leave the island on Wednesday, February 22nd 2017.

Cochran, the only Republican in the group, is a co-sponsor in the Senate of a bill providing for the Expansion of Agricultural Exports to Cuba. The legislation would eliminate the prohibition of granting private credit to finance agricultural sales to the island and thus seek greater access by US farmers to the Cuban market.

The bill is bipartisan and was introduced by Senators Heidi Heitkamp (D-North Dakota) and John Boozman (R-Arkansas.).

Cochran chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee and has voted in favor of all those nominated by the president to his cabinet.[28]

Single Payer Bill

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) unveiled Wednesday September 13, 2017 a new version of his plan to give everybody government-run health insurance, potentially opening a new chapter in the ongoing debate over how to make health care in the U.S. more affordable and available.

The plan calls for an overhaul of American health insurance with a souped-up, more generous version of Medicare replacing nearly all private health insurance ― and government exerting far more control over the cost of medical care. It would arguably be the most ambitious social welfare initiative in U.S. history, but Sanders told HuffPost in an interview Tuesday that he believes America is ready for it.

“The American people are catching on to where the Republicans are coming from, they see the limitations of the Affordable Care Act and they’re looking at the alternatives,” Sanders said. “And this is a rational alternative.”

That roster of co-sponsors includes a who’s-who list of potential Democratic presidential candidates for 2020, including Cory Booker of New Jersey, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Kamala Harris of California and Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts. Also backing the bill are Patrick Leahy of Vermont, Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, Al Franken of Minnesota, Jeff Merkley of Oregon, Ed Markey of Massachusetts, Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall of New Mexico, Brian Schatz and Mazie Hirono of Hawaii, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire and Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin.[29]

Staff

The following have worked as staff members for Tom Udall:[30]

External links

References

  1. official Senate bio, accessed Aug. 16, 2011
  2. official Senate bio, accessed Aug. 16, 2011
  3. official Senate bio, accessed Aug. 16, 2011
  4. , Octobert, 1998, N.M. Rides Crest of National Green Wave, By Rachel Smolkin, Albuquerque Tribune, October 24th, 1998
  5. official Senate bio, accessed Aug. 16, 2011
  6. Congressional Progressive Caucus website: Caucus Member List
  7. NEWS/OPINION‹‹ V.15 No.43 | October 26 - November 1, 2006 Now Starring in the People's Republic of Albuquerque!Introducing our city's radial celebsBy Jim Scarantino
  8. CLW website: Meet Our Candidates
  9. CLW website: Who We've Helped Elect
  10. Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation website. Council for a Livable World 50th Anniversary Celebration
  11. CLW blog, The Chain Reaction, Summary of the Council’s 50th Anniversary Senators Forum JUN 21, 2012
  12. CLW 2014 bio, accessed July 2013
  13. 21st Century Democrats website, About us]
  14. 21st Century Democrats 2008 bio
  15. The Wilderness Society Press Release: The Wilderness Society Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, April 29, 2010 (accessed on Dec. 17, 2010)
  16. Our Future website: Take Back America 2010 Speakers (accessed on July 12, 2010)
  17. Our Future website: Take Back America 2010 Registration (accessed on July 12, 2010)
  18. Heinrich press release, Friday, March 29, 2013
  19. J Street The political home for pro-Israel, pro-peace Americans
  20. JStreetPAC 2016 Endorsees
  21. [ https://www.sfreporter.com/news/2015/10/15/growing-the-wolf-pack/ SF Reporter, | October 15, 2015]
  22. [1]
  23. Tom Udall website, Udall, Flake Pledge Work to Modernize Relations with Cuba November 14, 2014
  24. [ http://peoplesworld.org/cuba-travel-bill-advances-in-the-senate/PW, Cuba travel bill advances in the Senate by: Emile Schepers May 20 2015]
  25. [%22S+299%22}, Congress.Gov. S.299 - Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015114th Congress (2015-2016) | G]
  26. Congressional Delegations Visit Cuba
  27. Politico, Pelosi, 16 House Democrats to join Obama trip to Cuba By Lauren French,| 03/14/16
  28. Havana Times, Trump Ally Joins Congressional Delegation to Cuba February 20, 2017 By Café Fuerte
  29. [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/bernie-sanders-single-payer-bill-major-support-senate_us_59b87dc1e4b02da0e13d465f HuffPo09/13/2017 08:00 am ET Updated 2 days ago Bernie Sanders Announces Single-Payer Bill With Major Support In Senate By Daniel Marans , Jonathan Cohn]
  30. Legistorm: Tom Udall (accessed on Aug. 24, 2010)