Josh Shapiro

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Josh Shapiro
Josh Shapiro (cropped).jpg
50th Attorney General of Pennsylvania
Assumed office
January 17, 2017
Governor Tom Wolf
Preceded by Bruce Beemer
Member of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners
In office
January 3, 2012 – January 17, 2017
Served with Bruce Castor, Leslie Richards, Val Arkoosh, Joe Gale
Preceded by Joe Hoeffel
Succeeded by Kenneth E. Lawrence Jr.
Member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives
from the 153rd district
In office
January 4, 2005[1] – January 3, 2012
Preceded by Ellen Bard
Succeeded by Madeleine Dean
Personal details
Joshua David Shapiro

(1973-06-20) June 20, 1973 (age 45)
Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Lori Shapiro
Children 4
Education University of Rochester (BA)
Georgetown University (JD)

Joshua David Shapiro (born June 20, 1973) is an American lawyer and the 50th and current Attorney General of Pennsylvania. A member of the Democratic Party, he previously served in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives - representing the 153rd legislative district (2005-2012) - and is a former member and Chair of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners. Shapiro was elected Attorney General in 2016, defeating Republican John Rafferty Jr.


Shapiro was born in Kansas City, Missouri to a Jewish family[2] and graduated magna cum laude from the University of Rochester in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. In 2002, he received his Juris Doctor degree from Georgetown University.

Shapiro practiced law with Stradley, Ronon, Stevens, and Young while also serving as Montgomery County Commissioner, and currently resides in Abington with his wife and 4 children.[3]


After college, he moved to Washington, D.C., working as a legislative assistant to U.S. Senator Carl Levin. He then served as a senior adviser to U.S. Representative Peter Deutsch (1996–98) and to U.S. Senator Robert Torricelli (1998–99).

From 1999 to 2003, he was chief of staff to U.S. Representative Joe Hoeffel - acting as the youngest chief of staff on Capitol Hill.

Shapiro's political future had been the subject of much speculation and he had been mentioned on multiple occasions as a potential candidate for higher office.

Political career

Pennsylvania House of Representatives

In 2004, Shapiro ran for the seat in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives held by Ellen Bard, who had run unsuccessfully for Congress. His GOP opponent, Jon Fox, represented Montgomery County in Congress from 1995 to 1999. Shapiro defeated Fox in November with 54% of the vote.[4]

He won re-election against a lesser-known opponent, Lou Guerra, taking 76% of the vote.[5] In 2007, Shapiro was named Deputy Speaker by incoming Speaker Denny O'Brien after Shapiro helped broker a deal to bring him into office.[6][7]

In the 2008 Democratic primary, Shapiro ran uncontested. Additionally he won a write-in campaign on the Republican side to ensure that would win re-election without major opposition in November. Shapiro was said to be considering a run for the United States Senate before Arlen Specter announced he had rejoined the Democratic Party.[8]

Montgomery County Commissioner

On January 31, 2011, Shapiro announced his candidacy for the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners after Hoeffel, whom Shapiro had succeeded as a state legislator, announced he would be retiring.[9] Shapiro, along with fellow Democrat Leslie Richards, won the majority for Montgomery County, something that has never happened in the county's history. He was sworn in on January 3, 2012.[10] He and Richards served with Republican Bruce L. Castor, Jr., a former county district attorney and the only of the members of the previous Board to be re-elected. The three enjoyed a good working relationship by all accounts.[citation needed]

He ruled out running for U.S. House[11] and for Governor in 2014 (instead endorsing Tom Wolf in the latter race).[12]

Pennsylvania Attorney General

Shapiro announced his intention to run for Pennsylvania Attorney General in January 2016.[13] He became the Democratic nominee for Attorney General following the primary on April 26, 2016.[14] He never held a position as a prosecutor prior to being elected attorney general.[15]

Agreeing with Shapiro's stance on guns, Michael Bloomberg donated to Shapiro's campaign.[15] Providing assistance for victims of addiction and imposing penalties for pollution caused by gas drilling, were among the biggest issues in Shapiro's campaign.[16]

On November 8, 2016, Shapiro won the PA Attorney General race by defeating Republican nominee and State Senator John Rafferty with 51.3% of the vote. Shapiro won the major counties of Philadelphia, Allegheny, Montgomery, Bucks, Delaware, and Chester, while Rafferty won the major counties of Lancaster, Berks, Westmoreland and York.[17]


  1. ^ "SESSION OF 2005 - 189TH OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY - No. 1" (PDF). Legislative Journal. Pennsylvania House of Representatives. January 4, 2005.
  2. ^ jcohen (January 20, 2016). "Josh Shapiro Ready for Next Phase of Career - Jewish Exponent".
  3. ^ "About Josh Shapiro". Biography. Josh Shapiro for Montgomery County Commissioner. Archived from the original on July 22, 2012. Retrieved August 10, 2012.
  4. ^ Pennsylvania General Election Results, Pennsylvania Department of State, 11/2/04 Archived November 27, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ Pennsylvania General Election Results, Pennsylvania Department of State, 11/7/06 Archived November 27, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Benjamin Wallace, Politics: Cleaning House, Philadelphia Magazine, December 2007
  7. ^ Tom Waring, House speaker pays a visit to CORA, Northeast Times, 2/1/07[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ "Torsella says he'll run for U.S. Senate". The Philadelphia Inquirer. February 10, 2009. Retrieved August 10, 2009.
  9. ^ Roebuck, Jeremy (January 31, 2011). "Montco's Hoeffel will not seek another term". Philadelphia Inquirer.
  10. ^ Rawlins, John. "Democrats historically gain control of Montgomery County". Elections. ABC News. Retrieved August 10, 2012.
  11. ^ Daniel Gleason; Carl Feldman (May 21, 2013). "Shapiro Rules out Bids for Guv, PA-13, Launches Statewide PAC". PoliticsPA. Retrieved March 6, 2014.
  12. ^ Gibbons, Margaret (May 21, 2013). "Shapiro rules out bid for higher office next year". Philly Burbs. Archived from the original on June 15, 2013. Retrieved May 25, 2013.
  13. ^ Field, Nick (January 12, 2016). "Shapiro Officially Announces AG Campaign". PoliticsPA. Retrieved January 12, 2016.
  14. ^ Addy, Jason (April 26, 2016). "Shapiro Wins Dem AG Nomination". PoliticsPA. Retrieved May 21, 2016.
  15. ^ a b Orso, Anna. "Josh Shapiro wins PA Attorney General race". Billy Penn. Spirited Media. Retrieved November 21, 2016.
  16. ^ Esack, Steve. "Shapiro wins AG race, leading Dems sweep of state row offices". The Morning Call. Retrieved November 21, 2016.
  17. ^ Times, New York (November 21, 2016). "Pennsylvania Attorney General Results: Josh Shapiro Wins". Retrieved November 25, 2016.

External links

  • Attorney General Josh Shapiro official Attorney General website
  • Profile at Vote Smart
  • Follow the Money - Josh Shapiro
    • 2006 2004 campaign contributions
Party political offices
Preceded by
Kathleen Kane
Democratic nominee for Attorney General of Pennsylvania
Most recent
Legal offices
Preceded by
Bruce Beemer
Attorney General of Pennsylvania
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