Mimi Walters

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Mimi Walters
Mimi Walters full official photo (cropped).jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 45th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2015
Preceded by John B. T. Campbell III
Member of the California Senate
from the 37th district
33rd district (2008–12)
In office
December 1, 2008 – January 3, 2015
Preceded by Dick Ackerman
Succeeded by John Moorlach
Member of the California State Assembly
from the 73rd district
In office
December 6, 2004 – November 30, 2008
Preceded by Patricia Bates
Succeeded by Diane Harkey
Personal details
Born Marian Elaine Krogius
(1962-05-14) May 14, 1962 (age 56)
Pasadena, California, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) David Walters
Children 4
Education University of California, Los Angeles (BA)
Website House website

Marian Elaine "Mimi" Walters (née Krogius; born May 14, 1962) is an American politician who is the U.S. Representative for California's 45th congressional district. She is a member of the Republican Party.

Before entering politics, Walters was an investment banker from 1988–95, and also served as chair of Laguna Niguel's investment and banking committee.[1][2] She was a member of the California State Senate for the 37th District (2012–15) and the 33rd Senate District (2008–2012), and served in the California State Assembly (2004–2008). Since January 2015, she serves as the United States House of Representatives from California's 45th congressional district.

Early years and education

Marian Elaine Krogius was born in 1962 in Pasadena, California. Her father was Tristian Krogius.[3] Krogius earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1984.

Walters was an investment banker from 1988 to 1995.[2] She acted as an Investment Executive at the firm of Drexel Burnham Lambert. Walters later joined the firm of Kidder, Peabody & Co..[4] She's been described as being a financial executive before she began public service.[1] Walters served as chair of Laguna Niguel's investment and banking committee, then joined the Laguna Niguel city council in 1996.[1]

Political career

Walters was Councilwoman and Mayor of Laguna Niguel during 1996–2004, and helped defeat efforts to convert Marine Corps Air Station El Toro to a commercial airport. She was elected in 2004 to represent the 73rd Assembly District, which includes coastal Orange and San Diego county communities of Laguna Niguel, Laguna Hills, Oceanside, Dana Point, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, and Aliso Viejo.

Walters was able to raise over $2 million in the 2016 campaign.[5] Prior to winning in 2014, she set up the Blessings of Liberty Leadership PAC.[6]

Laguna Niguel city council

Walters served as chair of Laguna Niguel's investment and banking committee, then joined the Laguna Niguel city council in 1996 after a member vacated his seat. Walters was chosen as a replacement without an election.[1] During her tenure, she received large contributions from the Building Industries Association (BIA) of Southern California and Newport Beach real-estate developers while talking tough against developers from El Toro.[3]

2010 California State Treasurer election

In January 2010, Walters announced that she would run for California State Treasurer against Democratic incumbent Bill Lockyer.

During the election season, Lockyer accused Walters of trying to hide her role as a legislator in California's 2009 fiscal meltdown. He noted that in the June primary ballot for the election, Walters had identified herself as a "businesswoman/senator", but dropped "senator" from her ballot description before the election. Lockyer said it was "hypocrisy" that Walters "hides that she's an elected official".[7]

She became the Republican nominee for State Treasurer but subsequently lost the election.

Investigation by the Fair Political Practices Commission

In 2010, as a result of a possible conflict of interest, a Fair Political Practices Commission inquiry was disclosed in a written notice to Walters' attorney by Gary Winuk, chief of enforcement for the state Fair Political Practices Commission. He wrote that his office "will be pursuing an investigation regarding whether or not Sen. Walters violated the Political Reform Act's conflict-of-interest prohibitions".[8]

Walters also voted against requiring additional disclosure of state contracts in 2007 and 2008. In 2010, Walters voted against legislation giving preference to contract bids from small businesses, or preference towards businesses that hire California workers.

Prison officials claimed they didn't give special treatment to Drug Consultants Inc. (the Walters firm), though they were contacted on an almost daily basis by the senator's office.[9] The FPPC inquiry ultimately found there was no wrongdoing on the part of Senator Walters or her staff.[10]

2012 California State Senate race

On September 20, 2012, Democratic candidate Steven R. Young filed a petition of extraordinary writ[11] seeking declaratory relief to the California Secretary of State to exclude opponent Walters from the 2012 election ballot for failing to establish a clear residency status in the district she was running in. Under state law, state legislators are required to live in the districts they represent.[12][13]

Walters and her family have long been associated with Laguna Niguel, where she served on the City Council and was elected to two terms in the Assembly and one in the Senate. But after the new California Citizens Redistricting Commission re-drew the state's legislative districts. To run in the newly drawn 37th Senate District, Walters stated that she moved to Irvine. Young and two registered Republicans who have joined in the suit allege that Walters and her husband, David, have lived in a 14,000-square-foot mansion in Laguna Niguel since 1999. Then, this year, the suit says that Walters changed her voter registration to reflect that she's living in a 570-square-foot apartment in Irvine with no dishwasher or washer/dryer hook ups.[14][15] A Sacramento County Superior Court judge denied Young's petition to have Walters' name removed from the ballot. According to the judge, "the court doesn't have jurisdiction to hear questions about the qualifications of members of the state Legislature."[16]

U.S. House of Representatives

Walters' 2015 portrait

2014 election

On July 2, 2013, Walters formally announced her candidacy for Congress, replacing Congressman John Campbell, who announced he would not be seeking another term.[17]

She was endorsed by a number of Republican Congressmen from California, including Campbell, Kevin McCarthy, Darrell Issa, and Ed Royce.[18]

Walters was placed in the National Republican Congressional Committee's (NRCC) "Contender" category of their "Young Guns" program.[19] In September 2014, the NRCC named Walters along with 13 other candidates to their "Vanguard" program.[20] In the nonpartisan blanket primary, she came in first place in a field of three candidates with 45% of the vote. In the general election, she defeated Democratic candidate Drew Leavens with 65% of the vote.[21]

2018 election

Four Democratic candidates will be seeking their party's nomination in the 2018 midterm elections, challenging Walters. The leading challengers are Brian Forde, an entrepreneur and former White House senior advisor on technology and innovation to President Barack Obama;[22] Katie Porter, a consumer advocate[23] and Professor of Law at UC Irvine;[24] and Dave Min, a UC Irvine Law professor and former policy analyst at the Center for American Progress.[25][26][27]

Committee assignments

Relationship with constituents

In 2017, following the inauguration of President Donald Trump, numerous Democratic and/or progressive groups[30][31] formed in the California 45th Congressional District to oppose his agenda. Rallies,[32][33] a petition,[34] and even Valentine's Day cards[35] went unanswered by Walters' office.

On February 28, 2017 during an interview with ABC7's Elex Michaelson, Walters declined to answer when asked twice if she would hold a town hall with her constituents.[36] The same day, Republican City Councilman for Mission Viejo, California, Greg Raths, stated, "I do appreciate the fact that you (residents) would like to talk to her, as I would, Mimi Walters needs to get out to her district and talk to her people."[37]

Town hall pressure

Some constituents have created a group to press her to conduct an open format town hall. They call themselves the California 45th Town Hall Group and claim the group was formed after constituents made "repeated, formal" requests for Walters to host a town hall. She has refused, telling radio station AM 870 on its show The Answer that the group's "whole goal is to try to get me to say something that they could use against me".[38][39]

Political positions

Abortion and Planned Parenthood

Walters opposes abortion, but has deemphasized the issue during her political campaigns.[40] In 2015, during her freshman term, she served on the Select Panel to Investigate Planned Parenthood.[41]

Cannabis

Walters has a "D" rating from NORML regarding her voting record on cannabis-related matters. She voted against allowing veterans access to medical marijuana, if legal in their state, per their Veterans Health Administration doctor's recommendation.[42]

Donald Trump

In July 2016, FiveThirtyEight placed Walters among the congressional members most supportive of then-candidate Trump, having endorsed him "wholeheartedly".[43][44]

When a recording surfaced of Trump having "an extremely lewd conversation about women" and describing actions that could be considered sexual assault, and with numerous Republicans rescinding their endorsements, Walters did not rescind her endorsement and declined media requests for comment.[45][46]

In February 2017, she voted against a resolution that would have directed the House to request 10 years of Trump's tax returns, which would then have been reviewed by the House Ways and Means Committee in a closed session.[47]

Federal taxation legislation of 2017

In November 2017, Walters voted in favor of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the house version of the Republican Party's tax reform bill.[48][49] The House bill removes state and local tax breaks that many Californians use, such as the mortgage interest deduction.[49] Several House Republicans representing Californian districts voted against the legislation because it raised taxes on Californians.[49] Walters said after the vote that she had received assurances from House Speaker Paul Ryan that a reconciliation version of the bill with the Senate would restore the lost tax breaks.[49] According to the Los Angeles Times, immediately after the vote, the Senate version of the bill "contains even deeper cuts to state and local tax breaks that are popular with Californians but maintains the mortgage interest deduction at its current level instead of cutting it in half as the House plan does. It also repeals Obamacare’s individual mandate, a move that could further complicate the situation for California members who represent districts with a lot of Obamacare enrollees."[49]

Environment

In 2015, Walters sponsored and voted for H.R. 1732, a bill that opposed the Waters of the United States rule, which expands the federal government’s jurisdiction to regulate waters and certain adjacent lands.[50]

Walters is a climate change denier and has opposed federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions and recently sponsored a bill to gut the Environmental Protection Agency, which would limit or do away with protections for clean water and air.[51][52]

On February 15, 2017, some of her constituents in Irvine, California held a Climate Rally to call attention to her position.[53] The League of Conservation Voters has given Walters a lifetime score of 3%.[54]

Guns

Mass shootings

In the wake of the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, Walters offers thoughts and prayers to the victims.[55]

Healthcare

Walters supports the repeal of Obamacare and voted in 2015 for H.R. 596, the House bill to repeal Obamacare.[56] She also voted for H.R. 3762, the Restoring Americans’ Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act, which would have repealed Obamacare.[57]

Walters supports repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act (known as Obamacare) with the American Health Care Act, the GOP's replacement plan for Obamacare, which did not come to a vote initially.[51][58] She said that passing the American Health Care Act "is a critical step" towards the goal of rescuing "this failing healthcare system".[59]

On May 4, 2017, Walters voted to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and pass the American Health Care Act.[60][38] In early 2017, Walters tweeted that she was "committed to protecting patients w/ pre-existing conditions to ensure their access to quality, affordable healthcare".[61] However, USA Today noted that the version of the American Health Care Act that she voted in favor of allows insurance companies to charge higher premiums to individuals with pre-existing conditions (such as cancer, epilepsy, diabetes and pregnancy).[61]

In response to House vote for the AHCA, an organization called Save My Care spent $500,000 to release a series of attack ads against 24 House members who voted for the AHCA, including one about Walters that says she "voted to raise your costs and cut coverage for millions, to let insurance companies deny affordable coverage for cancer treatment and maternity care and charge five-times more for people over 50. Walters voted yes even though the bill makes coverage completely unaffordable to people with pre-existing conditions.[62][63][64]

Immigration

In 2015, Walters opposed then-candidate Trump's proposed ban on Muslims, but when Trump signed an executive order to suspend the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) and suspend the entry of foreign nationals from seven Muslim-majority countries, Walters expressed support for the executive order.[65]

Keystone pipeline

Walters voted in support of the Keystone XL Pipeline Act (H.R. 3) in 2015.[66]

LGBT rights

She opposes same-sex marriage and other protections for the LGBT community.[51] As an Assemblywoman, Walters endorsed Proposition 8, which declared same-sex marriage illegal in the state of California.[67] Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD) named Walters as one of seven Republican representatives who switched their votes regarding a bill upholding an executive order prohibiting defense contractors from discriminating against people based on their sexual orientation. The identities of the seven vote-switchers were not publicly recorded and none of those named by Hoyer confirmed his claims.[68] PBS reported that under shouts of 'shame', Walters voted against this protection, which ended up narrowly failing.[69]

Pensions

Walters wrote an op-ed in October 2012 that questioned the wisdom of creating a state-run retirement pension plan for private-sector workers.[70] The bill, SB 1234, established the California Secure Choice Retirement Savings Program for private-sector workers that requires employers that may not offer retirement plans to participate in the program.[71]

Strikes

In 2014, Walters voted for a bill in committee that banned public transit workers from going on strike.[72]

Controversy

Judgement against husband's business

In 2012, at least a dozen subcontractors hired to treat inmates by two subsidiaries of David Walters' company claimed they were owed more than $120,000 in back payments.[73] One person sued, a pharmacist from Orange County, and in 2013, won a $20,000 judgment against the two companies that were co-owned by Walters' husband.[74]

Personal life

Walters is married to her husband, David, and has four children.[2] Her husband is the owner of a boutique investment bank called Monarch Bay Associates. In 2010, financial disclosure forms showed that Mimi Walters' holdings include between $100,000 and $1 million in Goldman Sachs.[7]

Residence

In 2000, a federal bankruptcy judge approved the sale of a mansion owned by accused swindler Luigi DiFonzo to then-Mayor Walters for $4.95 million. After the sale, Walters continued to live in her 14,000-square-foot home down the road in the Bear Brand Ranch.[75]

Walters briefly registered to vote in Irvine in 2012 so she could run in a newly re-drawn district for a state Senate Seat, and was subsequently elected. Under California law, state legislators are required to live in the districts they represent, and Walters was sued for faking the move in order to run for office, though the lawsuit was later dropped.[76] In 2014 after the election, Walters re-registered to vote at her Laguna Niguel home.[77]

Walters sold her Bear Brand Ranch house in Laguna Niguel for $6.3 million in 2015.[78] She and her husband currently live outside of Walters' California 45th District. Their home is within the boundaries of Rep. Dana Rohrabacher's (R-Costa Mesa) 48th District of California.[77]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d Messina, Frank (1996-12-19). "Council Names Walters to Seat Wilson Vacated". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  2. ^ a b c "Mimi Walters' background". Los Angeles Times. 2010-05-26. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  3. ^ a b Moxley, R. Scott (1999-07-29). "This Is War?". OC Weekly. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  4. ^ "Biography". Congresswoman Mimi Walters. 2012-12-11. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  5. ^ "Rep. Mimi Walters: Campaign Finance/Money - Summary". Center for Responsive Politics. Retrieved 2017-03-26. 
  6. ^ "Profile: campaignmoney.com". Retrieved March 25, 2017. 
  7. ^ a b Goldmacher, Shane (2010-10-29). "Actions of two top state treasurer hopefuls raise questions". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  8. ^ Patrick McGreevy (2012-06-15). "Ethics panel investigates state Sen. Mimi Walters". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  9. ^ McGreevy, Patrick (2012-05-19). "Firm co-owned by legislator's husband gets state settlement". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  10. ^ "State Sen. Walters cleared in conflict investigation". Orange County Register. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
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  13. ^ "CA Codes (elec:8040-8041)". Leginfo.ca.gov. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  14. ^ McGreevy, Patrick. "State Sen. Mimi Walters challenged by opponent over her residency". Los Angeles Times blogs. 
  15. ^ Brian Joseph (September 20, 2012). "Democrat sues to keep Mimi Walters off the ballot". Orange County Register. Archived from the original on September 28, 2012. Retrieved October 1, 2012. 
  16. ^ "Mimi Walters' name to remain on ballot". Orange County Register. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  17. ^ "Mimi Walters Formally Enters Congressional Race in 45th District - Mimi Walters for U.S. Representative". Mimi Walters. 2013-07-02. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  18. ^ "Endorsements - Mimi Walters for U.S. Representative". Mimi Walters. 2014-06-20. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  19. ^ "17 Republican Candidates Announced as 'Contender' as Part of NRCC's 'Young Guns' Program - National Republican Congressional Committee". National Republican Congressional Committee. 2014-03-26. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  20. ^ "Young Guns Vanguard - NRCC Young Guns". National Republican Congressional Committee. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  21. ^ "恋愛運を上げて素敵な出会いを|好きな人が出来たら恋占い". Dl45th.com. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  22. ^ Mai-Duc, Christine (July 19, 2017). "Former Obama advisor jumps in to challenge Rep. Mimi Walters in Orange County". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 24, 2017. 
  23. ^ Wisckol, Martin (April 5, 2017). "All the facts on Katie Porter, challenger to Rep. Mimi Walters's re-election bid". Orange County Register. Retrieved March 19, 2018. 
  24. ^ "California politics updates: The rush to push back against Trump's offshore drilling directive". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-05-04. 
  25. ^ "This son of immigrants is running for Congress to defend the American dream". NBC News. Retrieved 2017-08-25. 
  26. ^ WeedyGarden.net, Erik Runyon profile. "David Min profile". uci.edu. Retrieved 2017-08-25. 
  27. ^ Mai-Duc, Christine (February 25, 2018). "Dave Min gets Democratic endorsement for Congress after intense fight on the convention floor". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 25, 2018. 
  28. ^ "Members". Republican Mains Street Partnership. Retrieved 4 October 2017. 
  29. ^ "Member List". Republican Study Committee. Retrieved 22 January 2018. 
  30. ^ "People before Party". California 45th. Retrieved 2017-03-03. 
  31. ^ "Together We Will Orange County". Together We Will Orange County. Retrieved 2017-03-03. 
  32. ^ Goulding, Susan Christian. "Democratic constituents tell Walters she's on short leash". Orange County Register. Retrieved 2017-03-03. 
  33. ^ Fausto, Alma. "Group rallies at Congresswoman Mimi Walters' Irvine office". Orange County Register. Retrieved 2017-03-03. 
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  39. ^ "Republicans avoid town halls after health care votes". USA Today. April 10, 2017. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
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  41. ^ Congresswoman Mimi Walters (2015-10-07), Rep. Mimi Walters on Select Panel to Investigate Planned Parenthood, retrieved 2017-03-26 
  42. ^ "California Scorecard - NORML.org - Working to Reform Marijuana Laws". norml.org. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
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  46. ^ { Williams, Lauren. "Some California Republicans call for Trump to resign". Orange County Register. Retrieved 2017-02-13. 
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  53. ^ "Climate Rally at House Rep Mimi Walters' Office". Retrieved 2017-03-26 – via Facebook. 
  54. ^ "Check out Representative Mimi Walters's Environmental Voting Record". League of Conservation Voters. Retrieved 2017-02-13. 
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  56. ^ "Rep. Mimi Walters Votes to Repeal Obamacare". Congresswoman Mimi Walters. 2015-02-03. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  57. ^ "Rep. Walters Votes to Strip Core Provisions of Obamacare". Congresswoman Mimi Walters. 2015-10-23. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  58. ^ "The fight's on in 4 California districts where Republicans represent people who voted for Hillary". Retrieved 2017-02-13. 
  59. ^ Rubin, Jennifer; Rubin, Jennifer (2017-03-15). "Republicans who voted for the AHCA better watch out". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2017-04-03. 
  60. ^ "How the House voted to pass the GOP health-care bill". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2017-05-04. 
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  63. ^ Save My Care (2017-05-07), Disastrous CA45 Walters, retrieved 2017-05-11 
  64. ^ Sommer, Will (2017-05-08). "Liberal group funds $500K in attack ads after healthcare vote". The Hill. Retrieved 2017-05-11. 
  65. ^ "Screaming at Mimi; Protests at Rep. Walters Office on Extreme Vetting and Healthcare". The Liberal OC. Retrieved 2017-02-13. 
  66. ^ "Rep. Mimi Walters Stands for Jobs in Keystone Pipeline Vote". Congresswoman Mimi Walters. 2015-01-09. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  67. ^ "Proposition 8 Endorsements". ProtectMarriage.com. 2008-11-04. Archived from the original on 2008-11-04. Retrieved 2018-02-25. 
  68. ^ "7 Republicans Flipped Their Vote on LGBT Amendment, Setting Them Up for Attack". Roll Call. 2016-05-19. Retrieved 2017-02-13. 
  69. ^ "Amid shouts of 'shame,' House GOP defeats gay rights measure". PBS NewsHour. Retrieved 2017-03-26. 
  70. ^ Walters, Mimi. "State-Run Private Sector Retirement Plans Subsidized by Taxpayers Coming in 2013". District37.cssrc.us. Archived from the original on 2014-11-08. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
  71. ^ "Bill Text - SB-1234 Retirement savings plans". Leginfo.legislature.ca.gov. Retrieved 2016-11-11. 
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  73. ^ McGreevy, Patrick (2012-06-23). "Firms owned by state Sen. Mimi Walters' spouse draw complaints". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  74. ^ McGreevy, Patrick (2013-08-22). "Prison pharmacist wins judgment against firms tied to senator". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  75. ^ Fields, Robin (2000-11-09). "Laguna Niguel Mayor Buys DiFonzo Home". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  76. ^ Radio, Southern California Public (2012-09-20). "Democrat alleges Mimi Walters doesn't live in district". KPCC. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
  77. ^ a b Javier Panzar (December 22, 2015). "These California lawmakers don't live in the districts they represent". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2017-05-10. 
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External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
John B. T. Campbell III
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 45th congressional district

2015–present
Incumbent
Current U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Mark Walker
United States Representatives by seniority
359th
Succeeded by
Bonnie Watson Coleman
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