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Democrat

Rep. Eliot Engel (D)

Eliot Engel Contact
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Email: n/a
DC Contact Information

Phone: 202-225-2464

Address: 2161 RHOB, DC 20515

Websites: engel.house.gov
State Office Contact Information

Phone: (718) 796-9700

Address: 3655 Johnson Avenue, Bronx NY 10463-1671

Mount Vernon NY

Phone: (914) 699-4100

Fax: (914) 699-3646

Address: 6 Gramatan Avenue, Mount Vernon NY 10550-3208

Bronx NY

Phone: (718) 320-2314

Fax: (718) 320-2047

Address: 177 Dreiser Loop, Bronx NY 10475-2705

Eliot Engel Staff
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Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Michalek, Ned
Administrative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Michalek, Ned
Administrative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Michalek, Ned
Administrative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Michalek, Ned
Administrative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Barnao, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Barnao, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Barnao, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Barnao, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Michalek, Ned
Administrative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Barnao, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Beckman, Heather
Office Manager; Scheduler
Copland, Lori
District Manager
Daniels, Bryant
Director of Public Affairs
Fedderman, Richard
Director of Constituent Affairs
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Laub, Andrew
Staff Assistant
Michalek, Ned
Administrative Assistant
Miller, Cynthia
Staff Assistant; Caseworker
Ojeda-Tiru, Doris
Staff Assistant; Caseworker
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Skretny, Brian
Legislative Director
Sullivan, Maxine
Caseworker; Staff Assistant
Switzer, Ken
Staff Assistant
Wegimont, Jay
Staff Assistant
Weitz, William
Chief of Staff
Ross, Heidi
Senior Policy Advisor
Michalek, Ned
Administrative Assistant
Miller, Cynthia
Staff Assistant; Caseworker
Ojeda-Tiru, Doris
Staff Assistant; Caseworker
Sullivan, Maxine
Caseworker; Staff Assistant
Weitz, William
Chief of Staff
Daniels, Bryant
Director of Public Affairs
Fedderman, Richard
Director of Constituent Affairs
Barnao, Catherine
Legislative Assistant
Kaminski, Lewis
Senior Legislative Assistant
Skretny, Brian
Legislative Director
Copland, Lori
District Manager
Beckman, Heather
Office Manager; Scheduler
Beckman, Heather
Office Manager; Scheduler
Laub, Andrew
Staff Assistant
Miller, Cynthia
Staff Assistant; Caseworker
Ojeda-Tiru, Doris
Staff Assistant; Caseworker
Sullivan, Maxine
Caseworker; Staff Assistant
Switzer, Ken
Staff Assistant
Wegimont, Jay
Staff Assistant
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Eliot Engel Committees
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Foreign Affairs (Ranking member)
Eliot Engel Biography
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  • Elected: 1988, 14th term.
  • District: New York 16
  • Born: Feb. 18, 1947, Bronx
  • Home: Bronx
  • Education:

    Hunter-Lehman Col., B.A. 1969, C.U.N.Y., Lehman Col., M.A. 1973, NY Law Schl., J.D. 1987

  • Professional Career:

    Teacher, guidance counselor, NYC public schl., 1969–77.

  • Political Career:

    NY Assembly, 1977–88.

  • Ethnicity: White/Caucasian
  • Religion:

    Jewish

  • Family: Married (Patricia); 3 children

Democrat Eliot Engel, elected in 1988, has remained popular at home by relentlessly staying on top of constituent service and working on issues of interest to his district’s foreign-born and low-income residents. In 2013, he became the ranking Democrat on the Foreign Affairs Committee, where he made his name as the backer of downtrodden ethnic groups. Read More

Democrat Eliot Engel, elected in 1988, has remained popular at home by relentlessly staying on top of constituent service and working on issues of interest to his district’s foreign-born and low-income residents. In 2013, he became the ranking Democrat on the Foreign Affairs Committee, where he made his name as the backer of downtrodden ethnic groups.

Engel is the son of a welder and grew up in the Bronx. As a boy, he was a political junkie who memorized the names of all 100 senators. He graduated from Hunter-Lehman College, got a master’s in guidance and counseling from the City University of New York, and then taught in the New York City public schools. He was also a guidance counselor. After 14 years, he went back to school for a law degree from New York Law School. In 1977, at age 30, he was elected to the New York Assembly in a special election to replace a convicted incumbent. He won election to the House in 1988, replacing Democratic Rep. Mario Biaggi, who’d been convicted of bribery.

Engel’s once strongly liberal voting record has become more moderate in recent years, especially on foreign policy. On Foreign Affairs, he took over the top Democratic slot from California’s Howard Berman, who was unseated in 2012. Engel is limited in what he can accomplish in the minority on the panel, which has a far lower profile than its Senate counterpart. But he has forged a good working relationship with California Republican Ed Royce, the committee's chairman and another staunch supporter of Israel. They issued numerous joint news releases and appeared on CNN together in September 2014 to call for greater action against the Islamic State after the group released a video depicting the beheading of an American hostage.

When a senior Obama administration official was quoted in The Atlantic in October 2014 comparing to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to poultry excrement, Engel issued a statement calling it "counterproductive and unprofessional for administration officials to air their dirty laundry in such a public way." And when Speaker John Boehner enraged Democrats a few months later by inviting Netayahu to address a joint session of Congress, Engel said he would attend. Though most Democrats vowed to boycott the speech because they said it was aimed at undermining U.S. negotiations on Iran's nuclear program, "the U.S.-Israel relationship is bigger than any of the personalities involved at a given time," Engel said.

Engel does seek to publicly deflect Republican criticism of the Obama administration. At a January 2013 hearing at which committee members sharply questioned outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about security flaws that led to the September attack in Benghazi, Libya, Engel noted that House Republicans had cut diplomatic security funding. On many issues, he worked in a bipartisan fashion with Royce's Foreign Affairs predecessor Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., including on legislation to rein in Syria’s weapons program and promote human rights there. She has called him “a principled man … an incredible freedom fighter.”

Engel is not a 1970s-style dove. He supported the Gulf War resolution in 1990, the bombing of Serbia to get a settlement in Bosnia, and the use of force in Iraq in 2002, though he criticized President George W. Bush’s handling of that conflict. As chairman of the Western Hemisphere Subcommittee in the 111th Congress (2009-10), he criticized socialist Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez for “provocation” of the United States. He supported continued funding for the war in Afghanistan in 2010 and was one of three lawmakers to participate in a 2011 documentary, Iranium, that was intended to sound alarms about Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons.

On the Energy and Commerce Committee, Engel has worked on a wide range of subjects, from climate change to cell phone theft. He was among a bipartisan group of lawmakers who sponsored a 2009 measure requiring half of all new cars sold in U.S. by 2012 to be flex-fuel vehicles capable of burning any combination of ethanol, methanol, and gasoline. The automobile industry fought the measure, and it was not added to the House-passed energy bill that year. In 2010, he succeeded in passing a bill into law making it illegal to use false caller IDs to trick people into revealing personal information. During the 2009 health care debate, he was among the Democrats to engage members of the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Coalition in often-tense negotiations over the scope of the legislation.

Engel has a personal tradition of staking out an aisle seat many hours before the start of the annual State of the Union address so that he can shake the president’s hand or occasionally give him a hug. In February 2009, CNN anchor Anderson Cooper called Engel “pathetic” for waiting over 12 hours for President Barack Obama’s address to Congress. Engel replied that Cooper was “pathetic” for failing to share his enthusiasm. He later told The Journal-News that constituents loved him for it: "It'll be September, October and people will say they saw me on TV."

Engel has had a handful of spirited election opponents. In the 2000 primary, Assemblyman Larry Seabrook attacked Engel for living in suburban Maryland. Engel won 50%-41%. After redistricting made his district more suburban in 2002, Engel had vigorous competition from Rockland County Executive Scott Vanderhoef, a Republican who criticized Engel for voting against tax cuts and defense spending. Engel won 63%-34%.

In 2008 and 2010, he had no primary foe and only token Republican opposition. In the months leading up to the latter election, he did face some embarrassing publicity. The Wall Street Journal reported that ethics investigators found reason to believe he was one of five members to improperly keep cash intended to cover expenses on overseas trips. He said that the amounts were minimal and that he had to dig into his own pocket on those trips. In early 2011, the House Ethics Committee declined to pursue the matter.

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Eliot Engel Election Results
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2012 General
Eliot Engel (D)
Votes: 179,562
Percent: 75.93%
Joseph McLaughlin (R)
Votes: 53,935
Percent: 22.81%
2012 Primary
Eliot Engel (D)
Votes: 12,856
Percent: 87.34%
Aniello Grimaldi (D)
Votes: 1,864
Percent: 12.66%
Prior Winning Percentages
2010 (73%), 2008 (80%), 2006 (76%), 2004 (76%), 2002 (63%), 2000 (90%), 1998 (88%), 1996 (85%), 1994 (78%), 1992 (80%), 1990 (61%), 1988 (56%)
Eliot Engel Votes and Bills
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National Journal’s rating system is an objective method of analyzing voting. The liberal score means that the lawmaker’s votes were more liberal than that percentage of his colleagues’ votes. The conservative score means his votes were more conservative than that percentage of his colleagues’ votes. The composite score is an average of a lawmaker’s six issue-based scores. See all NJ Voting

More Liberal
More Conservative
2013 2012 2011
Economic 85 (L) : 15 (C) 73 (L) : 26 (C) 84 (L) : 16 (C)
Social 77 (L) : 21 (C) 78 (L) : 19 (C) 80 (L) : - (C)
Foreign 71 (L) : 27 (C) 63 (L) : 37 (C) 64 (L) : 33 (C)
Composite 78.3 (L) : 21.7 (C) 72.0 (L) : 28.0 (C) 79.8 (L) : 20.2 (C)
Interest Group Ratings

The vote ratings by 10 special interest groups provide insight into a lawmaker’s general ideology and the degree to which he or she agrees with the group’s point of view. Two organizations provide just one combined rating for 2011 and 2012, the two sessions of the 112th Congress. They are the ACLU and the ITIC. About the interest groups.

20112012
FRC00
LCV9491
CFG1117
ITIC-75
NTU1011
20112012
COC27-
ACLU-100
ACU44
ADA9085
AFSCME100-
Key House Votes

The key votes show how a member of Congress voted on the major bills of the year. N indicates a "no" vote; Y a "yes" vote. If a member voted "present" or was absent, the bill caption is not shown. For a complete description of the bills included in key votes, see the Almanac's Guide to Usage.

    • Pass GOP budget
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2012
    • End fiscal cliff
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2012
    • Extend payroll tax cut
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2012
    • Stop student loan hike
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2012
    • Repeal health care
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2012
    • Raise debt limit
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2011
    • Defund Planned Parenthood
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2011
    • Repeal lightbulb ban
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2011
    • Add endangered listings
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2011
    • Speed troop withdrawal
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2011
    • Regulate financial firms
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2010
    • Pass tax cuts for some
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2010
    • Stop detainee transfers
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2010
    • Legalize immigrants' kids
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2010
    • Repeal don't ask, tell
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2010
    • Limit campaign funds
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2010
    • Overturn Ledbetter
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2009
    • Pass $820 billion stimulus
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2009
    • Let guns in national parks
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2009
    • Pass cap-and-trade
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2009
    • Bar federal abortion funds
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2009
    • Pass health care bill
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2009
    • Bail out financial markets
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2008
    • Repeal D.C. gun law
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2008
    • Overhaul FISA
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2008
    • Increase minimum wage
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • Expand SCHIP
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • Raise CAFE standards
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • Share immigration data
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2007
    • Foreign aid abortion ban
    • Vote: N
    • Year: 2007
    • Ban gay bias in workplace
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • Withdraw troops 8/08
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
    • No operations in Iran
    • Vote:
    • Year: 2007
    • Free trade with Peru
    • Vote: Y
    • Year: 2007
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The Almanac is a members-only database of searchable profiles compiled and adapted from the Almanac of American Politics. Comprehensive online profiles include biographical and political summaries of elected officials, campaign expenditures, voting records, interest-group ratings, and congressional staff look-ups. In-depth overviews of each state and house district are included as well, along with demographic data, analysis of voting trends, and political histories.
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