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Democrat

Rep. André Carson (D)

André Carson Contact
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Email: n/a
DC Contact Information

Phone: 202-225-4011

Address: 2453 RHOB, DC 20515

State Office Contact Information

Phone: (317) 283-6516

Address: 300 East Fall Creek Parkway North Drive, Indianapolis IN 46205-4258

André Carson Staff
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Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Gail, Jessica
Press Secretary
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Mirza, Omair
Legislative Correspondent; Press Assistant
Morrison, Lindsay
Executive Assistant; Scheduler
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Scott, Andrea
Constituent Services Liaison
Sims, Megan
District Director
Martin, Andrea
Senior Policy Advisor
Sims, Megan
District Director
Morrison, Lindsay
Executive Assistant; Scheduler
Powell, Erica
Legislative Assistant
Mirza, Omair
Legislative Correspondent; Press Assistant
Bennett, Nathan
Legislative Director
Scott, Andrea
Constituent Services Liaison
Mirza, Omair
Legislative Correspondent; Press Assistant
Gail, Jessica
Press Secretary
Morrison, Lindsay
Executive Assistant; Scheduler
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André Carson Committees
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André Carson Biography
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  • Elected: March 2008, 3rd full term.
  • District: Indiana 7
  • Born: Oct. 16, 1974, Indianapolis
  • Home: Indianapolis
  • Education:

    Concordia U., B.A., 2003, IN Wesleyan U., M.S., 2005

  • Professional Career:

    Investigator, IN State Excise Police, 1996-2005, Investigator, IN Dept. of Homeland Security, 2006-08.

  • Political Career:

    Indianapolis/Marion City-Cnty. Cncl., 2007-08.

  • Ethnicity: Black/African American
  • Religion:

    Muslim

  • Family: Married (Mariama); 1 children

Democrat André Carson won his seat in a March 2008 special election to succeed his grandmother, Julia Carson, who died in office after representing the district for nearly 11 years. A hard-working and occasionally outspoken liberal, Carson is rising in the ranks of both the House Democratic Caucus and the Congressional Black Caucus. Read More

Democrat André Carson won his seat in a March 2008 special election to succeed his grandmother, Julia Carson, who died in office after representing the district for nearly 11 years. A hard-working and occasionally outspoken liberal, Carson is rising in the ranks of both the House Democratic Caucus and the Congressional Black Caucus.

As a child, André Carson studied religion. Originally interested in the priesthood, he later converted to Islam and became the second Muslim elected to Congress, following Minnesota Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison. Carson also had an artistic side. He wrote poetry as a young man and performed as a rap artist under the name “Juggernaut.” But his career took him into law enforcement. He got a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice management from Concordia University and a master’s degree in business management from Indiana Wesleyan. Carson spent nine years as a plainclothes officer of the Indiana Excise Police, which enforces alcohol and tobacco laws. “I loved law enforcement,” he told Esquire magazine in 2010. “But this job sure beats sitting and waiting for something bad to go down at three in the morning.”

He recalled that his political interest began in 1984, at age 10, when he attended the Democratic convention in San Francisco and heard civil rights leader Jesse Jackson speak. Carson said that his thinking was transformed by reading The Autobiography of Malcolm X, and he attended Louis Farrakhan’s Million Man March in 1995. In 2007, at age 32, he won a seat on the Indianapolis City-County Council, his first elected office.

After Julia Carson died in December 2007 following multiple and lengthy illnesses, her grandson faced significant opposition for the Democratic nomination in the special election to fill the remainder of her term. At the January 2008 Democratic caucus, he won with 223 of the 439 votes; state Rep. David Orentlicher, a lawyer and doctor, got 123 votes, and Marion County Treasurer Michael Rodman came in third with 27 votes.

Against Republican state Rep. Jon Elrod, a young lawyer, Carson received extensive assistance from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. On issues, he called for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq, endorsed tax cuts for working families, and said that companies should have incentives to keep them from sending jobs overseas. Elrod emphasized aid to small businesses and tougher enforcement of immigration laws, and he called for an end to federal spending earmarks. Carson won, 54%-43%.

Meanwhile, Carson had to continue campaigning for a May primary to determine the winner of a full term. That field included Orentlicher, former state Health Commissioner Woodrow Myers, and state Rep. Carolene Mays. Running as the incumbent this time and with an endorsement from presidential candidate Barack Obama, Carson won the primary with 47% of the vote to 24% for Myers, 20% for Orentlicher, and 8% for Mays. In the contest for a full term, Elrod won the GOP nomination, but he soon withdrew and ran unsuccessfully to retain his seat in the state House. Carson has faced minimal opposition since then.

In the House, Carson has established a liberal voting record. He was named a senior whip on Minority Whip Steny Hoyer’s team in 2013 and given a seat on the Armed Services Committee. He also took over as the black caucus’ secretary. Though he has a reputation for thoughtfulness, his biting rhetoric has sometimes gotten him in trouble. At a town hall meeting in August 2011, Carson said that some members of the tea party movement in Congress would love to see blacks “hanging on a tree.” A year later, he caused another uproar on the right when he said at an Islamic convention: “America will never tap into educational innovation and ingenuity without looking at the model that we have in our madrassas, in our schools, where innovation is encouraged, where the foundation is the Koran.” He later clarified his remarks by saying that faith-based schools of all religions were models for public education to follow. Before the final vote on the health care overhaul in March 2010, he drew national attention by contending that angry protesters outside the Capitol hurled racial epithets at him and Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., a leader of the civil rights movement.

Legislatively, Carson in 2011 added language to defense bills to provide military service members with mental health assessments before and after deployment as well as to provide soldiers and their spouses with financial counseling. As a member of the Financial Services Committee, he included a provision in a predatory lending bill in 2009 to ensure information on foreclosure rules is provided to low-income, elderly, and minority homeowners. He also introduced a bill letting newly released prisoners have their disability and Medicaid benefits reinstated.

Carson initially opposed the $700 billion bailout of the financial markets in 2008 but switched his position after Obama encouraged him to support it. At home, he worked with Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., to have the Housing and Urban Development Department block the sale of a notorious and deteriorating Indianapolis apartment complex from one out-of-state owner to another. He also spoke out against a 2011 bill in Indiana’s legislature calling for a tough immigration law modeled after Arizona’s.

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André Carson Election Results
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2012 General
André Carson (D)
Votes: 162,122
Percent: 62.85%
Carlos May (R)
Votes: 95,828
Percent: 37.15%
2012 Primary
André Carson (D)
Votes: 34,782
Percent: 90.35%
Bob Kern
Votes: 2,048
Percent: 5.32%
Prior Winning Percentages
2010 (59%), 2008 (65%), 2008 spec. (54%)
André Carson 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 83 (L) : 16 (C) 85 (L) : 15 (C) 92 (L) : - (C)
Social 93 (L) : - (C) 66 (L) : 34 (C) 77 (L) : 22 (C)
Foreign 74 (L) : 25 (C) 73 (L) : 26 (C) 73 (L) : 26 (C)
Composite 84.8 (L) : 15.2 (C) 74.8 (L) : 25.2 (C) 82.3 (L) : 17.7 (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
LCV8686
CFG1019
ITIC-58
NTU617
20112012
COC19-
ACLU-92
ACU44
ADA9590
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
    • Pass cut, cap, balance
    • 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: N
    • Year: 2008
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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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