Almanac A members-only database of searchable profiles compiled and adapted from the Almanac of American Politics

Biography

Elected: 1992, 12th term.

Born: October 12, 1951, Los Angeles, CA

Home: Fullerton, CA

Education: CA State Fullerton, B.A. 1977

Professional Career: Tax mgr., 1979–82.

Ethnicity: White/Caucasian

Religion: Roman Catholic

Family: Married (Marie Therese Porter)

Ed Royce, a Republican first elected in 1992, is a hawkish conservative and fervent supporter of free trade. In late 2012, he was named chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, replacing term-limited Florida Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

Royce’s lifetime almost precisely spans Orange County’s. He grew up in Fullerton and belonged to the conservative Young Americans for Freedom at Cal State Fullerton. He was later the head of Youth for Reagan in California during Reagan’s 1976 challenge to Gerald Ford. Royce worked several years as a tax and capital projects manager for a cement company. In 1982, a group of conservative state legislators known as the “Cave Men’’ took him to a Black Angus restaurant—no avocado-and-sprout sandwiches for them—and persuaded him to run for the state Senate. He won at age 31. When the legislature refused to pass Royce’s bill allowing crime victims to object to trial delays, giving grand juries more power, and ending “jury-shopping,” he got the measure on the ballot as an initiative and it passed by a wide margin. He also wrote the first law making it a felony to stalk someone. In 1992, Royce ran for the U.S. House. With the blessing of Orange County Republican leaders, he was unopposed in the primary and easily won the general. He has been reelected by wide margins ever since.

In the House, Royce has a conservative voting record, and he has been a faithful fundraiser for Republicans, which helped him prevail over New Jersey’s Chris Smith in taking the helm at Foreign Affairs. He made clear his intention to aggressively oversee the Obama administration as chairman. He had the backing of Ros-Lehtinen and, reportedly, 11 of the panel’s 14 Republicans. “I will work against the administration’s most harmful foreign policies and exercise strong oversight over the State Department and other agencies,” he said in announcing his bid. He later blasted what he called Obama’s “unimaginative and moribund” approach to North Korea and called Iran’s quest to attain nuclear weapons “a grave threat that demands constant attention and great pressure on Tehran.” He also promised to develop closer ties with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, saying on his blog, “It doesn’t make a lot of sense to pass legislation in the House with little Senate support.”

In 2014, Royce worked to get a bill providing aid to Ukraine while imposing sanctions on Russia through the House and into law. He brushed aside Senate Republicans' calls to include in the measure language to change how the United States provides money to the International Monetary Fund. "There isn't support in my committee on either side of the aisle for including this. We feel it should be handled separately," he told reporters. The provision eventually was dropped.

But Royce also called for doing more to export American natural gas to Europe to offer Russia some competition in those markets. “Until we do something decisive on energy policy, until we have a strategy and a policy that actually is something that the Russians would really worry about long term, we don’t have that hammer,” Royce said.

Royce has developed a good working relationship with New York's Eliot Engel, Foreign Relations' ranking Democrat. The two men both are staunch supporters 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. In February 2015, Royce told conservative talk-show host Hugh Hewitt that giving the Obama administration explicit authority to strike Iran if it continued developing a nuclear weapon was "a good idea."

The last time Republicans held the majority, Royce was the chairman of the International Relations Subcommittee on Africa. Although he had never set foot in Africa, he was widely praised for getting up to speed on the issues. He was instrumental in getting bipartisan support to enact an Africa free trade bill. He also sponsored bills to encourage oil production, promote human rights, and condemn the genocide in Sudan. He was among the sponsors of a bipartisan bill in 2009 requiring Obama to develop a comprehensive plan to end the brutal two-decade war in Uganda.

Back in the majority after the 2010 election, Royce became chairman of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade, where he has focused on the spread of radical Islam. He won enactment of a bill establishing Radio Free Afghanistan and another measure to promote nuclear nonproliferation in North Korea. He has also urged stronger strategic and trade relationships between the United States and India, and condemned the discrimination against Hindus in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Bhutan. He helped win the release of two journalists from a North Korean prison in 2009.

On other issues, Royce has been a vocal critic of the Obama administration’s approach to immigration, calling for it to tightly enforce current laws rather than propose new ones. He introduced a bill in 2011 to deploy National Guard troops on the U.S.-Mexico border. On the Financial Services Committee, he has worked with Democrats to expand lending authority for credit unions and to put them on an equivalent status with banks, something that puts him at odds with other Republicans who align more closely with the banking industry. He got a bill into law in 2014 that expands federal deposit insurance to include interest on lawyer trust accounts and similar escrow accounts housed within credit unions. During conference committee negotiations on the 2010 financial industry overhaul, he tried without success to persuade conferees to make substantive changes to government-backed mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, arguing that reshaping the oft-criticized institutions was crucial to any reform effort.

Redistricting after the 2010 census initially called for pitting Royce in a primary against fellow Republican Rep. Gary Miller. But Miller decided to seek reelection in the 31st District to the east, giving Royce a clear path to another term to the newly redrawn 39th.

Office Contact Information

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-4111

(202) 226-0335

RHOB- Rayburn House Office Building Room 2310
Washington, DC 20515-0539

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-4111

(202) 226-0335

RHOB- Rayburn House Office Building Room 2310
Washington, DC 20515-0539

DISTRICT OFFICE

(714) 255-0101

(714) 255-0109

210 West Birch Street Suite 201
Brea, CA 92821

DISTRICT OFFICE

(714) 255-0101

(714) 255-0109

210 West Birch Street Suite 201
Brea, CA 92821

DISTRICT OFFICE

(626) 964-5123

(626) 810-3891

1380 South Fullerton Road Room 205
Rowland Heights, CA 91748

DISTRICT OFFICE

(626) 964-5123

(626) 810-3891

1380 South Fullerton Road Room 205
Rowland Heights, CA 91748

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

(714) 253-7391

1513 North Highland Avenue
Fullerton, CA 92835-3733

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

1513 North Highland Avenue
Fullerton, CA 92835-3733

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Election Results

2012 GENERAL
Ed Royce
Votes: 145,607
Percent: 57.79%
Jay Chen
Votes: 106,360
Percent: 42.21%
2012 PRIMARY
Ed Royce
Votes: 62,874
Percent: 66.26%
Jay Chen
Votes: 28,457
Percent: 29.99%
2010 GENERAL
Ed Royce
Votes: 119,455
Percent: 66.79%
Christina Avalos
Votes: 59,400
Percent: 33.21%
2010 PRIMARY
Ed Royce
Votes: 55,351
Percent: 100.0%
2008 GENERAL
Ed Royce
Votes: 144,923
Percent: 62.55%
Christina Avalos
Votes: 86,772
Percent: 37.45%
2008 PRIMARY
Ed Royce
Votes: 39,565
Percent: 100.0%
Prior Winning Percentages
2010 (67%), 2008 (63%), 2006 (67%), 2004 (68%), 2002 (68%), 2000 (63%), 1998 (63%), 1996 (63%), 1994 (66%), 1992 (57%)

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