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

Biography

Elected: 2000, 7th term.

Born: June 15, 1965, Arlington, WA

Home: Lake Stevens, WA

Education: Pacific Lutheran U., B.A. 1987, U. of MN, M.P.A. 1990

Professional Career: Econ. dev. official, Port of Everett, 1990-91; Dir., pub. affairs, WA St. Dental Assn., 1991-98.

Ethnicity: White/Caucasian

Religion: Methodist

Family: Married (Tiia Karlen) , 2 children

Rick Larsen, a moderate Democrat first elected in 2000, takes an avid interest in issues related to China, a country that does substantial business with his state. He also is active on aviation matters to help Boeing Co., a major employer in his district.

Larsen grew up in Arlington, in Snohomish County, graduated from Pacific Lutheran University, and got a master’s degree at the University of Minnesota. He spent a year doing research on economic development for the Port of Everett. For six years, he was director of public affairs for the Washington State Dental Association. In 1998, he won a seat on the Snohomish County Council and later became its president.

In 2000, Republican Jack Metcalf kept his promise to retire after three terms in Congress. The Democratic field was cleared for Larsen when a state legislator unpopular with labor leaders withdrew. The Republican nominee was state Rep. John Koster. The general election became a battleground for political action committees and one of the premier contests in the nation. Anti-abortion rights groups and the National Rifle Association backed Koster, and unions and abortion rights groups fought for Larsen. Larsen said that the contest offered “a clear choice” on abortion, and he criticized Koster for referring to “our American holocaust.” Larsen won 50%-46%.

In the House, Larsen joined the New Democrat Coalition and leans toward the center in his voting record, although he has been more reliably Democratic since President Barack Obama took office. He backed the president’s 2009 economic stimulus and 2010 health care legislation. Earlier, he voted for the Bush tax cuts in 2001, but later expressed opposition to extending tax cuts for upper income taxpayers because it would add to the deficit. Though he opposed the 2005 Central America Free Trade Agreement, he did join with most Republicans six years later to back free trade pacts with Korea, Panama, and Colombia. He also was one of 22 Democrats in 2012 to support a failed proposal to implement a budget along the lines of the Simpson-Bowles deficit reduction commission.

Larsen co-chairs the U.S.-China Working Group, a bipartisan group of House members that seeks to build lasting diplomatic ties with China. He joined then-Rep. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., in introducing a series of bills in 2009 aimed at boosting cooperation on trade, environmental, energy, and language issues. The group met with Chinese military officials in May 2011 and was permitted to tour a Chinese navy attack submarine. The same year, Larsen got a bill into law creating a new type of business card aimed at expediting travel in the Asia-Pacific region for qualified American travelers. He joined the group’s other co-chair, Louisiana Republican Charles Boustany, in 2013 in calling for greater U.S. engagement with China on military issues, despite reports of widespread U.S. computer-security breaches that were blamed on the country’s army.

Larsen won a plum assignment in 2013 by becoming the top Democrat on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee’s aviation panel. Boeing is one of his major campaign contributors, as is Microsoft. He supported the Federal Aviation Administration’s decision in January 2013 to ground the company’s new 787 Dreamliner fleet over concerns about the plane’s fire-plagued batteries, saying that safety should be paramount. He joined other Washington delegation members in 2010 in seeking to ensure that Boeing received a lucrative contract to build the next generation of Air Force refueling tankers. On other issues, Larsen has pushed to secure funds for upgraded border security at Bellingham and helped get a pipeline safety bill into law in 2002 after a lethal explosion in his district.

Larsen won reelection easily until 2010, when he was challenged by Koster, his opponent of a decade earlier. Koster won endorsements from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, which inspired tea party activists to pump hundreds of thousands of dollars into the Republican’s campaign. Their second battle was a microcosm of the two major parties’ skirmishes that year: Koster blasted the Democrats’ “socialist” health care bill and the rising federal debt, while Larsen stressed job creation and expanding credit for small business.

On Election Night, Larsen trailed by about 1,200 votes but gained ground as more ballots were counted. He declared victory a week later with a 51%-49% edge. Two years later, he became a big beneficiary of Washington’s post-2010 census redistricting; Republican precincts in the Cascades foothills were excised. With Koster choosing to run—once again unsuccessfully—in the 1st District, Larsen returned to form by beating Republican Dan Matthews 61%-39%.

Office Contact Information

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-2605

(202) 225-4420

RHOB- Rayburn House Office Building Room 2113
Washington, DC 20515-4702

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-2605

(202) 225-4420

RHOB- Rayburn House Office Building Room 2113
Washington, DC 20515-4702

DISTRICT OFFICE

(202) 225-2605

(202) 225-4420

2930 Wetmore Avenue Suite 9F
Everett, WA 98201-4070

DISTRICT OFFICE

(425) 252-3188

(425) 252-6606

2930 Wetmore Avenue Suite 9F
Everett, WA 98201-4070

DISTRICT OFFICE

(202) 225-2605

(202) 225-4420

119 North Commercial Street Suite 1350
Bellingham, WA 98225-4452

DISTRICT OFFICE

(360) 733-4500

(360) 733-5144

119 North Commercial Street Suite 1350
Bellingham, WA 98225-4452

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

(202) 225-2605

(202) 225-4420

PO Box 326
Everett, WA 98206

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

PO Box 326
Everett, WA 98206

EXPORT CONTACTS » *

Staff

Sort by: Interest Name Title

Aerospace

Jonathan Golden
Military Legislative Assistant

Agriculture

Adam LeMieux
District Director

Animal Rights

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Appropriations

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Arts

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Budget

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Commerce

Adam LeMieux
District Director

Economics

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Education

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Family

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Gambling

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Govt Ops

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Gun Issues

Jonathan Golden
Military Legislative Assistant

Health

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Homeland Security

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Jonathan Golden
Military Legislative Assistant

Housing

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Human Rights

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Immigration

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Intelligence

Jonathan Golden
Military Legislative Assistant

Judiciary

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Labor

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Adam LeMieux
District Director

Medicare

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Military

Adam LeMieux
District Director

Jonathan Golden
Military Legislative Assistant

Mike Schanche
Veterans Outreach; Community Outreach Representative

Social Security

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Tax

Kim Conrad
Legislative Correspondent

kim.conrad@mail.house.gov
(202) 225-2605

Technology

Jonathan Golden
Military Legislative Assistant

Trade

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Adam LeMieux
District Director

Transportation

Adam LeMieux
District Director

Veterans

Jonathan Golden
Military Legislative Assistant

Mike Schanche
Veterans Outreach; Community Outreach Representative

Women

Terra Sabag
Legislative Director

Election Results

2014 GENERAL
Rick Larsen
Votes: 118,082
Percent: 60.74%
B.J. Guillot
Votes: 76,323
Percent: 39.26%
2012 GENERAL
Rick Larsen
Votes: 184,826
Percent: 61.14%
Dan Matthews
Votes: 117,465
Percent: 38.86%
2012 PRIMARY
Rick Larsen
Votes: 79,632
Percent: 57.21%
Dan Matthews
Votes: 39,956
Percent: 28.71%
John Shoop
Votes: 8,130
Percent: 5.84%
2010 GENERAL
Rick Larsen
Votes: 155,241
Percent: 51.07%
John Koster
Votes: 148,722
Percent: 48.93%
2010 PRIMARY
John Koster
Votes: 74,032
Percent: 42.0%
Rick Larsen
Votes: 73,734
Percent: 42.0%
Diana McGinness
Votes: 10,548
Percent: 6.0%
2008 GENERAL
Rick Larsen
Votes: 217,416
Percent: 62.39%
Rick Bart
Votes: 131,051
Percent: 37.61%
2008 PRIMARY
Rick Larsen
Votes: 98,304
Percent: 54.33%
Rick Bart
Votes: 68,189
Percent: 38.0%
Prior Winning Percentages
2010 (51%), 2008 (62%), 2006 (64%), 2004 (64%), 2002 (50%), 2000 (50%)

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