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Jackie Speier

“I believe within my lifetime it is possible that the world will look to America as living proof that people of all backgrounds and ethnicities can come together to create and sustain communities where there is equal access to education, quality affordable healthcare, and an equitable justice system.”

As the next Congresswoman from California’s 12th district, Jackie Speier will be a strong progressive voice in Washington. She has spent her entire career fighting to expand health care coverage, improve our education system, protect the environment and make our government more accountable and responsive to the needs of the people. She is committed to protecting the civil and human rights of all Americans and will promote more sustainable growth policies that create safer and more prosperous communities.

Jackie was born in San Francisco and has devoted much of her life to public service in the bay area. She was raised on the peninsula in a working-class family. Her father, Fred, was a teamster and her mother, Nancy, worked as a seamstress. Jackie graduated from Mercy High School in Burlingame, and went on to earn a B.A. from UC Davis and a J.D. from UC Hastings College of Law.

After receiving her law degree, Jackie served as an aide to California Congressman Leo Ryan. She accompanied the Congressman when he traveled to Jonestown, Guyana to investigate Rev. Jim Jones and the People’s Temple in November 1978. As their delegation was preparing to leave armed cult members ambushed the group, killing five people including Congressman Ryan. Jackie was shot five times and had to wait 22 hours for help to arrive. The experience had a profound effect on her outlook and showed her that “no one is guaranteed a tomorrow.” Click here to see Jackie talk about the Jonestown Tragedy

In 1980, Jackie became the youngest person ever elected to the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors. Six years later she won a seat in the California State Assembly and in 1998 Jackie was elected to the State Senate. She represented San Francisco and San Mateo County in the body for eight years. In the legislature Jackie built an impressive record of achievement with over 300 pieces of legislation signed into law by both Democratic and Republican Governors. She received numerous awards and authored groundbreaking legislation in privacy and consumer protection, child welfare, and healthcare. Many of her bills have become models for other state and national legislation.

Jackie Speier was motivated to enter public service by the Kennedys and believes that our nation desperately needs to recapture a sense of national service. 21st Century Democrats is proud to endorse such an exceptional leader and we are confident that she will promote a strong progressive agenda as the representative from California’s 12th Congressional District.

Race Facts

Race Type: Democratic Protect
Special Election Date: April 8, 2008
Special Election Result: Won, 77.9%
Primary Election Date: June 3, 2008
Primary Election Result:Won Primary
General Election Opponents: Phillip G Conlon
General Election Date: November 4, 2008
General Election Results: Won, 75.2% – 18.4%


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