Jim Himes

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James Andrew Himes
Jim Himes Official.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Connecticut's 4th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2009
Preceded by Chris Shays
Personal details
Born (1966-07-05) July 5, 1966 (age 54)
Lima, Peru
Nationality American
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Mary Scott
Residence Greenwich, Connecticut
Alma mater Harvard University (B.A.)
St Edmund Hall, Oxford (M.Phil.)
Profession Affordable housing executive
Religion Presbyterian
Website Congressman Jim Himes

James Andrew "Jim" Himes (born July 5, 1966) is an American businessman and U.S. Representative for Connecticut's 4th congressional district, serving since 2009. He is a member of the Democratic Party.

The district incorporates portions of Fairfield and New Haven counties in southwestern Connecticut, including the cities of Bridgeport and Stamford.

Early life and education

Himes was born July 5, 1966 in Lima, Peru,[1] to American parents, where his father worked for the Ford Foundation.[2]

His father, James R. Himes, also worked for UNICEF,[3] being the director of the Unicef Innocenti Center, a research institute on child development in Florence, Italy.

His mother, Judith A. Himes, was until recent years the director of board activities for the New Jersey Board of Higher Education in Trenton.

He spent his early childhood in Lima and Bogotá, Colombia.[2] After the divorce of his parents, Jim, his mother, and his two sisters moved to Pennington, New Jersey,[2][4] where Himes attended and graduated from Hopewell Valley Central High School.[3]

Himes attended Harvard University as an undergraduate where he was the captain of the Lightweight crew and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in 1988.[1] Himes studied for a degree in Latin American studies as a Rhodes scholar at St Edmund Hall, Oxford[2] and graduated with a Master of Philosophy in 1990.[1] He was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from the University of Bridgeport on May 5, 2012.[5]

Professional career

In 1995, Himes began working at Goldman Sachs[6] as a banker in Latin America and New York. He was eventually promoted to vice president. In 2003, Himes began working for the non-profit Enterprise Foundation (currently Enterprise Community Partners), and later began running their metropolitan New York operations. In 2007, he was named vice president of Enterprise.

Himes was appointed a Commissioner of the Greenwich Housing Authority in 2002, and served for two years as chairman of the board. He has also served as a board member of Aspira of Connecticut in Bridgeport, a board member of the Fairfield County Community Foundation, and as an advisory board member of Family Assets, LLp of Bridgeport.

He was also an elected member of the Greenwich Board of Estimate and Taxation and served as the Chairman of the Greenwich Democratic Town Committee.[7]

U.S. House of Representatives


Himes has sponsored 32 bills, including:[8]

111th Congress (2009-2010)

  • H.R. 2600, a bill to prohibit any state from imposing income taxes on nonresident individuals for any period in which the individual is not physically present in or working in the state, introduced May 21, 2009, reintroduced in the 112th Congress as H.R. 5615, reintroduced in the 113th Congress as H.R. 4085
  • H.R. 3973, a bill to award competitive grants to school systems that are implementing innovative early-education curricula, introduced October 29, 2009. Himes introduced a similar bill in the 112th Congress as H.R. 3322 and two similar bills in the 113th Congress as H.R. 3983 and H.R. 3984.
  • H.R. 4106, a bill to create a grant and loan program for retrofitting homes with renewable energy technology, introduced November 18, 2009
  • H.R. 5779, a bill to terminate and reduce payments for various agricultural programs, introduced July 20, 2010

112th Congress (2011-2012)

  • H.R. 1965, a bill to increase from $1 to $10 the shareholder registration threshold for issuing securities, and to require any bank or bank holding company to register with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission if its assets exceed $10 million and include a certain class of equity security held of record by 2,000 or more people, introduced May 24, 2011. H.R. 1965 has passed the House of Representatives but has yet to become law.
  • H.R. 3283, a bill to exempt from regulation under Title VII of the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (WSTAA) any swap dealers who are either a U.S. corporation or a subsidiary of a U.S. corporation and report such swaps to a swap data repository registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), to subject swap dealers to any regulations established by the CFTC to prevent evasion of WSTAA requirements, and subjects to WSTAA requirements any non-U.S. swap dealer who engages in swaps with any U.S. corporation, introduced October 31, 2011
  • H.R. 6187, a bill to increase efforts to cure HIV/AIDS, introduced June 25, 2012, reintroduced in the 113th Congress as H.R. 3630

113th Congress (2013-2014)

  • H.R. 4552, a bill to establish minimum safety standards for equestrian helmets, introduced May 1, 2014
  • H.R. 5004, a bill to promote renewable energy technology for multi-family homes and to make grants available to establish or expand energy savings plans that reduce total energy, water, or gas consumption by at least 20% for multi-family homes, introduced June 26, 2014
  • H.R. 5674, a bill to award grants to higher education institutions that carry out new or existing programs designed to graduate students at significantly lower student costs and within shorter time periods than traditional programs, to create minimum affordability, accessibility, and value accountability standards for higher education institutions, and to financially punish higher education institutions that do not make improvements in such standards, introduced September 19,20-12

Committee assignments



Planned Parenthood gives Himes a 100% pro choice rating.[9] He voted against the Stupak-Pitts Amendment in the Affordable Health Care for America Act that was intended to prevent any federal funds from paying for any health care plan with abortion coverage.[10][11]


Himes states that “we should reduce our presence in Afghanistan as rapidly as possible and reshape our mission to focus exclusively on counterterrorism”, yet requiring “presence in the region, but one considerably smaller than that required by our present strategy of nation-building.”[12] He believes in a nuclear weapon free world, and readily supports sanctions against Iran. He voted for the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010.[12] He supports a two state solution between Israel and Palestine.[12]


Himes believes that early childhood education is “the most intelligent investment a nation can make in its future”, and voted to double funding for Early Head Start Program.[13] He stated in 2008 that No Child Left Behind “is well-intentioned because it focuses on education, but it must be reformed.”[14] Rep. Himes also co-authored an amendment to the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act that promoted the financial literacy of students.[15]


Environment America has given Himes a 100% rating.[16] He believes that “By creating the right set of financial incentives and supporting a broad range of research and development, we can deliver the energy our economy requires to thrive while protecting our planet.”[17] He also voted for the American Clean Energy and Security Act.[11]

Financial Services

− On March 6, 2013, Himes co-sponsored H.R. 992 [18] which rolls-back provisions in section 716 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Citigroup’s recommendations were reflected in more than 70 lines of the House Financial Services committee’s 85-line bill. Two crucial paragraphs, prepared by Citigroup in conjunction with other Wall Street banks, were copied nearly word for word.[19] According to the Congressional Budget Office[20] "H.R. 992 would allow certain financial firms to retain financial portfolios containing swaps while remaining eligible for assistance from the Federal Reserve and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)."

Voted affirmative for H.R. 922. the Swaps Regulatory Improvement Act.[21]

Voted for H.R. 2374, the Retail Investor Protection Act.[22]

Gun Rights

Himes voted against H.R. 627 which allowed loaded guns into national parks.[11] The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence gives him a 100% lifetime score for his support of more gun regulations.[23]

Health Care

Himes supports the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. He believes in preserving Medicare and Medicaid and says we must be “prepared to equitably reform these programs to address the challenging problem of rising health care costs and ensure that these important safety net programs are here to help this generation and the next.”[24]

The Fourth Amendment

Himes voted against H.R. 2397 which was to defund the NSA domestic phone metadata spying program.[25] As one who is against the NSA's metadata spying program Himes states that he voted against H.R. 2397 not because he objects to the principle of limiting the NSA's power, but because the bill was created in a reactionary manner and stripped the NSA of too much power.


Himes co-sponsored H.R. 402, The National Infrastructure Development Bank Act of 2011, which would objectively fund national infrastructure projects. According to Himes it would also “attract private investment and facilitate private sector partnering with regions, states and localities to borrow from the Bank while adding its own private equity to projects.”[26] He has helped bring money to the 4th district, such as “over $70 million for safety improvements, resurfacing, enhancements, and bridge improvements to the Merritt Parkway; over $11 million for infrastructure improvements at the Steel Point project in Bridgeport that will generate thousands of new jobs; and $30 million for upgrades to Metro North’s Danbury Branch line.”[26]

Animal Rights and Wildlife Issues

In 2009-2010 the Society for Animal Protective legislation gave Himes a rating of 100% on his support of animal protection. In 2009, Himes was given a rating of 100% by the Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund due to his position on wildlife action.[27]

Civil Liberties and Civil Rights

In 2009-2010 the Human Rights Campaign gave Himes a rating of 100% due to his stance on human rights and liberties. This rating also extends to his position on sexual orientation and gender identity.[27]


In 2009-2010 the American Immigration Lawyers Association gave Himes a rating of 100% due to his stance on the defense of immigrants in the U.S.[27]

Political campaigns


In 2008 Himes faced the ten-term Republican incumbent Chris Shays in the 2008 congressional election, along with Libertarian nominee M. A. Carrano, a professional philosophy writer and systems consultant, and Green Party nominee Richard Duffee. Winning by a margin of 51 percent to 47 percent,[2] Himes claimed the large cities in the district—Bridgeport, Norwalk and Stamford. However, he swamped Shays in Bridgeport, winning a staggering 80 percent of the vote there.[28] He was also helped by Barack Obama's massive win in that district; Obama carried the 4th with 60 percent of the vote, one of the largest margins Obama recorded in a Republican-held district.

Himes took office in the 111th United States Congress on January 6, 2009. He is the first Democrat to represent the district since Donald J. Irwin left office in 1969, and only the second since 1943. Shays was the sole Republican congressman from New England, and Himes's win made New England's House delegation entirely Democratic for the first time in history.[29]


In the 2010 election, Himes won reelection against Republican challenger State Senator Dan Debicella. Along with the three towns that he won in 2008, Himes also won Redding, Weston, and Westport, and won Fairfield by one vote.[30]

Campaign Finance 2010

The campaign raised $3,660,497.57, $3,603,727 of which was spent.[31] Only 4% of that came from small individual donors, while 60% came from large individual donors. The remaining donations came mostly from Political Action Committees (34%). Himes did not self-finance at all.[31] His top contributor was General Electric with $57,550. Numbers two through five respectively were Goldman Sachs, Brown Brothers Harriman & Co., the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Pullman & Comley.[31] The majority of his money, 74%, came from in-state. Only 26% came from out of state.[31] Rep. Himes disclosed 97.9% of his donations.[31]

Personal life

On October 16, 1994 he married Mary Linley Scott,[32] of Toronto, a daughter of Janet and Michael Scott. The ceremony took place at Cathedral Church of St. James in Toronto, Canada, and was performed by the Rev. M. Jane Watanabe, an Anglican associate priest.

His wife was an assistant designer at Dorf Associates, a retail design firm in New York. She graduated from McGill University and from the Parsons School of Design. Her father retired as the vice chairman of Scotia McLeod, an investment bank in Toronto.

Himes lives in the Cos Cob section of Greenwich with his wife and their two daughters: Emma and Linley.[33] He is fluent in Spanish.[34] He is also a Member of Session of the First Presbyterian Church of Greenwich.[34]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Himes, James A." Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 2009-04-19.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Halbfinger, David M. (2008-11-09). "'Bullheaded' and a Rhodes Scholar, and Now Headed to Capitol Hill". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-04-19.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 Congressman Jim Himes : Biography
  4. "Himes Reaches Out to War-Weary Republicans", Jim Himes for Congress. Accessed February 15, 2011. "He was raised by "a working single mom" in the small town of Pennington, N.J., and attended 'a decent public school.' When he brought home an A minus, his mother would ask, 'What went wrong?'"
  5. Rep. Jim Himes, D-CT, to address graduates at University of Bridgeport's 102nd Commencement on May 5
  6. Wall Street's Favorite Democrat April 26, 2012
  7. Officers | Greenwich Democrats[dead link]
  8. "Representative Himes's Legislation". Library of Congress. Retrieved December 5, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. Planned Parenthood Action
  10. Congressional Record
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Office of the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Rep. Himes' Platform: Defense
  13. Rep. Himes' Platform: Education
  14. Vote Smart Project: Stamford Advocate
  15. Thomas, Library of Congress
  16. Environment America
  17. Rep. Himes' Platform: Energy and Environment
  18. http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-113hr992ih/pdf/BILLS-113hr992ih.pdf
  19. Lipton, Eric; Protess, Ben (May 23, 2013). "Banks' Lobbyists Help in Drafting Financial Bills". The New York Times.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  20. "H.R. 992, Swaps Regulatory Improvement Act - CBO". Cbo.gov. 2013-05-20. Retrieved 2014-08-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  21. [1]
  22. "H.R.2374 - 113th Congress (2013-2014): Retail Investor Protection Act | Congress.gov | Library of Congress". Beta.congress.gov. Retrieved 2014-08-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  23. Vote Smart Project: Brady Campaign Evaluation
  24. Rep. Himes' Platform: Health Care
  25. http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2013/roll412.xml
  26. 26.0 26.1 Rep. Himes' Platform: Transportation
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 "Jim Himes' Ratings and Endorsements - Project Vote Smart". Votesmart.org. Retrieved 2014-08-18.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  28. Elections Results from the Connecticut Secretary of State
  29. Jon Lender & Mark Pazniokas (November 5, 2008). "Jim Himes Defeats Christopher Shays in 4th District". The Hartford Courant. Retrieved April 18, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  30. AP Election Results - Courant.com
  31. 31.0 31.1 31.2 31.3 31.4 OpenSecrets.org
  32. http://www.nytimes.com/1994/10/16/style/weddings-mary-l-scott-james-a-himes.html WEDDINGS; Mary L. Scott, James A. Himes
  33. http://www.greenwichmag.com/g/March-2010/From-One-House-to-Another/ From One House to Another
  34. 34.0 34.1 [2][dead link]

External links

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Chris Shays
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Connecticut's 4th congressional district

United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Gregg Harper
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Duncan D. Hunter