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Loretta Sanchez

Loretta Sanchez
Loretta Sanchez

as a secretary. Her Mexican immigrant parents had seven children, all of whom went to college.[2] Sanchez joined the United Food and Commercial Workers when she worked as an ice cream server in high school, and she received a union scholarship to college.

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from California’s 47th district Incumbent Assumed office January 3, 1997 Preceded by Born Political party Residence Alma mater Occupation Religion Bob Dornan January 7, 1960 (1960-01-07) Lynwood, California Democratic; Republican until 1992 Anaheim, California Chapman College, American University financial analyst Roman Catholic

Entry and life in politics

Loretta Sanchez (born January 7, 1960), an American politician, has been a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives since 1997. She currently represents the 47th Congressional District of California (map) in central Orange County.

Loretta Sanchez with former president Bill Clinton. In 1994 Sanchez ran unsuccessfully as a moderate Republican for the Anaheim City Council under her then married name, Loretta Brixey. In 1996, she changed parties and recast herself as a moderate Democrat to run in the 46th District against six-term Republican incumbent Bob Dornan. The bitterly fought race saw Sanchez charge that Dornan was out of touch with his constituency, especially after a distracting run for the 1996 Republican Presidential nomination. The 46th had always had a Democratic tilt, but became even more Democratic after the 1990 census when it received a considerably larger number of Hispanics than had previously been in the

Sanchez was born in California and graduated from Katella High School in Anaheim in 1978. She received her undergraduate degree from Chapman College in Orange in 1982, obtained her MBA from American University in Washington, DC in 1984, and was a financial analyst until entering the House. Sanchez describes herself as growing up a "shy, quiet girl" who did not speak English. She credits government with much of her success in public life.[1] Her father was a unionized machinist and her mother worked


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district. Sanchez won by 984 votes, and Dornan contested the election, alleging that many votes were cast by people who were not American citizens. A Congressional investigation found evidence that 624 votes were indeed cast by noncitizens. An additional 124 votes had already been thrown out by California officials. These votes were not enough to throw Sanchez’s victory into doubt, so the investigation was halted and the outcome was upheld by a Republican-controlled Congress,[3] making Sanchez the first American of Mexican heritage to represent Orange County in Congress. Dornan continues to assert that illegal voter registration of non-citizens was decisive in Sanchez’s victory. In consultation with the INS, the House committee identified as many as 4,700 questionable registration affidavits;[4] however, the probe was dropped before these affidavits were investigated. As Article I Section V of the Constitution of the United States provides that "Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members" the investigation was without binding authority.[5]

Loretta Sanchez
was renumbered the 47th District after the 2000 census. In 2006, she defeated perennial candidate Tan D. Nguyen (R) with 62% of the vote. In November 2002, Sanchez’s younger sister, Linda, was elected for the new 39th District. They are the first pair of sisters to serve simultaneously in the United States Congress.

2003 Gubernatorial recall election
During California’s Gubernatorial recall campaign, Sanchez was one of the first Democrats to break from Governor Gray Davis and state that a Democrat should run to succeed Davis in case the recall measure passed. Though she recommended that the Democratic candidate be California’s Senior Senator Dianne Feinstein, Sanchez stated that if no other serious Democratic contender stepped forward, she would be willing to run herself. Many California Democrats ultimately adopted Sanchez’s position, paving the way for Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante to enter the race.

Political positions
Sanchez is known for her interests in education, crime, economic development, and protections for senior citizens.[6] • National Journal rated her votes in 2006 as liberal or conservative, with 100 as the highest rating, in three areas: Economic, Social, and Foreign. The ratings are: Economic = 71 liberal, 28 conservative; Social = 80 liberal, 19 conservative; Foreign = 70 liberal, 28 conservative.[7]

After changing parties, she staunchly opposed the Republican’s Head Start program overhaul in the 108th Congress, invoking her experience growing up poor and challenged by a speech impediment. "I know about these kids, because I am one of those kids," she said during debate on the bill. "It hurts to hear you talk about how we are not successful, or how we are losers. But we are very successful. We have had a lot of successes with Head Start," she said. Sanchez has asserted that conservative Republicans are not committed to improving public education.[8] When President Bush’s 2003 budget proposal

The first sister congresswomen, Loretta and Linda Sanchez. Sanchez became the first (and as of 2006, only) Democrat to represent a significant portion of Orange County since Dornan ousted Jerry Patterson in 1984. In a 1998 rematch, she heavily defeated Dornan and has not faced serious opposition since. Her district


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Loretta Sanchez
prevalent than previously thought. As a result, she led the fight to change sexual assault provisions of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Sanchez is regarded as a liberal on social issues. She voted against a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and supports abortion rights. She also sought to reverse the ban on abortions at overseas military bases and installations. In August 2000, Sanchez refused to relocate a political fundraiser she had planned at the Playboy Mansion in California. As a result, Democratic National Committee chairman Joe Andrew cancelled her scheduled speaking role at the Democratic National Convention. Sanchez’s address was reinstated just before the convention, when she agreed to relocate her fundraiser to Universal Studios.[9] Because of her close ties to labor growing up, she often votes labor’s way.

Loretta Sanchez at her annual "Women of Distinction" Event. threatened to cut education grants, she responded, "If he can run deficits for the military, then he can run deficits to educate our children."[1]

Armed services, social issues, and labor

Foreign policy

Loretta Sanchez visits U.S. troops in Kuwait during Easter.

Loretta Sanchez meeting with union leaders. She is the second-ranking Democrat on the Homeland Security Committee. She is also a senior member of the Armed Services Committee, and the most senior woman on that committee. Loretta has fought to reform both the law and culture of the U.S. military relating to investigation of sexual crimes, prosecution of sex offenders and care of sexual assault victims. Her leadership contributed to a decision to examine the problem of sexual assault at the military service academies, which revealed that the problem was much more

Loretta Sanchez visits U.S. troops in Africa.


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According to Congressional Quarterly, "In 2002, Sanchez voted against reviving fasttrack procedures for congressional action on trade deals. And, coming from a district with one of the largest Vietnamese communities outside Vietnam, she voted against a trade agreement with Vietnam, saying that political and human rights conditions in that country needed improvement. Her outspokenness led the Hanoi regime to refuse to allow her into the country late in 2004 when she applied for an entry visa to meet with dissidents."[1] By April 2006, Sanchez had been denied a visa to visit Vietnam four times by the country’s officials.[10] In honor of International Human Rights Day, Representative Loretta Sanchez (D-California) joined a bipartisan group of 11 House Members that issued a letter to Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung calling for the release of two U.S. citizens arrested by the Government of Vietnam.[11] On October 10, 2002, Loretta Sanchez was among the 133 members of the House who voted against authorizing the invasion of Iraq, but she has voted in favor of every appropriation bill for the war in Iraq. She opposed the troop surge in February 2007.[12] On March 7, 2007 Sanchez led a female congressional delegation to visit troops in Iraq. This is Sanchez’s third visit to Iraq most recently in 2004.[13] Sanchez has a strong record on supporting human rights and is a member of the bipartisan Congressional Human Rights Caucus. Two major votes include voting yes to keep the Cuba travel ban until political prisoners are released, and yes to acknowledge the Armenian genocide of the early 1900s.[14] She voted to the Implementing the 9/11 Commission Recommendations Act of 2007.

Loretta Sanchez

Perception by interest groups
Various interest groups have given Representative Sanchez scores or grades as to how well her votes align with the positions of the group: • Americans for Democratic Action has given her a 100 percent "Liberal Quotient" through 2007.[17] • The American Conservative Union has given her a lifetime 10.48 percent proenvironment action rating through 2007.[18] • The Drum Major Institute’s 2005 Congressional Scorecard gave her a 75 percent score or ’C’ grade on middle-class issues.[19] • The ACLU Congressional Scorecard gave her a 86 percent lifetime score.[20] • NARAL Pro-Choice America gave her a 100 percent pro-choice score.[21] • The League of Conservation Voters has given her a 100 percent pro-environment action rating through 2006.[22] • Americans for Better Immigration has given her a grade of ’D-’ from 2005 through 2008.[23] • The National Rifle Association gave her a ’D’ rating in 2006 for her stance on gun issues.[24]

Committee assignments
• • Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations • Subcommittee on Strategic Forces • Subcommittee on Military Personnel • (Vice Chair) • Subcommittee on Border, Maritime and Global Counterterrorism (Chairwoman) • Subcommittee on Emerging Threats, Cybersecurity, and Science and Technology

Sanchez has stated that she was briefly denied access to a United Airlines flight in October of 2006 because her name appeared on a “no fly list” set up after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Sanchez said she was instructed to check in with a United employee, who told her she was on the terrorist watch list. The employee asked her for identification. Sanchez had previously been a critic of the "no fly list" before the incident.[16]

In 2008 sister congresswomen Loretta Sanchez and Linda Sanchez published the joint memoir Dream in Color: How the Sanchez Sisters Are Making History in Congress.[25] Publishers Weekly reviewed the book and wrote: "Linda and Loretta Sanchez present their compelling story—noteworthy not only for their history-making achievements (including first sisters or women of any relation to serve together in Congress, first woman


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and person of color to represent a district in Orange County, first Latina on the House Judiciary Committee and first Head Start child to be elected to Congress) but also for its “American Dream” aspect—their parents immigrated from Mexico and despite lacking a formal education managed to send their seven children to college. Interweaving childhood vignettes with accounts of serving in Congress, both from California, this refreshing book evades many of the tropes of the typical political memoir—perhaps because these two women are not typical politicians."[26]

Loretta Sanchez
Baca and repeated it to Sanchez, yet Núñez claimed not to recall any such comment.[34] Sanchez, however, claimed after the article was published that she had never mentioned Núñez to[35]

Loretta Sanchez in popular culture
Loretta Sanchez was mentioned by name in the song "Ni de aquí, ni de allá" by Jae-P in a verse signifying the rise of Latinos in society: "...el Latino hoy en día no es un simple lavaplatos Hey, Loretta Sanchez quién te limpia tus zapatos..." In English this translates as: "...the Latino nowadays is not a dishwasher. Hey, Loretta Sanchez who cleans your shoes for you...."[36] The Hispanic Caucus Controversy (see above) was parodied on the Colbert Report on February 7, 2007.[37] On February 8, 2007, the phrase "Loretta Sanchez is a whore?" appeared on screen during "The Wørd" segment of the Colbert Report, eliciting laughs from the audience. Loretta Sanchez appeared as herself in the September 10, 2007 episode of The Closer entitled "Til Death Do Us Part, Part II". Within the fictional narrative of the show, she was briefly seen on the program Larry King Live being interviewed about a criminal legal case. On September 13, 2008, Sanchez was featured on TMZ on TV and at the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado. TMZ jokes: "California Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez was four lattes past hyper today in Denver."[38] A video of Sanchez shows her excessively excited as she interacts with a cameraman. On September 19, 2008, TMZ again featured Sanchez, highlighting contributions made to her by Hugh Hefner.[39]

Political ambitions
According to Roll Call, "Sanchez continues to give serious consideration to running for governor in 2010, as well as for the Senate, should Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA.) choose not to seek a fourth term."[27] In November 2005, she opened an exploratory committee called People for Loretta 2010.[28]

Hispanic Caucus controversy
In February 2006, Sanchez withdrew from the Congressional Hispanic Caucus’s political action committee, along with 5 other members, because the caucus chairman, Joe Baca, authorized political contributions to members of his family who were running for state and local offices in California.[29] Sanchez and other CHC members also claim that Baca was improperly elected chairman of the caucus in November 2006 because the vote failed to use secret ballots, as required in the group’s bylaws.[30] On January 31, 2007, Sanchez quit the CHC because she claimed that Baca repeatedly treated the group’s female members with disrespect. Other female lawmakers have made the same complaint about Baca.[31] In the election for caucus chairman, only one female member of the 23-member Caucus voted to support Baca’s candidacy.[32] According to Loretta Sanchez, Linda Sanchez, and Hilda Solis, Baca also called Loretta Sanchez "a whore" when he was speaking to other lawmakers.[29][33] Baca denied the charge. reported that Sanchez claimed California Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez heard the comment from

[1] ^ Sanchez, Loretta. (2005). In CQ’s Politics in America 2006. The 109th Congress. Retrieved January 14, 2007, from CQ Electronic Library, CQ Congress Collection [2] "Sanchezes: Sisters to Watch" US News and World Report January 12, 2007. Retrieved February 4, 2007.


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Loretta Sanchez

[3] "Proof Of Illegal Voters Falls Short, [23] Keeping Sanchez In House". testgrades.php3?District=CA47&VIPID=126 February 7, 1998. Retrieved February 7, [24] 2007 issue_rating_detail.php?r_id=3492 [4] Warren, Peter (1997), "Signature Lists [25] in Sanchez Probe" Los Angeles S%C3%A1nchez-Sisters-Congress/dp/ Times November 17: A1. 0446508047/ [5] "How to Steal an Election" City Journal. ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1226018626&s Autumn 2004. Retrieved February 7, [26] 2007 article/CA6567674.html [6] Sanchez, Loretta. (2007). Issues. [27] "Think Big, Plan Ahead." Roll Call, Retrieved May 16, 2007 from January 11, 2007. [28] "Rep. Sanchez ponders move out of index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=19&Itemid=17 House" Retrieved [7] February 4, 2007 search?q=cache:MbDy1TUk[29] ^ "Sanchez Accuses Democrat of Calling a ’Whore’, Resigns from Hispanic Her pubs/almanac/2008/people/ca/ Group" The Politico. February 2, 2007. rep_ca47.htm+Almanac+of+American+Politics+loretta+sanchez&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us Retrieved February 7, 2007 [8] Sanchez, Loretta. "The Real State of the [30] "Two More Reps. Complain About Union is Not Healthy." Los Angeles Treatment of Women in Hispanic Times 2 February 2003: B19. Caucus" The Politico. February 2, 2007. [9] The taming of Loretta Sanchez. Retrieved February 7, 2007 Retrieved May 4, 2008 [31] "’Whore’ Comment Fractures California [10] "Vietnam denies visa for Sanchez visit" Dems" Los Angeles Times February 1, Retrieved February 4, 2007. Retrieved February 7, 2007 2007 [32] "CHC nears split as female members [11] refuse to support chairman" The Hill. index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=253&Itemid=129 November 18, 2006. Retrieved February [12] Congresswoman Sanchez during debate 7, 2007 on the floor of the U.S. House of [33] "Hispanic Caucus Members Toil Over Representatives, February 14 2007 See Insult" Washington Post. February 1, also Congresswoman Sanchez’s 2007. Retrieved February 7, 2007 comments on the house floor [34] "Nunez: I Don’t Recall Whore Comment" [13] Los Angeles Times February 1, 2007. index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=213&Itemid=129 7, 2007 Retrieved February [14] [35] "Hispanic Caucus Members Toil Over Loretta_Sanchez_Foreign_Policy.htm Insult" February 1, 2007. [15] Retrieved February 7, 2006 index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=199&Itemid=56 [36] "Jae-P — Ni de Aqui Ni de Alla" [16] Retrieved February article.cgi?file=/news/archive/2006/10/ 10, 2007 30/state/n174752S39.DTL [37] The Colbert Report, perf. Stephen [17] Colbert. Comedy Central. February 7, votingrecords/2007.pdf 2007. Retrieved February 10, 2007 [18] [38] [1] "Loretta Stoned -- Congresswoman 2007house.htm#CA High on Life" [19] [39] [2] "Hef Likes Him Some Sanchez" congress/outerenvelope_house.htm [20] VoteCenter?congress=110&repId=20145&session_num=0&page=legScore [21]• U.S. Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez, action-center/in-congress/congressionalU.S. House site record-on-choice/california.html • Loretta Sanchez for U.S. Congress, U.S. [22] campaign site LCV_2006_Scorecard_final.pdf

External links


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United States House of Representatives Preceded by Bob Dornan Preceded by Chris Cox

Loretta Sanchez

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives Succeeded by from California’s 46th congressional district Dana Rohrabacher 1997–2003 Member of the U.S. House of Representatives Incumbent from California’s 47th congressional district 2003 – present • Biography, voting record, and interest group ratings at Project Vote Smart • Issue positions and quotes at On The Issues • SourceWatch Congresspedia — Loretta Sanchez profile

• Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress • Voting record maintained by The Washington Post • Campaign finance reports and data at the Federal Election Commission • Campaign contributions at

Retrieved from "" Categories: 1960 births, American Roman Catholics, American University alumni, California Democrats, Hispanic Americans, Living people, Members of the United States House of Representatives from California, Mexican American politicians, People from Anaheim, California, Sanchez family, Female members of the United States House of Representatives, Women in California politics This page was last modified on 19 May 2009, at 22:47 (UTC). All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.) Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a U.S. registered 501(c)(3) taxdeductible nonprofit charity. Privacy policy About Wikipedia Disclaimers


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