Kathy Castor Biography
Kathy Castor (Katherine Anne Castor) is an American politician born on 20th August 1966 in Miami, Florida, United States. She is the U.S. Representative for Florida’s 14th congressional district, serving in Congress since 2007. She is a member of the Democratic Party.
Kathy Castor Age
Kathy Castor was born on 20th August 1966.
Kathy Castor Family
Kathy Castor was born to Betty Castor (mother) and Donald Castor (father). She was raised in Miami. Her father was the Hillsborough County judge who died in April 2013.
Kathy Castor Husband
She is married to William Lewis.
Kathy Castor children
Kathy Castor Height
Kathy Castor stands at height of 5’2”
Kathy Castor Net worth
Kathy Castor has an estimated net worth of $2 million.
Kathy Castor Politician
Kathy Castor started her political career after her graduation. She is a former student of University of South Florida President, former Hillsborough County Commissioner, a former Florida State Senator, a former Florida Education Commissioner, and former Senator candidate for United States in 2004. She her career as Assistant General Counsel to Florida Department of Community Affairs. She is the former President of the Florida Association of Women Lawyers and partner in a statewide law firm. In 2005, Castor was named as the Tampa Bay Business Journal’s Woman of the Year in government. She also served as the Hillsborough County Board of Commissioners from 2002 through 2006. Her primary focus was on health care. She worked to stop seniors and other patients in Hillsborough County’s health care plan from being forced into HMOs.
Kathy Castor Committee assignments
- Committee on Energy and Commerce
- Subcommittee on Energy and Power
- Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations
- Select Committee on the Climate Crisis (Chair)
Kathy Castor Caucus
- Congressional Arts Caucus
- Afterschool Caucuses
Kathy Castor Political positions
Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
She was the only Democratic member of Congress from Florida to vote against Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, she is also known as the “bailout bill,” stating that: “After thoughtful consideration and review, I voted against President Bush’s $700 billion bailout. During Bush plan she did not provide sufficient help to middle-class families and the housing squeeze of taxpayer protections.” Instead, she championed programs such as the Neighborhood Stabilization Program and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, and said it was “the lifeline that really saved the economy.” In Tampa Bay, Recovery Act funds invested in transportation, education, housing, research, law enforcement and various local infrastructure improvements. The I-4/Crosstown Connector received the largest Recovery Act investment in Tampa Bay, with $105 million to make the completion of the project possible and it opened to the public in 2014.
During her first congressional campaign in 2006, she supported the withdrawal of U.S. troops out of Iraq and redeployment of U.S. troops from Afghanistan. Her first committee assignment was the House Armed Services. In 2007, she voted to redeploy U.S. troops out of Iraq.
She has been interested in health care since her first successful position on the Hillsborough County Commission, where she defended the need to fund the county’s indigent health care plan. In 2008, she successfully championed legislation to allow low-income families with overdue medical bills to still be eligible for student loans. She has also served on the House Energy & Commerce Committee since 111th Congress. During her membership in the Health Subcommittee, the subcommittee worked toward progressive reform for Florida families, businesses, and university medical and nursing colleges.
Since the Affordable Care Act passed, she has also worked to educate Floridians about new patient protections and rights, and about enrollment in the marketplace exchange. She has been critical of Gov. Rick Scott and the Republican-led Florida Legislature for not accepting more than $50 billion in federal funding to expand Medicaid to provide health care access to more than 1 million Floridians. With the assistance of the National Association of Children’s Hospitals, her and Rep Dave Reichert of Washington founded the bipartisan Children’s Health Care Caucus, dedicated to improving quality of health care and health care access for children.
She has called the GI Bill for the 21st Century that passed in 2008 despite strenuous opposition by President Bush “one of the most important pieces of legislation that I have cosponsored.” The bill restored full, four-year college scholarships to veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars from benefits at the time that were only paying about 70 percent of a public college education and 30 percent of a private college education for returning veterans.
The legislation also allowed veterans to transfer those benefits to family members. She was outspoken on the cuts that the 2013 Republican sequester would create for Head Start programs as well as research programs at Moffitt Cancer Care and University of South Florida. In 2014, she supported a bipartisan budget agreement that included restoring Head Start funding with an increase of $1 billion over the sequester level and $612 million over the 2013 enacted level.
She supports the same sex marriage. In 2005 she served as the Hillsborough County Commission, she was the lone commissioner to vote against a resolution to ban gay pride activities and events. In 2013, the Hillsborough County Commission unanimously reversed its position on the gay pride ban. In 2013, she filed a historic Amicus Brief in support of the Supreme Court striking down Section 3 of the defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and applauded the Supreme Court when it made its ruling to do so later that year.
She supports normalizing relations between the United States and Cuba. She visited the island in April 2013.
She is an outspoken advocate for gun control. Following the 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting, she participated in John Lewis’s Congressional sit-in to demand that those on the No Fly List lose the right to purchase firearms. She has spoken about her perception of Florida’s lacking gun legislation, saying, “My home state of Florida has some of the weakest gun laws; we lack expanded background checks that would prevent individuals on the terrorist watch list, criminals, domestic abusers and the dangerously mentally ill from purchasing guns.” She supports the ban of high-capacity magazines, as well as reinstating the Federal Assault Weapons Ban. While she acknowledged that preventing those on the No-Fly List from buying guns or banning assault rifles might not have prevented the Pulse nightclub shooting, she stated, “if we could stop another tragedy. . .I think it’s reasonable to say, here are a couple of common sense laws we could pass to make Americans more safe.”
Kathy Castor campaigns
Kathy Castor entered the race of the 11th District, when Jim Davis (D) chose to run for governor but (he lost to Charlie Crist in November). She won the September 5, 2006 Democratic primary—the real contest in what has long been the only safe Democratic district on Florida’s Gulf Coast—defeating challengers Al Fox, Lesley “Les” Miller, Scott Farrell, and Michael Steinberg. She received 54% of the vote, a full 20 points ahead of state Senate Minority Leader Les Miller in the five-way race. Eddie Adams Jr., an architect and former hospital laboratory technologist who was only the Republican to file. She was later endorsed by the pro-choice political action committee EMILY’s List, the League of Conservation Voters, Oceans Champions, The Tampa Tribune, The St. Petersburg Times and The Bradenton Herald.
She won the 2006 November general election, 70% to 30%–becoming the first woman to represent the Tampa Bay area in Congress, as well as only the third representative of this Tampa-based district since its creation in 1963 (it was the 10th District from 1963–67, the 6th from 1967–73, the 7th from 1973–93, the 11th from 1993 to 2013, and has been the 14th since 2013). She was reelected in November 2008 with 71% to 29% rematch with Adams. In 2010 census, Florida gained two more congressional seats. As a result, Castor’s district was renumbered as the 14th. It was no less Democratic than its predecessor, and she won reelection with 70.2 percent of the vote over Republican E. J. Otero.
In the 2014 their was no candidate filed to oppose her in the election. In 2016 Mike Prendergast considered a rematch against Castor in 2016, but instead opted to run for sheriff of Citrus County. Christine Quinn, the founder of My Family Seasonings, challenged Castor in the 2016 election, running on a pro-business and anti-immigration platform. A court-ordered redistricting cut out the district’s share of St. Petersburg, replacing it with most of the portion of Tampa. However, it was no less Democratic than its predecessor, and Castor held her seat against Quinn, with 61.79% of the vote to Quinn’s 38.21%.
Kathy Castor Congress
Democrats Kathy Castor and Lois Frankel won re-election to their congressional seats on Friday when no challengers filed before the close of a qualifying period for federal offices. But the unhindered re-election of the two lawmakers from Tampa and West Palm Beach was the exception as the majority of Florida’s 27 U.S. House members face a highly competitive election year. Four seats, now held by Republicans, are open and they drew crowded fields. Eleven of 21 incumbents will face challenges in the Aug. 28 primary elections. Up to 18 of the incumbents will face challenges in the Nov. 6 general election.
A half-dozen or more races could become factors in the effort by Republicans to hold their majority in the U.S. House of Representatives, with Democrats needing to pick up 23 seats across the nation to gain control of the chamber. One of the most competitive races will be for the District 27 seat in Miami-Dade County. The seat is open following longtime Republican Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s decision not to seek re-election. At the noon close of the qualifying period Friday, nine Republicans had qualified for the race along with five Democrats and one candidate with no party affiliation.
The Democrats are targeting the seat because Hillary Clinton carried the heavily Hispanic district by a margin of 58 percent to 39 percent over Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election. The Democratic contenders include former University of Miami President Donna Shalala, who had more than $1.1 million in cash on hand through March 31, and state Rep. David Richardson of Miami Beach. The crowded Republican field includes former state Rep. Bruno Barreiro and Maria Elvira Salazar, who had raised more than $300,000 through March.
Another highly competitive seat will be in nearby Congressional District 26, where Republican incumbent Carlos Curbelo will face another challenge from Democrats. Curbelo was targeted in 2016 but held on to his seat, which includes a portion of Miami-Dade and all of the Florida Keys, with 53 percent of the vote. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, one of the Democrats seeking to challenge Curbelo, participated in a health-care forum in the district this week with U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who wants to return to the speakership if the Democrats win a majority in November.
Democrats will seek to tie Republican candidates to Trump, particularly in districts where the president didn’t run well. But Republicans will use Pelosi as a counterweight as they seek to hold their 16-11 majority in the Florida congressional delegation. “Our incumbents are in excellent shape on all fronts to win re-election. Nancy Pelosi’s handpicked candidates don’t stand a chance,” said Maddie Anderson, a spokeswoman for the National Republican Congressional Committee. Cole Leiter, a spokesman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said Democrats in Florida “are running strong campaigns that are on track to flip congressional seats.”
Among the issues the Democrats will raise are Republican efforts to “rip away affordable health care” by opposing Obamacare and efforts to “give handouts to big corporations,” including the recent corporate tax cuts, Leiter said. Republicans will target Democratic U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy in Congressional District 7, which includes a portion of Orlando and all of Seminole County. State Rep. Mike Miller of Winter Park is facing Sanford businessman Scott Sturgill in the Republican primary. Among the issues Republicans will raise against Murphy is her opposition to the recent federal tax cuts, which Anderson characterized as a vote “against tax reform, which is continuing to put more money in the pockets of middle-class workers in her district.”
Two Democratic incumbents face serious challenges from their own party. Former Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown is trying to oust U.S. Rep. Al Lawson in Congressional District 5 in North Florida. And former Congressman Alan Grayson is trying to wrest the Democratic nomination away from U.S. Rep. Darren Soto in Congressional District 9 in the Orlando area. Along with the Ros-Lehtinen seat, the three other open Republican seats drew large fields, including in Congressional District 6 in Volusia, Flagler, St. Johns and Lake counties. U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis is not running for re-election in the district because he is running for governor.
Three Democrats, including Nancy Soderberg, a former member of the Clinton administration’s National Security Council, and three Republicans, including former state Rep. Fred Costello, are seeking to replace DeSantis. In Congressional District 17, where U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney will not seek re-election, state Sen. Greg Steube, R-Sarasota, is facing state Rep. Julio Gonzalez, R-Venice, in a three-way GOP primary, while two Democrats are seeking their party’s nomination. In Congressional District 15, where U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross is retiring, six Republicans, two Democrats and a candidate with no party affiliation are seeking the Central Florida seat. The GOP field includes former state Rep. Neil Combee of Polk County and state Rep. Ross Spano of Dover.
Three Democrats will return to Congress if they survive primary challenges in August: U.S. Rep. Val Demings in Congressional District 10, U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson in Congressional District 24 and U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings in Congressional District 20, though Hastings would face a write-in opponent in the November election. In the U.S. Senate race, Republican Gov. Rick Scott qualified to run against U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, the Democrat who has held the seat since 2001. Scott will face Rocky De La Fuente in the Republican primary.
Kathy Castor vs Christine Quinn
When conservatives claim the Democratic Party is anti-small business, they have no one better to champion that claim than Christine Quinn, the Republican businesswoman running against Democrat incumbent Kathy Castor in Florida’s 14th Congressional District this November. The Southern California native created My Family Seasonings in 2005, which began with a prime rib seasoning from her mother’s secret family recipe. She then quickly adding seafood, hamburger, poultry, wild game and most recently a meatloaf mix to her company’s list of products, and she’s flourished ever since.
As her business grew, so did the regulations she says made it harder to conduct business in the Golden State. When some of her business allies began looking at Texas or Arizona as possible locations that would provide a better business environment, Quinn immediately began considering Florida, since Lakeland-based Publix supermarkets had become her biggest client. Other measures, like the state’s elimination of the sales tax that manufacturers pay when purchasing equipment in Florida, made the Sunshine State even more attractive to her.
So Quinn pulled up stakes and moved to Lakeland in 2014, where she relocated her headquarters and manufacturing facility. She says at one point she was prodded by Lakeland Mayor Howard Wiggs to consider running for the Polk County Commission, which got her thinking more about running for elected office. While that was happening, she decided she loved Tampa and could handle the commute, so she moved there. In January she said she started to think about a run for Congress, emboldened by the Florida Supreme Court’s redistricting efforts last summer that made Castor’s 14th Congressional District in Hillsborough County (sans Pinellas) less formidable for a Republican. Most political analysts still consider her odds long, however.
Before making the decision, Quinn, 56, traveled to Washington, where she attended some briefings with the Heritage Foundation and the Conservative Political Action Committee, and literally walked the halls of Congress to speak to lawmakers about her thoughts about running for a seat in the House of Representatives. When asked about immigration, Quinn says she’s not equipped to give a short, succinct answer. But when asked if she supports the wall Donald Trump has proposed along the U.S. Southern border, she backs that idea with enthusiasm, adding her fear is that the undocumented could be bringing over diseases that could compromise our health system.
“We’re also bringing in some very dangerous threats to the American health and safety of the American population at large,” she said. “Tuberculosis was almost completely eradicated in the ’80s. Now our safe haven cities, like San Francisco, have the highest rate of tuberculosis in the nation. It’s a very treatable disease, we have medications that can treat it, but it’s a silent killer because it’s airborne.” The Centers for Disease Control does say on its website there is a risk of infection from people traversing from Mexico to the U.S., but doesn’t say it comes directly from undocumented immigrants.
As PolitiFact notes, approximately 300 million legal crossings take place from Mexico into the United States annually along the 1,969-mile border, and about 15 million Americans visit Mexico each year, according to CDC, which notes that, “the sheer number of people who live, work, and travel between the United States and Mexico has led to a sharing of culture and commerce, as well as the easy transportation of infectious diseases. The large movement of people across the United States and Mexico border has led to an increase in health issues, particularly infectious diseases such as tuberculosis.”
Quinn vows “never” to compromise on the 2nd Amendment, but does say it’s extremely important for anyone who purchases a gun to get proper training. She also says she hopes to go for a ride-along with the Hillsborough County Sheriffs Department, adding that they hadn’t returned her call for such a ride. On the Affordable Care Act, Quinn says she lost her insurance “because I didn’t qualify for the ACA. That’s not fair.” (Quinn’s campaign manager sent an e-mail Thursday with more information. “Christine said it went up, for her $840 plus for her son was another $432 and the deductible was $2,500. So ACA priced her out of insurance from the rate hikes. She didn’t qualify for ACA benefits.”)
Quinn also doesn’t buy the notion that the U.S. never found weapons of mass destruction upon invading Iraq. “We didn’t get in fast enough,” she says regarding the invasion and the search for WMD, which began in March 2003. “Could they have moved them? We’re they really not there? How do we know? Maybe they really were there. I have a hard time believing that they weren’t there. I think that they were there, I think that we don’t get the full reports. We don’t know. We simply don’t know. We can speculate. We can have arguments on TV with all the newscasters and everyone can have their opinion. We needed to protect the oil, and if anyone wants to say we didn’t, of course we did.”
The New York Times did report in the fall of 2014 that during the Iraq war, at least 17 American service members and seven Iraqi police officers were exposed to aging chemical weapons abandoned years earlier, a report conservatives seized upon. Critics noted, however, that the chemical weapons discovered predated 1991 and thus could not vindicate Bush’s rationale, which relied on an active, ongoing chemical weapons program at the time of the invasion. Quinn defers on what our policy should be regarding Syria at the moment. She segues into talking about her admitted lack of knowledge regarding the Muslim faith after 9/11 prompted her to read the Koran to learn more about the religion.
While discussing this, she pulls out a paperback copy of the holy text from a drawer in her office. “How do we learn if we don’t read?” she asks. Quinn caught a break when perennial candidate Eddie Adams failed to qualify for the ballot last month, earning her the GOP nomination by default, avoiding the added costs of a contested primary. Nevertheless, she’s a prohibitive underdog against Castor, who is vying for a sixth term in the House of Representatives. The candidate did tweet to this reporter Thursday that, “I’m the only candidate and first Business WOMAN to run against Castor in Hillsborough County — critical to Florida,” but whether that will be nearly enough won’t be decided until November.