Congressman Ted W. Lieu represents California’s 33rd Congressional District. Serving his fourth term in Congress, Ted has already made a significant impact in Washington. He was elected President of the Democratic Freshman Class by his colleagues during his first term. Last term, after being elected Vice Chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, Ted led efforts to take back the House, helping Democrats win 9 Republican-held house seats in his region. This term, Ted was elected Co-Chair of the House Democratic Policy and Communications Committee. Ted was also appointed as an Assistant Democratic Whip. He serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the House Judiciary Committee. Ted has taken a leadership role in Congress on a number of vital policy issues.
As a veteran and Reservist, Ted is a strong advocate for our women and men in uniform. California's 33rd Congressional District includes the West Los Angeles VA Medical Center, the largest VA hospital in the country. Ted helped secure $35 million for vital safety improvements at the West LA VA. He also successfully authored legislation to develop a Master Plan for the campus to provide critical housing for our homeless veterans.
Ted has been an outspoken voice for greater attention to cyber security in government and the private sector. He successfully authored bipartisan legislation to increase funding for cyber security. Ted was featured in a segment on 60 Minutes exploring the vulnerabilities of our mobile devices.
Ted is the author of first-of-its-kind legislation to ban the fraudulent practice of so-called “gay conversation therapy,” as well as a bill to improve our criminal justice system by eliminating the injustice of money bail. The very first bill Ted introduced when he got to Washington was legislation to address climate change modeled on California’s landmark Global Warming Solutions Act, which he coauthored when he served in the State Legislature. Ted also led the call for investigations into Exxon Mobil’s decades-long campaign of misinformation about climate science.
Ted’s numerous accomplishments have not gone unnoticed. He was honored by the Daily Dot as an “Internet Freedom Hero” for his work on behalf of Internet privacy. Leading environmental news and advocacy organization, The Grist, named him one of their “Top 50 Influencers” for 2016. The Hill included Ted as one of its “10 rising stars in the energy and environment world.” The Washington Post and LA Times have published profiles on Ted's resistance to our current President. Ted has also been featured on CNN, MSNBC, CNBC, Democracy Now, the Chelsea Handler Show, Comedy Central, and Real Time With Bill Maher.
Ted entered public service because he believes America is the most remarkable country in the world. His family immigrated to the United States when he was three years old. Ted's parents were looking for a better life and more opportunity for their children. They grew up poor, spoke limited English, and his parents sold gifts at flea markets to make ends meet. Through hard work, saving money, and perseverance, Ted’s family was able to open a gift store in a shopping center. Eventually their family business expanded to include multiple gift stores in malls, where Ted and his brother helped with the small business.
With the support of hard-working parents and a country that provided limitless opportunity, Ted went on to attend Stanford University where he received undergraduate degrees in Computer Science and Political Science. Ted received his law degree Magna Cum Laude from Georgetown University Law Center, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the law review. He then clerked on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Ted is so grateful that he and his family had the opportunity to achieve the American Dream. His upbringing inspired him to give back to his country by joining the United States Air Force on active duty, where he served both domestically and abroad for four years. Ted continues to serve his country in the Air Force Reserves and has achieved the rank of Colonel. Ted received numerous medals for his outstanding military service, including two Meritorious Service Medals. When he was on active duty at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam, he participated in Operation PACIFIC HAVEN, which airlifted thousands of Kurds out of northern Iraq and brought them to Guam before Saddam Hussein could attack them. Ted served as Chief of Operations Law for the 36th Air Base Wing and received the Air Force Humanitarian Service Medal for his efforts during the operation.
Ted's service at Los Angeles Air Force base in the district is what brought him to Southern California. After active duty, Ted practiced civil law at Munger, Tolles & Olson, and worked in the financial services sector. He served on the Torrance Environmental Quality and Energy Conservation Commission, and was later elected to the Torrance City Council. Ted served for nearly a decade in the California State Legislature, representing Los Angeles County in both the State Assembly and the State Senate.
Ted and his wife Betty, a former California Deputy Attorney General, are residents of Torrance. Betty currently serves a Vice President of the Torrance Board of Education. Their two sons, Brennan and Austin, attend public school in Torrance.