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Andrew P. Harris

Member of the Maryland Senate
from the 7th district
Assumed office 
January 8, 2003

Member of the Maryland Senate
from the 9th district
In office
January 13, 1999 – January 8, 2003
Preceded by F. Vernon Boozer
Succeeded by Allan H. Kittleman

Born January 25, 1957 (1957-01-25) (age 52)
Brooklyn, New York
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Sylvia Harris
Profession Physician
Religion Roman Catholic

Andrew P. Harris (born January 25, 1957) is an American physician and politician who currently serves in the Senate of the Maryland General Assembly. In 2008, Harris was the Republican nominee for Maryland's 1st congressional district after defeating incumbent Wayne Gilchrest in the primary election.[1] He lost in the general election to Frank Kratovil.[2]


Early life, career, and family

Andy Harris was born in Brooklyn, New York. His father was Zoltán Harris, an anesthesiologist who was born in Miskolc, Hungary in 1911 and emigrated to the United States in 1950; his mother, Irene, was born in Poland.[3]

Harris earned his B.S. in biology (1977) and his M.D. (1980) from the Johns Hopkins University. The University's Bloomberg School of Hygiene and Public health conferred the M.H.S. in 1995 in Health Policy & Management and also Health Finance & Management.[3]

Harris served in the Navy Medical Corps and the U.S. Naval Reserve as a Lt. Commander on active duty during Operation Desert Storm, and currently serves as a Commander.[3]

He has worked as an anesthesiologist, as an Associate Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, and as Chief of Obstetric Anesthesiology at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. Harris also served as Commanding officer for the Johns Hopkins Naval Reserve Medical Unit from 1989 to 1992.[3]

Harris and his wife Sylvia have five children and reside in Cockeysville, Maryland.[3]

Maryland General Assembly

Andrew Harris was first elected to the Maryland Senate in 1998 for District 9 for Baltimore County.[4] He defeated his predecessor, F. Vernon Boozer, in the 1998 primary election.[5] In the general election he defeated Democratic challenger Anthony O. Blades.

His district was later redrawn to be District 7, representing Baltimore County and Harford County. He defeated Democratic challenger Diane DeCarlo in the general election in 2002,[6] and from 2003 to 2006 served as the Minority Whip.[3] In 2006 he won re-election, this time defeating Patricia A. Foerster.[7]


Harris has been strongly consistent in his support of marriage defined as solely between a man and a woman, voting twice in March 2008 against redefining marriage to include homosexual or other arrangements.

In 2007 Harris submitted a bill to the Maryland State Senate to limit the scope of eminent domain.[8] Currently, the law allows the government to confiscate private property under certain circumstances and transfer it to private corporations for development, as per the Supreme Court ruling in the Kelo case in Connecticut.[9]

In 2009, Harris submitted an amendment to the State budget bill that proposed to withhold state funding from any public university that allowed for the showing of a pornographic film. This was prompted by a string of instances of colleges and universities endorsing pornographic events, most recently the planned screening of Pirates II: Stagnetti's Revenge at the University of Maryland College Park. Harris was quoted as saying "I know some students would like to portray this as a free speech issue... It is not. This is about the use of taxpayer dollars... Just because someone is on a college campus they do not have a right to spend the hard-earned money of Maryland's taxpayers on something as detrimental to our society as hard-core XXX pornography."[10] Although the film was offered at no cost to the university and the direct expenses of the event were to be covered by the student union, the university acknowledged that allowing the use of state-provided facilities would be problematic. Eventually, the university canceled the event and released a statement explaining that the opportunity to "engage students in a discussion about the national dialogue revolving around pornography... got lost in the titillation revolving around the film's showing."[11] Harris was quoted saying that University officials "should stop any showing of it right now until a clear policy is developed by the university regarding the conditions under which a triple-X-rated, hard-core pornography movie will be shown on campus." He said that policy should consider "the dangers of pornography, the detrimental effect on women and families, and the addictive nature of pornography."[12] He claims that "Occasional viewing of porn is more dangerous than occasionally lighting up a cigarette."[13]

On April 6, 2009, despite the University's pronouncement, a university student group proceeded to screen the movie, adding a panel discussion with university faculty members and an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union that defended the public support of the students' pornographic endeavor as an issue of free speech and academic freedom.[14] Millree Williams, a university spokesman, released the following statement: "on their own, student groups moved to create a discussion event during which they planned to screen excerpts from a pornographic film and to explore issues surrounding the place and implications of pornography and constitutionally protected free speech in our community. Although not condoning this movie or any excerpts from it that might be shown, the University of Maryland must allow this event." Williams said that the discussion of sensitive topics such as the impact of pornography on society is "characteristic of a vibrant educational community."[15]


Andy Harris has been an active member in the community as a member of the Knights of Columbus[16], an officer in the Thornleigh Neighborhood Improvement Association (vice-president, 1984-85; president, 1985-86), a member of the Board of Directors of the Sherwood Community Association, 1987-91, and served as Vice President of St. Joseph's School Home-School Association from 1992-94. Also, he has been on the Board of Directors of the Maryland Leadership Council, 1995-98, a member of the North Central Republican Club (treasurer, 1997-98; vice-president, 1998)[3], and finally as a Delegate to the Republican Party National Convention, 2004.[16]

Harris has received the Laughlin Award for Distinguished Public Officer, Medical and Chirurgical Faculty of Maryland in 2001.[16]

2008 Congressional campaign

Harris defeated incumbent Republican Wayne Gilchrest and State Senator E.J. Pipkin in the Republican primary for Maryland's 1st congressional district.[1] Harris explained that he was upset with Gilchrest's decision to support a Democratic bill setting a time table for troop withdrawal from Iraq and suspected that many of his constituents also felt that way. Andy Harris was endorsed by the Club for Growth,[17] which raised nearly $250,000 for him,[18] and by former Governor Bob Ehrlich[19], seven of ten state senators who represent parts of the district, and House Minority leader Anthony J. O'Donnell.[20] His general election opponent Frank Kratovil attacked the Club for Growth's policies, and Harris for having its support.[21] Gilchrest endorsed Kratovil for the General election.[22] The November election was as close as expected. On election night, Kratovil led Harris by 915 votes. After two rounds of counting absentee ballots, Kratovil's lead grew to 2,000 votes. Forecasting that it would be nearly impossible for Harris to close the gap, most media outlets declared Kratovil the winner on the night of November 7.[23][24] Harris finally conceded on November 11. Harris won most of the suburban Baltimore portion of the district, but lost the Eastern Shore, home to half of the district's population. Harris is running again for Congress in 2010.

Election results

Year Office Election Subject Party Votes  % Opponent Party Votes  % Opponent Party Votes  %
1998 Maryland Senate, District 9[25] General Andy Harris Republican 24,814 61% Anthony O. Blades Democratic 15,780 39%
2002 Maryland Senate, District 7[26] General Andy Harris Republican 23,374 57.8% Dianne DeCarlo Democratic 16,991 42.1% Write-ins 44 0.1%
2006 Maryland Senate, District 7[27] General Andy Harris Republican 23,453 56.6% Patricia A. Foerster Democratic 17,972 43.3% Write-ins 35 0.1%
2008 United States House of Representatives, Maryland's 1st congressional district[1] Primary Andy Harris Republican 33,627 43.4% Wayne Gilchrest Republican 25,624 33.1% E.J. Pipkin Republican 15,700 20.3%
2008 United States House of Representatives, Maryland's 1st congressional district[28 ] General Frank M. Kratovil, Jr. Democratic 177,065 49.1% Andy Harris Republican 174,213 48.3% Richard James Davis Libertarian 8,873 2.5% Write-ins 35 0.1%

References and notes

  1. ^ a b c "Representative in Congress Results". Maryland State Board of Elections. Retrieved April 11, 2008.  
  2. ^ Official 2008 Presidential General Election results for Congressional District 01
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Andy Harris for Congress: Biography Retrieved August 6, 2007
  4. ^ Maryland State Board of Elections - 1998 election results
  5. ^ Maryland State Board of Elections - 1998 election results (primary)
  6. ^ Maryland State Board of Elections - 2002 election results
  7. ^ Maryland State Board of Elections - 2006 election results
  8. ^ Maryland General Assembly - Senate Bill 35
  9. ^ Supreme Court of the United States, opinion - Kelo vs. City of New London
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^ a b c Maryland Senate Archives Biography Retrieved August 6, 2007
  17. ^ Club for Growth Endorses Andy Harris Andy Harris For Congress Press Release. August 13, 2007. Retrieved August 17, 2007
  18. ^ Center for Responsive Politics
  19. ^ Ehrlich supports Harris for seat ASSOCIATED PRESS October 19, 2007. Retrieved October 19, 2007
  20. ^ Eleven Republican Incumbents Have to Watch Their Backs in House Primaries By CQ Staff. October 2, 2007. Retrieved October 19, 2007
  21. ^ Anti-tax group’s support not paying dividends Politico
  22. ^ Gilchrest crosses party lines, endorses Democrat Kratovil, even cutting an ad for him Baltimore Sun
  23. ^ "AP: Kratovil Winner Of 1st District Seat". WJZ-TV. Retrieved 2008-11-08.  
  24. ^ "Maryland's 1st District". CNN. Retrieved 2008-11-08.  
  25. ^ "State Senate Results". Maryland State Board of Elections.   Retrieved on Oct. 9, 2007
  26. ^ "State Senate Results". Maryland State Board of Elections.   Retrieved on Oct. 9, 2007
  27. ^ "State Senate Results". Maryland State Board of Elections.   Retrieved on Oct. 9, 2007
  28. ^ "Representative in Congress Results". Maryland State Board of Elections.   Retrieved on Jun. 14, 2009

External links



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