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Raúl Grijalva

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Arizona's 7th district
Assumed office 
January 3, 2003
Preceded by District created after 2000 census

In office

Born February 19, 1948 (1948-02-19) (age 62)
Tucson, Arizona
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Ramona F. Grijalva
Children Adelita Grijalva
Raquel Grijalva
Marisa Grijalva
Residence Tucson
Alma mater University of Arizona
Occupation college administrator
Religion Roman Catholic

Raúl M. Grijalva (Spanish pronunciation: [raˈul ɡɾiˈxalβa], English: /rɑːˈuːl ɡrɨˈhælvə/; born February 19, 1948) is an American politician from Arizona. He has been a member of the United States House of Representatives since 2003 and represents Arizona's 7th congressional district and is a Democrat. The district includes half of metro Tucson, all of Yuma and Nogales, and some peripheral parts of metro Phoenix.



Raúl Grijalva's father was a migrant worker from Mexico who entered the United States in 1945 through the Bracero Program and labored on southern Arizona ranches.[1] Raúl was born in Tucson, Arizona, and graduated from Sunnyside Magnet High School in 1967. Grijalva is a 2004 inductee to the Sunnyside High School Alumni Hall of Fame. He attended the University of Arizona and earned a bachelor's degree in Sociology. While at the university, he was a member of Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlán (MEChA).In 1974, he was elected to the Tucson Unified School District board and served as a school board member until 1986. The Grijalva Elementary School in Tucson was named for him in 1987.[2] From 1975 to 1986, Grijalva was the director of the El Pueblo Neighborhood Center, and in 1987 he was Assistant Dean for Hispanic Student Affairs at the University of Arizona. Grijalva was a member of the Pima County Board of Supervisors from 1989 to 2002, and served as chairman from 2000 to 2002. After the 2000 United States Census, Arizona gained two congressional districts. The 2nd District, which had long been represented by Democrat Mo Udall, was renumbered as the 7th District. Ed Pastor, a Phoenix Democrat who had succeeded Udall in 1991, had his home drawn into the newly created 4th District and opted to run for election there, making the 7th District an open seat. Grijalva won a crowded seven-way Democratic primary, which was tantamount to election in this heavily Democratic, majority-Hispanic district. He has been reelected three times with no substantial Republican opposition. In 2008, he defeated Republican challenger Joseph Sweeney.

Personal life

He is married to Ramona F. Grijalva and together they have three daughters: Adelita, Raquel and Marisa.

Political positions

In 2006, the conservative National Journal ranked him as the 21st most liberal member in the House of Representatives, based on his votes in 2005.[3] Along with 25 other Democratic House members, he was ranked most liberal in economic policy votes; with 17 other Democrats he was most liberal on foreign policy. He was ranked as more liberal than 84% of Representatives on social issues. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) gives him a lifetime score of 98% for his voting record.[4]


Grijalva has a pro-choice voting record and voted against the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act [5] He was strongly critical of the Stupak-Pitts Amendment, which places limits on taxpayer-funded abortions in the context of the November 2009 Affordable Health Care for America Act.[6]


In 2005 the Humane Society gave Grijalva a score of 100% for his "advocacy on animal welfare issues considered by Congress in 2005." He opposed horse slaughter, animal fighting, and puppy mills.[7]


As a member and later chairman of Pima County Board of Supervisors, Grijalva was widely regarded as the leading political supporter of the Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan,[8] an ambitious and highly regarded county program for planned land-use and biodiversity conservation.[9] He has consistently supported endangered species conservation and wilderness issues then and as a Congressman.[10]

In late 2008, Grijalva was a popular choice of environmental groups to head the Department of the Interior in Barack Obama's cabinet, but the position went to Colorado Senator Ken Salazar.[11][12][13]

Gun rights

Grijalva supports increasing restrictions on the purchase and possession of guns and increasing enforcement of existing restrictions on gun purchase and possession.[14] He was one of the 67 co-sponsors of the 2007 Assault Weapons Ban, HR 1022.[15] Grijalva has an F rating from the NRA.[16]


Grijalva has described current immigration laws as "cruel" and "unjust."[1] He supports amnesty for illegal aliens already present in the country, as well as increasing legal immigration.[1] He voted against H.R. 4437 and against the Secure Fence Act. He opposed Arizona Proposition 200 in 2004, and he does not support a National Guard presence on the border.


Grijalva supported failed House Resolution 635 to censure President George W. Bush.[17]

Native Americans

Grijalva is a strong supporter of sovereignty and government-to-government relationship[s].[18]

2004 elections

Concerned about allegations of voting irregularities purportedly leading to disenfranchisement, in 2004 Grijalva joined Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson and several other House Democrats in requesting that the United Nations observe and certify elections in the United States.[19]

After the General Election, Grijalva was one of 31 Representatives who voted in the House not to count the electoral votes from Ohio on grounds of unacceptable irregularities.[20]

Committees assignments



Electoral history

Arizona's 7th congressional district: Results 2002–2006[21]
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct
2002 Raúl M. Grijalva 61,256 59% Ross Hieb 38,474 37% John L. Nemeth Libertarian 4,088 4%
2004 Raúl M. Grijalva 108,868 62% Joseph Sweeney 59,066 34% Dave Kaplan Libertarian 7,503 4%
2006 Raúl M. Grijalva 80,354 61% Ron Drake 46,498 35% Joe Cobb Libertarian 4,673 4%
2008 Raúl M. Grijalva 124,304 63% Joseph Sweeney 64,425 33% Raymond Petrulsky Libertarian 7,755 4%


  1. ^ a b c Congressman Raul Grijalva : Home
  2. ^ TUSD School
  3. ^ NATIONAL JOURNAL: 2006 Vote Ratings (03/02/2007)
  4. ^ "Representative Raul M. Grijalva". ACLU Congressional Scorecard. ACLU. Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ Grijalva Vows To Fight Trigger, Opt-Out, Stupak Amendment
  7. ^ Congressman Raul Grijalva : Home
  8. ^ Tucson Weekly : Currents : Beating Raúl
  9. ^ Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan Home
  10. ^ Congressman Raul Grijalva : Issues & Legislation
  11. ^ John M. Broder (17th December 08). "Praise and Criticism for Proposed Interior Secretary". Politics. New York Time. Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  12. ^ Robert Lovato (6th December 08). "Grijalva Appointment to Interior Department Would Bring Ecological-and Political- Balance to Obama Cabinet". Green. Huffington Post. Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  13. ^ "Shunning Environmental Groups, Obama Taps Colorado Sen. Ken Salazar for Interior Dept.". Past Shows. Democracy Now!. 18th December 08. Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  14. ^ Gun Issues from Project Vote Smart
  15. ^ H.R.1022 THOMAS (Library of Congress)
  16. ^
  17. ^ - Video
  18. ^ [1]
  19. ^ "House members will discuss request to United Nations to monitor election". Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson. Retrieved 2008-12-18. 
  20. ^
  21. ^ "Election Statistics". Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives. Retrieved 2008-01-10. ; for 2008 see United States House of Representatives elections in Arizona, 2008

External links

United States House of Representatives
New district Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Arizona's 7th congressional district

2003-01-03 – present
Representatives to the 108th–111th United States Congresses from Arizona (ordered by seniority)
108th Senate: J. McCain | J. Kyl House: J. Kolbe | E. Pastor | J. D. Hayworth | J. Shadegg | J. Flake | T. Franks | R. Grijalva | R. Renzi
109th Senate: J. McCain | J. Kyl House: J. Kolbe | E. Pastor | J. D. Hayworth | J. Shadegg | J. Flake | T. Franks | R. Grijalva | R. Renzi
110th Senate: J. McCain | J. Kyl House: E. Pastor | J. Shadegg | J. Flake | T. Franks | R. Grijalva | R. Renzi | G. Giffords | H. Mitchell
111th Senate: J. McCain | J. Kyl House: E. Pastor | J. Shadegg | J. Flake | T. Franks | R. Grijalva | G. Giffords | H. Mitchell | A. Kirkpatrick


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