Carol Shea-Porter

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Carol Shea-Porter
Carol shea-porter.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Hampshire's 1st district
Assumed office
January 3, 2013
Preceded by Frank Guinta
In office
January 3, 2007 – January 3, 2011
Preceded by Jeb Bradley
Succeeded by Frank Guinta
Personal details
Born Carol Shea
(1952-12-02) December 2, 1952 (age 61)
New York, New York
Political party Democratic
Residence Rochester, New Hampshire
Alma mater University of New Hampshire (B.A., M.P.A.)
Occupation US Representative, Social worker
Religion Roman Catholic
Website Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter

Carol Shea-Porter (born December 2, 1952) is an American politician and member of the Democratic Party who has served as the U.S. Representative for New Hampshire's 1st congressional district since 2013 and previously represented the district from 2007 to 2011.

Shea-Porter was first elected in 2006, defeating Republican incumbent Jeb Bradley. She beat him again in 2008 but was defeated in 2010 by former Manchester Mayor Frank Guinta and left Congress in January 2011.[1] In 2012, Shea-Porter reclaimed her seat as she beat Guinta in a rematch.

Early life, education and career[edit]

Shea-Porter was born in New York[2] and grew up in the Seacoast Region of New Hampshire, attending local public schools, and graduating from the University of New Hampshire.[3] She earned a bachelor's degree in social services and a master's degree in public administration.[4][5] Prior to getting involved in politics, she and her family lived in Colorado, Louisiana, and Maryland, during which time she was a social worker and community college instructor.[6]

After returning to New Hampshire, she worked for the Wesley Clark presidential campaign and was a volunteer for John Kerry’s presidential run.[6]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]

Committee assignments[edit]


Political positions[edit]

Earlier photo of Shea Porter

Shea-Porter was a lead co-sponsor of a bill to protect US troops from the disposal of toxic waste in open burn pits.[7] She also introduced a bill to study urological war wounds. About 3% of combat wounds in Iraq involve soldiers' genital or urinary systems.[8][dead link] She also believes that following the recent Libyan embassy attacks, the US should continue a relationship to achieve democracy saying,“for democracy to flourish, it’s going to be a bumpy road there.”[9]

Shea-Porter supports decreasing U.S. reliance on foreign energy sources and agrees with a number of the objectives of financier and oil magnate T. Boone Pickens on these matters including continuance of emissions trading measures, a system already in effect for her constituency in the form of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative begun in 2003 by Republican governor George Pataki of New York.[10][dead link] Shea Porter opposes the Keystone XL pipeline and believes that the United States needs a policy that moves away from oil as a primary energy source.[9] She voted for the American Clean Energy and Security Act, which proposed a cap and trade system under which the government would allocate carbon permits and credits to companies.[11][12]

Shea-Porter voted for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, saying "We’ll continue to work on that, but this is a good bill.”[9] She led an effort to pass the Affordable Care Act and stated her support for closing the "donut hole" in Medicare reimbursements for senior citizens.[13]

Shea-Porter voted for the auto industry bailout[14] and the "Cash for Clunkers" bill.[15]

Town hall disruptions[edit]

Following the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, many members of Congress held town hall meetings throughout their districts in an effort to explain and, in some cases, defend their votes. Shea-Porter, like several of her colleagues, found herself on the defensive at two such events held in Portsmouth and Bedford. She took about a dozen questions at each, the majority of which “were in opposition to Shea-Porter's health care vote.” A Londonderry man who repeatedly shouted down Shea-Porter and others was even removed by security. The lack of civility was noted by members of the event as well who, while disagreeing with Shea-Porter, wanted their concerns addressed in a more composed atmosphere.[16][17]

Political campaigns[edit]


On November 7, 2006, Shea-Porter narrowly defeated incumbent Republican Jeb Bradley in the 2006 midterm elections to become the first woman elected to Congress from New Hampshire.

Shea-Porter faced four other Democrats in primary on September 12, 2006. She won with 12,497 votes (54%); Jim Craig, the New Hampshire House minority leader, finished second with 34%.[18] Shea-Porter received 100,899 votes (51%) to Bradley's 94,869 votes (49%). She received no financial support from either the Democratic National Committee or the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and was outspent by her opponent three to one.[19]


Shea-Porter was re-elected to a second term in November 2008, defeating Bradley for the second time, winning by a larger margin this time. The Concord Monitor in 2008 changed its endorsement, which had gone to Bradley in 2006, to support Shea-Porter, citing her positions in favor of increased minimum wage, ending the Bush tax cuts, and veterans issues.[20]

During her 2008 re-election campaign, Shea-Porter reversed course and requested financial support from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. The Committee enrolled Congresswoman Shea-Porter in their "Frontline" program "which helps vulnerable incumbents with fundraising and campaign infrastructure."[21]


Shea-Porter was defeated by her Republican opponent, former Manchester Mayor Frank Guinta, who won by a 54% to 42% margin, larger than Shea-Porter has won to date.


Shea-Porter launched a 2012 campaign for her old House seat of New Hampshire's 1st District. She received the endorsement of Democracy for America, and was selected as one of their Dean Dozen. In the General Election she wrested the seat back from Frank Guinta, who won in the 2010 election.


Shea-Porter is running for re-election. She is once again a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's Frontline Program, which is designed to help protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents heading into the 2014 election.[22] Shea-Porter made Roll Call's "Ten Most Vulnerable" list for the third quarter. According to Roll Call, New Hampshire is a swing state and could be susceptible to national political trends.[23] Mayday PAC, a super PAC seeking to reduce the role of money in politics, announced its endorsement of Shea-Porter because of her support of campaign finance reform.[24]

Electoral history[edit]

Year Office Election Subject Party Votes % Opponent Party Votes %
2006 Congress, District 1 General Carol Shea-Porter Democratic 100,837 51.31 Jeb Bradley Republican 95,538 48.61
2008 Congress, District 1 General Carol Shea-Porter Democratic 176,461 51.78 Jeb Bradley Republican 156,394 45.89
2010 Congress, District 1 General Carol Shea-Porter Democratic 95,503 42.36 Frank Guinta Republican 121,655 53.96
2012 Congress, District 1 General Carol Shea-Porter Democratic 171,356 49.7 Frank Guinta Republican 158,482 46.0


  1. ^ Fahrenthold, David A. (December 9, 2010). "Between Losing and Going Home: The House Basement". The Washington Post. Retrieved December 19, 2010. 
  2. ^ Sangillo, Gregg (10-5-12). "New Hampshire, 1st House District". National Journal. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  3. ^ "Carol Shea Porter's unusual journey to Congress"(registration required)
  4. ^ Carol Shea-Porter (2006). Carol Shea Porter for Congress (NH 01). New Hampshire:  An early video "audition" introducing herself to the voters for the 2006 Congressional race which she won.
  5. ^ "Carol Shea-Porter (D)". Washington Post. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  6. ^ a b "Carol Shea-Porter (D)". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  7. ^ "Shea-Porter: Bill will protect troops" (January 25, 2010) AP
  8. ^ "Congress asked for study of urological war wounds" (September 27, 2010) AP
  9. ^ a b c Berry, Jake (October 10, 2012). "Guinta, Shea-Porter voice vast policy differences in TV debate". The Telegraph. 
  10. ^ Shea-Porter, Carol (2009-07-21). "Carol Shea-Porter: Cap And Trade Will Create Jobs, Improve Our Energy Future". New Hampshire Union Leader 
  11. ^ FINAL VOTE RESULTS FOR ROLL CALL 477 (American Clean Energy and Security Act)
  12. ^ Quinton, Amy (10-26-10). "Candidates Quiet on Climate Change". NHPR. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  13. ^ "Medicare 'donut hole' checks in the mail". 2020-08-12. Retrieved 2010-11-13. 
  14. ^ Palermo, Sarah (10-28-12). "First District candidate Carol Shea-Porter outlines congressional agenda". Concord Monitor. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  15. ^ Sletten, Phil (6-12-09). "Cash for Clunkers Fails to Earn Gregg’s Support". NHPR. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  16. ^ "Tempers hot at Shea-Porter health meetings" Union Leader (August 30, 2010)[dead link]
  17. ^ "Protesters Question Shea-Porter On Health Care Law: Tea Party Members Plan Protests At Town Hall Meetings" WMUR (March 31, 2010)
  18. ^ Secretary of State Results for New Hampshire 1st Congressional District, Democratic Primary, September 12, 2006
  19. ^ Winograd, Morley; Hais, Michael D. (2008). Millennial makeover: MySpace, YouTube, and the future of American politics. New Brunswick, New Jersey: Rutgers University Press. p. 126. ISBN 978-0-8135-4301-7. OCLC 156994481 
  20. ^ "Shea-Porter best for the 1st" Concord Monitor editorial (October 27, 2008)
  21. ^ "Shea-Porter requests DCCC help in race" Politico, May 21, 2008
  22. ^ "DCCC CHAIRMAN STEVE ISRAEL ANNOUNCES 2013-2014 FRONTLINE MEMBERS". DCCC. 3-5-13. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  23. ^ Center, Shira (11-4-13). "Roll Call's 10 Most Vulnerable House Members Revealed". Roll Call. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  24. ^ Sullivan, Sean (11 August 2014). "A leading ‘anti-super PAC’ just backed three more candidates for Congress". Washington Post. Retrieved 11 August 2014. 

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Frank Guinta
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Hampshire's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by
Preceded by
Jeb Bradley
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Hampshire's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by
Frank Guinta
United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Mike Fitzpatrick
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Tim Walberg