|Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus|
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2021
|Preceded by||Katherine Clark|
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from California's 31st district
|Assumed office |
January 3, 2015
|Preceded by||Gary Miller|
|Mayor of Redlands|
December 7, 2010 – December 2, 2014
|Preceded by||Pat Gilbreath|
|Succeeded by||Paul Foster|
|Member of the Redlands City Council|
April 19, 2006 – December 15, 2014
|Preceded by||Susan Peppler|
|Succeeded by||John James|
Peter Rey Aguilar
June 19, 1979
Fontana, California, U.S.
|Residence(s)||Redlands, California, U.S.|
|Education||University of Redlands (B.S.)|
Peter Rey Aguilar // (born June 19, 1979) is an American politician serving as the United States representative from California's 31st congressional district. A member of the Democratic Party, he served as mayor of Redlands, California, from 2010 to 2014 and as the president of the Inland Empire Division of the League of California Cities. Aguilar served on the Redlands City Council from 2006 until his election to Congress.
Early life and education
Aguilar was born in Fontana, California, and grew up in a working-class family in San Bernardino, California. He is of Mexican descent. He graduated from the University of Redlands, where he studied government and business administration.
Aguilar began his career in public service in 2001 when then-California Governor Gray Davis appointed him Deputy Director of the Inland Empire Regional Office of the governor, eventually becoming the Interim Director. In 2006, Aguilar became the youngest member of the Redlands City Council in the city's history when five council members, Democrat and Republican, picked him out of 11 candidates to fill an open seat. He was elected a year later. His fellow council members appointed him mayor in 2010 and again in 2012. As mayor, Aguilar was regarded for his professionalism, leadership during difficult financial times, balancing the city budget while building financial reserves, road improvements, government transparency, and fair treatment of municipal employees. Aguilar served as mayor and councilman until December 2014.
U.S. House of Representatives
California's 31st congressional district became more favorable to the Democratic Party as a result of redistricting following the 2010 Census. The Cook Partisan Voting Index rates the district D+5. In January 2012, Aguilar announced he would run for the seat held by incumbent Republican Gary Miller. Although the top Democratic vote-getter, with 22.6% of the vote, he finished behind Miller and Robert Dutton, the California State Senate Republican Leader. Because of California's open primary, both Republicans advanced to the November general election. In March 2013, Aguilar announced he would run again. In the June 2014 primary, he finished second, qualifying for the November general election, where he defeated Republican Paul Chabot with 51.4% of the vote. Aguilar defeated Chabot again in the 2016 election with 56.1% of the vote.
In the 2018 Democratic primary, Aguilar faced Kaiser Ahmed and Sean Flynn, a Republican economist and aikido artist. Aguilar narrowly defeated Flynn, 45.96% to 45.45%. Ahmed received 8.59% of the vote. In the general election, Aguilar garnered 58.7% of the vote to Flynn's 41.3% 
Aguilar's time in Congress has focused on immigration, job creation, trade practices, gun control, national security, LGBT issues, veteran affairs, drug prevention, student loan debt, and environmental protection. Aguilar has supported legislation to attract individuals in the cybersecurity field to join the military; prevent discrimination against LGBT people by government contractors; provide funding for homeless veterans; and provide funding for research into opioid addiction. He has introduced the Grace Period Alleviation (GPA) Act, which would give college graduates an optional grace period before beginning to repay certain types of loans. With Senator Dianne Feinstein and Representative Paul Cook, Aguilar introduced legislation to protect the habitat along the Santa Ana River. He has vowed to fight the repeal of the Affordable Care Act and to protect women's reproductive rights. In addition, he has worked closely with law enforcement and local, state and federal officials and agencies to help communities recover costs incurred from the emergency response to the 2015 San Bernardino attack, which took place in Aguilar's district, and helped secure additional funding for survivors of the attack.
During the Obama Administration, Aguilar supported expanding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program for undocumented children and creating the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program. He introduced the Academic Success Centers and Education Networks for Dreamers (ASCEND) Act, which would establish grants for college and university programs and services to benefit undocumented students. Aguilar voted in favor of legislation that would effectively halt the resettlement of refugees from Syria and Iraq to the U.S., citing national security concerns, but subsequently criticized President Donald J. Trump's Executive Order as "xenophobic" and said it sent a message of "hate and bigotry to the rest of the world." Aguilar criticized Trump and his staff for citing the 2015 San Bernardino attack in defending the executive order. In 2018, with Representative Will Hurd, Aguilar authored legislation that would provide a path to citizenship for DACA recipients and address border protection concerns.
- Job creation
Aguilar released a job-creation initiative for his district that includes cutting taxes on small businesses, investing in infrastructure, expanding job-training programs, expanding Pell Grants, increasing the minimum wage, and equal pay for women. He has introduced a number of bills focusing on small businesses, including legislation to provide tax credits to small businesses for on-the-job training expenses, tax credits for small business for full-time newly hired employees, legislation to make it easier for small businesses to repay loans, and legislation making it easier for small businesses to advertise job openings. Aguilar annually hosts a jobs fair that connects job-seekers with employers in his district. In April 2017, he started a quarterly "Job For a Day" tour where he works throughout the Inland Empire doing jobs such as train conducting for Metrolink, sorting Goodwill donations, and bagging groceries at local markets. The tour's goal is to interact with community members directly and learn about local businesses' daily operations.
In 2017, Aguilar introduced a bill that would provide active-duty service members and reservists access to training for commercial drivers’ licenses granted by the FAST Act. He authored the Active Duty Voluntary Acquisition of Necessary Credentials for Employment (ADVANCE) Act and the OPPORTUNITY (Offering Promising Persons Occupations Relevant To Upholding National Interests For Years) Act, both of which Trump signed into law in 2018. The latter bill connects students of color with the Department of Defense Cyber Scholarship program.
- Trade policy
Aguilar introduced the Displaced Jobs Relief Act, which increases authorization of funds for the Trade Adjustment Assistance for Firms program (TAA-F) to help businesses that have been negatively affected by trade. He has urged the United States International Trade Commission to find that imported steel subsidized by Korea, Mexico and Turkey creates unfair competition and hurts steel manufacturers in his district.
- Gun control
Aguilar has advocated for reforms to curb gun violence by closing loopholes that terrorists have used to obtain guns and banning assault weapons. After the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, Aguilar participated in the 2016 United States House of Representatives sit-in to show support for gun control legislation.
- Committee on Appropriations
- Committee on House Administration
- Select Committee on the January 6 Attack
- Vice chair, House Democratic Caucus
- Congressional Hispanic Caucus
- Pro-Choice Caucus
- LGBT Equality Caucus
- Latino-Jewish Caucus
- Diabetes Caucus
- Work for Warriors Caucus
- Joint Strike Fighter Caucus
- Veterans Jobs Caucus
- Former Mayors Caucus
- Wine Caucus
- Native American Caucus
- Steel Caucus
- Hunger Caucus
- New Democrat Coalition
- Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus
- Climate Solutions Caucus
Aguilar announced his candidacy for vice chair of the Democratic Caucus in September 2018, but lost to Katherine Clark by a vote of 144–90. By a vote of 148-82, he defeated Robin Kelly for the no. 6 spot in the House Democratic Caucus. The position became vacant after Clark decided to run for Assistant Speaker in the House Democratic Caucus.
Aguilar's top contributors throughout his career have been JStreet PAC, League of Conservation Voters, Credit Union National Association, Matich Corporation, and New World Medical. Since 2011, he has not contributed personally to his own campaign, and relies mostly on individual contributions from community members. He has obtained nearly $5.3 million in contributions from individuals (63.86% of total donations). Top donations are generally from Democrats, but also include lawyers and law firms, Leadership PACs, and labor unions. His total career campaign donations are $8.2 million.
|Democratic||Pete Aguilar (incumbent)||81,994||62.1|
|No party preference||Eugene Weems (write-in)||51||0.0|
|Democratic||Pete Aguilar (incumbent)||175,315||61.3|
|Democratic||Pete Aguilar (incumbent)||41,337||45.9|
|Democratic||Pete Aguilar (incumbent)||110,143||58.7|
|Democratic||Pete Aguilar (incumbent)||48,518||43.1|
|Democratic||Pete Aguilar (incumbent)||121,070||56.1|
|Democratic gain from Republican|
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Like so many other Latinos with deep roots in the U.S., he’s fuzzy on the family history, which he is still digging out. He knows the family went from Mexico to Kingman, California, through the railroad industry.
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- "Live updates after the 2016 election: Protests, concessions and rebounding stocks". Retrieved June 21, 2017 – via LA Times.
- "Kaisar Ahmed For Congress".
- "About Sean".
- "U.S. Congressional Races: June 2018 California Primary Election Results". KCRA. June 6, 2018.
- "Election 2020 :: California Secretary of State". www.sos.ca.gov.
- "Aguilar Passes Critical Cybersecurity Amendment through House of Representatives". Highland Community News.
- "Aguilar Passes National Security Amendments through House of Representatives". Highland Community News.
- "Aguilar Announced Federal Funds to Combat Veteran Homelessness in San Bernardino County - California RealEstateRama".
- "Aguilar Supports Bipartisan Measures to Combat Opioid Epidemic". Highland Community News.
- "Rep. Pete Aguilar introduces bill to make student loans easier to repay". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Feinstein Introduces Bill to Protect Habitat Along Santa Ana River". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Aguilar Joins Congressional Hispanic Caucus to Warn House Republicans of Consequences of Repealing the Affordable Care Act". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Aguilar Pledges to Remain Fierce Advocate for Women's Reproductive Rights". January 23, 2017. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Aguilar Reflects on San Bernardino Community Six Months After Terrorist Attack". Highland Community News.
- Wire, Sarah. "A shooting back home: Congress reacts to another tragedy".
- "$4 million in funding announced for San Bernardino terror attack survivors, family of victims". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- Aguilar, Pete. "Immigration policy, rhetoric need improvement".
- "What would 31st Congressional District candidates Aguilar, Chabot do about immigration?". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- Times, Los Angeles. "Inside the Syrian refugee vote: California representatives explain what shaped their votes".
- "Aguilar Condemns Trump's Unconstitutional Actions". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Essential Politics: State Senate committee moves to assist immigrants, what California's members of Congress are saying about Trump's executive order". Retrieved June 21, 2017 – via LA Times.
- Molina, Alejandra. "Uncertainty over DACA program? Rep. Pete Aguilar says he has bipartisan solution". The San Bernardino Sun. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
- "Aguilar Highlights Job-Creating Initiatives One Year After Jobs Plan". Highland Community News.
- "On-the-Job Training Tax Credit Act of 2015 (2015 - H.R. 2431)". GovTrack.us. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Small Business Jobs Act of 2015 (2015 - H.R. 3198)". GovTrack.us. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Small Business Lending Assistance Act of 2016 (2016 - H.R. 5029)". GovTrack.us. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "JOBS Act (2016 - H.R. 5508)". GovTrack.us. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Inland Empire Jobs Fair will be held Friday, July 22". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Rep. Aguilar rides the rails on latest "Job for a Day" tour stop". Congressman Pete Aguilar. October 24, 2018.
- McIntyre, Doug (June 2, 2017). "Next stop on Aguilar's 'Job For A Day' tour at Goodwill store in Rancho Cucamonga". SB Sun.
- "Rep. Pete Aguilar bags groceries for a day as part of Inland Empire tour". Congressman Pete Aguilar. July 7, 2017.
- "Aguilar Bill to Connect Active-Duty Service Members and Reservists with Inland Empire Jobs Moves Forward". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Aguilar's ADVANCE Act signed into law". Highland Community News. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
- "Aguilar's Bill to Expand Access to DoD Cyber Scholarship Program Signed into Law". Congressman Pete Aguilar. August 15, 2018.
- "Aguilar Testifies Before U.S. Trade Commission In Support of Rancho Cucamonga Manufacturer Impacted By Unfair Trade Practices". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Aguilar Calls for Commonsense Reforms to Curb Gun Violence" – via www.youtube.com.
- Wire, Sarah. "California Democrats push Congress, again, for gun control votes".
- Horseman, Jeff. "Pete Aguilar joins call for closing 'terrorist loophole'".
- "In Case You Missed It: Reducing gun violence is not a partisan issue". February 23, 2016.
- "CONGRESS: Social media 'huge' for sit-in, Aguilar says – Press Enterprise". Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Committees and Caucuses". December 13, 2012. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Aguilar Named Assistant Whip of House Democratic Caucus". January 4, 2017. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- "Members". New Democrat Coalition. Archived from the original on February 8, 2018. Retrieved February 5, 2018.
- "Members". Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus. Retrieved May 17, 2018.
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- https://elections.cdn.sos.ca.gov/sov/2018-primary/sov/82-congress.pdf[bare URL PDF]
- https://elections.cdn.sos.ca.gov/sov/2018-general/sov/48-congress.pdf[bare URL PDF]
- https://elections.cdn.sos.ca.gov/sov/2016-primary/90-us-reps-formatted.pdf[bare URL PDF]
- https://elections.cdn.sos.ca.gov/sov/2016-general/sov/26-us-reps-formatted.pdf[bare URL PDF]
- https://elections.cdn.sos.ca.gov/sov/2014-primary/pdf/63-congress.pdf[bare URL PDF]
- https://elections.cdn.sos.ca.gov/sov/2014-general/pdf/43-congress.pdf[bare URL PDF]
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Pete Aguilar.|
- Congressman Peter Aguilar official U.S. House website
- Pete Aguilar for Congress
- Pete Aguilar at Curlie
- Appearances on C-SPAN