Raja Krishnamoorthi

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Raja Krishnamoorthi
Raja Krishnamoorthi official photo.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 8th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2017
Preceded by Tammy Duckworth
Personal details
Born (1973-07-19) July 19, 1973 (age 43)
New Delhi, India
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Priya
Children 3
Residence Schaumburg, Illinois, U.S.
Alma mater Princeton University
Harvard Law School
Occupation Small Businessman, Attorney
Website House website

Subramanian Raja Krishnamoorthi[1] /ˈrɑːə ˌkrɪʃnəˈmʊrθi/ (born July 19, 1973) is an Indian-American businessman, public servant, and politician from the state of Illinois who is the U.S. Representative for Illinois's 8th congressional district.

Early life[edit]

Krishnamoorthi was born in New Delhi, India in 1973.[2] His family moved to Buffalo, New York, when he was three months old, so that his father could attend graduate school.[3] They lived in public housing and used food stamps.[4] In 1980, the Krishnamoorthi family moved to Peoria, Illinois.[3] His father became a professor at Bradley University.[4]

Krishnamoorthi attended Princeton University, where he earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering. He then received a Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School.[4]

Early career[edit]

Krishnamoorthi and Obama in 2002

After graduating from Harvard, Krishnamoorthi served as a law clerk for Joan B. Gottschall,[5] and worked as a staffer on Barack Obama's 2000 election campaign for the United States House of Representatives. Krishnamoorthi served as an issues director for Obama's 2004 election to the United States Senate.[4] Krishnamoorthi aided in the development of Obama's 2004 Democratic National Convention keynote address.[3]

Krishnamoorthi served as a partner at the law firm Kirkland & Ellis, as a special assistant attorney general under Lisa Madigan, the Illinois Attorney General, and as deputy state treasurer for Alexi Giannoulias, the Illinois Treasurer from 2007 through 2009.[3][4] He was the president of Sivananthan Laboratories and Episolar Inc., which develop and sell technology for military and civilian customers, until resigning all his business positions before entering Congress to eliminate any conflicts of interest.[3][4][6]

Electoral career[edit]

In 2010, Krishnamoorthi ran for the Democratic Party nomination for Illinois Comptroller. He lost the primary election to David E. Miller by less than 1% of the vote.[7][8] He ran for the Democratic Party nomination for the U.S. House of Representatives seat in Illinois's 8th congressional district in the 2012 elections. Tammy Duckworth defeated Krishnamoorthi in the primary election, 66%–34%.[4]

With Duckworth running for the U.S. Senate in 2016, Krishnamoorthi again declared his candidacy for the U.S. House of Representatives. He won the March 2016 primary election with 57% of the vote, while Michael Noland earned 29% and Deb Bullwinkel received 13%.[7] In November 2016, Krishnamoorthi defeated Republican Pete DiCianni in the general election, capturing 58.1% of the vote after a campaign in which he vowed to fight for middle-class families in Congress.[9][10][11]

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]

Krishnamoorthi was sworn into office on January 3, 2017, stating, "I will continue to focus on the middle class and our commitment to ensure that hard work is rewarded."[12]

While Krishnamoorthi attended President Donald Trump's January 2017 Inauguration, he said he did so in part, "because I want President Trump to look at the crowd and Congress and see on day one that he will be strongly opposed if he continues to pursue policies that hurt working families."[13] The day before the inauguration, Krishnamoorthi was included in a list featured in The Guardian of "The up-and-coming leaders of the Trump resistance in Washington."[14]

The day after the inauguration, Krishnamoorthi addressed a crowd of more than 250,000 at the Chicago Women's March, "Today’s march was about people from every walk of life coming together to declare their support for the rights of women and all Americans. Women’s rights are human rights. A loud chorus of voices including mine will speak up for the rights of women and all Americans to make a better life in this country."[15]

Later that week, Krishnamoorthi delivered a speech on the House floor in opposition to a Trump administration decision to block an Obama administration policy that would have reduced mortgage costs for lower and middle-income families by hundreds of dollars per year.[16][17] Krishnamoorthi closed his remarks by referencing President Trump's campaign slogan,[18] stating "the Trump administration’s order to make mortgages more expensive will not strengthen our economy. It will not create jobs. And it will not make America great again. But it will make life harder for working families."[19]

Health care[edit]

During a January 2017 floor debate in the House of Representatives, Krishnamoorthi argued against repealing the Affordable Care Act.[20] Citing his experience running small businesses Krishnamoorthi stated, "repealing without replacing the Affordable Care Act would devastate our economy and harm millions of middle-class families. Within the 8th District of Illinois, we could lose upwards of over $550 million from our economy and over 4,000 jobs. I know firsthand how important health coverage is to workers and to business. Without the protections of the Affordable Care Act, we will see fewer entrepreneurs take the risk of starting a business and fewer workers take the risk of working for a start-up."[20]

Islam and Immigration[edit]

On January 28, 2017, President Donald Trump's executive order placing restrictions on people entering the U.S. from seven Muslim-majority countries caused 18 travelers arriving at O'Hare International Airport to be detained and questioned by federal officers,[21] including a family of legal permanent residents and their 18-month-old baby[22] who held U.S. citizenship.[23] Krishnamoorthi arrived at O'Hare within hours to speak to immigration officials but was told they were unavailable.[24] While joining a protest at the airport Krishnamoorthi said of the detentions "They applied legally, they've been vetted and they've been here, in many cases, for decades, and they were detained by their own country at the airport. So many of our businesses rely on green card holders -- how are we supposed to attract these people if they think they'll be detained at the airport if they go abroad for a wedding, or just to show their baby to relatives?"[25]

In a WGN Radio interview the next morning, Krishnamoorthi denounced President Trump's immigration initiative, calling it the "worst executive order you could draw up to unify the country."[26]

Committee assignments[edit]


Personal life[edit]

Krishnamoorthi's wife, Priya, is a doctor. They live with their two sons, Vijay and Vikram, and daughter[29] in Schaumburg, Illinois.[30]

In January 2017, Krishnamoorthi, a lifelong Chicago Cubs fan, and his eldest son attended the Cubs' official White House commemoration of their World Series victory.[31]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Schneider returns to House; Krishnamoorthi takes Duckworth's seat".
  2. ^ Sharma, Sheenu (November 9, 2016). "Raja Krishnamoorthi becomes first Indian-American to enter US Congress". India Today. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Bhattacharyya, Anirudh (August 29, 2016). "Raja Krishnamoorthi: First-ever Hindu of Indian origin may make it to the US House of Representatives". firstpost.com. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Gonzales, Nathan L. (March 31, 2016). "Faces of the 115th Congress: Raja Krishnamoorthi". Roll Call. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  5. ^ Schoenburg, Bernard (August 2, 2009). "Bernard Schoenburg: Schock, Shimkus: Obama born in U.S.". The State-Journal Register. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  6. ^ "Daily Herald". Suburbs' new congressmen ready to face steep climb on the 'Hill'. January 28, 2017. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  7. ^ a b "Raja Krishnamoorthi Registers Big Win in Congressional Primary". Chicago Tribune. March 17, 2016. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  8. ^ Mack, Kristen (February 3, 2010). "Democratic comptroller race settled". Chicago Tribune. Chicago: Tribune Co. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  9. ^ "New Member: Democrat Raja Krishnamoorthi Elected in Illinois’ 8th District". Roll Call. November 9, 2016. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  10. ^ "Illinois U.S. House 8th District Results: Raja Krishnamoorthi Wins". Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  11. ^ "Krishnamoorthi Vows to Fight for Middle Class in Congress". NBC Chicago. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  12. ^ "Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi takes oath and commits to middle class". Asian American Press. January 5, 2017. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  13. ^ "6 Illinois Democrats Skipping Out On Swearing-In". Chicago Tonight | WTTW. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  14. ^ Gambino, Lauren (January 19, 2017). "The up-and-coming leaders of the Trump resistance in Washington". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  15. ^ News, Indian-American Community (January 22, 2017). "Hundreds of Thousands Join Women’s March on Washington to Protest President Trump’s Agenda". Indian-American Community News. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  16. ^ Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi (January 24, 2017), Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi Speaks Out Against Trump Plan To Make Mortgages More Expensive, retrieved January 30, 2017 
  17. ^ "Trump Reverses Obama's Mortgage Fee Cuts on First Day". Bloomberg.com. January 20, 2017. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  18. ^ "How Trump came up with his slogan 'Make America Great Again'". Business Insider. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  19. ^ "Raja Speaks Out Against Trump's Plan To Make Mortgages More Expensive For Working Families". Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi. January 24, 2017. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  20. ^ a b "Krishnamoorthi Opposes Repeal Of Obamacare During House Debate - News India Times". www.newsindiatimes.com. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  21. ^ "As hundreds protest, attorneys seek info on how many are detained". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  22. ^ "Refugees, Visa and Green Card Holders Detained, Turned Away at O'Hare". Chicago Tonight | WTTW. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  23. ^ "Travelers Detained Due To Trump Travel Ban Released, Attorneys Say". Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  24. ^ Sobol, Rosemary Regina. "Illinois Democrats express 'disbelief' at Trump immigration order". chicagotribune.com. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  25. ^ "Daily Herald". Protests for immigrants begin anew at O'Hare. January 29, 2017. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  26. ^ "Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi: "Worst Executive Order You Could Draw Up To Unify The Country"". WGN Radio - 720 AM. January 29, 2017. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  27. ^ "Committees and Legislation". Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi. November 7, 2014. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  28. ^ "Cummings Announces Subcommittee Ranking Members for 115th Congress". Committee on Oversight and Government Reform - Democrats. January 24, 2017. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 
  29. ^ "Raja Krishnamoorthi: Candidate Profile". Daily Herald. January 1, 2016. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  30. ^ Gutowski, Christy (October 28, 2016). "Suburban politicians seeking promotion vie to succeed Duckworth in Congress". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 7, 2016. 
  31. ^ Reporter, India-West Staff. "Indian American Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi Visits White House for Chicago Cubs Celebration". India West. Retrieved January 30, 2017. 

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Tammy Duckworth
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 8th congressional district

United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Ruben Kihuen
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
David Kustoff