|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Wisconsin's 7th district
January 3, 2011 – September 23, 2019
|Preceded by||Dave Obey|
|Succeeded by||Tom Tiffany|
|District Attorney of Ashland County|
August 1, 2002 – July 9, 2010
|Preceded by||Michael Gableman|
|Succeeded by||Kelly McKnight|
Sean Patrick Duffy
October 3, 1971
Hayward, Wisconsin, U.S.
|Education||Saint Mary's University of Minnesota (BA)|
William Mitchell College of Law (JD)
Sean Patrick Duffy (born October 3, 1971) is an American politician, prosecutor, former sports commentator and reality television personality who is currently a Fox News contributor. A member of the Republican Party, he previously served as the U.S. representative for Wisconsin's 7th congressional district from 2011 to 2019.
He first gained fame as a cast member on The Real World: Boston, 1998's Road Rules: All Stars and 2002's Real World/Road Rules Challenge: Battle of the Seasons, before going on to serve as district attorney of Ashland County, Wisconsin.
Duffy was born on October 3, 1971, in Hayward, Wisconsin, the tenth of 11 children of Carol Ann (née Yackel) and Thomas Walter Duffy. Duffy has a marketing degree from St. Mary's University, and a J.D. degree from William Mitchell College of Law.
Duffy started log rolling at age five and speed climbing (sprinting up 60 and 90 foot poles) at 13. He holds two speed-climbing titles.
In 1997, Duffy appeared on The Real World: Boston, the sixth season of the MTV reality television show, and on Road Rules: All Stars in 1998, where he met his future wife Rachel Campos. Duffy later appeared on Real World/Road Rules Challenge: Battle of the Seasons, which aired in 2002. Both appeared in a filmed segment on 2008's The Real World Awards Bash, while Duffy served as district attorney.
Duffy has been an ESPN color commentator for televised competitions and in 2003 appeared as both a competitor and commentator on ESPN's Great Outdoor Games. He was named Badger State Games Honorary Athlete of the 2004 Winter Games.
Duffy, a Republican, was appointed Ashland County District Attorney in 2002 by then Governor Scott McCallum, and was reelected unopposed in 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2008. Upon assuming the office of district attorney, he succeeded Michael Gableman, a former justice on the Wisconsin Supreme Court.
U.S. House of Representatives
On July 8, 2009, Duffy announced his campaign for Congress in Wisconsin's seventh congressional district. Duffy was considered an underdog in the race until May 2010 when 15-term incumbent Democratic Representative Dave Obey announced that he would not seek re-election. Following Obey's announcement, Democratic State Senator Julie Lassa joined the race.
On June 4, 2010, Duffy announced his resignation from the position of Ashland County District Attorney to focus on the congressional race. The resignation was effective three weeks later and Duffy returned to work in his father's law practice. He won the race on November 2, 2010, in a nationwide wave of Republicans being elected to Congress.
Different sources attribute his victory to his ten-month head start on Lassa's campaign, his grassroots organization and fundraising, his experience as a district attorney, and voter discontent with the economy.
Duffy was challenged by Democratic nominee Pat Kreitlow.
Duffy was challenged by Democratic nominee Kelly Westlund.
In March 2011, Duffy was criticized when a video published by the Polk County Republicans, showing a public town hall-style meeting in his district, was picked up by media commentators. In the video, made in the wake of the passage of a controversial state bill which would have effectively frozen the salaries of state employees, Duffy was asked about whether he would be willing to cut his own $174,000 salary. Duffy responded that he would only be willing to do so as part of a general round of salary cuts for government employees, and insisted that he was "struggling" to get by, despite his salary being nearly three times the average for Wisconsin residents.
On December 22, 2011, Duffy and fellow GOP House freshman Rick Crawford (Arkansas), published an open letter to Speaker Boehner, urging the leader to allow the House to vote on the Senate's two-month tax cut extension compromise.
In 2013, Duffy and Democratic House member Michael Michaud (Maine) introduced a resolution calling for government action to ensure that people be provided with paper-based information along with electronic.
Duffy supported President Donald Trump's 2017 executive order to impose a temporary ban on entry to the U.S. to citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries. He stated that "President Trump is fulfilling a campaign promise to re-evaluate our visa vetting process so that the American people are safe from terrorism."
In February 2017, Duffy made controversial statements in an interview with CNN's Alisyn Camerota while discussing the topic of President Trump's immigration and travel ban, which focused on combating radical Islamist terrorists. When Camerota, referring to the Quebec City mosque shooting, asked why Trump made no public statement on the white terrorists who perpetrated that act, Duffy replied, "I don't know, there's a difference. You don't have a group like ISIS or al Qaeda that is inspiring people around the world to take up arms and kill innocents...That was a one off, Alisyn."
In July 2018, Duffy said that Europe, China, Canada and Mexico had committed "economic terrorism in a way" by placing retaliatory tariffs on the United States in response to tariffs enacted by the Trump administration.
Duffy resigned his seat effective September 23, 2019, to care for a newborn daughter with a heart defect.
Duffy proposed legislation to replace the director of the consumer watchdog group, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), with a five-person commission and removing the CFPB from Federal Reserve System oversight so that it "would go through the same funding process as other federal agencies." The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau would have been renamed the Financial Product Safety Commission. The bill also intended to make overturning the decisions about regulations that the new commission made easier to do. The bill gave the commission more room to get rid of policies that Duffy believes jeopardize the safety of the US banking system.
In December 2015, Duffy introduced legislation to establish a five-person financial oversight board over Puerto Rico (with members appointed by the White House) in exchange for allowing public entities in Puerto Rico access to Chapter 9 restructuring.
Duffy served on the House Committee on Financial Services. He was appointed Chairman of the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations in November 2014, taking over from Patrick McHenry. He was also a member of the Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government-Sponsored Enterprises. He also served on the Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit and the Subcommittee on Insurance, Housing and Community Opportunity.
- 2018 race for U.S. House of Representatives – 7th District
- Sean Duffy (R), 60.2%
- Margaret Engebretson (D), 38.5%
- 2016 race for U.S. House of Representatives – 7th District
- Sean Duffy (R), 62%
- Mary Hoeft (D), 38%
- 2014 race for U.S. House of Representatives – 7th District
- Sean Duffy (R), 60%
- Kelly Westlund (D), 39%
- 2012 race for U.S. House of Representatives – 7th District
- Sean Duffy (R), 56%
- Pat Kreitlow (D), 44%
- 2010 race for U.S. House of Representatives – 7th District
- Sean Duffy (R), 52%
- Julie Lassa (D), 44%
- 2008 race for District Attorney of Ashland County, Wisconsin
- Sean Duffy (R) (inc.)
- 2006 race for District Attorney of Ashland County, Wisconsin
- Sean Duffy (R) (inc.)
- 2004 race for District Attorney of Ashland County, Wisconsin
- Sean Duffy (R) (inc.)
- 2002 race for District Attorney of Ashland County, Wisconsin
- Sean Duffy (R) (inc.)
Duffy is married to Rachel Campos-Duffy, a fellow alumna of The Real World, and Fox News personality, whom he met when they were co-stars on Road Rules: All Stars. They lived in Ashland, Wisconsin when Duffy was District Attorney for that county. They moved to Weston, a suburb of Wausau, Wisconsin, in late 2011, in order for Duffy to be closer to an airport for his weekly commute to Washington, D.C., where he spent three or four days a week.
As of August 2019, Duffy and his wife have eight children, and were expecting their ninth that October. On August 26, 2019, Duffy announced that because he and his wife learned that their ninth child, would experience health complications, including a heart condition, he was resigning from Congress, effective September 23.
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- Kane, Paul (October 23, 2015). "Boehner's next select committee, focusing on Planned Parenthood, to be led by Marsha Blackburn". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 23, 2015.
- Blake, Aaron (January 29, 2017). "Coffman, Gardner join Republicans against President Trump's travel ban; here's where the rest stand". The Denver Post. Retrieved January 30, 2017.
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- Dale, Daniel (July 25, 2018). "Republican congressman accuses Canada of 'economic terrorism'". Toronto Star. Retrieved July 31, 2018.
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- "H.R. 3192 (113th): Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection Accountability Act of 2013". September 26, 2013. Retrieved April 19, 2016.
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- Pabst, Georgia (May 11, 2013). "Rachel Campos-Duffy balances motherhood with activism". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Archived from the original on August 26, 2016. Retrieved December 4, 2020.
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- Dater, Adrian (November 3, 2020). "Around the Rink: No Doubt the NHL Is in a Golden Age of Young Talent". Bleacher Report. Archived from the original on November 5, 2016. Retrieved December 4, 2020.
|Wikiquote has quotations related to Sean Duffy.|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sean Duffy.|
- Congressman Sean Duffy official U.S. House website
- Sean Duffy for Congress
- Sean Duffy at Curlie
- Biography at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Profile at Vote Smart
- Financial information (federal office) at the Federal Election Commission
- Legislation sponsored at the Library of Congress
- Appearances on C-SPAN
- "Sean and Rachel Campos-Duffy welcome fifth child, daughter Paloma Pilar". People. May 20, 2008. Archived from the original on August 3, 2010. Retrieved December 4, 2020.
- "Rachel Campos-Duffy Welcomes Daughter MariaVictoria Margarita". People. April 16, 2010. Archived from the original on April 18, 2010. Retrieved December 4, 2020.
- Camia, Catalina (May 8, 2014). "Wisconsin congressman welcomes Baby No. 7". USA Today. Archived from the original on May 8, 2014. Retrieved December 4, 2020.