|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Mississippi's 1st district
|Assumed office |
June 2, 2015
|Preceded by||Alan Nunnelee|
|District Attorney for Mississippi's 1st Judicial District|
January 1, 2012 – June 2, 2015
|Preceded by||John Young|
|Succeeded by||John Weddle|
John Trent Kelly
March 1, 1966
Union, Mississippi, U.S.
|Branch||United States Army|
|Years of service||1985–present (reserve)|
|Unit||Army National Guard Element, Joint Force Headquarters Mississippi|
|Wars||Persian Gulf War|
John Trent Kelly (born March 1, 1966) is an American politician from Mississippi. A member of the Republican Party, Kelly is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Mississippi's 1st congressional district, following his victory in a special election on June 2, 2015.
Early life and career
John Trent Kelly was born on March 1, 1966, in Union, Mississippi, to John and Barbara Kelly. He is a resident of Saltillo, Mississippi, where he served as the district attorney of Mississippi's 1st Circuit Judicial District, which includes Lee, Pontotoc, Alcorn, Monroe, Itawamba, Prentiss and Tishomingo Counties.
Kelly graduated from Union High School in 1984 and joined the Mississippi Army National Guard in 1985. He earned an associate degree from East Central Community College in Decatur before graduating from the University of Mississippi with a bachelor's degree in business administration. Kelly is a member of Phi Kappa Tau fraternity.
Kelly is serving as a major general with the Army National Guard Element, Joint Force Headquarters Mississippi. In 1990, he mobilized for Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm as a second lieutenant engineer officer. In 2005, Kelly deployed as a major during the Iraq War with the 155th Brigade as the Operations Officer of the 150th Engineer Battalion. From 2009 to 2010, he deployed as a lieutenant colonel to Iraq as the Battalion Commander of Task Force Knight of the 155th Brigade Combat Team and commanded over 670 troops from Mississippi, Ohio, and Kentucky. Kelly has received two Bronze Star Medals, the Combat Action Badge, the DeFleury Medal, and numerous other federal and state awards for his service. From October 2014 to November 2016, he served as the brigade commander for the 168th Engineer Brigade, leading 1,400 soldiers from the 223rd Engineer Battalion, the 890th Engineer Battalion, and multiple Engineer Specialty Companies from Mississippi. Kelly was promoted to brigadier general in January 2018 and to major general in November 2020.
U.S. House of Representatives
|Year||Republican||Votes||Pct||Democratic||Votes||Pct||Third party||Party||Votes||Pct||Third party||Party||Votes||Pct|
|2015 (special)||Trent Kelly||69,516||70.0%||Walter Zinn||29,831||30.0%|
|2016||206,455||68.7%||Jacob Owens||83,947||27.9%||Chase Wilson||Libertarian||6,181||2.1%||Cathy Toole||Reform||3,840||1.3%|
|2018||158,245||66.9%||Randy Wadkins||76,601||32.4%||Tracella L.O. Hil||Reform||1,675||0.7%|
2015 special election
In the first round, Kelly finished second in a 13-candidate field, behind Democrat Walter Zinn. As no candidate received a majority of votes, Kelly and Zinn advanced to a runoff on June 2. Several of the other candidates in the race endorsed Kelly after they were eliminated.
Kelly won the Republican primary in March 2016, defeating Paul Clever of Olive Branch both districtwide and in DeSoto County. Kelly had 18,152 votes in DeSoto County, or 80%, to Clever's 4,497 (20%).
Kelly then won reelection with 67.57% of the vote to Democratic nominee Jacob Owens's 27.97%, followed by Libertarian Chase Wilson's 2.92% and Reform Party candidate Cathy L. Toole's 1.45%.
Kelly serves on the House Armed Services Committee and the Agriculture Committee and Small Business Committee, where he serves as the chair of the Subcommittee on Investigations, Oversight, and Regulations.
In December 2020, Kelly was one of 126 Republican members of the House of Representatives to sign an amicus brief in support of Texas v. Pennsylvania, a lawsuit filed at the United States Supreme Court contesting the results of the 2020 presidential election, in which Joe Biden defeated incumbent Donald Trump. The Supreme Court declined to hear the case on the basis that Texas lacked standing under Article III of the Constitution to challenge the results of an election held by another state.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued a statement that called signing the amicus brief an act of "election subversion." She also reprimanded Kelly and the other House members who supported the lawsuit: "The 126 Republican Members that signed onto this lawsuit brought dishonor to the House. Instead of upholding their oath to support and defend the Constitution, they chose to subvert the Constitution and undermine public trust in our sacred democratic institutions." New Jersey Representative Bill Pascrell, citing section three of the 14th Amendment, called for Pelosi to not seat Kelly and the other Republicans who signed the brief supporting the suit, arguing that "the text of the 14th Amendment expressly forbids Members of Congress from engaging in rebellion against the United States. Trying to overturn a democratic election and install a dictator seems like a pretty clear example of that."
2017 congressional baseball shooting
On June 14, 2017, in Alexandria, Virginia, Republican member of Congress and House Majority Whip Steve Scalise of Louisiana was shot while practicing for the annual Congressional Baseball Game for Charity, scheduled for the following day. Also shot were David Bailey and Crystal Griner, a Capitol Police officer assigned to protect Scalise; Zack Barth, a congressional aide; and Matt Mika, a Tyson Foods lobbyist.
A ten-minute shootout ensued between the shooter—James Hodgkinson of Belleville, Illinois, a left-wing activist—and officers from the Capitol and Alexandria Police. Media reports state Hodgkinson began firing from the fence adjacent to the third base dugout. At the time of the shooting, Kelly was playing third base and roughly ten yards from Hodgkinson. As Hodgkinson opened fire, Kelly is reported to be the first person to be shot at and the first to alert the rest of the team there was an active shooter by yelling "shooter, active shooter" as he evacuated himself from the field. Officers shot Hodgkinson, who died from his wounds later that day at George Washington University Hospital. Scalise and Mika were taken to nearby hospitals, where they underwent surgery. Scalise is the first sitting member of Congress to have been shot since Representative Gabby Giffords was shot in 2011.
- Kelly is a member of the House Armed Services Committee, serving as Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Intelligence and Special Operations. He also serves on the Budget and Agriculture Committees.
- "Trent Kelly sworn in as newest member of Congress".
- "About". Trent Kelly for Congress. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
- "Col Trent Kelly". Combat Veterans for Congress. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
- Guajardo, Rod (April 29, 2015). "Kelly sees Congress as 'ultimate' service job". Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal.
- Brumfield, Patsy R. (December 29, 2011). "Kelly ready to take on DA's responsibilities". Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal.
- "Congressman Trent Kelly: Representing the First District of Mississippi". House.gov. Retrieved November 30, 2020.
- "Biography : Congressman Trent Kelly". trentkelly.house.gov. Retrieved September 14, 2017. This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
- JOURNAL, CALEB BEDILLION DAILY. "Kelly promoted to rank of brigadier general". Daily Journal. Retrieved May 15, 2018.
- Harrison, Bobby (April 21, 2015). "Nunnelee funds directed to Kelly's campaign". Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal.
- Easley, Jonathan (May 12, 2015). "Democrat advances to runoff in Mississippi special election". The Hill.
- Pender, Geoff (May 13, 2015). "Democrats celebrate Tuesday win; battle moves to runoff". Clarion Ledger.
- Cahn, Emily (May 12, 2015). "Mississippi Special Election Heads to Runoff". Roll Call.
- Pettus, Emily Wagster (May 13, 2015). "1 Dem, 1 Republican headed to US House runoff in Mississippi". Washington Post.
- Cahn, Emily (June 2, 2015). "Kelly Wins Runoff for Mississippi House Seat". Roll Call.
- "Rep. Trent Kelly of Mississippi Sworn in as New House Member". Associated Press. June 9, 2015.
- Blood, Michael R.; Riccardi, Nicholas (December 5, 2020). "Biden officially secures enough electors to become president". AP News. Archived from the original on December 8, 2020. Retrieved December 12, 2020.
- Liptak, Adam (December 11, 2020). "Supreme Court Rejects Texas Suit Seeking to Subvert Election". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Archived from the original on December 11, 2020. Retrieved December 12, 2020.
- "Order in Pending Case" (PDF). Supreme Court of the United States. December 11, 2020. Archived (PDF) from the original on December 11, 2020. Retrieved December 11, 2020.
- Diaz, Daniella. "Brief from 126 Republicans supporting Texas lawsuit in Supreme Court". CNN. Archived from the original on December 12, 2020. Retrieved December 11, 2020.
- Smith, David (December 12, 2020). "Supreme court rejects Trump-backed Texas lawsuit aiming to overturn election results". The Guardian. Retrieved December 13, 2020.
- "Pelosi Statement on Supreme Court Rejecting GOP Election Sabotage Lawsuit" (Press release). Speaker Nancy Pelosi. December 11, 2020. Retrieved December 13, 2020.
- Williams, Jordan (December 11, 2020). "Democrat asks Pelosi to refuse to seat lawmakers supporting Trump's election challenges". TheHill. Archived from the original on December 12, 2020. Retrieved December 12, 2020.
- Oliver Laughland; Jon Swaine (June 15, 2017). "Virginia shooting: gunman was leftwing activist with record of domestic violence". The Guardian. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- Matt Pierce; Joseph Tanfani (June 14, 2017). "Virginia gunman hated Republicans, and 'was always in his own little world'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 21, 2017.
- de Vries, Karl; Scott, Eugene (June 14, 2017). "Rep. Scalise shot in Virginia". CNN. Retrieved July 1, 2017.
- Staff. "Hospital: House Majority Whip Steve Scalise in critical condition after surgery". AOL. Retrieved June 15, 2017.
- Yadidi, Noa (June 14, 2017). "Giffords tweets support following baseball practice shooting". CNN. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
- "Members of the Veterinary Medicine Caucus". Veterinary Medicine Caucus. Retrieved October 12, 2018.
- "Member List". Republican Study Committee. Retrieved December 21, 2017.
- "Trent Kellini "Doʻstlik" ordeni bilan mukofotlash toʻgʻrisida". UzA (in Uzbek). August 30, 2019. Retrieved August 31, 2019.
- U.S. Representative Trent Kelly official U.S. House website
- Kelly for Congress campaign website
- Trent Kelly 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
|U.S. House of Representatives|
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Mississippi's 1st congressional district
|U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)|
| United States representatives by seniority
|114th||Senate: T. Cochran • R. Wicker||House: B. Thompson • G. Harper • A. Nunnelee • S. Palazzo • T. Kelly|
|115th||Senate: T. Cochran • R. Wicker • C. Hyde-Smith||House: B. Thompson • G. Harper • S. Palazzo • T. Kelly|
|116th||Senate: R. Wicker • C. Hyde-Smith||House: B. Thompson • S. Palazzo • T. Kelly • M. Guest|
|117th||Senate: R. Wicker • C. Hyde-Smith||House: B. Thompson • S. Palazzo • T. Kelly • M. Guest|