Congress to Campus - "Closing our Political Divide - A Bipartisan Approach to Legislation"
Thursday, September 27, 2018, Wean Hall 7500, 4:30 PM – 5:30 PM
Former congressmen from both major political parties will discuss the impact of midterm elections and the importance that this November’s election has on the political landscape today.
Rep. David Skaggs (D-CO)
David Skaggs is a former six-term Democratic member of the United State House of Representatives from Colorado’s 2nd Congressional District (1987-99). Prior to his election to Congress, he served three terms in the Colorado House (1981-87), the last two terms as Minority Leader.
Skaggs currently holds positions as Co-Chair of the Board of the U. S. House of Representatives’ Office of Congressional Ethics and a Senior Advisor with Dentons US LLP (formerly McKenna Long & Aldridge). He serves as Vice-Chair of the board of trustees of the National Endowment for Democracy. He is currently a trustee of the American University of Iraq – Sulaimani and the U. S. Association of Former Members of Congress, and is on the board of directors of the Center of the American West at the University of Colorado.
Skaggs has been an Adjunct Professor at the University of Colorado in both the School of Law (teaching Professional Ethics, 2012-16) and the Department of Political Science (1999-2002). He served in the cabinet of Colorado Governor Bill Ritter Jr. as Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Higher Education.
In Congress, David was a member of the House Appropriations Committee and the House Permanent Select Committee of Intelligence. He was a leader in efforts to improve the House of Representatives and was the founding co-chairman with Congressman Ray LaHood (R-Illinois) of the House Bipartisan Retreats, designed to improve bipartisan relations among House members. He has remained dedicated to improving the quality of the nation’s politics and with his wife, Laura, endowed a fund at American University that beginning in 2019 will support the biennial award of the Madison Prizes to a Member of Congress, Representative or Senator, from each major party “who each best exemplifies respect for the institutional values and constitutional prerogatives of the Congress, the need for compromise in a democratic society, and the republican spirit of James Madison.”
After earning a B.A. in philosophy from Wesleyan University in 1964, Skaggs studied law at the University of Virginia for one year, completing his LL.B. at the Yale Law School in 1967. He entered active duty in the U. S. Marine Corps in 1968 and served on Okinawa, in Vietnam, and at Marine Corps Headquarters in Washington, remaining in the Marine Corps Reserves until 1978 and attaining the rank of Major.
Mr. Skaggs is married to Laura Locher Skaggs, and has three children: Matthew Babcock (50), Clare Belcher (42) and Will Driscoll (38).
Rep. Donald Manzullo (R-IL)
Don Manzullo recently retired as President & CEO, KEI, Korea Economic Institute of America. During his 20 years of service representing the 16th District of Illinois, Congressman Manzullo was a leading voice in shaping congressional economic and foreign policy towards the Asia Pacific region. He started his career in the House of Representatives in 1993 on the Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and ended his tenure in Congress serving as the Republican leader of this pivotal subcommittee from 2007 until 2013, including chairing the Asia subcommittee during his last two years in the House. Mr. Manzullo also served as a member of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on International Economic Policy and Trade.
Chairman Manzullo was appointed by House Speaker John Boehner to serve a Commissioner on the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, which monitors compliance with human rights obligations and the development of the rule of law in the People’s Republic of China. He was appointed by a previous Speaker to serve as a member of the House Task Force on the Hong Kong Transition.
Representative Manzullo is well-known as a staunch advocate for small business, manufacturing, and trade between the United States and Asian economies. For 14 years, Congressman Manzullo served on the Small Business Committee, first chairing the Exports Subcommittee from 1995 to 2001. He was then elected by his fellow colleagues to chair the full Small Business Committee – one of just 17 standing committees of the U.S. House of Representatives – for a maximum of three 2- year terms from 2001 to 2007.
Manzullo also served on the House Financial Services Committee for 16 years, sitting on three important subcommittees dealing with the U.S. economic recovery, capital markets, banks, financial reforms, and international monetary policy. He co-founded and co-chaired the bipartisan House Manufacturing Caucus and also served as a co-chair of the House Automotive Caucus.
During the course of his career in Congress, Representative Donald Manzullo authored 17 bills that were signed into law by the President and altered the direction of 18 other bills that also became law. He also significantly influenced over 50 administrative actions by the Executive Branch through regulatory changes or alterations to internal policy. Overall, Mr. Manzullo chaired over 140 hearings on diverse subjects ranging from global competitiveness and manufacturing to human rights. He supported every free trade agreement (FTA) in Congress, and served on several “whip” teams to encourage his fellow legislators to vote for these market opening initiatives. Mr. Manzullo has been recognized for his leadership on various legislative issues, including receiving the Distinguished Service Award from the Small Business Exporters Association for his work that improved various trade promotion programs, the Leadership Award from the Coalition for Employment through Exports for his legislation that reauthorized the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and the prestigious Wings of Liberty Award from the Aerospace Industries Association for his efforts to amend an export control regulation that freed up billions of dollars of commercial aviation parts and components to be sold abroad without requiring a license for each item.
Mr. Manzullo was also appointed by the Speaker of the House to serve as Chairman of the Canada-U.S. Inter-parliamentary Group and the U.S.-China Inter-parliamentary Exchange. He also was a frequent participant in the U.S.-European Union Inter-parliamentary Exchange; the U.S.-Mexico Inter-parliamentary Exchange; and the U.S.-Japan-South Korea Legislative Exchange program, developing relationships with legislators from all around the world. Chairman Manzullo also led two of the largest official Congressional delegations to visit dignitaries in China, Australia, and New Zealand. Congressman Manzullo was one of the first critics of easy lending practices for residential real estate, which created and then led to the collapse of the subprime mortgage market that quickly spread to other financial markets both in the United States and around the world. In 2000, he was an early co-sponsor of the Housing Finance Regulatory Improvement Act, which would have reduced the systemic risk posed to capital markets by financial institutions that engaged in lax mortgage lending practices. Congressman Manzullo has spoken before numerous groups on financial services and trade issues. He also gained a reputation for being one of the most knowledgeable U.S. legislators on manufacturing, leading him to be a featured speaker before numerous manufacturing organizations such as the National Association of Manufacturers, the Precision Metalforming Association, and the Society for the Advancement of Material and Process Engineering (SAMPE). Mr. Manzullo has also visited hundreds of manufacturing facilities in the United States, Europe, and Asia. He also authored numerous op-eds and letters to the editor that appeared in local and national publications, including the Rockford Register Star, the Northwest Herald, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Times. Prior to his congressional service, Mr. Manzullo practiced law as an attorney in Oregon, Illinois before entering politics. He holds a Juris Doctor from Marquette University (1970) and a B.A. from American University (1967), and honorary Juris Doctor from Inha University, Inchon, Korea. Mr. Manzullo is married to Freda Teslik and is the father of Neil, Noel, and Katie Manzullo. The Manzullos come from Leaf River, Illinois, where they raise beef cattle on their small farm.
Sponsored by the Center for International Relations and Politics.
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