Bob Filner

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Bob Filner currently serves the 51st Congressional district of California

Dr. Robert "Bob" Filner, Ph. D., a Democrat, has represented the 51st Congressional District of California in the U. S. House of Representatives since 1993. (map)

Record and controversies

Iraq War

Filner voted against the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 that started the Iraq War.[1]

For more information see the chart of U.S. House of Representatives votes on the Iraq War.

Environmental record

For more information on environmental legislation, see the Energy and Environment Policy Portal

Support for gun control

Filner cosponsored H.R. 1022 (Assault Weapons Ban Reauthorization Act of 2007) on March 7, 2007.[2]

Main article: U.S. gun legislation

Veteran's health

On May 23, the House considered the Chiropractic Care Available to All Veterans Act (H.R.1470), sponsored by Rep. Filner, which would amend the Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care Programs Enhancement Act of 2001 to require the provision of chiropractic care and services to veterans at all Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers by 2011. The bill passed 421-1.

On May 23, 2007, the House considered the Returning Servicemember VA Healthcare Insurance Act of 2007 (H.R.612), also sponsored by Rep. Filner, which would extend the period of eligibility for health care for combat service in the Persian Gulf War or future hostilities from two years to five years after discharge or release. The bill passed 419-0.

Main article: U.S. veterans and soldiers legislation

Assault charges

On August 19, 2007, Filner was charged with assault and battery, following an incident at Dulles airport. According to a statement issued by the Washington Metropolitan Airports Authority, at approximately 6:00 PM on August 19, airport police were called to the United Airlines baggage claim office after a report of a passenger, Rep. Filner, attempting to enter a restricted area, only open to airport employees. Filner pushed an airport employee who tried to stop him and refused to leave the area when asked to do so. When the police arrived a few minutes later, Filner had left the office and was waiting near the baggage claim. The police interviewed Filner and several witnesses, and allowed the Congressman to leave after informing him that the airport employee intended to pursue charges. Later that night, the employee filed assault charges, appearing before a Loudoun County, Virginia magistrate, who issued a summons to Rep. Filner to appear in court on October 2 for a Class 1 misdemeanor, a charge punishable by a $2,500 fine and up to one year in prison. Filner's office issued a statement following the incident which stated, “Congressman Bob Filner is on his way to Iraq, visiting our troops, and will have a full statement when he returns. Suffice it to say now, that the story that has appeared in the press is factually incorrect-and the charges are ridiculous.”[3]

Deadline for ethics investigation passes

On September 19, the House ethics committee faced a deadline to either create a subcommittee to look into into Rep. Filner's assault charges or to issue a statement why they did not. A House rule agreed to in June stated that if a Member was indicted or “formally charged with criminal conduct in a court,” then the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct has 30 days to create an investigative subcommittee to investigate it, or report to the House with an explanation why no subcommittee was created.[4]

Ethics Chairwoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-Ohio) would not comment on whether a subcommittee was formed or not.[5]

Plea Deal Reached

On November 26, 2007, Filner entered an Alford plea with Loudoun County General District Court, acknowledging he could be convicted of the crime but not admitting guilt. Under the terms of the plea agreement, the charges against Filner were reduced to trespassing, and he was given a $100 fine.[6]


Filner was born September 4, 1942 in Pittsburgh. As a student at Cornell University, he participated in the Freedom Rides of 1961, spending several months in jail for his efforts.[1] He graduated from Cornell in 1963 and earned his doctorate from the same school six years later. Shortly after earning his Ph.D, he moved to San Diego, becoming a history professor at San Diego State University. He resigned his position in 1992 to run for Congress.

Filner was long interested in politics, serving as a staffer for Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota in 1975 and for Congressman Don Fraser, also of Minnesota, in 1976. He also served as a staffer for Congressman Jim Bates from the San Diego area in 1984.

His elective career began in 1979, when his opposition to the closing of a neighborhood school led him to run for the San Diego school board where he defeated a longtime incumbent. Even though he was the only Democrat on the board, his "back to basics" approach to education won him wide praise, and his colleagues elected him president of the board in 1982. [2] For part of his tenure on the board, he served alongside Susan A. Davis, who now represents most of the other side of San Diego in the House. He was elected to the San Diego City Council in 1987. He was handily reelected in 1991, and his colleagues elected him deputy mayor. His main interest was in economic expansion.

California gained seven seats after the 1990 census, and one of them was the 50th District in south San Diego (renumbered the 51st District after the 2000 census). Filner ran in a five-way Democratic primary for the seat and won a narrow victory. The district was almost 40% Hispanic (redistricting in 2000 made it 53% Hispanic) and heavily Democratic, and his victory in November (with 57 percent of the vote) was a foregone conclusion. He has been reelected six times with no substantive Republican opposition. He ran unopposed in 1998.

2006 elections

In 2006, the Republicans nominated Blake Linden Miles, and the Libertarian Party nominated Dan Litwin to face Filner in his November 2006 bid for reelection. (See U.S. congressional elections in 2006) [3] Filner retained his seat.

2008 elections

This information was gathered by volunteer researchers as part of the Superdelegate Transparency Project on the superdelegates for the 2008 Democratic presidential primary. For more info see the California superdelegate tracker or visit the STP homepage.

Before Hillary Clinton conceded the race, Bob Filner, as a superdelegate, had not endorsed a candidate for President.

  • For more information and sources, see the state page for this superdelegate linked to in the blue box above.

Committees and Affiliations


Committee assignments in the 109th Congress (2005-2006)

More Background Data

Wikipedia also has an article on Bob Filner. This article may use content from the Wikipedia article under the terms of the GFDL.


DC Office:
2428 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: 202-225-8045
Fax: 202-225-9073
Web Email

District Office- Chula Vista:
333 F Street, Suite A
Chula Vista, CA 91910
Phone: 619-422-5963
Fax: 619-422-7290

District Office- Imperial:
1101 Airport Road, Suite D
Imperial, CA 92251
Phone: 760-355-8800
Fax: 760-355-8802

Articles and resources


  1. Roll call vote, Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002.
  2. Thomas page on H.R. 1022
  3. Mike Soraghan, "Rep. Filner charged with assault," The Hill, August 20, 2007.
  4. Lauren Whittington, "Deadline Arrives for Filner Probe," Roll Call, September 19, 2007.
  5. Lauren Whittington, "Deadline Arrives for Filner Probe," Roll Call, September 19, 2007.
  6. Bill Brubaker, "Congressman Reaches Deal Over Baggage Office Case", The Washington Post, November 27, 2007


Local blogs and discussion sites

Corresponding article on Wikipedia and Cause Caller. (If Cause Caller link does not work, pick from its list of senators and representatives.)

Current Office: U.S. House of Representatives
111th Congress
Leadership Position:
Committees Chaired:
Ranking Member On:

110th Congress
Leadership Position:
Committees Chaired:
Ranking Member On:

Committees: House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure/Subcommittee on Aviation, House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure/Subcommittee on Highways and Transit, House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure/Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment, House Committee on Veterans' Affairs
Congressional Career
First Elected to Current Office:
November 3, 1992
First Took Current Office:
January 3, 1993
Next Election:
November 2, 2010
Term Ends:
Freshman Member?
Previous Political Work?
Deputy Mayor, San Diego, San Diego City Council, San Diego School Board,
Other Party Membership:
District Offices:
1. 333 F Street, Suite A, Chula Vista, CA 91910
Phone: 619-422-5963 / Fax: 619-422-7290
2. 1101 Airport Road, Suite D, Imperial, CA 92251
Phone: 760-355-8800 / Fax: 760-355-8802

Campaign Contact:

Webform Email: / Email:

Campaign Offices:

Phone: / Fax:

Zip Code Affiliations:

Date of Birth: September 4, 1942