|This is a profile of a freshman U.S. Representative in the 111th Congress. (See the Florida portal for all incumbents, candidates and blogs.)|
|This article is a stub. You can help by expanding it.|
Positions, record and controversies
War in Iraq
Alan Grayson would end the war in Iraq as soon as possible without endangering the troops. He believes that it is important to leave Iraq for various reasons and that if there had been no involvement in Iraq, more resources could have been allocated to finding Osama Bin Laden. Grayson oppposes the war on a economic basis as well, say that half the money spent in Iraq could have gone to providing healthcare for Americans, and other important domestic issues. Grayson is the prosecuting attorney in five fraud cases against contractors in Iraq, and has testified before Congress about fraud in Iraq.
Energy and Environmental Policy
Grayson says he would promote higher fuel efficiency standards, support rewards to companies that create energy sources that are clean and renewable, ban drilling for oil off Florida coasts and support ending tax breaks to oil companies. He also says he would ensure that federal energy research is conducted by independent scientists.
Grayson also says he supports a renewable electricity standard of 15% by 2020 a law mandating biodegradable consumer packages. He would also encourage the signing of a new global climate change treaty and capping and reducing greenhouse gas pollution and carbon emissions. 
Economy and Jobs
Grayson says he will support providing tax breaks for middle-class and working-class families, raise the minimum wage, strengthening labor laws. He also supports providing universal health care for all Americans, increasing federal financial aid to make college more affordable, making sure than there is job-training and re-training available to those who need it, and providing paid vacations and sick leave for all Americans who are working.  On the Wall Street bailout, Grayson said this on his campaign website, "We are often reminded that we live in a free market system. That certainly does not mean that the taxpayers are the suckers of last resort. It seems as though the free market's "invisible hand" has been balled into a fist, and that fist is about to punch you and me in the face". 
Grayson has said he will support providing quality health care for all Americans at prices that are fair and affordable and increasing federal funding for stem cell research. Grayson also believes that the lack of health insurance for many people is not just a financial issue, but a moral issue,and that people have the right to quality, affordable health care for people and their families.
On his campaign website Grayson says this about education, "We need to treat education like the investment in our future that it is, and not as an expense to begrudgingly pay. No matter where a child lives or what his or her family's background is, every child deserves this investment." He says he will ensure that schools are given more resources and support fully funding any federal education requirements, such as No Child Left Behind. He also says he would support increasing federal funding for electives, including art, music, and drama, promote stronger math and science education, increase funding for early education programs, increase funding for college financial aid programs. Grayson would also support pay increases and training for teachers, especially for those who teach in the neediest areas. 
Grayson was founder and President of IDT Corp and has invested in over a dozen smaller companies. He has resumed his law practice in the past few years. 
Grayson was the Democratic nominee seeking to challenge Rep. Ric Keller (R-Fla.) in the 2008 congressional elections. He won in primary elections which took place on August 26, 2008 and went on to defeat Keller in the November 4 general election.
Money in politics
This section contains links to – and feeds from – money in politics databases.
The following is drawn from government records of campaign contributions to Alan Grayson. Campaign contributions are one of the most direct conduits for influencing members of Congress. How to use this information. <crpcontribdata>cid=N00028418&cycle=2008</crpcontribdata>
Committees and affiliations
Grayson will be assigned committees if and when he is elected to Congress.
More background data
Alan's Fight Against War Profiteers
"Mr. Grayson has filed dozens of lawsuits against Iraq contractors on behalf of corporate whistle-blowers. He won a huge victory last month [March 2006] when a federal jury in Virginia ordered a security firm called Custer Battles LLC to return $10 million in ill-gotten funds to the government. The ruling marked the first time an American firm was held responsible for financial improprieties in Iraq."
In the words of Senator Dorgan, there is an "orgy of greed" in Iraq. Vice President Cheney's old firm Halliburton gets billions of dollars in no-bid contracts. War profiteers run wild, stealing millions from both US taxpayers and the Iraqi people. Corrupt corporations plunder Iraqi reconstruction funds, sabotaging the war effort. And the Bush Administration does nothing to stop it.
Everyone is concerned about the War in Iraq. Alan Grayson has done something about it.
Alan has taken on the biggest corrupt defense contractors, and won. His work on behalf of taxpayers has been recognized and applauded not only in the Wall Street Journal, but in the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Boston Globe, CNN, 60 Minutes, the BBC, and newspapers and magazines in dozens of countries around the world.
Alan and his wife, Lolita, have five children – Skye (12), Star (8), Sage (6) and two-year-old twins, Storm and Stone.
Alan grew up in "the projects" in the Bronx. He heard the squeal of the wheels of the elevated trains, every five minutes, all day and all night. At the age of 12, he took the subway to school, by himself. At the age of 11, a bully threw him under a moving bus. He lived.
Six years later, he took the standard test for 12th graders in New York. Almost 50,000 students in the Bronx took that the same test. Alan received the highest score.
Alan was accepted to Harvard College. He cleaned toilets there, and worked as a night watchman. He graduated in three years, with high honors.
Then he went to graduate school at Harvard. In only four years, he received a law degree (with honors), he earned a master's degree in Government, and he finished the course work and passed the general examinations for a Ph.D.
After graduate school, Alan worked as a judge's assistant at the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. He worked with Judges Ginsburg, Bork, Scalia, and Starr. He then joined Judge Ginsburg's husband's law firm, where he represented government contractors.
In 1990, Alan left the practice of law, and started a new business – IDT Corp. Alan was the first President of IDT. Today, IDT is a Fortune 500 public company, with $2 billion a year in sales. Alan took his profit from IDT, and invested it in many other small companies. Today he owns between one and ten percent of a dozen different public companies.
Twenty years ago, Alan helped to found the Alliance for Aging Research, to help promote health and a good life for older people. The motto of the Alliance is "Living to 100 – and Loving It!" Alan has served as an officer of the Alliance for two decades. He also supported the work of Arnold Palmer Hospital for many years.
In the '90s, Alan returned to the practice of law. For many years, he represented honest government contractors. Over the years since the beginning of the Bush Administration, however, he has seen the bad drive out the good. Fraud and corruption among government contractors grows and grows. The Bush Administration did nothing to recover the stolen money, protect the taxpayers, punish the thieves, or even safeguard the U.S. troops using and wearing defective equipment and supplies. And so Alan found his calling – like an Avenging Angel for the taxpayers and soldiers, he has sued the war profiteers in the name of whistleblowers, and forced them to disgorge their ill-gotten gains.
Committee to Elect Alan Grayson
8419 Oak Park Rd.
Orlando, FL 32819
Articles and resources
Related SourceWatch articles
- 2008 U.S. congressional elections
- Portal:Florida and the U.S. Congress
- ↑ War in Iraq
- ↑ Energy Plan
- ↑ Environment
- ↑ Economy& Jobs
- ↑ Alan Grayson on the $700 Billion Wall Street Bailout
- ↑ Health care
- ↑ Education
- ↑ About Alan
- ↑ “Florida 2008 General Election,"The Green Papers, August 27, 2008
- ↑ Yochi J. Dreazen, "Attorney Pursues Iraq Contractor Fraud", The Wall Street Journal, April 19, 2006
- 2008 Race Tracker page on Florida's 8th Congressional District
- Official Alan Grayson for Congress website
- Rachel Kapochunas, "Fall Hotbeds in Florida Produced Close Primaries Tuesday",CQ Politics, August 27, 2008
- The people verses the Profiteers - Vanity Fair
- The Great Iraq Swindle - Rolling Stone
- US Rebuffed Food Fraud Case - Wall Street Journal
- Food Fraud in the War Zone? - CBS
|Current Office: U.S. House of Representatives|
Ranking Member On:
|Committees: House Committee on Financial Services|
Ranking Member On:
|First Elected to Current Office:
November 4, 2008
|First Took Current Office:
January 3, 2009
|Previous Political Work?
||Other Party Membership:|
|Zip Code Affiliations:|
Date of Birth: March 13, 1958