Martin Thomas Meehan is a former Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He represented the 5th District of Massachusetts from 1993 to 2007.(map) On July 1, 2007 he left Congress to become Chancellor of the University of Massachusetts, Lowell.
Record and controversies
Meehan voted for the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 that started the Iraq War.
On January 9, 2007, Meehan introduced a resolution (H.Res.41) expressing, "the sense of the House of Representatives that an increase in number of members of the United States Forces deployed in Iraq is the wrong course of action and that a drastic shift in the political and diplomatic strategy of the United States is needed to help secure and stabilize Iraq."
For more information on environmental legislation, see the Energy and Environment Policy Portal
Support for gun control
Meehan cosponsored H.R. 1022 (Assault Weapons Ban Reauthorization Act of 2007) on March 7, 2007.
- Main article: U.S. gun legislation
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On May 26, 1994, Meehan wrote a letter to then Attorney General Janet Reno requesting a criminal investigation of tobacco companies, including an investigation of possible purjury before Congress. Meehan wrote,
- Documents and testimony before Mr. Waxman's panel offer compelling evidence that tobacco companies --through their executives,their lawyers, their advertising agencies, their lobbyists, their public relations agents, their scientists, and their trade association officials --have committed a series of serious crimes over a period of several decades. These offenses, which led to serious illness and early death for millions of Americans, may include:
-perjury -conspiracy to obstruct Congress -conspiracies in restraint of trade -conspiracy to defraud the public -mail fraud -wire fraud -RICO violations
Attorney General Reno confirmed the following day that DOJ was looking into the charges alleged in the letter.
Meehan first ran for Congress in 1992 on a platform of reform. As part of that platform, Meehan made a pledge not to serve more than four terms. He won the 1992 election and has been re-elected to Congress every two years since, including the latest election (2004). On the House floor in 1995 he scolded members who might go back on their promise to limit their tenure in office. "The best test of any politicians' credibility on term limits," he said, "is whether they are willing to put their careers where their mouths are and limit their own service." Despite this pledge, he again ran for Congress in the year 2000, exceeding four terms. 
- Main article: term limits
On 18 July 2005, Meehan's staff made controversial changes to his Wikipedia article. These edits consisted of, among other things, removing verified facts that portrayed him in a bad light. On January 27, 2006, Matt Vogel, Meehan's chief of staff, admitted to authorizing a replacement article on Meehan published on Wikipedia, with a staff-written biography.Lehmann, Evan. "Rewriting history under the dome". Lowell Sun Online. January 27, 2006. This ran afoul of internal Wikipedia guidelines.
In 2001, Meehan sponsored the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (BCRA) with Rep. Christopher Shays (D-Conn.) in the House and Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) in the Senate. Also known as the Shays-Meehan bill in the House, the BCRA banned "soft money" from being contributed to federal or state candidates and national, state, and local political parties. BCRA also prohibited non-partisan "issue ads" funded by soft money from corporations and labor unions - those referring to candidates for federal election without expressly advocating their election or defeat -- in the 60 days prior to a general election, or 30 days prior to a primary election. It also required the disclosure of sources of finance for "electioneering communications" in excess of $10,000 per year, and raised the legal limits of hard money that could be raised. The bill passed the House 240-189 and Senate 60-40, and was then signed into law by President George W. Bush.
- Main article: Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002
On January 31, 2007, Meehan introduced the Presidential Funding Act of 2007 (H.R.776), an attempt to update public financing of election laws. Specifically, the bill would:
- Raise spending limits for the presidential primary and general election.
- Increase the amount of public matching funds available during the primary process.
- Allow earlier access to public funds in the primary process.
- Provide additional funds to publicly financed candidates who are significantly outspent by privately financed candidates.
- Increase the check-off from $3 to $10 for individuals and $6 to $20 for couples.
- Prohibit national parties from raising or spending soft money for party nominating conventions.
- Main article: Public financing of elections (U.S.)
On May 1, 2007, Reps. Meehan and Christopher Shays (R-Conn.) introduced (H.R.2093), which would "amend the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995 to provide for additional reporting by lobbying firms." The bill would require organizations that spend $100,000 or more per quarter, in attempts to get the public to contact their representatives, to register and disclose their financial information to the government.
- Main article: Grassroots and astroturf lobbying legislation
Meehan was born December 30, 1956 in Lowell, Massachusetts. Meehan earned undergraduate degrees in Education and Politcal Science at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell in 1978, and later earned a Master of Public Administration degree from Suffolk University in 1981 and a Juris Doctorate degree from Suffolk University Law School in 1986.
Meehan was a lawyer, a staff member for Representative James M. Shannon, head research analyst for the joint committee on election laws, Massachusetts Senate, director of public affairs for the Massachusetts Secretary of State and Massachusetts Deputy Secretary of State before entering the House.
Congressman Meehan is an advocate for campaign finance reform, and is one of the sponsors of the Shays-Meehan-McCain-Feingold Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act.
Retiring from the House
In March 2007, Meehan announced that he would be resigning his seat from the 5th district of Massachusetts to become the chancellor of the University of Massachusetts at Lowell. He stated that the move was, "the most difficult professional decision of [his] life". Also noted however, was that Meehan and been looking to become a Senator, and had raised over $5 million when John Kerry ran for President in 2004.
On May 9 2007, Rep. Meehan declared that he would resign from the United States House of Representatives on July 1st 2007.
Money in politics
This section contains links to – and feeds from – money in politics databases. <crpcontribdata>cid=N00000205&cycle=2006</crpcontribdata>
|Links to more campaign contribution information for Marty Meehan
from the Center for Responsive Politics' OpenSecrets.org site.
|Fundraising profile:||2006 election cycle||Career totals|
|Top contributors by organization/corporation:||2006 election cycle||Career totals|
|Top contributors by industry:||2006 election cycle||Career totals|
- Revolving door profile for Marty Meehan from the Center for Responsive Politics' OpenSecrets.org website.
- 2006 privately funded travel profile for Marty Meehan from the Center for Responsive Politics' OpenSecrets.org website.
- Personal finance profile for Marty Meehan from the Center for Responsive Politics' OpenSecrets.org website.
Committees and Affiliations
- House Committee on the Judiciary
- Subcommittee on Courts, the Internet, and Intellectual Property
- Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security
- Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security, and Claims
- House Committee on Armed Services
- Subcommitee on Oversight and Investigations -Chair
- Subcommittee on Military Personnel
Committee assignments in the 109th Congress (2005-2006)
- House Committee on Armed Services
- Subcommittee on Personnel
- Subcommittee on Terrorism Unconventional Threats and Capabilities - Ranking Minority Member
- House Committee on the Judiciary
- Subcommittee on Task Force on Antitrust
- Subcommittee on Courts the Internet and Intellectual Property
- Subcommittee on Crime Terrorism and Homeland Security
- Subcommittee on Immigration Border Security and Claims
More Background Data
District Office- Haverhill:
Haverhill City Hall
Second Floor, Room 201 A
4 Summer Street
Haverhill, MA 01830
District Office- Lawrence:
305 Essex Street, Fourth Floor
Lawrence, MA 01840
District Office- Lowell:
11 Kearney Square
Lowell, MA 01852
Articles and Resources
- ↑ Roll call vote, Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002.
- ↑ Thomas page on H.R. 1022
- ↑ Jeremy Jacobs, " Meehan makes resignation official, will leave July 1", The Hill, May 09, 2007.
- Official website
- Campaign Website
- Marty Meehan on the Issues from OnTheIssues.org
- Open Secrets - 2006 congressional races database
- Jennifer Ratay
- Evan Lehmann, "Rewriting history under the dome. Online 'encyclopedia' allows anyone to edit entries, and congressional staffers do just that to bosses' bios," Lowell Sun (MA), January 27, 2006.
- Paul Geary, "Congressman rewrites the history books, literally," The New Editor, January 29, 2006.
- Josh Kraushaar, "Rep. Meehan Tapped as Chancellor at Mass. College," The Politico, March 13, 2007.
- "Meehan To Take UMass Lowell Helm. State Rep. To Resign Washington Seat In July" and "Rep. Marty Meehan's Statement," TheBostonChannel.com, March 13, 2007.
- Lisa Wangsness, "Rare opening means big, expensive race," Boston Globe, March 14, 2007.
- Aaron Blake, "Meehan will leave Congress for University of Mass. post," The Hill, March 14, 2007.
Local blogs and discussion sites
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