Tammy Green Baldwin was a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives, representing the 2nd district of Wisconsin since 1999. She was "the first openly LGBT candidate ever elected to Congress as a non-incumbent."
In 2012, she was elected to the US Senate, from Wisconsin.
Her long time partner is Lauren Azar.
In 2017 Senator Baldwin serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee, the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP), and the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
BackgroundTammy Baldwin was born on February 11, 1962 in the area she now represents in Congress; and traces one branch of her family tree back to 1866 in Sauk County (Baraboo). Raised in Madison jointly by her mother and maternal grandparents, Tammy graduated first in her class of 510 students at Madison West High School in 1980. She received an A.B. degree from Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts in 1984 with majors in government and mathematics. In 1989, while an active member of the Dane County Board of Supervisors, Tammy earned her J.D. from the University of Wisconsin Law School and practiced law from 1989-1992.
Political careerTammy Baldwin served four terms as a Dane County (WI) Supervisor (1986-1994), representing the downtown Madison area, including the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus. In 1986, Tammy also served briefly on the Madison Common Council, filling an aldermanic vacancy.
Tammy Baldwin "won a seat in the Wisconsin State House of Representatives" in 1993, with help from the Victory Fund, who "was instrumental in assisting Tammy Baldwin’s winning congressional campaign."
She served three terms as a WI State Representative for the 78th Assembly District (comprising central and south Madison) from January 1993 to January 1999.
The RainbowAccording to Paul Ortiz;
- Likewise, there were many Obama activists who had campaigned for the Rev. Jesse Jackson in 1984 and 1988. It is impossible to imagine Senator Obama's victory without the precedent of Jackson's Rainbow Coalition. The Rainbow excited and recruited tens of thousands of gay, Latino, Native American, white, Asian, and African-Americans into electoral politics, social movements and union organizing in the US in the 1980s. The Rainbow sustained and supported numerous progressive politicians, including Paul Wellstone, Tammy Baldwin and Harold Washington. The Rainbow Coalition - and Jackson as leader - had many limitations. Even so, the organization provided one of the few spaces for progressive movement organizing to take place in the Age of Reagan. The Rainbow increased working-class voter registration, promoted Shirley Chisholm for vice president, stood in solidarity with the Pittston coal strike, and was a counterweight to the conservative Democratic Leadership Council.
When Baldwin talks about building support both inside Washington and outside in the communities for universal healthcare or daycare or civil rights, she echoes Jackson’s campaigns.
Legislative successesTammy Baldwin led successful efforts in the House in 2009 to pass expanded hate crimes legislation. As Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus, she is leading efforts to advance the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) and other civil rights initiatives. She is the lead author of legislation to extend benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees. A strong consumer advocate, Tammy also has crafted legislation to repeal antiquated antitrust exemptions protecting freight railroads from competition. The Railroad Anti-Trust Enforcement Act has strong support from business and consumer groups and from bipartisan Members of both Houses of Congress.
Institute for Policy Studies connections
IPS grades "progressive"In 1998 fourteen new Members of Congress were elected who ran on progressive platforms.
The 14 were gauged "progressive" by the Institute for Policy Studies after comparing their campaign literature and past activities with the Progressive Challenge "Fairness Agenda for America." On issues ranging from shifting budgetary priorities from military spending and corporate giveaways to health care and education, to promoting worker and environmental rights, fair trade, and equality, these 14 candidates stood for the liberal values that recent polls show most Americans embrace. The 14 new progressive members included:
- Tammy Baldwin, won in Wisconsin's 2nd district after a tough grassroots campaign. She has led the fight on progressive issues throughout her career in the Wisconsin state legislature, proposing bills on a range of issues from living wage and workers rights, to support for public education and strong environmental protection. She has advocated a progressive tax system, universal health care and women's rights. She is also the first openly gay, nonincumbent elected to Congress."
Progressive State of the Union Address, 1999January 19, 1999, members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and Institute for Policy Studies, talked about issues that they are planning to address in the upcoming year, at the Progressive State of the Union Address. Some of the issues they intend to address are poverty in the United States, national defense, the global economy, Medicare, and education. Rep. Conyers stated that the House disregarded the views the majority of the American people when the House impeached the president.
Speakers were Tammy Baldwin [D] Wisconsin, John Cavanagh Co-Director Institute for Policy Studies, John Conyers, [D] Michigan, Peter DeFazio [D] Oregon, Karen Dolan, Coordinator Institute for Policy Studies, Earl Hilliard, [D] Alabama, Maurice Hinchey, [D] New York, Stephanie Tubbs Jones, [D] Ohio, Barbara Lee, [D] California, Jerrold Nadler, [D] New York, Grace Napolitano, [D] California, Major Owens, [D] New York, Bernie Sanders, [I] Vermont, Jan Schakowsky, [D] Illinois.
Clinton/Chile letterFebruary 24, 2000, 31 members of the U.S. House of Representatives have sent a letter to President Clinton requesting full U.S. cooperation with the Spanish case against former Chilean General Augusto Pinochet, a thorough investigation into the car-bomb assassination of Orlando Letelier and American citizen Ronni Moffitt, and the release of all U.S. documents pertaining to human rights abuses in Chile.
- Dear President Clinton,
- We would like to take this opportunity to commend your Administration's recent activity concerning the ongoing investigation into former Chilean General Augusto Pinochet's role in the 1976 car bombing of Orlando Letelier and Ronni Moffitt in Washington D.C. We also appreciate your efforts to release documents pertaining to human rights abuses in Chile.
Progressive Majority Advisory CommitteeIn 2003 Rep. Tammy Baldwin served on the Progressive Majority Advisory Committee.
IPWS awards ceremony
Every year the far left Washington, D.C.-based Institute for Policy Studies gives two awards -- one domestic and one international -- to what are described as "heroes of the progressive movement."
In 2011, representatives from Madison Teachers Inc. accepted the national Letelier-Moffitt Human Rights Award on behalf of Wisconsin progressives involved in demonstrations last spring against anti-union legislation proposed by Republican Gov. Scott Walker.
The Madison teachers union was cited for its role in helping organize last spring's massive protests at the state Capitol in response to Walker's efforts to eliminate collective bargaining rights for most public workers, as well as other legislation including strict voter ID requirements that are likely to limit voting by college students, the elderly, the poor and immigrants.
In a release from the Institute for Policy Studies, executive director John Cavanagh wrote, "MTI, along with a rainbow of other groups, were leaders in the demonstrations against Walker's proposed legislation in February and March."
They were described as "gallantly fighting to preserve workers' rights and dignity in Wisconsin."
John Matthews, executive director of MTI for 43 years and Peggy Coyne, a middle school teacher and MTI president, accepted the award in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 12. Rep. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wisconsin, presented the award.
IPS donorsLynn Raskin, a Washington D.C. realtor, and her husband, Marcus Raskin, a cofounder of the Institute for Policy Studies, contributed to progressive candidates in several tight congressional races during the 2012 election cycle. They donated to Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisc.), Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), and Elizabeth Warren, the Democrat running for Senate in Massachusetts. They've also given money to Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio).
PDA across WisconsinFriday, November 2nd they hosted a guided discussion at the the Wisconsin Federation of Nurses & Health Professionals offices in Milwaukee, moderated by John Nichols (The Nation , MSNBC Contributor). Guest speakers included: PDA's National Director Tim Carpenter, NNU's Director of Public Policy Michael Lighty, Communist Party USA member Judith LeBlanc from Peace Action, and Dr. Robert Kraig from Citizen Action of Wisconsin.
Lighty and Carpenter joined with author/commentator Jim Hightower at the UAW Local 95 Hall in Janesville Saturday November 3rd, 11 am to 1 pm. Rob Zerban--who was challenging Paul Ryan in Wisconsin's 1st District--and John Nichols also appeared. Then, from 2:30 to 3:30 pm. Carpenter and Lighty appeared in Madison, WI, with Mark Pocan, Congressional Candidate in Wisconsin's 2nd District, one of the leaders of the Wisconsin walkout. All three Wisconsin events also sought to help Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin, win her close race for the U.S. Senate.
Hightower on BaldwinJim Hightower said, "PDA, NNU, and I are joining together to make sure Tammy Baldwin carries Wisconsin. She is now under a slanderous last-minute attack from Karl Rove! I once wrote a book called 'If the Gods Had Meant Us to Vote They Would Have Given Us Candidates.' Well, the Gods mean for us to vote--and donate--and make phone calls--this year, because you don't find great progressive candidates like Tammy Baldwin and Mark Pocan and Rob Zerban every day."
According to a New Year 2013 press release from Progressive Democrats of America;
- Progressive Democrats of America accomplished a lot in 2012--thanks to your help and support. Together, we helped defeat Tea Party extremists and helped elect strong progressives to Congress. We educated members of Congress every month in our home districts, and in the halls of Congress in Washington, DC. Now, PDA is starting 2013 in a big way!
- In just a few days, on January 3rd, our team will be on Capitol Hill as special guests of our newly elected and re-elected progressive candidates including our board members our friends Representatives Alan Grayson, Dr. Ami Bera, and Mark Pocan; as well as newly-elected Senators Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren. If you're going to be in the DC-area, join us for these exciting swearing in ceremonies, and help us pass out leaflets for our exciting January 19th events!
PDA connectionIn June 2013 Progressive Democrats of America assigned activists to deliver their material to almost every US Congressman and several Senators. Rob Hansen was assigned as contact for Sen. Baldwin.
Tribute to Communist Clarence Kailin
In 1999 Tammy Baldwin honored Madison Communist Party USA veteran Clarence Kailin, and the communist led Abraham Lincoln Brigade.
From the Congressional Record Volume 145 , Number 149 Pages E2209m Extensions of Remarks, Thu, Oct. 28, 1999.
- Mr. Speaker, I rise to honor Mr. Clarence Kailin of Madison, and the brave men and women who volunteered to serve in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade during the Spanish Civil War, especially those courageous volunteers from my home state of Wisconsin.
- They, along with 45,000 volunteers from over 50 different countries, fought side by side during the early struggle against fascism. Their foresight in recognizing the rising tyranny of fascism was a call to arms that went unheeded by the free world, and resulted in the long and bloody conflict that became World War II.
- Mr. Speaker, I want to express my gratitude to these men and women who helped to defend the democratic Spanish Republic from fascist aggression, at a time when the fate of democracy in Europe was being threatened by all sides of the political spectrum.
- On October 31st, in James Madison Park, in the state capitol of Wisconsin, a memorial will be dedicated to those sons and daughters of the ``Badger State that joined the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. A volunteer unit comprised of American citizens from all ethnic and religious backgrounds and walks of life, were all equal in their resolve to stem the tide of fascism. Our country's reluctance to aid the Spanish Republican government did not deter these brave people who understood what the consequences were if a legitimately elected government were to fall.
- Mr. Speaker, for the first time in our country's long history of isolationism, United State's citizens were reacting to threats to liberty and freedom on the international level more passionately than ever before. Mr. Kailin was one of those citizens, had it not been for him and other brave volunteers in the Lincoln Brigade, the tide of fascism would have swept over Europe unchecked. The corps of international volunteers who came together in Spain would be the same volunteers to comprise the victorious armies of the allied forces that triumphed over the fascists dictators Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini.
- Mr. Speaker, I ask you and my colleagues to honor these dedicated men and women in the same rightful fashion as my state. The strength of character of Clarence Kailin and others from Wisconsin who volunteered in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade are the qualities which we all can take pride in and celebrate in this Congress.
Supported by Council for a Livable WorldThe Council for a Livable World, founded in 1962 by long-time socialist activist and alleged Soviet agent, Leo Szilard, is a non-profit advocacy organization that seeks to "reduce the danger of nuclear weapons and increase national security", primarily through supporting progressive, congressional candidates who support their policies. The Council supported Tammy Baldwin in her successful House of Representatives run as candidate for Wisconsin.
2012 CLW Senate victories2012 CLW Senate Victories were;
Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Bob Casey (D-PA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Angus King (I-ME), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Chris Murphy (D-CT) Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Jon Tester (D-MT), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI).
According to the Council for a Livable World website;
- In her first race for Congress, Baldwin was supported by Council for a Livable World’s PeacePAC. She has proved worthy of the endorsement by scoring a perfect 100% on Council for a Livable World’s PeacePAC voting scorecard over the past six years.
- Baldwin was one of the first House opponents of President George W. Bush’s war in Iraq when she joined with 18 colleagues in a press conference months before the conflict began. She has voted for early withdrawal of American troops from both Iraq and Afghanistan.
- She has opposed deployment of National Missile Defense and attempts to build new generations of nuclear weapons. She was one of only 68 Representatives to oppose the U.S.-Indian nuclear cooperation deal that undermined worldwide nuclear non-proliferation efforts. She advocates negotiations with Iran to eliminate its nuclear weapons program while some of her colleagues have advocated launching a military attack.
CLW Inauguration eventCouncil for a Livable World and the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation hosted an event on Monday, January 21, 2013 celebrating the second inauguration of President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden and theirr endorsed candidates in the 113th Congress. The event was held at the Phoenix Park Hotel ballroom across from Union Station and just two blocks from the U.S. Capitol.
A number of prestigious guests attended the event, including Senators Tammy Baldwin, Martin Heinrich, Angus King and Bernie Sanders, U.S. Representatives Suzan DelBene, Lois Frankel and Mark Takano, United Steel Workers International President Leo Gerard, host of The Ed Show on MSNBC, Ed Schultz and Vicki Hansen Thackray from the executive committee of Democrats Abroad.
Gary Collins, President of the board of Council for a Livable World, kicked off the celebration with a short speech highlighting the work of the Council during the 2012 election cycle.
Chairman of the board, Ira Lechner, introduced one of the most inspiring leaders in the country today, Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI). Senator Baldwin, who made history in November as the first openly gay member of the United States Senate, received a warm round of applause from the Council enthusiastic supporters who filled the ballroom. She expressed her gratitude for the early grassroots support and encouragement in what was a hard-fought victory..
Progressive Caucus SOTU AddressOn Thursday, January 27 2000, from 3:30pm to 5:00pm in 2253 of RHOB, the Congressional Progressive Caucus held its 3rd Annual Congressional Progressive Caucus' State of the Union Address. This event was also sponsored by the Institute for Policy Studies' Progressive Challenge coalition whose Fairness Agenda for America is endorsed by 200 public interest groups nationally.
Caucus Chair Rep. Peter DeFazio(D-OR) stated "The Progressive Caucus Alternative State of the Union will provide a much needed reality check to politicians who would rather ignore the priorities of Americans left out of the economic boom -- priorities like access to quality health care and education, repairing crumbling schools, addressing the growing gap between the rich and poor, and creating a sustainable global economy that works for everyone, not just the corporate architects."
Anticipated speakers included: Peter DeFazio (D-OR), House Minority Whip David Bonior (D-MI), Earl Hilliard (D-AL);Dennis Kucinich (D-OH); Cynthia McKinney (D-GA);. Major Owens (D-NY)Bernie Sanders (I-VT). Tammy Baldwin (D-WI);. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY);Barbara Lee (D-CA); Jerrold Nadler (D-NY); and Lynn Woolsey(D-CA). John Cavanagh, director of the Institute for Policy Studies also made some remarks regarding public interest groups support of a progressive agenda.
- The Congressional Progressive Caucus, Chaired by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR), consists of over a quarter of the House Democrats, one Independent and Senator Paul Wellstone. The Caucus will be releasing position papers on Health Care and Income Inequality, with reports on the Alternative Federal Budget, Social Security, Minimum Wage, Education and the Global Economy.
RadFest 2002 was held May 31-June 2 at Aurora University's George Williams Lake Geneva Campus.
RadFest was sponsored by the A.E. Havens Center for the Study of Social Structures and Social Change. Its director, Patrick Barrett, said that “the central goal of the conference is to provide an opportunity for progressive activists, organizers and intellectuals to come together to discuss issues of mutual interest and concern, strengthen networks and devise strategies for progressive social, economic and political change.”
The second conference plenary, titled “The State of Progressive Politics: Where Are We? Where Are We Going?” featured Medea Benjamin, David Newby of the South Central Wisconsin Coalition of Labor (AFL-CIO), Madison-based Nation columnist John Nichols, Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisc.) and the Green Party USA’s George Martin. “We’re all here to see how we can make this a bigger movement when we leave here,” said Martin.
Health Care Access resolutionJohn Conyers promoted House Concurrent Resolution 99 (H. Con Res. 99) Directing Congress to enact legislation by October 2004 that provides access to comprehensive health care for all Americans. IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES April 4, 2001.
Sponsors:John Conyers (for himself), Jan Schakowsky, John Tierney, Barbara Lee, Donna Christensen, David Bonior, Dennis Kucinich, Earl Hilliard, Maurice Hinchey, Jerry Nadler, Donald Payne Chaka Fattah, Peter DeFazio, John Lewis Tammy Baldwin, Stephanie Tubbs Jones, Barney Frank, Henry Waxman, Cynthia McKinney, Jim Langevin, George Miller Alcee Hastings, Patsy Mink, John Olver , Bennie Thompson, Pete Stark, Julia Carson, and Mike Capuano submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce;
- Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), that the Congress shall enact legislation by October 2004 to guarantee that every person in the United States, regardless of income, age, or employment or health status, has access to health care..
Supporting trade with CubaIn Fall 2002, Cuba's Fidel Castro wined and dined American food producers in Havana, part of a well crafted "charm offensive" aimed at weakening the U.S. trade embargo.
This spring, Castro made a public relations splash of a different kind. He imprisoned dozens of Cuban dissidents and executed three men for hijacking a ferry to flee the country.
The crackdown was denounced worldwide.
The House Cuba Working Group, which opposes the embargo, includes two Wisconsin lawmakers: conservative Republican Paul Ryan of Janesville and liberal Democrat Tammy Baldwin of Madison.
Baldwin said she told Cuban officials recently that "these arrests and persecutions were not going to make it any easier for those of us trying to ease travel restrictions and increase trade to make our case."
Said Ryan: "I think the crackdown may have helped buttress the argument of people in favor of the embargo. But the argument is based on a faulty premise: 'See how bad Castro is. We need to keep the embargo.' What about China? They're bad too. They're doing horrible things every day, but we think we should engage with them."
Greets Cuba "normalization"December 18, 2014, members of Congress from Wisconsin welcomed President Barack Obama's announcement that his administration will move toward normalizing relations with the communist country.
Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin hailed the announcement as a "historic and positive step" that asserts American leadership by charting a new course with Cuba.
Democratic Reps. Ron Kind of La Crosse and Gwen Moore of Milwaukee joined Baldwin in embracing the move.
"It doesn't make sense to have economic relations with a communist nation like China, yet stay closed off to a nation just 90 miles off our coast," said Kind, who called for eliminating the embargo.
Baldwin said that more than 50 years of U.S. policy to isolate Cuba "has not achieved our national security objectives, (has) created hardship for the Cuban people, and failed to weaken the Cuban regime."
At the Milwaukee-based Wisconsin Coalition to Normalize Relations with Cuba, steering committee member Art Heitzer said Badger State residents and companies could benefit from the thaw. He cited Harley-Davidson motorcycles and Johnson Controls air conditioning systems as items that could potentially find a market in Cuba if direct trade is allowed.
Posada letterIn 2005 several far left Congressmembers wrote to President Bush urging him to extradite alleged terrorist Luis Posada Carriles to Venezuela to face justice.
- We are writing to urge you to oppose the application for asylum by Luis Posada Carriles, and to support the request for extradition to Venezuela, where he is a fugitive from justice.
Peace Pledge CoalitionIn 2007 90 Members of Congress, pledged in an open letter delivered to President Bush: "We will only support appropriating funds for U.S. military operations in Iraq during Fiscal Year 2008 and beyond for the protection and safe redeployment of all our troops out of Iraq before you leave office." The letter was initiated by the Peace Pledge Coalition. The Coalition was led by Tim Carpenter, Progressive Democrats of America, Bob Fertik, Democrats.com Medea Benjamin, CodePink, Bill Fletcher, co-founder of Center for Labor Renewal David Swanson, AfterDowningStreet.org, Democrats.com, Progressive Democrats of America, Kevin Zeese, Voters for Peace, Democracy Rising, Brad Friedman, co-founder of Velvet Revolution, Bill Moyer, Backbone Campaign.
Tammy Baldwin signed the letter.
Voted against cutting funding for ACORNIn September 2009, following the lead of their Senate colleagues, the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly to cut off funds to ACORN. the vote was 345-75. All of the 75 were democrats, and included Tammy Baldwin. 
Democratic Socialists of AmericaTammy Baldwin's political career has been supported by Democratic Socialists of America.
Strong "progressive"After the 1998 Congressional elections Bob Roman of Chicago Democratic Socialists of America wrote:
In addition, the increase in numbers of Democrats in the House was due to the election of Progressives. These include: Tammy Baldwin (WI2), the first open lesbian to be elected to Congress and a strong progressive
DSA support 2004
In 2004 Democratic Socialists of America targeted local races where control of state houses were up for grabs and where statewide electoral-vote outcomes hinged on successful local district turnouts.
- Incumbent Tammy Baldwin vocally supports equal rights, gay rights, and expanded health insurance benefits, and her public posture as an out lesbian is symbolically important. Left critics widely view her leadership, however, as disappointing and ineffective. Like Feingold, she faces well-funded right wing opposition. DSAers also are backing what they call “old-fashioned democrat” Dave Obey in the northwestern part of the state,.”
- We reported on the candidates that DSAers were supporting in the last issue of Democratic Left. How did they do?
- In Wisconsin, progressive incumbents Feingold, Baldwin and Obey won. In a race for an open state senate seat, the favored Mark Miller won handily. However, progressive insurgent Bryan Kennedy lost badly..
DSA support 2012Speaking to Reuters in May 2012 SEIU Healthcare Wisconsin vice president of politics and growth, and one time Democratic Socialists of America member Bruce Colburn said of Wisconsin Senate candidate Tammy Baldwin... "We were looking for a champion, and Tammy fit the bill," .
Baldwin has won endorsement from the local SEIU.