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Florida Delegation Freshmen
Kathy Castor,
D-Tampa
Gus Bilirakis,
R-Palm Harbor
Vern Buchanan,
R-Longboat Key
Ron Klein,
D-Boca Raton
Tim Mahoney,
D-Venus
Age 40 43 55 49 50
Washington Home Renting an
apartment
Renting his parents' townhouse on Capitol Hill Bought Capitol Hill townhouse of former Florida Rep. Clay Shaw Renting apartment with two other members Renting Capitol Hill apartment
Family Husband, William Lewis, and two daughters, 9 and 7 Wife, Eva, and four sons, ages 3 to 13 Wife, Sandy, and two grown children, 22 and 25 Wife, Dori, 21-year-old son and 18-year-old daughter Wife, Terry, and 20-year-old daughter
Where will family live? Tampa Palm Harbor during the school year; probably in Washington during the summer Both Washington and Longboat Key Boca Raton Venus (near Lake Okeechobee)
Biggest surprise? Being asked to make
life-and-death decisions as a member of the Armed Services Committee
The members' access to first-hand information via the Congressional Research Service and other resources The sheer magnitude of voting and rules procedures "The amount of walking you do. It's 10-times as much as Tallahassee" How nicely Democratic leaders have treated freshman. "They've treated us like gold"
Most exciting thing yet about being in Congress? Being sworn into office by the first female House speaker while her two daughters stood next to her and her mother watched from the audience Being sworn in while accompanied by his children and his father, Mike Bilirakis, who held the seat for 24 years Watching President Bush deliever his State of the Union address from the House floor, alongside his colleagues, senators, Cabinet members and Supreme Court justices "The feeling you can change people's lives" "Having my daughter see me sworn in and see a woman become Speaker"
Committee Assignments Armed Services; Rules; Steering and Policy Veterans Affairs; Homeland Security Transportation and Infrastructure; Small Business Financial Services, Foreign Affairs Financial Services, Agriculture
Who did you replace? Jim Davis served a decade in the House, often working behind the scenes on educational and environmental issues, including fighting oil drilling off Florida's coasts. His father, Mike Bilirakis, a 24-year veteran of the House and a top Republican on the Veterans Affairs Committee Katherine Harris, who served four years, was known as an aggressive deputy whip on the leadership team and focused on national security and economic issues Clay Shaw, a 26-year veteran and senior member of Ways and Means Committee Mark Foley, who served a dozen years, was a member of the House tax-writing committee and focused on child protection. He resigned after revelations that he sent explicit emails to teenage pages.
Top Issues Healthcare,
healthcare and
more healthcare
Establish federal catastrophic insurance fund; improve certain veterans' benefits; allow tax deductions for health insurance Get Florida more transportation money, establish federal catastrophic insurance fund, balance budget Homeowners insurance, energy independence Homeowners insurance, water projects, farm bill reauthorization
Profession, past political experience Attorney; Hillsborough County Commission, 2002-2006 Lawyer; Florida House, 1998-2006 Owner of car dealerships; no previous political office Lawyer; Florida Legislature, 1992-2006 Runs financial business, no previous political office
 
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