David Adam Smith (born June 15, 1965), American politician, has been a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives since 1997, representing Washington's 9th congressional district.
Born in Washington, D.C., Smith was raised in the Sea-Tac area of Washington State.
Smith attended Bow Lake Elementary and Chinook Middle School, before graduating from Tyee High School in 1983. His father, who worked for United Airlines and was active in the Machinists' Union, died when Smith was 19.
Smith attended Western Washington University in Bellingham for a year, later graduating from Fordham University in 1987 with a bachelor's degree in political science. He completed a law degree at the University of Washington in 1990. He worked his way through college by loading trucks for United Parcel Service. After law school, Smith worked as a private practice attorney with Cromwell, Mendozza, and Belur. pro tem judge.
From 1993 to 1995, he served as a prosecutor for the city of Seattle. In 1996, he worked temporarily as a
Smith served in the Washington State Senate from 1991 to 1996. He was just twenty-five years old at the time of his election in 1990, defeating a 16 year incumbent Republican to become the youngest State Senator in the country. Smith won his seat in the U.S. House of Representatives in 1996 by defeating another incumbent Republican, religious conservative Randy Tate.
Smith hasn't faced serious opposition since, and has turned what was originally drawn as a "fair fight" district into a fairly safe Democratic seat.
He has been a leader in moderate, "New Democrat" organizations. He serves as the chair of the political action committee of the New Democrat Coalition.
On October 10, 2002, Adam Smith was among the 81 Democratic members of the House voting in favor of authorizing the invasion of Iraq.
In 2006, Smith won his sixth term in Congress. His opponent was Republican Steve Cofchin. Smith won 65.7% of the vote to Cofchin's 34.3%.
In April 2007, Smith threw his support behind Senator Barack Obama for the 2008 Presidential Election. He has also appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews speaking for Obama.
Smith voted against the Protect America Act of 2007, which has been criticized for violating American citizens' civil liberties by allowing for wiretapping without issued warrants.
In 2008, Smith won a seventh term in the House by defeating James Postma, a 74-year-old retired engineer running on a pro-nuclear power platform, with 65% of the vote.
On December 16, 2010, Smith defeated Silvestre Reyes and Loretta Sanchez to become the Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee after Chairman Ike Skelton was defeated for re-election.
In the first round, Sanchez and Smith earned 64 votes with Reyes earning 53. In the runoff, Smith defeated Sanchez by 11 votes.
In 2011, recognized for his work in fighting global poverty, Smith became only the second member of Congress selected to the Borgen Project's Board of Directors.
In 2012, Smith cosponsored the National Defense Authorization Bill that would grant the President of the United States unprecedented powers to wage war freely against persons abroad and detaining and restricting access to the civil court system by persons suspected of terrorism. The detention provisions of the Act have received critical attention by, among others, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and media sources which raise concerns about the scope of the President's authority, including contentions that those who may be held indefinitely could include U.S. citizens arrested on American soil, including arrests by members of the Armed Forces.
March 12, 2012