Robert Cortez "Bobby" Scott (born April 30, 1947) is the U.S. Representative for Virginia's 3rd congressional district, serving since 1993. He is a member of the Democratic Party.
The district takes in most of Richmond, all of Portsmouth, along with parts of Norfolk, Hampton and Scott's home in Newport News.
Early life, education and career
Scott was born in Washington, D.C. but grew up in Newport News, Virginia. He is of African American and Filipino American (maternal grandfather) descent.
Scott graduated from Harvard College with an A.B. in government and Boston College Law School with his Juris Doctor.
He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity.
Scott is a former member of the National Guard and Army Reserve.
Scott was a lawyer at a private practice from 1973 to 1991.
Scott was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates as a Democrat in 1977 and he was elected to the Senate of Virginia in 1982. While in the Virginia legislature, he worked for greater access to health care for the poor and children, an increased minimum wage, and greater job training. Scott also authored legislation that provides tax credits to business that provide donations to serving local communities in preventing crime or increasing social service delivery.
U.S. House of Representatives
Third Congressional District
Scott’s congressional district is the only one with a majority black population in Virginia. The district was created in 1992; Scott was the first representative elected to it, in November 1992, and, so far, the only one.
The third congressional district has remained the most Democratic district in Virginia; Scott has been elected ten times, beginning in 1992.
The 3rd congressional district may be significantly changed because of the redrawing of districts after the 2010 census; the newly drawn congressional districts will take effect as of the November 2012 election.
- Committee on Education and Labor
- Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary and Secondary Education
- Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training
- Committee on the Judiciary
- Subcommittee on the Constitution
- Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security (Ranking Member)
- Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus
- Congressional Black Caucus
- Congressional Arts Caucus
On November 7, 2009, Scott voted for the Affordable Health Care for America Act (HR 3962).
Scott has voted progressively in the House of Representatives on civil rights and socioeconomic issues such as voting to increase the minimum wage and to help eliminate anti-gay bias in the workplace.
Scott has been an outspoken opponent of the Bush agenda during his 8 years in office. He opposed the Patriot Act explaining that officials may abuse the power by promoting anti-terrorist security and develop unfair “racial profiling”. In 2002 Scott voted nay on the Iraq war resolution and did not support any of the Bush Doctrine in reference to the Iraq war.
Scott is the first African American Representative from Virginia since Reconstruction. Also, having a maternal grandfather of Filipino ancestry gives Scott the distinction of being the first American of Filipino descent to serve as a voting member of Congress.
Scott's annual Labor Day picnic, generally held at his mother's residence in Newport News, is a major campaign stop for statewide and federal candidates in Virginia.
Scott first ran for Congress in 1986 from the 1st district, which included his home in Newport News; he lost to Republican incumbent and fellow Newport News resident Herb Bateman.
1992 through 2008
In 1992, the Department of Justice directed the Virginia legislature to draw a black-majority district after the 1990 census. The legislature responded by shifting most of the black residents of Hampton Roads and Richmond into a newly created 3rd District.
Scott won a three-way Democratic primary with 67 percent of the vote, which was tantamount to election in this heavily Democratic district. He has been re-elected nine times. He ran unopposed in 2000, 2002, 2006, and 2008. He has faced substantive opposition once, when former state delegate Winsome Sears challenged him in 2004. Scott still won 69 percent of the vote — the first time he won with less than 70 percent of the vote.
Scott was challenged by Repu
blican Chuck Smith of Virginia Beach, a former JAG. Scott won his 10th term with about 70 percent of the vote; Smith received 27%.
February 24, 2012