David Eugene Price (born August 17, 1940) is a professor and the U.S. Representative for North Carolina's 4th congressional district, serving since 1997 and previously from 1987 to 1995. He is a member of the Democratic Party. The district includes portions of Raleigh, Cary, as well as all of Durham and Chapel Hill, and surrounding suburbs.
Early life, education, and academic career
Born in Erwin, Tennessee, Price attended Mars Hill College in Mars Hill, North Carolina when it was a junior college. He later transferred to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, after winning a scholarship, and became a member of The Dialectic and Philanthropic Societies. He earned a degree in 1961.
Originally intent on becoming an engineer, Price continued his education at Yale University where he received a theology degree (1964) and a Ph.D. in political science (1969).
He served as an aide to Alaska Senator Bob Bartlett from 1963 to 1967 and then entered academia, working as a political science and public policy professor at Duke University from 1973 until his first campaign for Congress in 1986. He also served as a Duke professor during 1995 and 1996, when he was not in Congress.
Price worked for the North Carolina Democratic Party from 1979 to 1984. Price has written a political science textbook entitled The Congressional Experience, from the perspective of a candidate for office, and then, a member of Congress.
Price also served as executive director and then state chair for the North Carolina Democratic Party prior to being elected to Congress.
U.S. House of Representatives
Price first entered Congress in 1987 after defeating one-term Republican U.S.
Congressman Bill Cobey 56%-44%. Price won re-election in 1988 and 1990 with 58%. In 1992, he won re-election with 65%.
In 1994, he was narrowly defeated by Republican Fred Heineman, who won by a margin of less than 1% during the Republican Revolution, in part to lower-than-expected turnout in the Democratic stronghold of Orange County (home to Chapel Hill), but despite the fact that heavily Republican Randolph County had been eliminated from the Fourth District during redistricting prior to that election year.
In 1996, Price defeated Heineman in a rematch 54%-44%. He was helped in part by voters who were not happy with the lack of progress made by the freshman class on the goals of the Contract with America.
Price was an early opponent of the Iraq War and has sponsored a bill to bring the conduct of private military companies working in Iraq under legal jurisdiction of the United States. He has also introduced legislation to prohibit contractors from performing interrogations of prisoners in the custody of intelligence agencies.
As chairman of the House subcommittee responsible for determining the budget for the Department of Homeland Security, Price is seeking to focus immigration enforcement efforts on criminal convicts.
For "[defending] critical emergency management and homeland security priorities," Price was honored with the 2008 Congressional Recognition Award by the National Emergency Management Association.
Price authored a provision of the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 which made the interest on student loans tax deductible, and legislation creating the Advanced Technological Education program at the National Science Foundation, which provides grants for high-tech education in community colleges and was enacted in 1993. Price voted for the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, reasoning that "the harmful effects of the credit crisis on all North Carolinians were too great for the federal government to sit on the sidelines." In December 2009, he voted for the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which enacted more stringent regulations on the financial industry in order to protect consumers and taxpayers from another financial crisis.
Price is also the author of legislation to reform the public financing system for presidential campaigns.
Price married his wife, Lisa Kanwit, in 1968. They were longtime Democratic Party activists together, and they have two children: Karen, a filmmaker; and Michael, a professor of Evolutionary Psychology at Brunel University in London. They have two grandchildren, Charles Albert, born in 2006, and Margaret Elizabeth, born in 2009. Price resides in Chapel Hill and is a member of the Binkley Memorial Baptist Church.
Price appeared as a contestant on the nighttime version of the CBS game show Password, which aired on November 28, 1963, while he was a graduate student at Yale.
His celebrity partner was Gloria Stuart, and they lost to James Stewart and his contestant partner. Price won a consolation prize of $50.
Price received the 2011 John Tyler Caldwell Award for the Humanities from the North Carolina Humanities Council.
January 9th, 2012