Timothy "Tim" F. Murphy (born September 11, 1952, Cleveland, Ohio) is the U.S. Representative for Pennsylvania's 18th congressional district, serving since 2003. He is a member of the Republican Party. He previously served in the Pennsylvania Senate.
The district includes several wealthy suburbs south of Pittsburgh. It includes parts of Allegheny, Washington, Beaver and Westmoreland counties.
In the 2010 elections, he won re-election with 67.3% of the vote.
Early life, education, and career
Murphy was born in Cleveland, Ohio. One of eleven children, he grew up in a working class Catholic family where his parents struggled to provide for their family. After graduating from Walsh Jesuit High School, Murphy worked and paid his own way through college and graduate school, receiving a Bachelor of Science from Wheeling Jesuit University, a MA from Cleveland State University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh.
Upon leaving school, he became a practicing psychologist and a professor at the University of Pittsburgh. He also made regular appearances on KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh from 1979 to 1995 as a health care expert.
In 2009, Tim Murphy spoke with Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who indicated a need for medical personnel to help treat brain injuries in military hospitals.
Because the Department of Veteran Affairs does not allow volunteers to clinically treat patients, Murphy joined the US Naval Reserves in August 2009, underwent training and physical tests, and was commissioned as a Lieutenant Commander in the Medical Corps. He makes rounds each month at the National Naval Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland, and two weeks per year. In the 2010 campaign, Murphy's opponent made an issue of Murphy's service. In response, Murphy said, "I didn't want to play this up...I did what was required. I don't call myself a veteran. I'm a Navy reservist. I'm no hero. I work with heroes."
Murphy is co-author of "The Angry Child: Regaining Control When Your Child Is Out of Control", and "Overcoming Passive-Aggression: How to Stop Hidden Anger from Spoiling Your Relationships, Career, and Happiness", both co-authored with Loriann Hoff Oberlin.
Elected to the Pennsylvania State Senate in 1996, Murphy served as chair of the Pennsylvania Committee on Aging and Youth and wrote the Pennsylvania Patient Bill of Rights. Despite his stance as a fiscal conservative, he pushed for increased public funding for medical research. In 2002, the political website PoliticsPA named him to the list of "Smartest Legislators." He resigned his senate seat on January 3, 2003.
U.S. House of Representatives
Murphy lives in Upper St. Clair, a suburb of Pittsburgh. However, he is listed on the official House roll as "R-Pittsburgh", although his district does not include any portion of Pittsburgh itself.
- Committee on Energy and Commerce
- Subcommittee on Environment and Economy (Vice Chair)
- Subcommittee on Health
- Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations (Vice Chair - Environment and the Economy)
Murphy previously served on the Veterans Affairs and Government Reform committees. He is a member of the centrist Republican Main Street Partnership.
- Congressional Arts Caucus
Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act
Congressman Tim Murphy was the Republican sponsor of the Currency Reform for Fair Trade Act, along with Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio.
The bill, which passed the House of Representatives on September 29, 2010, received overwhelming, bi-partisan support. The final vote was 348-79. The measure seeks to protect American manufacturing and the jobs they create by making China more accountable to its artificially low currency. It would authorize the United States Commerce Department to impose tariffs and countervailing duties against goods from countries with currencies that it deems are undervalued.
Murphy told WDUQ that the goal is to, “protect domestic manufacturers and the steel industry from countries unwilling to compete fairly in the global marketplace.” He added that by tying China's currency to the dollar and not floating its currency on the open market, China can undercut US manufactures by 40%. In other words, manufacturers in China can make and ship products to the US for less than a manufacturer here can buy the raw materials.
The Senate under the leadership of Democrat Harry Reid failed to take up the legislation, and President Barack Obama's Treasury Department failed to label China a "currency manipulator." As a result, Murphy reintroduced the bi-partisan measure in February 2011.
Rep. Murphy has served as a Co-Chair of the House Republican Doctor's Caucus since its creation in March 2009. Murphy opposed President Obama's health care reform law, and voted to repeal it in the 112th Congress. Murphy serves on the 21st Century Healthcare Caucus, the Mental Health Caucus, and the Men's Health Caucus.
During the tragic shooting of Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Murphy and Mental Health Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-CA) spoke with national media about issues surrounding mental health issues. Both members also held a briefing for congressional staffers with questions on the Tucson shooting.
Traffic accident in Iraq
On November 26, 2005, Murphy was injured during a traffic accident in Iraq while riding in a van along with fellow congressmen Jim Marshall and Ike Skelton. The van swerved off the road to avoid an oncoming vehicle and overturned, injuring Murphy and Skelton. The two were airlifted to Ibn Sina hospital in Baghdad. The driver of Murphy's bus suspected a car riding alongside the bus was a suicide bomber, and drove off the road on purpose.
After an MRI indicated head and neck injuries, Murphy was flown to the US Military's Landstuhl Medical Center in Germany for further tests. These tests indicated no permanent damage. After wearing a neck brace for a brief period, Murphy made a full recovery.
Politically charged accusations of violations of House rules
Shortly before the 2006 election, allegations were made that Congressman Murphy was using official resources for campaign activities. Such allegations have not resulted in any formal charges or actions taken against Rep. Murphy. In late October 2006, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that in interviews with a half-dozen present and former staffers, accusations were made that Murphy had mixed campaign activities and official government work in a manner that the staffers considered unethical or in possible violation of House rules.When presented with the accusations, Murphy said he would seek a congressional investigation of his own conduct.
On September 16, 2007, the organization Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) released its third annual report on the most corrupt members of Congress entitled "Beyond DeLay: The 22 Most Corrupt Members of Congress (and two to watch)". Murphy was included on the list. CREW issued their analysis of Murphy's alleged ethical lapses, together with various exhibits which CREW asserted supports their naming him to their list of the most corrupt members of Congress. The reality, however, is that CREW is "one of a wave of new groups backed by liberal donors" and is "a vehicle for assaults on largely – but not entirely – Republican targets," according to Politico.com.
In a 2002 PoliticsPA Feature story designating politicians with yearbook superlatives, he was named the "Most Ambitious"
Murphy ran for the newly redrawn 18th Congressional District in 2002. The district had previously been the 20th, represented by four-term Democrat Frank Mascara. However, the legislature re-drew the district after the 2000 Census in such a way that a large portion of Mascara's district ended up in the neighboring Johnstown-based 12th District, represented by 28-year incumbent John Murtha.
The new district lines were harshly criticized, in part because in some areas portions of several neighborhoods—and even streets—were split between districts. In some areas, one side of the street was in the 18th while the other was in the 12th; in other areas, one side of the street was in the 18th while the other was in the Pittsburgh-based 14th District. In the most extreme example, nearly all of Mascara's hometown of Charleroi was drawn into the 12th district, but Mascara's house stayed in the 18th.
After a legal battle, the courts largely upheld Pennsylvania's redistricting plan after some minor modifications. Murphy was a member of the committee that redrew Pennsylvania's congressional map, and rumors abounded that he'd reconfigured the district for himself, even though numerous Democrats were also on the committee. Mascara challenged Murtha in the Democratic primary for the 12th District, since the newly configured 12th was geographically more his district than Murtha's. However, Murtha won handily. This removed a significant barrier to Murphy, and he ran against Democrat Jack Machek in the November election. Even though Democrats outnumbered Republicans by 70,000 registered voters, it was somewhat friendlier to Republicans than the old 20th had been. He won handily, defeating Machek by 20 points.
Murphy was reelected in 2004 by a similar margin over Democratic challenger Mark Boles.
Murphy faced Democrat Chad Kluko, a telecommunications executive, in the November 2006 general election. Murphy won reelection with 58% of the vote to Kluko's 42%.
Murphy's opponent was Democrat Steve O'Donnell, a Monroeville health care executive. Murphy won with 64% of the vote.
Murphy defeated Democratic nominee, Dan Connolly. Murphy received 161,888 votes (67.3%), to 78,558 (32.7%) for Connolly. Rep. Murphy was reelected for his fifth term in Pennsylvania's 18th district.
February 1st, 2012