In 2014, Ted W. Lieu was elected to California’s 33rd Congressional District, succeeding retiring 40-year incumbent Henry Waxman. In the 114th Congress, Ted was elected president of the Democratic Freshman class by his colleagues. Today he serves on the House Judiciary Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee. He is also an Assistant Whip for the Democratic Caucus.
Ted is a former active duty officer in the US Air Force and currently serves as a Colonel in the Reserves.
In Congress, Ted has established himself as a leader on protecting the environment; Social Security and Medicare; civil liberties; and veterans.
He has been an outspoken proponent for tackling climate change. The first bill Ted wrote and introduced after coming to Congress was the Climate Solutions Act, which aims to make California’s ground-breaking renewable energy goals and climate emissions reduction targets a national model.
As one of only four computer science majors currently serving in Congress, Ted is frequently sought out for his insight on technology and innovation matters including cybersecurity, cloud computing and innovation as well as the sharing and creative economy.
Ted has been a leader in Congress against ethnic and racial profiling, and discrimination against the LGBT community. He serves as Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus task force on armed services and veterans, Co-Chair of the LGBT Equality Caucus, and Co-Chair of the Cloud Computing Caucus.
In just his first year in Congress, Ted successfully passed three laws. He successfully fought for $35 million in funding to the West Los Angeles VA for essential seismic retrofits; reauthorized the Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans; and restored the Quarterly Financial Report, one of our nation’s principal economic indicators used by both businesses and the public sector.
Prior to serving in Congress, Ted was elected to the California State Senate in 2011 and the State Assembly in 2005. Ted's legislative accomplishments include authoring landmark legislation regulating the subprime mortgage industry; a first-in-the-nation ban on gay conversion therapy for children; and a first-in-the-nation ban on the use of tanning beds for minors.
Ted fought for California state tax reform that saved small businesses from millions in retroactive taxes, and tax incentives for film and TV production. Ted also co-authored California’s landmark Global Warming Solutions Act and co-authored the law banning state pension funds from investing in Iran’s nuclear and energy industries.
Ted started his elected service as a Member of the Torrance City Council in 2002. Prior to serving on the Council, Ted was a Torrance Environmental Quality Commissioner.
Looking for a better life and opportunity, Ted and his family immigrated to the United States when he was three years old. His parents went to flea markets and sold gifts and jewelry to make ends meet. Ted's family went from being poor and not speaking English well to opening up a gift store where Ted and his brother would help out in the family business. After many years of perseverance his parents were eventually able to expand to six stores.
With the support of hard-working parents and a country that provided limitless opportunity, Ted would go on to attend Stanford for his undergraduate degrees in Computer Science and Political Science, and then Georgetown University, where he received his law degree magna cum laude after serving as Editor-in-Chief of the law review. Ted also received four American Jurisprudence Awards.
Recognizing the great opportunities America had given to his family, Ted wanted to serve his country to preserve the American Dream. He joined the United States Air Force, where he served in the JAG corps. After serving on active duty for four years, Ted wanted to continue to serve his country and joined the Reserves. Ted has received numerous medals for his outstanding military service, including the Air Force Humanitarian Service Medal and multiple Meritorious Service Medals.
After serving active duty, Ted joined the law firm of Munger, Tolles & Olson as a litigator. In 2003, Ted joined the legal office at UBS Financial Services.
Ted's wife, Betty, is a Water Commissioner and a former California Deputy Attorney General. They live in Torrance with their two sons, Brennan and Austin.