America’s New Congress is filled with hundreds of Members and thousands of stories. Each week, GOP.gov will introduce you to a new House Republican with “10 Questions.”
This week’s Featured Member is Rep. Martha McSally, who represents the 2nd Congressional District of Arizona. Rep. McSally serves on the House Committees on Homeland Security and Armed Services.
Prior to serving in Congress, McSally was a Colonel in the U.S. Air Force. She was the first American woman to fly in combat since the 1991 lifting of the ban of women in combat. She was sworn into Congress on January 6, 2015.
1. What motivates you to serve the people of your district in Congress?
Same as what motivated me to wear the military uniform for 26 years: To serve and make a difference.
2. What’s one piece of advice that has helped shape the course of your life?
Do the right thing no matter what the personal cost.
3. When did you realize you were a Republican?
I grew up in a Republican family. Also, I was attending Harvard during the height of the election between Bush and Dukakis. Being in that environment encouraged me to consider why I believed what I believed so I could articulate it in a cogent manner as a counter to the majority of my classmates.
4. What were you most surprised about when you started serving in Congress?
The first thing that hit me was just how bad the dysfunction in Washington is. The inability of all levels of government to even come together on things with strong bipartisan support to make a difference for the people we serve is a big problem; but, I’d rather be in the room than not be in the room, and I’m hopeful that I can be a part of the solution that helps change that.
5. What’s the most important — but under-reported — policy issue you work on?
Human trafficking in the U.S. The victims of this terrible crime are our kids, our vulnerable men and women, and this is happening in our communities, not some far off place. Bringing local, regional, and federal officials as well as law enforcement and non-profit leaders together on this issue to find solutions is something about which I’m very passionate.
Now, the fun ones:
6. What was your first job?
Bus girl at a restaurant as an adolescent.
7. What book are you currently reading?
Servant Leadership by Robert Greenleaf
8. What is your favorite vacation destination?
Whenever I returned from a combat deployment, long months of work, or just need to get away for a day, I go hike at Mount Wrightson about one hour south of Tucson. I usually bring my dog and enjoy the outdoors, the workout, and the beautiful 360 degree views from the summit.
9. Where are you most likely to be seen dining when you’re home in your district?
Papa Loco’s. Awesome local Mexican restaurant in my neighborhood. Attached to a gas station. Wonderful owners and food. I walk there with my rescue golden retriever and loved ones and friends often.
10. What is your favorite professional sports team?
We don’t have a professional team in Southern Arizona but we have the awesome University of Arizona Wildcats!
Want to learn more about Rep. McSally?