2373 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Elected in 1980, Rep. Chris Smith (R-Robbinsville, N.J.) is currently in his 20th term in the U.S. House of Representatives, and serves residents in the Fourth Congressional District of New Jersey. Smith, 65, serves as a senior member on the Foreign Affairs Committee, and is chairman of its Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations Subcommittee. He is the highest-ranking House member of both the bipartisan House/Senate Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE), and the bipartisan House/Senate/White House Congressional-Executive Commission on China, and has chaired both commissions in the past. He also serves as “Special Representative” on Human Trafficking for the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. Previously, he served as Chairman of the Veterans Committee (two terms) and Chairman of the Foreign Affairs’ Subcommittee on Human Rights and International Operations and the Subcommittee on Africa.
Smith has long chaired a number of bipartisan congressional caucuses (working groups) including the Pro-life (36 years), Autism (20 years, co-founder), Alzheimer’s (18 years, co-founder), Lyme Disease (14 years, co-founder), Spina Bifida (14 years), Human Trafficking (14 years, co-founder), Refugees (14 years), and Combating Anti-Semitism caucuses, and serves on caucuses on Bosnia, Uganda and Vietnam.
According to the independent watchdog organization GovTrack, as of January 2019 Smith ranks second among all 435 Members of the House in the number of laws authored. According to the official Congress.gov website, Rep. Smith has authored 46 laws.
In 2019, his Frederick Douglass Trafficking Victims Prevention and Protection Reauthorization Act (PL 115-425) was signed into law by the President on Jan. 8. After two years of effort, Smith’s Iraq and Syria Genocide Relief and Accountability Act (PL 115-300) was enacted into law on Dec. 11, 2018. His bill, HR 6651, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) Extension Act of 2018 (PL 115-305) was also signed into law Dec. 11, 2018.
He is the author of five comprehensive anti-human trafficking laws including the landmark Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, a law designed to prevent modern-day slavery, protect victims, and enhance civil and criminal penalties against traffickers. In 2016, Smith’s International Megan’s Law to Prevent Child Exploitation and Other Sexual Crimes Through Advance Notification of Traveling Sex Offenders, (PL 114-119), was passed by both houses of Congress and enacted into law to protect children in the U.S. and around the world from convicted pedophiles who travel in or out of the United States unbeknownst to law enforcement officials. The law capped an eight-year effort to finally enact international notification legislation that draws on current federal and Megan’s Laws in all 50 states that require public notice when a sex offender moves into a U.S. neighborhood. Megan, for whom the law is named, lived in the Fourth Congressional District.
He has also authored 14 laws helping veterans, including the Homeless Veterans Comprehensive Assistance Act (PL 107-95) (HR 2716), the Veterans Benefits Act of 2003 (PL 108-183), the Veterans Health Care Improvement Act of 2004 (PL 108-422) (HR 2297), the Veterans Survivor Benefits Improvements Act (PL 107-14) (HR 801), and the Gold Star Families Voices Act (PL 114-246) (HR 4511).
Smith is the author of two historic stem cell laws. His Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Reauthorization Act of 2015 (HR 2820), which was signed into law as PL 114-104 on Dec. 18, 2015, authorized funding of $265 million for cord blood and stem cell research and treatment over five years. He wrote the first Stem Cell Therapeutic and Research Act of 2005, HR 2520 (PL 109-129) which established a nationwide program for ethical research and treatment using umbilical cord blood and bone marrow cells, and which also authorized $265 million over five years for umbilical cord blood and bone marrow stem cell research and treatment. That landmark law was reauthorized in September 2010 for another five years.In March of 2018, key provisions of Smith’s Kevin and Avonte’s Law—designed to help protect and locate children with Autism and elderly persons with Alzheimer’s who wander—were signed into law as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act. In 2014, Smith’s legislation, HR 4631, the Autism Collaboration, Accountability, Research and Education (CARES) Act (now PL 113-157), was enacted into law; the bill funds $1.3 billion over five years for research into the causes of autism. In October 2011, Smith’s bill, HR 2005, the Combating Autism Reauthorization Act (CARA) of 2011, was signed into law (PL 112-32), a follow-up to his Autism Statistics, Surveillance, Research, and Epidemiology Act (ASSURE) of 2000.
In 2014, Smith saw over five years of work come to fruition in the House and Senate passage and enactment of his groundbreaking Sean and David Goldman International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (now PL 113-150), to help bring back home American children unlawfully taken out of the U.S. to foreign countries.
A lifelong New Jerseyan, Congressman Smith graduated from The College of New Jersey with a degree in business administration. Prior to being elected to Congress, he helped run a small business—his family’s wholesale sporting goods corporation. He is also the former Executive Director of the New Jersey Right to Life Committee.
Congressman Smith resides in Hamilton, N.J., and has four grown children.
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