Susan Wild

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Susan Ellis Wild (born June 7, 1957) is an American attorney and politician from the commonwealth of Pennsylvania. A Democrat, she is a member of the United States House of Representatives from . The district is in the heart of the Lehigh Valley, and includes Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton, Bangor, and East Stroudsburg. Wild spent the last two months of 2018 as the member for after Charlie Dent resigned in 2018. She co-chairs the New Democrat Coalition Climate Change Task Force and is vice chair of both the Congressional Labor and Working Families Caucus and the Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations. Wild is the first woman to represent the Lehigh Valley in Congress.

Early life

Wild is the daughter of Norman Leith and Susan Stimus Ellis. Her mother was a journalist. +more Her father served in the United States Air Force during World War II and the Korean War. Wild was born at Wiesbaden Air Force Base, West Germany, while her father was stationed there. She also lived in France, California, New Mexico, and Washington, D. C.

Early political career

Wild volunteered on Jimmy Carter's 1976 presidential campaign. She graduated from American University in 1978. +more She earned her Juris Doctor at George Washington University Law School in 1982. She studied under John Banzhaf. Wild became a partner at the law firm Gross McGinley in 1999.

Wild ran for Lehigh County Commissioner in 2013, but lost. She was appointed the first female solicitor of Allentown, Pennsylvania, in January 2015. +more She served as Solicitor of Allentown starting on January 7, 2015, when she was confirmed by the Allentown City Council.

U.S. House of Representatives

Elections

2018 general

On December 31, 2017, Wild resigned from office to pursue her candidacy for the United States House of Representatives to succeed retiring Representative Charlie Dent (R) in 2018. Dent's district had previously been the 15th, represented by seven-term Republican Charlie Dent. +more She won a six-candidate Democratic Party primary election with 33% of the vote, narrowly defeating Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli, and faced Republican Lehigh County Commissioner Marty Nothstein in the November 6 general election. She defeated Nothstein in the general election with 53. 5% of the vote to Northstein's 43. 5%.

2018 special

On the same day, Wild also ran in a separate special election for the balance of Dent's term; he had resigned in May after announcing the previous fall that he would not run for reelection. On November 15, 2018, it was announced that Wild had won the 15th congressional district's special election, receiving 130,353 votes to Nothstein's 129,593 votes.

There was a closer margin in the special election because that election was under the former 15th district, which had been thrown out by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in February 2018. The former 15th had stretched from the Lehigh Valley into heavily Republican territory between Lebanon and Harrisburg, by way of a tendril in Berks County. +more The new 7th district is a more compact district centered in the Lehigh Valley, and includes a sliver of the Poconos.

2020

Wild ran for reelection to a second term. She was unopposed in the Democratic primary and faced former Lehigh County Commissioner Lisa Scheller in the general election. +more Wild defeated Scheller with 51. 9% of the vote, less than was expected.

Tenure

Wild is a self-described "pro-business" Democrat.

Wild has been critical of Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro for holding views characterized as "far-right", "misogynistic", "homophobic" and "anti-immigrant". In March 2019, she and 29 other Democratic lawmakers wrote +moreS. _Secretary_of_State'>U. S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo a letter that read in part, "Since the election of far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro as president, we have been particularly alarmed by the threat Bolsonaro’s agenda poses to the LGBTQ+ community and other minority communities, women, labor activists, and political dissidents in Brazil. We are deeply concerned that, by targeting hard-won political and social rights, Bolsonaro is endangering Brazil’s long-term democratic future. ".

In 2020, Wild co-sponsored a bill to reauthorize the Older Americans Act for five years with a 35% increase in funding. President Donald Trump signed the bill into law in March 2020.

Donald Trump

On December 10, 2019, Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee advanced two articles of impeachment against Republican President Donald Trump. On December 18, 2019, Wild voted for the first article of impeachment, "abuse of power", and the second article of impeachment, "obstruction of Congress".

Joe Biden

As of September 2022, Wild had voted in line with Joe Biden's stated position 100% of the time.

Gun policy

In 2022, Wild voted for H.R. 1808: Assault Weapons Ban of 2022.

Marjorie Taylor Greene

Wild cosponsored a resolution to expel Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene from Congress, suggesting that she "advocated violence against our peers, the Speaker and our government."

Carbon County

Wild drew some controversy when she said, "Carbon County has many attributes, but it is a county that-although it was once an Obama county-it since has become a Trump county. I’m not quite sure what was in their heads because the people of Carbon County are exactly the kind of people who should not be voting for a Donald Trump, but I guess I might have to school them on that a little bit. +more But most of all, it is a very rural county. ".

Committee assignments

Committee on Ethics (Chair) *Committee on Foreign Affairs **Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations (Vice Chair) **Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, Energy, and the Environment *Committee on Education and Labor **Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions *Committee on Science, Space and Technology **Subcommittee on Research and Technology

Caucus memberships

New Democrat Coalition *Congressional LGBT+ Equality Caucus *Congressional Ukrainian Caucus *Black Maternal Health Caucus *New Democrat Coalition Climate Change Task Force (Co-Chair) *Congressional Labor and Working Families Caucus (Vice Chair) * House Pro-Choice Caucus

Electoral history

Personal life

Wild married Russell Wild in 1981. They divorced in 2003 after 22 years of marriage. +more They have two adult children. Following her divorce, Wild reunited with Kerry Acker, who remained her life partner until his death by suicide on May 25, 2019. She lives in South Whitehall Township, west of Allentown. She is Jewish.

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