|U.S. Representative from California's 50th Congressional District|
From: January 3, 2021 - Present
|Successor||Duncan D. Hunter|
Darrell E. Issa (born November 1, 1953) is a U.S. Representative from California's 50th congressional district and a member of the Republican Party. Issa previously served in the United States House of Representatives from 2001 to 2019, representing two districts 49th and very shortly the 48th, primarily covering North County in the San Diego area, most recently California's 49th congressional district. From January 2011 to January 2015, Issa served as Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and also served on the House Judiciary Committee. After serving in the United States Army, he graduated from Sienna Heights University in Michigan with an ROTC scholarship. He would go on to launch a car-alarm business, Directed Electronics Incorporated, which went on to become the largest manufacturer of vehicle security systems in the United States. He became active in the technology-industry, and served as chairman of the Consumer Electronics Association. Issa's company earned him a fortune of $200 million. Issa, was once the wealthiest member of Congress.
Issa first entered politics in 1998 when he unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination to challenge Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer. However, Issa was elected the Congress in California's 49th district in 2000, upon the retirement of nine-term incumbent Ron Packard. He was easily reelected ever since but did not run again the 2018 elections.
In 2003, Issa contributed over $1.6 million to a signature-gathering drive for a petition to recall Governor Gray Davis.
In 2008, Issa defeated a Democrat, Robert Hamilton. Another opponent, Frank Ford, the founder of Arrowhead Mills, a natural foods wholesaler, withdrew from the congressional race because of health issues.
In the House Issa had a rather conservative voting record. He has voted with a majority of his Republican colleagues 93 percent of the time during the current Congress. Issa has been especially active in foreign affairs. On the eve of the War in Afghanistan he visited several middle eastern nations to build support for the United States. In 2007 he joined a delegation to terrorist-sponsored Syria led by Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.
He is the chairman of the House Oversight Committee. Unlike the rest of Republican leadership, he's used this position to investigate into scandals involving the White House.
Darrell Issa has taken numerous decidedly non-conservative stances. He voted against an amendment which would have repealed taxpayer funding of sex-reassignment surgeries for members of the military. Commentator Mark Levin has called him a "RINO" because he did not support investigations into the IRS early enough. He made an insensitive comment about 9/11 in order to justify his opposition to 9/11 victims' relief programs. He has been referred to as "Jihad Darrell" for arguably defending Hezbollah.
In 2019 President Trump had tapped Issa to lead the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, but the nomination stalled in committee in the Senate.
On November 7, 2020, Darrell Issa declared victory in his race over Democratic opponent Ammar Campa-Najjar, after being projected to defeat his Democratic opponent for California’s 50th Congressional District. Issa's return to Congress, where he once headed the powerful House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and launched investigations of the Obama administration was to also replace former Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.). Duncan Hunter, resigned following a series of legal woes, including the Justice Department charging him with wire fraud, falsifying campaign finances reports, prohibited use of campaign contributions and conspiracy to commit offenses. Issa ran the 2020 election in the neighboring and more conservative 50th District anchored in eastern San Diego County, with his district that includes North San Diego county and as far north as most of Temecula in Riverside County.
Issa said he will push for a common-sense approach to the coronavirus pandemic that brings in the voices of business to find a way to operate safely without having to shut down. His top priority, he said, will be to support the armed forces and veterans. “I want to take care of the troops,” he told The Associated Press in an interview in October, acknowledging the military’s presence in the 50th District and the Hunter family’s enduring popularity there.
Issa was a strong supporter of Trump and shortly after the 2020 election he reiterated his support for the president’s claims against the electoral process.
- House website
- On the Issues
- Issa declares victory in us house comeback bid
- Issa-defeats Campa-Najjar in California house race