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John Katko
John Katko official photo.jpg
Ranking Member of the House Homeland Security Committee
Assumed office
January 3, 2021
Preceded byMike Rogers
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 24th district
Assumed office
January 3, 2015
Preceded byDan Maffei
Personal details
John Michael Katko

(1962-11-09) November 9, 1962 (age 58)
Syracuse, New York, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Robin Gibson
(m. 1987)
EducationNiagara University (BA)
Syracuse University (JD)
WebsiteHouse website

John Michael Katko (/ˈkætk/; born November 9, 1962) is an American attorney and politician serving as the U.S. Representative for New York's 24th congressional district, based in Syracuse, since 2015. A member of the Republican Party, he previously was an Assistant United States Attorney who led the organized crime division at the U.S. Attorney's Office in Syracuse. In that role, he helped to prosecute gang members under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.[1] In the 116th Congress, he was a co-chair of the House moderate Republican faction, the Tuesday Group.[2] He is the sole chair of the renamed Republican Governance Group for the 117th Congress.[3]

Katko was one of ten Republicans who voted to impeach Donald Trump during Trump's second impeachment.[4][5]

Early life and education

Katko was born in Syracuse in 1962 and is a 1980 graduate of Bishop Ludden High School.[6] He is of Slovak descent on his father's side.[7]

Katko attended Niagara University, where he earned a bachelor of arts degree in political science in 1984, and the Syracuse University College of Law, where he earned his Juris Doctor in 1988.[8][9]

Legal career

Katko entered private practice at a firm in Washington, D.C. Shortly thereafter he became a senior trial attorney in the Enforcement Division of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. He then spent 20 years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the United States Department of Justice. He served as a senior trial attorney on the Mexico–United States border in El Paso, Texas, and he was later assigned to San Juan, Puerto Rico. In April 2000, a Department of Justice-issued handgun was stolen from Katko's vehicle and used in a robbery in which two people were killed. Katko had been issued the gun after receiving a threat against his life.[10]

After leaving the Department of Justice, Katko moved to Camillus, New York, and spent 15 years working as a federal organized crime prosecutor in Syracuse, New York for the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Northern District of New York. In this role, he later said, he "led high-level narcotics prosecutions and was instrumental in formulating the Syracuse Gang Violence Task Force and successfully prosecuting the first-ever RICO gang case in the City of Syracuse, which led to a significant drop in the city's violent crime rate." He "also prosecuted political and police corruption cases." He retired from the Department of Justice in January 2013.[11][12]

U.S. House of Representatives



Katko challenged incumbent Representative Dan Maffei in the 2014 United States House of Representatives elections and was declared the winner on November 4 by 20 percentage points. This was the largest margin of defeat suffered by an incumbent in the 2014 election cycle.[13][14]


Katko ran for reelection in 2016. He was unopposed in the Republican primary.[15] He faced Democratic nominee Colleen Deacon, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand's former district director for Central New York, in the November general election.[16] Katko was reelected with 61% of the vote,[17] even as Donald Trump lost this district by four points in the concurrent presidential election.


National Democrats thought that this was one of the seats that they should have a chance at winning because Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton won this district by four points in the 2016 election. The 2018 election was also heavily favored for the Democrats.[18] In May 2018, The New York Times reported that the Democratic primary contest had attracted interest around the country. On June 26, 2018, Dana Balter, with 63% of the vote, defeated Juanita Perez Williams, with 37%, in the Democratic primary. Katko defeated Balter with 53.1% of the vote in the November general election.[19][20]


Katko was reelected in 2020 with 53% of the vote.[21]


In 2016, eight Katko-sponsored bills passed the House; one became law. Katko had more bills pass the House that year than any other member of the 61-member freshman class elected in 2014.[22]

In 2018, Katko was ranked the seventh-most bipartisan member of the House during the 115th United States Congress.[23] He had voted in support of Trump's position 75.6% of the time.[24]

On December 18, 2019, Katko voted against both articles of impeachment against Trump. Of the 195 House Republicans who voted, all voted against both impeachment articles, as did one Democrat.

On January 12, 2021, Katko became the first House Republican to say he would vote to impeach Trump in the pending vote on a second impeachment. This came in the aftermath of allegations that Trump incited a mob to storm the U.S. Capitol building. In a statement, Katko faulted Trump for fostering the environment that led to the attack and failing to "promptly and forcefully call it off." He believed that if Trump were not held to account for this behavior, it would pose "a direct threat to the future of our democracy."[25] Earlier, Katko had blamed Trump for the storming, saying the president's false claims of election fraud "incited and encouraged this unlawful and unpatriotic attack." As a result, Katko said, he could no longer support Trump.[26] He joined nine other Republicans in supporting impeachment on January 13.[27] On February 4, 2021, Katko joined 10 other Republican House members voting with all voting Democrats to strip Marjorie Taylor Greene of her House Education and Labor Committee and House Budget Committee assignments in response to controversial political statements she had made.[28]

In March 2021, Katko voted against the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.[29]

Caucus memberships

Committee assignments

Political positions


Katko opposes abortion. In 2014, he said he would reverse the Roe v. Wade 1973 Supreme Court decision if he could.[34] He has voted multiple times to defund Planned Parenthood. Katko said that he favored funding for Planned Parenthood until the Planned Parenthood 2015 undercover videos controversy, where anti-abortion activists claimed that the videos showed Planned Parenthood illegally selling fetal tissue,[35] a claim found to be false.[36] During his 2014 campaign, Katko said he would not defund the organization.[35] At the time of the vote, he said he could not support additional funding of the organization while an investigation into its practices was ongoing.[37]


In February 2018, Katko supported the Bipartisan Budget Act, saying that it would bring $1.4 million to Oswego Health in his district.[38]

Civil rights

In 2019, Katko co-sponsored legislation to extend the protections of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to people regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.[39]

Health insurance

In 2017, Katko was one of 20 Republicans to vote against the GOP Healthcare Bill. The act passed the House by a margin of 217–213.[40]

In 2019, Katko voted with seven other Republicans to pass a resolution condemning the Trump administration's efforts by Department of Justice to have the courts invalidate the Affordable Care Act.[41]

January 6 commission

On May 14, 2021, Katko and Representative Bennie Thompson, the House Homeland Security Committee chair, announced that they had struck a deal to create the January 6 commission, a bipartisan, independent commission meant to investigate the storming of the U.S. Capitol. The specifics of the commission's scope had been a topic of strong debate between Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress.[42] On May 19, Katko became one of 35 Republicans who joined all 217 Democrats present in voting to establish the commission.[43][44][45]

Parental savings accounts

In 2016, with Representative Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, Katko cosponsored the Working Parents Flexibility Act (H.R. 4699). This legislation would establish a tax-free "parental savings account" in which employers and parents could invest savings tax-free, with unused funds eligible to be "rolled into qualifying retirement, college savings or ABLE accounts for people with disabilities without tax penalties."[46]

School safety

After the shooting in Parkland, Florida, in February 2018, Katko and Representative Henry Cuellar introduced the Securing Our Children Act of 2018, which would create a commission tasked with developing school safety and security policy.[47]

Personal life

Katko was raised in suburban Camillus, New York, where he resides with his wife, Robin, and their three sons.[48]

See also


  1. ^ Weiner, Mark (January 14, 2014). "John Katko, former organized crime prosecutor, seeks GOP nomination for Congress". Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  2. ^ "Congressional Member and Staff Organizations". Committee on House Administration. April 22, 2019.
  3. ^ Akin, Stephanie (February 18, 2021). "To Retake House, Centrists Say GOP Needs Candidates Who Can Win Swing Districts". Roll Call. Retrieved March 21, 2021.
  4. ^ "10 GOP lawmakers vote to impeach Trump, trial moves to Senate". FOX 35. January 13, 2021.
  5. ^ "These 10 House Republicans voted to impeach Trump on Wednesday". CNN. January 13, 2021. Retrieved January 13, 2021.
  6. ^ Profile,; accessed November 10, 2014.
  7. ^ Weiner, Mark (March 25, 2015). "Rep. John Katko scores winning goal, named MVP in Congressional Hockey Challenge (video)". Archived from the original on September 30, 2015.
  8. ^ Breidenbach, Michelle (October 24, 2014). "Meet John Katko: Career gang prosecutor talks of taking on 'knuckleheads' in Congress".
  9. ^ "Election preview: Rep. John Katko aims to build on successes if re-elected to Congress".
  10. ^ Weiner, Mark; Gun stolen from congressional candidate John Katko used in robbery where 2 were killed;; August 28, 2014;
  11. ^ Breidenbach, Michelle; Meet John Katko: Career gang prosecutor talks of taking on 'knuckleheads' in Congress;; October 24, 2014;
  12. ^ University, Niagara. "John Katko, '84: A Life of Advocacy".
  13. ^ "John Katko declared winner over Rep. Dan Maffei in race for Congress". Retrieved November 5, 2014.
  14. ^ Weiner, Mark (May 16, 2016). "House passes John Katko's bill to improve counterterrorism oversight". Retrieved May 17, 2016.
  15. ^ Tumulty, Bruce (April 27, 2016). "Democratic primary will determine challenger to Katko". Democrat & Chronicle. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  16. ^ Weiner, Mark (September 20, 2016). "7 issues that separate John Katko, Colleen Deacon in race for Congress". The Post-Standard. Retrieved September 21, 2016.
  17. ^ Sharp, Brian (November 9, 2016). "Republican incumbents Collins, Reed and Katko win re-election". The Democrat & Chronicle. Retrieved November 11, 2016.
  18. ^ Lee, Jasmine C. (March 26, 2018). "To Reclaim the House, Democrats Need to Flip 24 G.O.P. Seats. 25 Are in Clinton Territory. (Published 2018)". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved January 16, 2021.
  19. ^ Foderaro, Lisa (May 30, 2018). "National Democrats Wade, Uninvited, Into New York House Race". The New York Times.
  20. ^ "New York's 24th Congressional District election, 2018". Ballotpedia.
  21. ^ "New York Election Results: 24th Congressional District". The New York Times. November 3, 2020.
  22. ^ Theobold, William (April 11, 2016). "Arizona's Rep. Martha McSally shows a knack for moving bills despite gridlock". The Arizona Republic. Retrieved May 17, 2016.
  23. ^ Harding, Robert (April 26, 2018). "Rep. John Katko ranked as one of the most bipartisan members of Congress". Auburn, New York. Retrieved July 3, 2018.
  24. ^ Bycoffe, Aaron; Silver, Nate. "Tracking Congress In The Age Of Trump". FiveThirtyEight. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  25. ^ Weiner, Mark (January 12, 2021). "Rep. John Katko becomes first House Republican to back Trump impeachment". The Post Standard. Retrieved January 12, 2021.
  26. ^ Baker, Chris (January 7, 2021). "Rep. Katko faults Trump for inciting violence at U.S. Capitol". The Post Standard.
  27. ^ "These 10 House Republicans voted to impeach Trump on Wednesday". CNN. January 13, 2021. Retrieved January 13, 2021.
  28. ^ Foran, Clare; Diaz, Daniella; Grayer, Annie (February 4, 2021). "House votes to remove Marjorie Taylor Greene from committee assignments". CNN. Retrieved February 5, 2021.
  29. ^ "FINAL VOTE RESULTS FOR ROLL CALL 49". Retrieved April 27, 2021.
  30. ^ "Members". Republican Mains Street Partnership. Archived from the original on August 26, 2018. Retrieved October 4, 2017.
  31. ^ "TUESDAY GROUP CAUCUS ELECTS JOHN KATKO AS CO-CHAIR". Congressman John Katko. November 7, 2017. Retrieved May 24, 2020.
  32. ^ "Featured Members". Problem Solvers Caucus. Retrieved March 1, 2021.
  33. ^ "John Katko, Representative for New York's 24th Congressional District". Retrieved March 29, 2021.
  34. ^ "Rep. John Katko's votes against Planned Parenthood funding". Politifact. October 5, 2016. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  35. ^ a b Wiener, Mark (May 26, 2018). "What happened to 7 promises John Katko made to Central New York?". Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  36. ^ "Planned Parenthood Investigations Find No Fetal Tissue Sales". NPR. January 28, 2016. Retrieved June 16, 2020.
  37. ^ "House GOP votes to defund Planned Parenthood with help of John Katko". September 28, 2015. Retrieved September 23, 2016.
  38. ^ Parsnow, Luke; Katko: Oswego Health to receive $1.4 million from congressional budget deal; CNY Central; February 9, 2018;
  39. ^ "Congressional Democrats, GOP moderates look to enshrine LGBTQ legal protections". Retrieved March 14, 2019.
  40. ^ Bryan, Bob (May 5, 2017). "Which, and why, Republicans voted against AHCA, healthcare bill". Business Insider. Retrieved May 14, 2017.
  41. ^ House condemns Trump's latest anti-ObamaCare push, The Hill, Julie Grace Brufke, April 3, 2019. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  42. ^ Herb, Jeremy; Nobles, Ryan; Grayer, Annie (May 14, 2021). "House strikes deal to create independent January 6 commission". CNN. Retrieved May 19, 2021.
  43. ^ LeBlanc, Paul (May 19, 2021). "Here are the 35 House Republicans who voted for the January 6 commission". CNN. Retrieved May 19, 2021.
  44. ^ Roll Call 154 Bill Number: H. R. 3233 117th Congress, 1st Session, United States House of Representatives, May 19, 2021. Retrieved May 20, 2021.
  45. ^ How Republicans voted on a commission to investigate the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, Washington Post, May 19, 2021. Retrieved May 20, 2021.
  46. ^ Katko bill would establish tax-free savings accounts for parents, Ripon Advance News Service (March 10, 2016).
  47. ^ Weiner, Mark (March 5, 2018). "Rep. John Katko wants federal commission to look at mass shootings, gun laws".
  48. ^ Braidenbach, Michelle (October 24, 2014). "Meet John Katko: Career gang prosecutor talks of taking on 'knuckleheads' in Congress". Retrieved November 5, 2014.

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Dan Maffei
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 24th congressional district

Party political offices
Preceded by
Tom MacArthur
Chair of the Republican Governance Group
Tuesday Group: 2017–2020

Served alongside: Charlie Dent (2017–2018), Elise Stefanik (2017–2019), Susan Brooks (2019–2021), Fred Upton (2019–2021)
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
French Hill
United States representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
Brenda Lawrence
This page was last edited on 11 July 2021, at 08:25
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