Rob Andrews

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Rob Andrews
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Jersey's 1st district
In office
November 6, 1990 – February 18, 2014
Preceded by James Florio
Succeeded by Donald Norcross
Personal details
Born Robert Ernest Andrews
(1957-08-04) August 4, 1957 (age 61)
Camden, New Jersey, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Camille Spinello
Children 2
Alma mater Bucknell University (B.A.)
Cornell Law School (J.D.)

Robert Ernest Andrews (born August 4, 1957) is the former U.S. Representative for New Jersey's 1st congressional district, serving from 1990 to 2014. He is a member of the Democratic Party. The district includes most of Camden County and parts of Burlington County and Gloucester County.

Before his election to Congress, Andrews was a member of the Camden County Board of Chosen Freeholders from 1986 to 1990, including two years as freeholder director (1988–1990). A native of Camden and graduate of Bucknell University and Cornell Law School, he was an attorney and an adjunct professor at the Rutgers School of Law–Camden. In the U.S. House of Representatives, he served on the Committee on Armed Services, Committee on the Budget, and Committee on Education and Labor, where he served as chairman of the Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions.

Andrews was a candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 2008 U.S. Senate election, being defeated by incumbent U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg. In November 2004, he received more votes than anyone ever elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from New Jersey.[1]

First elected to Congress in 1990, Andrews served for 24 years as the U.S. Representative for New Jersey's 1st congressional district, which includes most of Camden County and parts of Burlington County and Gloucester County. In the U.S. House of Representatives, he served as chairman of the Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions.[2] In 2014, sources familiar with Andrews said he planned to leave Congress to take a position at a Philadelphia law firm.[3] Andrews retired from the House with the 10th longest tenure among U.S. Representatives in New Jersey history, and the fifth longest among Democrats in his state.[4]

Early life, education, and early career[edit]

Andrews was born in Camden, New Jersey, the son of Josephine (née Amies) and Ernest Andrews; he is predominantly of Scottish and Scotch-Irish descent and counts American portrait painter Charles Willson Peale and Johannes Roosevelt among his ancestors.[5] He grew up in Bellmawr and attended Triton Regional High School in Runnemede.[6] Andrews was the first in his family to attend college, graduating from Bucknell University in 1979 with a BA in political science, summa cum laude. He later attended Cornell University Law School, earning his JD degree with honors in 1982.

For several years, Andrews was involved in legal education as a member of Cornell Law Review‍‍ '‍s board of editors. He also was an adjunct professor at Rutgers University-Camden Law School. From 1983 onward, Andrews operated a private law practice. In 1986, he was elected as a member of the Camden County Board of Chosen Freeholders, where he served for four years, including two years as freeholder director (1988–1990).

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]


In 1990, after a 15-year incumbent Democratic U.S. Congressman James Florio resigned from the U.S. House of Representatives to take office as Governor of New Jersey, Andrews won the 1990 special election and simultaneous general election against Gloucester County Freeholder Daniel J. Mangini.[7] He subsequently won re-election every two years until his retirement. Andrews had the 10th longest tenure among U.S. Representatives in New Jersey history, and the fifth longest among Democrats state.[4] In November 2004, he received more votes than anyone ever elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from New Jersey, a record which he broke once again in 2012.[1]

Andrews was a candidate for the Democratic nomination in the 2008 U.S. Senate election, being defeated by incumbent U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg.


Andrews is generally considered a moderate by Democratic standards, though he votes with his party most of the time. The New York Times has characterized Congressman Andrews as "fiscally conservative ... and socially moderate."[8] He has a lifetime rating of 17.24 (and a 2007 rating of 0) from the American Conservative Union and a 2007 rating of 100 from Americans for Democratic Action.[9][10] He has a liberal rating of 76.2 and a conservative rating of 23.8 from the National Journal.[11] In recent years, his voting record has trended progressively more liberal.

Andrews served for his entire Congressional career on the House Committee on Education and Labor. He was the Democratic leader and ranking member on the Education Subcommittee on Employer-Employee Relations, and was the chairman of the Education Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor, and Pensions which has responsibility for the health insurance, pension and labor laws of the nation. He also served on the House Armed Services Committee, which maintains jurisdiction over funding for the military forces.

Using Amtrak to commute from his Haddon Heights home while Congress is in session so that he can be closer to his family and constituents, Andrews does not maintain a residence in Washington, D.C.. Andrews is an ardent supporter of Amtrak subsidies.

Andrews voted for the Secure Fence Act of 2006, authorizing the erection of a 700-mile fence across the U.S.-Mexico border.

On October 10, 2002, Rob Andrews was among the 81 House Democrats who voted in favor of authorizing the invasion of Iraq (126 Democrats in the House were opposed) and was the only Democratic member of the New Jersey Congressional delegation to co-sponsor the Iraq Resolution.[12][13] In 2005, he voted in favor of amending the U.S. Constitution to prohibit desecration of the American flag. The proposed amendment was later defeated in the Senate.[14] In the same year he voted for the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act which makes it more difficult for individuals to declare bankruptcy under Chapter 7 and encourages declaration of bankruptcy under Chapter 13.[15]

Senators Frank Lautenberg, Bob Menendez,[16] and Andrews[17] were the only members of the New Jersey Democratic Congressional Delegation to vote for the Military Commissions Act of 2006. He was also involved in proposing a bill for sanctioning Iran in 2007. The Iran Sanctions Enhancement Act of 2007 targets any company or individual that provides Iran with refined petroleum products or engages in an activity that could contribute to the enhancement of Iran's ability to import refined products after December 31, 2007.[18]

Andrews is a signer of Americans for Tax Reform's Taxpayer Protection Pledge.[19]

During his tenure, Andrews was considered a "key champion of health care legislation in the U.S. Congress."[20] According to President Barack Obama, he was an "original author" of the Affordable Care Act and was a "vital partner in its passage and implementation."[21]

In 2013, Andrews proposed an amendment to the 2014 defense bill that would have added atheists, humanists, and "ethical culturalists" to the corps of chaplains. However, the House Armed Service Committee defeated this amendment by a vote of 43-18.[22]

Committee assignments[edit]


Caucus memberships[edit]

  • Congressional Arts Caucus


In 2014 Andrews came under investigation by the House Ethics Committee for improper use of campaign funds.[24] The identical substance of the accusations made were dismissed in their entirety by the Federal Election Commission in May 2014.[25][26]

Other political activities[edit]

1997 gubernatorial election[edit]

In 1997, Andrews ran for Governor of New Jersey. In the Democratic primary, he was defeated 40%-37%, a margin of just 9,993 votes, by State Senator Jim McGreevey.[27]

Speculation between 1998 and 2007[edit]

Andrews was reportedly considering a primary challenge in 2005, before McGreevey's resignation. While Andrews had been frequently mentioned as a possible replacement for Jon Corzine's United States Senate seat after Corzine's November 2005 gubernatorial victory, Bob Menendez was eventually chosen by Corzine to fill the vacancy. Andrews had informally announced his plan to run in the 2006 Democratic primary against Menendez, but in January 2006 announced that he would run for a ninth full term in the House and seek the Senate seat in 2008 if U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg retired.

2008 Senate election[edit]

Lautenberg ran for re-election to his Senate seat in 2008 but Andrews filed to become a candidate in the Democratic primary shortly before the deadline for doing so.[28] Andrews accused the 84-year-old Lautenberg of being too old to be effective in the Senate.[29] While running for the Senate, his wife Camille Andrews was placed on the Democratic primary ballot to run for Andrews' House seat.[30]

Andrews was beaten by Lautenberg in the Senate primary held on June 5, 2008.[29] In September, Andrews replaced his wife (who won the primary election) on the general election ballot for the House seat he still held.[31] He subsequently won re-election to his house seat that year.

2008 presidential election[edit]

Andrews is a superdelegate within the Democratic Party and prior to the New Jersey primary he endorsed Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination.[32] Following the results from the Indiana and North Carolina primaries Andrews stated that he believed Senator Barack Obama would win the nomination and that the party should unite behind him. However he did not switch his vote as a superdelegate from Clinton to Obama stating that "such a move might retard the process of unifying the party".[33]

Personal life[edit]

Andrews is married to Camille Spinello Andrews, an associate dean of enrollment and projects at Rutgers School of Law - Camden. They have two daughters, Jackie and Josie.[34]

Electoral history[edit]

New Jersey's 1st congressional district: Results 1990–2012[35][36]
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct 3rd Party Party Votes Pct
Rob Andrews 71,373 55% Daniel J. Mangini 58,087 45%
1990 Rob Andrews 72,415 54% Daniel J. Mangini 57,299 43% Jerry Zeldin Libertarian 1,592 1% Walter E. Konstanty Pride and Honesty 1,422 1% William H. Harris Populist 1,066 1%
1992 Rob Andrews 153,525 67% Lee A. Solomon 65,123 29% James E. Smith Pro-Life Pro-Family Veteran 3,761 2% Jerry Zeldin Libertarian 2,641 1% Kenneth L. Lowndes Pro-Life Independent Conservative 2,163 1% Nicholas Pastuch America First Populist 859 <1%
1994 Rob Andrews 108,155 72% James N. Hogan 41,505 28%
1996 Rob Andrews 160,413 76% Mel Suplee 44,287 21% Michael Edmondson Independent 2,668 1% Patricia A. Bily Independent 1,873 1% Norman E. Wahner Independent 1,493 1%
1998 Rob Andrews 90,279 73% Ronald L. Richards 27,855 23% David E. West, Jr. Independent 1,684 1% Joseph W. Stockman Independent 1,324 1% Edward Forchion Independent 1,257 1% James E. Barber Independent 943 1%
2000 Rob Andrews 167,327 76% Charlene Cathcart 46,455 21% Catherine L. Parrish Independent 3,090 1% Edward Forchion Independent 1,959 1% Joseph A. Patalivo Independent 781 <1%
2002 Rob Andrews 121,846 93% (no candidate) Timothy Haas Libertarian 9,543 7%
2004 Rob Andrews 201,163 75% S. Daniel Hutchison 66,109 25% Arturo F. Croce E Pluribus Unum 931 <1%
2006 Rob Andrews 140,110 100% (no candidate)
2008 Rob Andrews 191,796 72% Dale M. Glading 70,466 26% Matthew Thieke Green 1,778 <1% Margaret Chapman Back to Basics 1,188 <1% Everitt M. Williams, III Think Independently 954 <1% Alvin Lindsay Lindsay for Congress 483 <1%
2010 Rob Andrews 106,334 63% Dale M. Glading 58,562 35% Mark Heacock Green 1,593 <1% Margaret Chapman Time for Change 1,257 <1% Nicky I. Petrutz Defend American Constitution 521 <1%
2012 Rob Andrews 210,470 68% Gregory W. Horton 92,459 30% John William Reitter Green 4,413 1% Margaret Chapman Reform Party 1,177 <1%


  1. ^ a b "Biography". Congressman Robert E. Andrews. Archived from the original on April 28, 2007. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "{title}". Archived from the original on January 11, 2018. Retrieved June 26, 2017. 
  4. ^ a b Ostermeier, Eric (February 4, 2014). "Andrews Exits US House with Top 10 Longest Tenure in New Jersey History". Smart Politics. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ Robert Ernest Andrews, Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved October 7, 2007.
  7. ^ Sipress, Alan (November 7, 1990). "Andrews Holds Off Mangini's Challenge Captures Seat In Congress Held For Years By Florio". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved December 22, 2013. 
  8. ^ Robert E. Andrews - First District of New Jersey Archived April 28, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ ACU Ratings
  10. ^ Ratings on liberal issues collated by Project Vote Smart
  11. ^ National Journal's 2007 Vote Ratings for New Jersey[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ House Roll Call 455 Office of the Clerk
  13. ^ H.J.RES.114 Co-sponsors The Library of Congress
  14. ^ votes database/Key Votes by Robert Andrews Archived October 4, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  15. ^ House Roll Call 108 Office of the Clerk
  16. ^ Roll Call Vote On Passage of the Bill S. 3930 As Amended
  17. ^ Final Vote Results for Roll Call 508
  18. ^ US lawmakers target Iran gasoline imports in new sanctions bill
  19. ^ "The Taxpayer Protection Pledge Signers 112th Congressional List" (PDF). Americans for Tax Reform. Retrieved November 30, 2011. 
  20. ^ "Congressman Rob Andrews at Yale to Talk About Health Care Law". YaleNews. Yale University. March 21, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Statement from the President on the Retirement of Congressman Rob Andrews". Retrieved 2015-10-02. 
  22. ^ "Democrats' push to create military chaplains for atheists falls flat". Retrieved August 12, 2013. 
  23. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on February 2, 2014. Retrieved January 23, 2014. 
  24. ^ Shonkwiler, Mark (May 28, 2014). "Letter from FEC to Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington" (PDF). Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 18, 2014. Retrieved June 15, 2014. 
  25. ^ Walsh, Jim (June 3, 2014). "FEC Rejects Complaint against Andrews". CourierPost. Retrieved December 22, 2014. 
  26. ^ Petriccione, Annette (June 3, 2014). "US Closes Case of Former NJ Congressman Rob Andrews". New Jersey WKXW. The Associated Press. Retrieved December 22, 2014. 
  27. ^ Pulley, Brett. "McGreevey Wins Democratic Nod for Governor", The New York Times, June 4, 1997. Retrieved November 28, 2007.
  28. ^ Chen, David W. (April 3, 2008). "Congressman to Challenge Lautenberg in Democratic Senate Primary". The New York Times. Retrieved December 22, 2013. 
  29. ^ a b "Lautenberg defeats Andrews in N.J. Senate primary". Politico. June 3, 2008. Retrieved December 22, 2013. 
  30. ^ Staff (April 7, 2008). "Camille Andrews will file for Congress". Politicker NJ. Retrieved December 22, 2013. 
  31. ^ Confessore, Nicholas (September 4, 2008). "Congressman Seeks to Replace Wife on Ballot". The New York Times. Retrieved December 22, 2013. 
  32. ^ Press Release: Gov. Corzine, NJ Officials Endorse Clinton
  33. ^ "Andrews: Time for Democrats to unite" Archived December 24, 2013, at the Wayback Machine. May 13, 2008 The Star-Ledger
  34. ^ Profile of Camille Spinello Andrews from Rutgers School of Law - Camden. Retrieved December 23, 2006.
  35. ^ "Election Statistics". Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives. Retrieved December 18, 2011. 
  36. ^,_2012

External links[edit]

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
James Florio
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Jersey's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by
Donald Norcross
Party political offices
Preceded by
George Miller
Chairperson of House Democratic Policy Committee
Succeeded by
George Miller