Rep. Nunes
Rep. Nunes

Devin Nunes
Devin Gerald Nunes (/ˈnuːnɛs/; born October 1, 1973) is an American politician serving as the U.S. Representative for California's 22nd congressional

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Devin Nunes Chair of the House Intelligence Committee Incumbent Assumed office
January 3, 2015Preceded by Mike RogersMember of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 22nd district Incumbent Assumed office
January 3, 2003Preceded by Bill Thomas (21st)
Kevin McCarthy (22nd)Succeeded by David Valadao (21st)Constituency 21st district (2003–13)
22nd district (2013–) Personal detailsBorn Devin Gerald Nunes
(1973-10-01) October 1, 1973 (age 45)
Tulare, California, U.S.Political party RepublicanSpouse(s) Elizabeth TamarizChildren 3Education College of the Sequoias
California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo (BS, MS)Signature Website House website

Devin Gerald Nunes (/ˈnuːnɛs/;[1] born October 1, 1973) is an American politician serving as the U.S. Representative for California's 22nd congressional district since 2003. A Republican, he serves as chairman of the United States House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and was a member of President Trump's transition team.[2] Nunes's district, numbered as the 21st from 2003 to 2013 and as the 22nd after redistricting, is in the San Joaquin Valley and includes most of western Tulare County and much of eastern Fresno County.

In March 2017, the U.S. House intelligence committee, which Nunes chairs, launched an investigation into possible Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections. On April 6, 2017, he temporarily stepped aside from leading that investigation while the Office of Congressional Ethics investigated allegations, which Nunes denied, that he had improperly disclosed classified information to the public.[3][4] In December 2017, the United States House Committee on Ethics closed its investigation without taking any action against Nunes.[5]

In February 2018, the Nunes memo, a four-page memorandum written for Nunes by his staff, was released by Nunes to the public. The memo alleged a Federal Bureau of Investigation conspiracy against Donald Trump. In March 2018, the U.S. House intelligence committee finished its investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, concluding that there had not been collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. The committee also concluded that Russia had not sought Trump's election. Nunes subsequently began an investigation of the FBI and the Justice Department for allegedly abusing their powers in an attempt to hurt Trump.[6] Nunes's attacks on the FBI and the investigation by independent counsel Robert Mueller have created concerns among Democrats and some Republicans about Republican efforts to halt the investigation and to protect Trump from any allegations against him.[7]

Contents Early life, education and career

Nunes was born on October 1, 1973, the older of two sons born to Antonio L. "Anthony" Nunes, Jr. and Toni Diane Nunes (née Enas).[8][9] His family operated a farm in Tulare County until 2006, when they sold the property and purchased a dairy in Sibley, Iowa. [10][11][12] Nunes is of three quarters Portuguese descent, with ancestors emigrating from the Azores to California.[13][14] He had one younger brother, Anthony III.[8] After receiving his Associate of Arts degree from the College of the Sequoias, Nunes graduated from Cal Poly with a bachelor's degree in agricultural business and a master's degree in agriculture.[15]

In 2009, Nunes wrote in The Wall Street Journal that he became an entrepreneur at age 14 when he bought seven head of young cattle, learning quickly how to profit from his investment.[16]

In 2001, he was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve as California State Director for the United States Department of Agriculture's Rural Development section.[17]

Election history

In 2002 Nunes ran for the Republican nomination in the 21st congressional district, a new district created through reapportionment after the 2000 United States Census. His principal opponents in the crowded seven-way primary were former Fresno mayor Jim Patterson and state Assemblyman Mike Briggs. Nunes was the only major candidate from Tulare County; Patterson and Briggs were both from Fresno. This was critical, as 58% of the district's population was in Tulare County.[18] Patterson and Briggs split the vote in Fresno County, allowing Nunes to win by a four-point margin over Patterson, his nearest competitor. Nunes won 46.5% of the vote in Tulare County and 28.1% of the vote in Fresno County. Nunes was also helped by a strong showing in the rural part of the district.[19] He won the endorsements of the California Farm Bureau and The Fresno Bee.[18] The district is solidly Republican, and Nunes coasted to victory in November. He has been reelected seven times against only nominal Democratic opposition.[20][21] He ran unopposed in the 2010 general election.

Nunes's district was renumbered the 22nd after the 2010 census. It lost most of eastern Tulare County to the neighboring 23rd District, and now has a small plurality of Hispanic voters. Despite these changes, it is no less Republican than its predecessor. Nunes was reelected with 62% of the vote in 2012, 72% in 2014, and 68% in 2016.[22][23][24]

During the 2014 election cycle, Nunes received approximately $1.4 million in political action committee (PAC) contributions.[25] During the 2016 election cycle, he received approximately $1.6 million in campaign contributions from PACs.[26]

In the November 2018 general election, Nunes will face Democrat Andrew Janz, a Fresno County prosecutor.[27] In the June 2018 top-two primary, Nunes received 57.6% of the vote; Janz received 31.7%.[28]

U.S. Congress Nunes with President George W. Bush in 2003 Committees and caucuses

In 2015, Nunes became the Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.[29]

Nunes is co-chair (along with Jared Polis, Democrat of Colorado) of the U.S.-Mexico Friendship Caucus. In that capacity, he and Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer met with President Felipe Calderón of Mexico in April 2012.[30]

Nunes is a member of the House Baltic Caucus.[31]

112th Congress 114th Congress Political views

Former Trump campaign CEO and chief strategist Steve Bannon has described Nunes as Trump's second-strongest ally in Congress.[6]

Nunes at CPAC in 2018 Energy

On July 28, 2010, Nunes introduced H.R. 5899, "A Roadmap for America's Energy Future", which would have accelerated the exploration and production of fossil fuel, supported the rapid development of market-based alternative energy supplies, and expanded the number of nuclear reactors from 104 to 300 over the next 30 years.[32] Kimberley Strassel of The Wall Street Journal wrote, "It's a bill designed to produce energy, not restrict it" with "no freebies", and "offers a competitive twist to government support of renewable energy."[33]


Nunes wrote in his book that members of the environmental lobby were "followers of neo-Marxist, socialist, Maoist or Communist ideals".[34]

In February 2014, during a drought in California, Nunes rejected any link to global warming, saying "Global warming is nonsense."[35] He has said it was a "man-made drought" due to water restrictions from the Endangered Species Act of 1973 and other environmental regulations that have seen water allocations decline dramatically even in non-drought years.[36]

He criticized the federal government for shutting off portions of California's system of water irrigation and storage and diverting water into a program for freshwater salmon and the delta smelt.[35] Nunes co-sponsored the Sacramento-San Joaquin Valley Emergency Water Delivery Act to stop a project designed to restore a dried-up section of the San Joaquin River. He also co-sponsored the California Emergency Drought Relief Act. The bills passed the House of Representatives in February 2014 and December 2014 respectively, but were not voted on by the Senate.

In an April 2015 National Review article, Nunes responded to criticism that California farmers were making the state's drought worse since they used 80 percent of the state's water, often on water-intensive crops such as almonds. Nunes is a third-generation dairy farmer. He said that 50% of California water is actually used for environmental causes while farmers only use 40%. Nunes added that the problem is worse because California lacks adequate water storage facilities due to environmentalist opposition, but that California is still prepared for five years of drought.[37]

Fiscal policy

On January 27, 2010, Nunes co-sponsored H.R. 4529, Roadmap for America's Future Act of 2010, the Republican Party's budget proposal.[38][39]

On December 2, 2010, Nunes introduced H.R. 6484, the Public Employee Pension Transparency Act, which would "provide for reporting and disclosure by State and local public employee retirement pension plans," but it never received a vote.[40][41]

Nunes has long been a proponent of a consumption tax model and has been influenced by David Bradford.[42] In 2016, he introduced the American Business Competitiveness Act (H.R. 4377), known as the ABC Act, a "cash-flow tax plan" featuring full expensing and a reduction of the highest rate for federal corporate income tax rate to 25%.[42] Nunes's proposal was influential among House Republicans, and had similarities to the House Republican tax plan introduced by Speaker Paul Ryan and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady in June 2016.[42] Conservative economist Douglas Holtz-Eakin said that Nunes had "a tremendous impact on the debate" for a non-chairman.[42]

In April 2016, Nunes voted for the Preventing IRS Abuse and Protecting Free Speech Act, a bill that would prevent the IRS from accessing the names of donors to nonprofit organizations.[43] Critics of the bill, which was promoted by the Koch brothers, say IRS access to donor information is important for ensuring that foreign funds do not impact U.S. elections.[43]

Nunes voted in support of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.[44]


In 2009, Nunes co-authored the "Patients' Choice Act" with Paul Ryan (R-WI) in the House, and Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Richard Burr (R-NC) in the Senate. The bill would have established a system of state health insurance exchanges and amended the Internal Revenue Code to allow a refundable tax credit for qualified health care insurance coverage. It also proposed to absorb Medicaid programs into the exchange system.[45] The Patients' Choice Act was incorporated into the "Roadmap for America's Future Act of 2010".

Nunes opposes the Affordable Care Act and has stated it cannot be fixed.[46] In 2017, he voted to repeal it.[47]

Immigration and refugees

Nunes supported President Trump's 2017 executive order imposing a temporary ban on entry into the United States by citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries, calling it "a common-sense security measure to prevent terror attacks on the homeland".[48]

Intelligence Committee

Nunes opposed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, an international agreement that the U.S. and other major world powers negotiated with Iran, under which Iran was granted partial sanctions relief in exchange for limits and monitoring of its nuclear activities.[49][50]

As House Intelligence Committee chairman, Nunes oversaw the Republican-controlled committee's two-year-long investigation into the U.S. response to the 2012 Benghazi attack. The committee's final report found no evidence of wrongdoing on the part of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton or any other Obama administration officials, and concluded that the response of CIA and U.S. military to the attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound was correct.[51] The committee's report debunked "a series of persistent allegations hinting at dark conspiracies" about the attack, determining that "there was no intelligence failure, no delay in sending a CIA rescue team, no missed opportunity for a military rescue, and no evidence the CIA was covertly shipping arms from Libya to Syria", but found "that the State Department facility where Stevens and Smith were killed was not well-protected, and that State Department security agents knew they could not defend it from a well-armed attack".[51]

Paul Ryan vacated the chairmanship of the Ways and Means Committee when he replaced John Boehner as Speaker of the House of Representatives. Ryan asked Nunes to stay on the Intelligence Committee, and Nunes complied.[52][53]

Marijuana policy

Nunes has a "D" rating from the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) for his voting history on cannabis-related causes.[54]


California State Route 99 is a highway running north–south that branches from Interstate 5 at the community of Wheeler Ridge in Kern County and continues northward through the Central Valley until it connects with Interstate 5 again at Red Bluff in Tehama County. In 2005, Nunes introduced H.R. 99, which designated State Route 99 as a congressional High Priority Corridor. The bill also provided federal authorization for Highway 99 to become part of the Interstate Highway System. On February 17, 2011, Nunes introduced H.R. 761, the "San Joaquin Valley Transportation Enhancement Act", which would give the State of California the option to redirect federal high-speed rail funds to finance improvements to Highway 99.[55] H.R. 761 was cosponsored by Jeff Denham (R-CA) and House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA).[56]

U.S. base in Portugal

In 2015, Nunes clashed with the Pentagon over a U.S. base in the Azores, Portugal.[57] He proposed relocating Africa Command and European Command intelligence centers to the Azores, contrary to plans by Pentagon and NATO to create a larger intelligence "fusion" facility in the United Kingdom, maintaining that this would save money because of the Azores' lower living and construction costs.[58] The Pentagon responded by stating "Moving to Lajes Field is very expensive and living is expensive as well."[59]

Comments about other politicians

During the debate over President Obama's health care bill in the House of Representatives, Nunes said of then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi, "For most of the 20th century people fled the ghost of communist dictators and now you are bringing the ghosts back into this chamber."[60] He has also had a long-running dispute with another San Francisco Bay-area Democrat, Senator Dianne Feinstein, over California water policy and other issues,[61] even running a series of advertisements against her in California.[62]

Nunes's criticisms have not been limited to liberals or the Obama administration. During the October 2013 budget standoff, Nunes called certain members of his own Republican Conference who favored a government shutdown "lemmings with suicide vests". "It's kind of an insult to lemmings to call them lemmings" because of their tactics, he said.[63][64][65]

In May 2014, Nunes came under fire when he charged that Michigan Congressman and fellow Republican Justin Amash was "al-Qaeda's best friend in Congress" because of Amash's supposed voting record on National Security Agency (NSA) surveillance. At the time, Amash had voted in opposition to a Nunes water bill for California "on constitutional grounds".[66]

Role in Trump–Russia investigation Main article: Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections Further information: Nunes memo

In February 2017, Nunes, who served on the Trump transition team, was the first leading House Republican to deny that the intelligence community had evidence of contact between the Trump campaign and Russian operatives.[67] He rejected repeated calls for an investigation by a select committee,[68][69] saying that the House should not engage in a "witch hunt" and that "at this point, there's nothing there".[69] Nunes also rejected calls that he request President Trump's tax returns.[67] At the request of a White House communications aide, Nunes spoke to a reporter for The Wall Street Journal to challenge a story about the Trump campaign's connections to Russia.[70]

When Trump's national security adviser Michael T. Flynn resigned after it was revealed that he had misled the Trump administration about his communication with Russian officials, Nunes said he would not seek to investigate Flynn's ties to Russia.[71] Nunes said, "From everything that I can see, his conversations with the Russian ambassador — he was doing this country a favor, and he should be thanked for it."[71]

On March 22, 2017, during the House Intelligence Committee's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections, Nunes held a press conference to announce that he had received information that communications of members of Trump's transition team had been "incidentally collected" by the intelligence community. The communications had been obtained legally during foreign intelligence surveillance, but were not related to Russia. He added that the information was "widely disseminated" in the intelligence community and later clarified that Trump associates were not necessarily participants in the intercepted conversations. Nunes had met his source for the information one day earlier at the White House grounds, with a spokesman for Nunes saying this provided "a secure location" to view the material.[72] Although Nunes had characterized his intelligence sources as whistleblowers whose identities he had to protect, The New York Times reported that they were actually White House officials Ezra Cohen-Watnick and Michael Ellis,[73] while The Washington Post reported that apart from Cohen-Watnick and Ellis, a third man, National Security Council lawyer John Eisenberg, was also involved.[74]

Nunes was widely criticized for sharing this information with the media and the president before briefing his colleagues on the committee.[75] According to Nunes, the intercepted communications came in November, December and January — after Trump won the election but before he was sworn in as president.[76] Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the committee, and House Democratic leadership called on Nunes to recuse himself from the investigation.[4] He also received criticism from Republican Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham.[77] The latter compared Nunes's actions to those of the comically incompetent fictional character Inspector Clouseau.[78] Nunes was criticized by Democrats and some Republicans for sharing information on an investigation of the Trump campaign with the administration without communicating it to Schiff, his Democratic Intelligence Committee counterpart.[79]

In late March 2017, Nunes canceled a public hearing in which former acting Attorney General Sally Yates, former National Security Agency Director James Clapper and former CIA Director John Brennan were to testify,[80] saying that he wanted to hear FBI Director James Comey and National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers in a classified setting first. Democrats criticized Nunes's decision and said that he was trying to protect the White House from damaging revelations.[81][82]

On April 6, 2017, Nunes temporarily stepped aside from leading the Russia investigation while the Office of Congressional Ethics investigated whether he had "made unauthorized disclosures of classified information, in violation of House Rules, law, regulations, or other standards of conduct" [83] in his March press conference.[3] He called the charges "entirely false and politically motivated".[4] On April 12, 2017, sources from both the Republican and Democratic parties said that the original documents Nunes cited did not support Trump's claims that the Obama administration acted illegally or unusually.[84]

In May 2017, Nunes unilaterally issued three subpoenas seeking documents about former Obama administration officials who requested the unmasking of Trump aides, which led to renewed accusations of colluding with the White House to undercut the Russia probe.[85]

According to Politico, in July 2017, an aide to Nunes secretly sent a pair of Republican staffers to London to contact Christopher Steele.[86][87] The Los Angeles Times editorial board wrote that Nunes' involvement in the investigation was "threatening the credibility of the probe".[88]

In December 2017, the United States House Committee on Ethics closed its investigation into improper disclosure of classified information by Nunes; the co-chairs of the Committee stated: "The Committee does not determine whether information is or is not classified. In the course of this investigation, the Committee sought the analysis of Representative Nunes’s statements by classification experts in the intelligence community. Based solely on the conclusion of these classification experts that the information that Representative Nunes disclosed was not classified, the Committee will take no further action and considers this matter closed."[5] In January 2018, The Atlantic cited three congressional sources describing that the Ethics Committee was never able to obtain the classified information that it was investigating regarding Nunes's case.[89] Nonetheless, deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe resigned due in part to the Nunes memo, for which Donald Trump said he felt "vindicated".[90][91][92]

In August 2018, Nunes traveled to London in an attempt to meet with the heads of MI5, MI6, and GCHQ for information about Steele, but was rebuffed by the three agencies.[93][94]

Personal life

The Nunes family is of Portuguese descent, immigrating from the Azores to California in the early 20th century.[13] Nunes wrote a foreword to the 1951 novel Home Is An Island by Portuguese-American author Alfred Lewis for the 2012 edition by Tagus Press, an imprint of the Center for Portuguese Culture and Studies at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth.[95]

Nunes married Elizabeth Nunes (née Tamariz), an elementary school teacher, in 2003.[8] They have three daughters.[8][9]

Nunes has been a Boston Celtics fan since he was a teenager.[96]


Nunes has been awarded the following foreign honors:

See also References
  1. ^ "New Day - Devin Nunes" on YouTube
  2. ^ "Essential Politics November archives". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 26, cite.citation{font-style:inherit}.mw-parser-output q{quotes:"\"""\"""'""'"}.mw-parser-output code.cs1-code{color:inherit;background:inherit;border:inherit;padding:inherit}.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-free a{background:url("//")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-limited a,.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-registration a{background:url("//")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .cs1-lock-subscription a{background:url("//")no-repeat;background-position:right .1em center}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration{color:#555}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription span,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration span{border-bottom:1px dotted;cursor:help}.mw-parser-output .cs1-hidden-error{display:none;font-size:100%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-visible-error{font-size:100%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-subscription,.mw-parser-output .cs1-registration,.mw-parser-output .cs1-format{font-size:95%}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-left,.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-wl-left{padding-left:0.2em}.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-right,.mw-parser-output .cs1-kern-wl-right{padding-right:0.2em}
  3. ^ a b c Cloud, David S. (April 6, 2017). "Devin Nunes says he's temporarily stepping aside from Russia probe". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 6, 2017.
  4. ^ a b c Rebecca Shabad (April 6, 2017). "Devin Nunes recuses himself from Russia probe". CBS News. Retrieved April 25, 2017. The House Committee on Ethics confirmed in a statement Thursday morning that it is "investigating and gathering more information" on "public allegations that Representative Devin Nunes may have made unauthorized disclosures of classified information."
  5. ^ a b Kelly, Erin. "House Ethics Committee closes probe of Intel Chairman Devin Nunes". USA Today. Retrieved February 5, 2018.
  6. ^ a b Zengerle, Jason (April 24, 2018). "How Devin Nunes Turned the House Intelligence Committee Inside Out". New York Times Magazine. Retrieved April 24, 2018.
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  40. ^ H.R. 6484 - To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide for reporting and disclosure by State and local public employee retirement pension plans. December 2, 2010, as introduced. Archived December 26, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
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  78. ^ Jared McNett (April 21, 2017). "Former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates to Testify in Congress About Russia". Paste magazine. Archived from the original on April 26, 2017. Retrieved April 25, 2017. One particular Clouseau-esque misstep Rep. Nunes made was to cancel a hearing that was to include testimony from former acting Attorney General Sally Yates, who was fired in January for refusing to back the Trump White House’s first travel ban.
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External links U.S. House of Representatives Preceded by
Bill Thomas Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 21st congressional district

2003–2013 Succeeded by
David Valadao Preceded by
Kevin McCarthy Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 22nd congressional district

2013–present Incumbent Preceded by
Mike Rogers Chair of the House Intelligence Committee
2015–present Current U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial) Preceded by
Steve King United States Representatives by seniority
104th Succeeded by
Mike Rogers California's current delegation to the United States CongressSenators
Dianne Feinstein (D)
Kamala Harris (D)
(ordered by district)
Doug LaMalfa (R)
Jared Huffman (D)
John Garamendi (D)
Tom McClintock (R)
Mike Thompson (D)
Doris Matsui (D)
Ami Bera (D)
Paul Cook (R)
Jerry McNerney (D)
Jeff Denham (R)
Mark DeSaulnier (D)
Nancy Pelosi (D)
Barbara Lee (D)
Jackie Speier (D)
Eric Swalwell (D)
Jim Costa (D)
Ro Khanna (D)
Anna Eshoo (D)
Zoe Lofgren (D)
Jimmy Panetta (D)
David Valadao (R)
Devin Nunes (R)
Kevin McCarthy (R)
Salud Carbajal (D)
Steve Knight (R)
Julia Brownley (D)
Judy Chu (D)
Adam Schiff (D)
Tony Cárdenas (D)
Brad Sherman (D)
Pete Aguilar (D)
Grace Napolitano (D)
Ted Lieu (D)
Jimmy Gomez (D)
Norma Torres (D)
Raul Ruiz (D)
Karen Bass (D)
Linda Sánchez (D)
Ed Royce (R)
Lucille Roybal-Allard (D)
Mark Takano (D)
Ken Calvert (R)
Maxine Waters (D)
Nanette Barragán (D)
Mimi Walters (R)
Lou Correa (D)
Alan Lowenthal (D)
Dana Rohrabacher (R)
Darrell Issa (R)
Duncan D. Hunter (R)
Juan Vargas (D)
Scott Peters (D)
Susan Davis (D)
Other states' delegations Non-voting delegations Chairs and Ranking Members of United States House committeesChairs (Republican)Ranking Members (Democratic) Chairmen of the United States House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence i - Select Committee chairs Current members of the United States House of RepresentativesPresiding Officer: Speaker Paul Ryan (R)Majority partyCurrent Republican Party conferenceMajority Leader: Kevin McCarthy, Majority Whip: Steve Scalise Minority partyCurrent Democratic Party caucusMinority Leader: Nancy Pelosi, Minority Whip: Steny Hoyer, Assistant Minority Leader: Jim Clyburn Authority control

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Rep. Nunes

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