Congressmember Karen Bass has a long track record of delivering life-changing resources for the residents of Los Angeles. She has spent years fighting for justice and opportunity and will continue to do so as our next Mayor of Los Angeles.
U.S. House of Representatives:
Karen Bass is one of the most effective and impactful legislators in Washington D.C., which is why Speaker Nancy Pelosi has endorsed her to be the next mayor of Los Angeles. Select accomplishments in Congress include:
- Pandemic Relief: As Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, Rep. Bass secured hundreds of millions of dollars in COVID relief and vaccine outreach funds to provide relief for communities hardest hit by the pandemic. She brought together the Black Caucus, Latino Caucus, Asian Pacific American Caucus, and Native American Representatives to ensure that communities of color received culturally relevant and targeted resources.
- Housing & Safety: Rep. Bass secured millions of dollars for projects in the community including housing assistance programs, community safety initiatives, drug and addiction treatment centers, and domestic violence prevention systems. She also helped pass the American Rescue Plan, which included billions of dollars for housing and homelessness, including emergency rental assistance, emergency housing vouchers and mortgage relief.
- Jobs: Rep. Bass has led on providing economic relief to L.A.’s small businesses and workers, and she passed legislation signed by President Biden that will create jobs here in L.A. With billions of dollars on their way to L.A. through the federal infrastructure bill to expand our public transportation and highway systems, Rep. Bass’ local-hire legislation will allow those projects to prioritize hiring Angelenos before turning to folks out-of-state.
- Justice: As Chair of the Crime Subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. Bass helped pass the FIRST Step Act, a bipartisan law that improves criminal justice outcomes and reduces the size of the federal prison population while also enhancing public safety.
- Children and Families: Rep. Bass is a national leader on child welfare. She founded and leads the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth – and has enacted a number of laws to expand healthcare for foster youth, provide cash assistance for foster youth during COVID, expand educational opportunities for young people in foster care, and prevent sex trafficking of foster youth.
- International Trade & Human Rights: Rep. Bass is the Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, and Global Human Rights. She led efforts to expand trade opportunities for U.S. businesses, including passing the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Reauthorization and the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act.
California State Assembly:
As the first Black woman to lead any state legislature nationwide, Karen Bass is certainly a trailblazer. And, most importantly, she delivers results. She successfully led the state through the greatest recession since the Great Depression, saving California’s safety net from being eliminated by budget cuts and leading California — the 5th largest economy in the world — to economic recovery. She made tough choices while bringing Democrats and Republicans together to propel California forward. Select Assembly accomplishments include:
- Preserving the Safety Net: Bass closed a $42 billion budget shortfall and maintained a commitment to preserving the safety net for the people of California. She restored the Governor’s cuts to domestic violence programs and ensured Californians remained eligible for continued federal unemployment benefits, benefiting 469,000 unemployed Californians. She also took savings from the Assembly’s budget and directed them to help speed unemployment claims in the state. Speaker Bass also made sure that Californians laid off by small businesses fully benefited from federally subsidized COBRA health coverage. For this effort, Bass and her bipartisan legislative leaders were awarded the prestigious John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award.
- Access to Healthcare: Bass protected 600,000 children from losing their health care and negotiated the plan with the University of California to reopen Martin Luther King Hospital to serve medically underserved South Los Angeles communities.
- Environment & Water: Speaker Bass negotiated a historic water agreement to increase water supply reliability and quality while improving the fragile Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, the source of drinking water for two-thirds of the state.
- Jobs & Business: Supporting California’s infrastructure and construction workers, Bass authored legislation to help ensure all California local governments in California met federal deadlines so the state didn’t lose out on $2.6 billion in federal road and highway stimulus funding. Bass also co-authored legislation to secure $113 million in federal economic stimulus energy funding to help build California green industries as quickly as possible.
- Children & Families: Bass passed several pieces of legislation to help foster youth, including the historic AB 12, which extended the state’s support for foster youth to 21, preventing instability and homelessness for tens of thousands of young people statewide.
- Racial Justice: As a leader of the Legislative Black Caucus, Bass commissioned the State of Black America Report, which provides qualitative and quantitative data collection measuring the status of the state’s black population relative to whites and other ethnic and racial groups, and has provided the impetus for several bills focused on closing gaps in employment, education and other areas.
Karen Bass founded the nonprofit Community Coalition in 1990 to address addiction, crime, violence and poverty by advocating for policy solutions that built up the community, instead of tearing it apart. She united African Americans and Latinos to organize the community and turn despair and hopelessness into action. Select Community Coalition accomplishments include:
- Led successful campaigns to win $1 billion for new school construction and secure $153 million to repair dilapidated schools in South L.A.
- Transformed dozens of nuisance liquor stores and motels (magnets for crime and drug use) into beneficial community assets, such as laundry mats, grocery stores, and parks.
- Won a campaign to hold the LAPD more accountable by amending the LA City charter and elevating oversight by a citizens commission and the mayor.
- Founded, managed, and grew a successful nonprofit organization that is now heralded as a national model for engaging community members in public policy.