John Garamendi Sworn into Congress, Vows to Address "the Issues that Confront our Fellow Citizens and the World Beyond"
Washington, DC – John Garamendi, a former California Lieutenant Governor, State Insurance Commissioner, state legislator, and Deputy Interior Secretary, was sworn into Congress by Speaker Nancy Pelosi today.
"Madame Speaker, if I might just tell you what a great privilege it is for me to be here. I look forward to working with all of you. We have many issues I look forward to addressing,” Garamendi said.
Garamendi added, "I want to thank the voters in my district and all my constituents for their support, giving me this opportunity to extend what has been the most important thing I think any of us can do, which is to spend our life in public policy addressing the issues that confront our fellow citizens and the world beyond.”
"He and his wife Patti began their years in public service as Peace Corps volunteers in Ethiopia, and since then, John has spent 37 years serving the people of California,” added Rep. Pete Stark, the Dean of the California congressional delegation. "As we prepare to enact health care reform, John will lend an effective voice to that effort. As California's insurance commissioner, he learned the problems families face when trying to buy health coverage. He's an expert in insurance regulation. His perspective will be of great value.”
Earlier today, Garamendi resigned as California's Lieutenant Governor. Text of Garamendi's resignation letter is below.
Congressman Garamendi brings more than three decades of public service to the House of Representatives. As a state legislator, Garamendi authored more than 20 health care bills signed into law, including the Rural Health Act, which continues to bring clinic access to millions of previously unserved and underserved communities throughout California. As State Insurance Commissioner, Garamendi authored a universal health care bill that would have provided affordable coverage to almost every Californian. Bill Clinton adopted many of Insurance Commissioner Garamendi's health care principles in his 1992 presidential campaign.
On November 3rd, voters in Northern California's 10th Congressional District, which includes portions of Contra Costa, Solano, Alameda, and Sacramento counties, elected Garamendi as their representative. The seat was made vacant when former Rep. Ellen Tauscher was appointed to be President Obama's Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security.
Garamendi's resignation letter:
"Dear Governor Schwarzenegger:
On Tuesday, November 3, 2009, I was elected to fill the vacant seat representing California's 10th Congressional District.
Today, at 12:00pm EST, I will be sworn in as a member of the United States Congress. Therefore, effective at the time of my swearing in as a member of Congress, I resign my position as Lieutenant Governor of the State of California.
It has been an honor to serve the people of California as Lieutenant Governor, and I look forward to continuing to serve our great state in Washington, DC.