Meet Lloyd Doggett
U.S. Congressman Lloyd Doggett serves on the House Ways & Means Committee, which has jurisdiction over all tax and trade measures, as well as Social Security and Medicare. He is ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Human Resources, which has jurisdiction over issues that relate to child care, child and family services, child support, foster care, adoption, and unemployment compensation. Doggett was reappointed in 2014 to serve on the Budget Committee.
For his work on this subcommittee and leadership on issues important to children, Rep. Doggett was named a 2012 “Champion of Children” by the First Focus Campaign, a national, bipartisan child advocacy group, and in 2013, was recognized for his efforts by the National Children’s Alliance. He was also named the Public Official of the Year by the National Association of Social Workers recognizing his work to advance the cause of social justice for working Texas families through his commitment to health care, public and higher education, civil and human rights, and social practice.
This year, Congress approved Rep. Doggett’s Protect Our Kids Act to reduce child abuse and neglect. The bipartisan bill establishes a national commission, appointed by the President and Congress, to develop recommendations to reduce the number of children who die from abuse and neglect. In a Ways & Means Human Resources Subcommittee hearing last year on the issue of child deaths stemming from neglect and abuse, Rep. Doggett concluded that “We are aware that there are so many, many children across the country who lose their lives or are permanently scarred by abuse from a caretaker. We know that there are many reasons why this happens—our goal must be to improve our understanding of these causes and what we can do to prevent this kind of maltreatment of children.”
As a senior member of the House Ways & Means Committee, Rep. Doggett has been a vocal advocate for tax code reform and has sought to close tax loopholes that favor large corporate interests to the detriment of small businesses and individual taxpayers. He was featured in a CBS News 60 Minutes segment by Lesley Stahl and on MSNBC’s Morning Joe regarding his longstanding efforts to address multinational corporate tax abuse. He has also been a leading advocate of budget scrutiny of “tax expenditures” made available through preferential treatment in the tax code.
Rep. Doggett has long opposed efforts to privatize Social Security, promoted affordable prescription drug coverage for seniors, and worked to boost federal support for education maintaining that America’s competitiveness begins with an opportunity for students to achieve all of the education for which they are willing to work. Rep. Doggett introduced a permanent extension of the American Opportunity Tax Credit that he successfully authored, which provides an annual $2,500 tax credit for students seeking more education after high school. This permanent extension of Rep. Doggett’s vital tax cut would make the credit work more efficiently for students who receive Pell grants and simplify the tax code. President Obama has repeatedly called on Congress to make this tax cut permanent. “Higher education success should depend on how hard you work, not how much you can afford to spend,” said Rep. Doggett. “This ‘More Education’ tax cut that I authored ensures more young Americans can achieve their full potential. Making this tax cut for tuition and textbooks permanent and easier to claim for families is critical to our future competitiveness.”
Congressman Doggett has also been a long-time, vocal advocate of enacting real, meaningful, comprehensive immigration reform to unite families, including the DREAM Act.
Last year, he received the American Bar Association’s Justice Award for his work on legislation that assists with funding for legal services to the disadvantaged.
Rep. Doggett has also worked to ensure our local vets have better access to the healthcare facilities and the educational benefits they earned.
This year, Congressman Doggett was awarded the Interfaith Action of Central Texas Hope Award for his long history of advocacy for policies promoting social justice and education. He has also been honored with the national AARP 2008 Legislative Achievement Award for his leadership on Medicare. For his work ensuring families have access to health care, he received awards from the National Association of Community Health Centers and the Texas Association of Community Health Centers. For his work protecting the environment, Rep. Doggett was honored in 2006 by the Texas League of Conservation Voters with its inaugural Environmental Champion Award.
Austin Chronicle readers again named Lloyd Doggett as the "Best Elected Official for 2012," saying that during his career in Congress he has always risen "to defend the values of Austin, Travis County, and his entire district, no matter how hard the Republicans have tried to take him out of the game." Austin Chronicle readers also named him as the Best Elected Official for 2011 calling him "a constant presence at community events." 2012 was the seventh time that he has been so honored in a publication that noted in 2008 that he serves “with distinction, courage, and forthrightness."
His strong defense of consumer rights earned Rep. Doggett a "Public Interest Champion" award in 2003 from the Public Interest Research Group. For his efforts on behalf of small business and economic development in Central Texas, the Texas Association of Mexican-American Chambers of Commerce honored him as the 2006 Business Advocate of the Year in government. For his support of the San Antonio VIA Metropolitan Transit system, he was given an “Excellence Award.” This commitment to public service is a tradition for Congressman Doggett. At the University of Texas in Austin, he was elected Student Body President in 1967 and graduated first in his class from the College of Business Administration. Later, he graduated from the UT School of Law with honors, while serving as an associate editor of the Texas Law Review. Elected to the Texas Senate, he became known for his untiring work ethic. He authored 124 state laws, including the creation of the Texas Commission on Human Rights to prohibit discrimination and the Texas Sunset Act, which continues to seek greater efficiency and accountability by requiring periodic review of government agencies.
Elected in 1988 to serve as Justice to the Texas Supreme Court, he wrote opinions supporting the right to a trial by jury and authored an important rule bolstering the public's access to information. Lloyd Doggett served as Chair of the Supreme Court Task Force on Judicial Ethics and was recognized as an "Outstanding Judge in Texas" by the Mexican-American Bar of Texas, awarded the James Madison Award from the Freedom of Information Foundation of Texas, and received the First Amendment Award from the National Society of Professional Journalists.
Rep. Doggett’s wife, Libby, is Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Early Learning at the U.S. Department of Education. Previously, she was director of the Pew Home Visiting Campaign at the Pew Center on the States working to promote smart state policies and investments in quality, home-based programs for new and expectant families. They have two daughters: Lisa, an Austin physician, directs a clinic that focuses on treating the uninsured; and, Cathy, a former schoolteacher, now trains teachers how to be more effective in the classroom. The Doggett’s have three granddaughters; Ella, Clara, and Zayla.