Congressmember Karen Bass was re-elected to her fourth term representing the 37th Congressional District in November 2016. Congressmember Bass serves on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs where she is Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations. As a member of the House Judiciary Committee, Congressmember Bass is also working to craft sound criminal justice reforms as well as protect intellectual property right infringements that threaten the economic health of the 37th District.
She was selected by Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi to serve on the prestigious Steering and Policy Committee, which sets the policy direction of the Democratic Caucus, as Organization, Study and Review Chair. Congressmember Bass is also playing a leadership role in the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), where she serves as 2nd Vice-Chair for the 115th Congress.
In her fourth term, Congressmember Bass is solidifying leadership positions on two issues very close to her heart: reforming America’s foster care system and strengthening the United States’ relationship with Africa. In her first term, Congressmember Bass created the bipartisan Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth along with co-chair U.S. Representative Tom Marino (R-Pa.) and intends to examine national standards of care in the child welfare system.
In January 2013, President Obama signed into law the Uninterrupted Scholars Act (USA) which was the first major piece of legislation shepherded through the House under the Caucus’ leadership. USA makes it easier for caregivers to access educational records so they can assist foster youth with school enrollment and provide additional academic support in an effort to reduce school dropout rates. Since 2012, she has joined Members of the Caucus for a Nationwide Foster Youth Listening Tour traveling the nation to examine best practices and the challenging conditions that foster youth face in our country. She is also a co-chair of the bipartisan, bicameral Congressional Coalition on Adoption.