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Jake was born and raised in the Massachusetts Fourth Congressional District he now represents, the son of a surgeon and a scientist. They taught him the values of curiosity and integrity. He and his older brother and sister grew up in the Jewish faith tradition and attended the Newton Public Schools. His 2nd-grade teacher saw he loved to read and gave him books on United States history. He was hooked.
After graduating from Harvard College, Jake joined the Marines. He commanded infantry in Afghanistan and special operations in Panama. He’s now a major in the reserves.
In Afghanistan in 2012, Jake led patrols through villages contested by the Taliban. He saw firsthand the mistakes of the Forever Wars, and in Congress, he’s working to prevent them in the future. In 2021, he voted against increased Pentagon spending, the only Democratic Veteran in the House to do so. And during the troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, Jake became one of President Biden’s biggest defenders. One White House Aide noted, “‘as a Marine veteran who served in Afghanistan, Rep. Auchincloss brings a unique and badly needed perspective on the president’s decision to finally end the war in Afghanistan and bring Americans home. He was willing to speak from his own personal experience and stand strong on his principles when it came to Afghanistan, even as Beltway press might have been in a different place.”
While stationed in the Panama Canal Zone, Jake wrote for Harvard about urban planning in Panama City. When he returned home to Newton, Jake wanted to continue working at the local level. He won election to the Newton City Council in 2015, was re-elected in 2017, and topped the ticket in 2019. He resigned in 2020 after his election to Congress.
Jake’s favorite part of being a city councilor was constituent services and communication. He chaired the transportation and public safety committee and was a member of the land use committee, where he consistently supported pro-housing policies to address spiraling costs.
Jake also worked on housing and transportation at Liberty Mutual’s innovation lab. His favorite project? Kickstarting development of insurance for cyclists and e-scooters. Before Liberty Mutual, Jake worked in cybersecurity and led the startup competition at MIT, where he has an MBA in Finance.
Now in Congress, Jake is working to put the pandemic behind us and a strong economy in front of us. He has been hailed as a “media-savvy millennial politician” who can “make friends and influence enemies in Washington.” He’s been delivering results from day one as a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and as Vice Chairman of the Financial Services Committee. Jake was one of the first Freshmen to have a bill successfully pass the House and his work has been recognized by Democratic Policy and Communications Committee and Majority Leader Steny Hoyer. In addition to endorsements and praise from state and local leaders across the Fourth District, Jake has been endorsed by the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, BradyPac, and the Progressive Turnout Project.
Jake lives in Newtonville with his wife, Michelle; their son, Teddy; their daughter, Grace; and their Labrador Retriever, Donut. In his free time, he still loves to read American history.
Addressing the Pandemic’s Impacts on our Children
I’m the father of two pandemic babies. I met both Teddy and Grace for the first time in surge-strained hospitals. One of Teddy’s first words was “mask.” My wife and I once assumed that neither of them would even remember COVID. Now we worry that it will cloud their childhood. I see our anxiety mirrored in my constituents, of all ages.
Like so many parents, this is not the path I want for my kids. Step one is the schools. Re-opening schools was my day-one priority when I took office in January 2021, and Congress sent more than $130 billion to school districts last winter to help them reopen. No school should be operating without high-quality ventilation and filtration systems. And, every school district should have clear, forward-looking infectious-disease policies that disavow closures and implement restrictions only as a last resort, with input from child psychologists and parents in addition to public health officials. If states and cities need more flexibility from American Rescue Plan funds to pandemic-proof their schools, then Congress must give it to them.
We must also expand youth services. Congress is working to guarantee affordable access to child care and early education for every family. Mental health should be part of that deal, too. But capping costs leads to shortages if we don’t simultaneously expand supply. There are too few pediatricians, inpatient providers, child psychologists, adjustment counselors, social workers, early educators, and childcare specialists. Boosting supply may require the government at all levels to cut red tape for occupational licensing, subsidize workforce education, increase funding for afterschool and other wraparound programming, and change rules for insurance rates. If states need more flexibility from American Rescue Plan funds to achieve this, then Congress must give it to them. Congress must also pass two bipartisan bills, both of which I have cosponsored, to (1) better fund children’s mental health, and (2) incorporate collaborative care models, which integrate mental health services with primary care.
I’ve only been a congressman for one year and a parent for two, but I am committed for the long haul to improving children’s socioemotional wellbeing. It’s a special responsibility I have as the youngest parent in the House Democratic caucus. COVID is a fork in the road: let’s take the harder, better path for our kids.
Lowering Costs for Working Families
In Congress I am using every tool at my disposal to drive down costs for families. Rising costs, from housing to heating to child care, are a real problem. Pandemic and overseas war have primarily driven this inflation by disrupting supply chains and employment, but now Congress must help fix it. While Republicans were trying to use inflation for political points, I offered real solutions to get our economy back on track .
I am also fighting to lower or eliminate out-of-pocket costs in health care, so that patients never struggle to afford the medicines they need.
We must work across the government, business, and education sectors to boost employment and increase research and development. That is why I was proud to play a role in securing key wins in the House version of the COMPETES Act , a generational investment in our workforce, supply chains, and America’s leadership in science and technology.
Building Infrastructure for Strong Towns, Safe Water, and Clean Energy
As a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee I am working to ensure that Massachusetts residents benefit from better infrastructure, which supports stronger towns and healthier families. In my first term I helped pass an historic, bipartisan infrastructure bill. Now, I’m working with state and local leaders as America invests more than $1T in roads and bridges, transit, high-speed internet, the electric grid, and clean water.
Tackling the Climate Crisis
Climate change is a clear and present threat to our planet and our children’s way of life. Even before coming to Congress, I was leading on this issue in the private sector and in local government. On the city council, I voted with Green Newton priorities 100% of the time. At a Fortune 100, I helped build products for sustainable mobility. Leading environmental advocates endorsed me for Congress because they knew I’d hit the ground running – and I have. As an original co-sponsor of the Green New Deal and leading advocate for Offshore Wind, I have called for a carbon tax to curb the pollution that causes climate change; fought for investments in green infrastructure and clean-energy research and development; and have become a champion for sustainable, on-demand transit.
Protecting our Democracy
We must protect access to the ballot and the independence of state election officials. Our campaign is committed to fighting to protect our democracy. My work has won me the endorsement of the Progressive Turnout Project who cited my “history of championing pro-democracy legislation and a shared commitment to a reality that everyone has the right to vote in a country where voting is made simple and accessible to all.”