Freedom Force (United States Congress)

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The eight members of the Freedom Force:
  • Maria Elvira Salazar, FL-27
  • Carlos Giménez, FL-26
  • Byron Donalds, FL-19
  • Nicole Malliotakis, NY-11
  • Michelle Steel, CA-48
  • Victoria Spartz, IN-5
  • Burgess Owens, UT-4
  • Stephanie Bice, OK-5

The Freedom Force is an informal coalition of several Republican members of the U.S. House Of Representatives established in 2021. It was first coined by Maria Elvira Salazar of Florida and comprises Salazar, Carlos A. Giménez, and Byron Donalds of Florida, Nicole Malliotakis of New York, Michelle Steel of California, Victoria Spartz of Indiana, Burgess Owens of Utah, and Stephanie Bice of Oklahoma.[1][2][3]

It has been described as a conservative alternative to the progressive group, The Squad, which was established by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), and Ayanna Pressley (D-MA).

Both the Freedom Force and The Squad began as groupings of then freshman class members. While all members of the Squad are under 50 years of age, members of the Freedom Force range from 40 to 69 years of age. In addition, while all members of the Squad represent safe, solidly Democratic congressional districts that have a Cook Partisan Voting Index (PVI) score above D+20, members of the Freedom Force represent competitive districts, with each individual’s 2020 race being decided by a few percentage points. Byron Donalds is the lone exception, who won his election with over 60% of the vote.

At the moment, the Freedom Force is majority-female by a 5 to 3 margin. It is also majority-minority, with three Hispanic-Americans (Salazar, Gimenez, and Malliotakis), two African-Americans (Donalds and Owens), one Korean-American (Steel), one Ukrainian immigrant (Spartz), and the first Iranian member of Congress (Bice). Members of the Freedom Force denounce socialism and support small businesses.[1] They also oppose the Green New Deal and oppose court-packing.[4][5]

Members[edit]

Member Born Party District CPVI Prior experience Education Assumed office
Maria Elvira Salazar.jpg
Maria Elvira Salazar
November 1, 1961
(age 60)
Miami, Florida
Republican Florida 27 D+5 Journalist, broadcast television anchor Miami Dade College
University of Miami (BA)
Harvard University (MPA)
2021
Rep. Carlos Gimenez official photo, 117th Congress.jpg
Carlos A. Giménez
January 17, 1954
(age 68)
Havana, Cuba
Florida 26 D+6 Mayor,
Miami-Dade County
(2011–2020)
Barry University (BPA)
Rep. Byron Donalds official photo, 117th Congress.jpg
Byron Donalds
October 28, 1978
(age 43)
Brooklyn, New York
Florida 19 R+13 Member,
Florida House of Representatives
(2016–2020)
Florida State University (BS)
Nicole Malliotakis 117th U.S Congress (cropped).jpg
Nicole Malliotakis
November 11, 1980
(age 41)
New York City, New York
New York 11 R+3 Member,
New York State Assembly
(2011–2020)
Seton Hall University (BA)
Wagner College (MBA)
MichelleSteel.jpg
Michelle Steel
June 21, 1955
(age 67)
Seoul, South Korea
California 48 R+4 Member,
Orange County Board of Supervisors
(2015–2021)
Pepperdine University (BA)
University of Southern California (MBA)
Victoria Spartz 117th U.S Congress.jpg
Victoria Spartz
October 6, 1978
(age 43)
Nosivka, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic
Indiana 5 R+9 Member,
Indiana Senate
(2017–2020)
Kyiv National Economic University (BS, MBA)
Indiana University, Indianapolis (MAcc)
Burgess Owens 117th U.S Congress.jpg
Burgess Owens
August 2, 1951
(age 71)
Columbus, Ohio
Utah 4 R+13 Non-profit executive, National Football League player University of Miami (BS)
Stephanie Bice 117th U.S Congress.jpg
Stephanie Bice
November 11, 1973
(age 48)
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Oklahoma 5 R+10 Member,
Oklahoma Senate
(2014–2020)
Oklahoma State University, Stillwater (BS)

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Noor, Poppy (2020-11-30). "The 'Freedom Force': Republican group takes on the Squad and 'evil' socialism". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  2. Parrott, Jeff (2020-12-29). "GOP's 'Freedom Force' members say they are ready to take on the 'socialist Squad'". Deseret News. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  3. "GOP group mocked for banding 'Freedom Force' to rival progressive 'Squad'". The Independent. 2020-12-01. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  4. "Daily Kickoff: Maria Elvira Salazar brings her 'Freedom Force' to D.C. + Supreme Court considers two Holocaust restitution cases". Jewish Insider. 2020-12-08. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  5. Zanona, Melanie; Mutnick, Ally; Ferris, Sarah (December 28, 2020). "Meet the GOP freshmen taking on the 'Squad'". Politico. Retrieved 2021-01-04. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)


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