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Charles Albert Ruppersberger III; usually known as Dutch Ruppersberger (born January 31, 1946) is a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives, representing the 2nd Congressional district of Marylandmarker ( map) since 2003. The district includes parts of Baltimore County, Anne Arundel Countymarker, Harford Countymarker and Baltimore Citymarker. Areas in the district include Dundalkmarker, Towsonmarker and Severnmarker.

Early life and political career

Ruppersberger attended Baltimore City Collegemarker and the University of Maryland, College Parkmarker, where he played varsity lacrosse. He earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Baltimore School of Law. He married in 1971 and has two grown children, Corey and Jill.

In 1975, Ruppersberger's political career was spurred after a near-fatal car accident while investigating a drug trafficking case. With luck and the dedication of doctors at the University of Maryland's Shock Trauma center, he survived. After recovering, the young State's Attorney decided to run for public office to help others and to repay Shock Trauma for saving his life. Today, he remains an active supporter of the hospital, serving as Vice Chairman of the hospital's Board of Visitors.

Ruppersberger began his career in public service as a Baltimore County Assistant State's Attorney. Once there, it didn't take long for a promotion to Chief of the State's Attorney Office Investigative Division, pursuing organized crime, political corruption, and drug trafficking. He was elected to the Baltimore County Council in 1985 and was twice chosen as council chairman.

In December 1994 and again in 1998, Ruppersberger was elected Baltimore County Executive.

Congressional career

Barred from a third term as County Executive, Ruppersberger opted to run for Congress in 2002 after 2nd District Congressman Bob Ehrlich made what turned out to be a successful run for governor. The Maryland General Assembly significantly altered the 2nd by shifting portions of Harford County to the 1st and 6th Districts. In their place, the legislature added a heavily Democratic portion of Baltimore City that had previously been in the 1st District. The result was to turn the 2nd from a swing district into a strongly Democratic district. He was elected with 55% of the vote. His Republican opponent was Helen Delich Bentley, who had represented the 2nd district from 1985 to 1995. He was reelected in 2004 and 2006 with no substantive Republican opposition.

In Congress, Ruppersberger was the first Democratic freshman ever to be appointed to the House Select Committee on Intelligence. He was also chosen as an Assistant Whip. In this position Ruppersberger meets regularly with the House leadership to set legislative priorities and to ensure the passage of key measures. He was handily reelected in 2004 and 2006. He founded the "Operation Hero Miles" program, which encourages people to donate unused frequent flyer miles to U.S. armed forces personnel and families.

Ruppersberger aims to create jobs and rebuild the economy in Maryland and across the country. He also aims to improve healthcare and to aide senior citizens by providing quality, affordable and accessible healthcare and prescription drugs. The Congressman considers one of his highest priorities to improve the security of the United Statesmarker and to direct fiscal energies towards "first responders", such as the police and fire departments.

Committee assignments

Party leadership

  • Assistant Whip

Philippine Visit

On August 25, 2007, Silvestre Reyes, chairman of the permanent select committee on intelligence and the armed services committee and 4 other US Congressmen visited American troops deployed in the southern Philippinesmarker to overview the US-Philippines relationship. Reyes headed the bipartisan delegation which included New Jerseymarker Rep. Rodney P. Frelinghuysen , member of appropriations committee and the select intelligence oversight panel; New Mexicomarker Rep. Heather Wilson of the committee on energy and the intelligence committee; New Yorkmarker Rep. Gregory W. Meeks, a Democrat, of the financial services and international relations committees; and Marylandmarker Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger of the appropriations and intelligence committees. They drove to the base of the Joint Special Operation Task Force Philippines (JSOTFP), a US-led body, which trains Filipino soldiers against terror, in Barangay Upper Calarian.

Election history

Year Office Election Subject Party Votes % Opponent Party Votes %
1994 Baltimore County Executive General Charles Albert Ruppersberger, III Democratic N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
1998 Baltimore County Executive General Charles Albert Ruppersberger, III Democratic 166,482 70.47 John J. Bishop Republican 69,449 29.4
2002 General Charles Albert Ruppersberger, III Democratic 105,718 54.16 Helen Delich Bentley Republican 88,954 45.57
2004 General Charles Albert Ruppersberger, III Democratic 164,751 66.62 Jane Brooks Republican 75,812 30.66
2006 General Charles Albert Ruppersberger, III Democratic 135,818 69.21 Jimmy Mathis Republican 60,195 30.68


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