Jim McGovern is the US representative for Massachusetts’ 2nd congressional district. He was first elected to Congress in 1996 and was later named chairman of the House Rules Committee during the 116th Congress. He is a senior member of the House Committee on Agriculture’s Subcommittee on Nutrition and Oversight. He also serves as the Chairman of the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, and is the Democratic Co-Chair of the bipartisan Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission – both of which monitor, investigate and advocate on behalf of international human rights, the rule of law, and good governance.
He earned his BA in history and Master’s in public administration at American University. While working under Congressman Joe Moakley, Rep. McGovern helped lead the investigation of the murders of six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper and her daughter in El Salvador. He helped expose that the murders were committed by the US-backed Salvadoran military, leading to a major shift in US foreign policy that made future military aid contingent on improved human rights and a negotiated peace in El Salvador.
Among his accomplishments, Rep. McGovern wrote, introduced, and saw signed into law the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act, which allows the President to punish foreign officials who the US identifies as corrupt or human rights abusers. Congress later applied it world-wide as the Global Magnitsky Act. He has also introduced and championed resolutions to end violence against children globally; prohibit arms sales and security assistance to Saudi Arabia; reduce and eliminate nuclear weapons; and end restrictions on American’s right to travel to Cuba.
Rep. McGovern was an event speaker at the Dialogue.