Edward Randall "Ed" Royce (born October 12, 1951) is an American politician. He has been a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives since 1993, representing the 40th District of California (map) in northern Orange County, including portions of Stanton, Cypress, Buena Park, Fullerton, Anaheim, Placentia, and Orange. Previously, he had served as representative from the 39th District of California.
Born in Los Angeles, California, and graduating from Katella High School in Anaheim, Royce went on to earn his B.A. in Accounting and Finance in 1977 from the California State University, Fullerton. He was a business owner and corporate tax manager for a Portland cement company before becoming a California State Senator in 1983, serving in that post until his election to the U.S. House of Representatives. Royce is married to the former Marie Porter.
In the House, Royce is a member of the Financial Services Committee and the Foreign Affairs Committee, where he previously served as chairman of its Subcommittee on International Terrorism and Nonproliferation.
When Ed Royce came to Congress, he felt a federal interstate stalking law was needed because victims were losing the protection of state laws when they crossed state lines. Stalkers were crossing state lines to pursue victims who had moved to escape harm. Royce introduced the Interstate Stalking Punishment and Prevention Act which was signed into law. The law makes t a federal felony to stalk someone across state lines or on federal property and it also makes a restraining order issued in one state enforceable in other states.
Royce also has been supportive of victims' rights legislation. When the California State Legislature refused to pass his legislation allowing crime victims to object to trial delays, giving grand juries more power and ending shopping for juries he made it a ballot initiative and it passed by wide margins. He helped lead the effort, establishing rights for crime victims in California's state constitution as author and campaign co-chair of Proposition 115, the Crime Victims/Speedy Trial initiative. This law gives victims the right to a speedy trial, reduces the number of times crime victims must testify, increases sentences and punishments, and requires reciprocal discovery of evidence.
At the federal level, he has advocated for victims' rights. Royce testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in support of a constitutional amendment to protect crime victims. He also strongly supported the victims' rights legislation that was signed into law in the 108th Congress (P.L. 108-405) which enumerated rights originally contained in Royce's Victims' Rights Amendment. The law gives crime victims the right to be reasonably protected from the accused; to reasonable, accurate and timely notice of any court proceeding or parole proceeding of the accused; to be heard at any public court proceeding; to full and timely restitution' to proceedings without undue delay; and to be treated with fairness and with respect to victims' dignity and privacy.
He was co-chair of the House "porkbusters" coalition "risking others' wrath by opposing appropriations bills without dubious projects. As part of the porkbusters, he supported a deficit lockbox amendment, and he got a rules change requiring unauthorized spending to be listed separately in appropriations bills.
He is also a crusader against what he considers corporate welfare. Royce opposes funding for the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), which uses taxpayer dollars to fund corporations overseas. Royce feels that these overseas investments expose taxpayers to a serious potential liability, just like the S&L crisis did.
He has received 14 "Taxpayer Friend Awards" from the National Taxpayers' Union. For 2007, he received a vote rating of 93 percent.
In foreign policy, Royce's record has earned the most pro-military rating from SANE.
GovTrack rates Royce as a "rank-and-file Republican," i.e., a moderate within his party, based an analysis of the bills he has sponsored. The legislation he has sponsored shows a focus on tax policy, small businesses, and credit and banking, and many of his biggest campaign contributors have been banks: his five top contributors in 2006 were Credit Union National Assn, Irvine Co., Wells Fargo, Orange County Teachers Fed Credit Union, and GUS plc. 58 percent of his campaign contributions from individuals, 34 percent from PACs. Of the PAC contributions, 96 percent were from business groups, none from labor, and 4 percent from single-issue groups. The Sunlight Foundation gave Royce's web site a 24 percent rating for transparency, with 40 percent being considered a passing score. Royce's website highlights support from conservative and business organizations such as the National Taxpayers Union, Citizens Against Government Waste, National Federation of Independent Businesses, Watchdogs of the Treasury, Americans for Tax Reform, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, United Seniors Association, 60 Plus, American Share Holders Association, Citizens for a Sound Economy and the Small Business Survival Committee.
Royce is a social conservative, having voted against same-sex marriage and gay adoption, and in favor of school prayer and school vouchers. He has a 92 percent rating from the Christian Coalition in terms of his voting record on families and children. He is pro-life, his votes resulting in NARAL's most consistent possible score. He has voted in favor of a constitutional amendment forbidding flag burning, and in favor of making the USA PATRIOT Act permanent. He has an A rating from the NRA.
Royce is a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, serving as a Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade in the 110th Congress. In previous Congresses, Royce served as chairman of the International Relations Subcommittee on International Terrorism and Nonproliferation, and Subcommittee on Africa.
During his tenure as Chairman of the Subcommittee on International Terrorism and Nonproliferation, Royce held numerous hearings on the extremist Islamist threat facing our country, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and the dangerous intersection of those two. Royce led efforts in the House to bolster efforts to either secure or destroy shoulder-fired missiles around the world that otherwise may be susceptible to terrorists. Royce's legislation, H.R. 5333 was incorporated into H.R. 6060, which became law in January 2007.
In the summer of 2006, Royce held much publicized Congressional hearings in San Diego, California, and Laredo, Texas, focusing on border vulnerabilities and international terrorism.
Royce also serves as a senior member of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia. Royce has established himself as one of the House's leading voices on North Korea. During his career, Royce has worked to bring attention to the lack of transparency in North Korea, whether it's with respect to its human rights record or its efforts to counterfeit U.S. currency. In an oped for the Wall Street Journal published earlier this year, Royce wrote, "Can we really expect a regime that counterfeits our currency to abide by a nuclear weapons agreement? Earlier this year, the House passed legislation suthored by Royce focusing on the plight of North Korean refugees. H.Con.Res. 234 calls on China to halt the practice of repatriating North Korean refugees.
Royce has also strongly backed U.S. broadcasting efforts in Asia. His Radio Free Asia Act of 1997 was incorporated into law and significantly bolstered U.S. broadcasting efforts to China, North Korea, and Vietnam – repressive governments that restrict the free flow of information. U.S. backed Radio Free Asia follows the model of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. As "surrogate" broadcasters, these services act as the free press these countries lack.
Royce has also focused on Afghanistan, with his legislation to create Radio Free Afghanistan becoming law in March 2002. Radio Free Afghanistan brings accurate news and information to the people of Afghanistan in the local languages of Dari and Pashto, helping to counter extremist messages in the country. Radio Free Afghanistan has established itself as the leading broadcaster in Afghanistan, netting 60 percent of the population as an audience.
As Chairman of the Africa Subcommittee, Royce held numerous hearings on the continent at a time when its strategic significance to the United States is increasing. Royce co-led with Colin Powell a delegation to observe Nigeria's historic elections in 1999 and led a delegation into Darfur, Sudan to bring attention to the ongoing genocide in 2005. Traveling with Royce to Darfur was critically acclaimed actor Don Cheadle.
Royce led efforts in the House to bring Charles Taylor, the former President of Liberia, to stand trial before the Special Court of Sierra Leone, being highly critical of the agreement that allowed Taylor a comfortable exile in Nigeria. Royce co-authored H.Con.Res. 127, which passed the House and called on Nigeria to transfer Taylor to be tried for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other serious violations of international humanitarian law.
His website says very little about the war in Iraq, focusing more on antiterrorism, and stating "We will not triumph solely through military might. In 2002, he voted in favor of authorizing President George W. Bush to use force in Iraq. In 2003, he voted yes on an emergency appropriation of $78 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In every year from 2003 to 2006, he has voted in favor of the annual supplemental spending bill to continue funding for the Iraq war. In 2005, he voted against Amendment 214 to HR 1815, which called on Bush to develop a plan for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq; in favor of Amendment 488 to HR 2601 to keep troops in Iraq; and in favor of HR 612 opposing a timetable for withdrawal of troops from Iraq. In 2006, he voted for HR 861, a resolution labeling the war in Iraq as part of a global war against terrorism.