Clay Shaw

  • Fall 2007

Congressman E. Clay Shaw, Jr. represented South Florida in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1981 to 20007.  After 26 ears in Congress, Mr. Shaw ended his career as the second most senior Republican on the Committee on Ways and Means. He was next in line to be Chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means.

At the beginning of the 109th Congress, Mr. Shaw was tapped to be the Chairman of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade. He is committed to expanding free trade as an engine of economic growth in South Florida and around the country. He believes Florida is positioned to gain tremendously with expanded trade to Latin America due to its proximity and unique comparative advantages. He believes that the principles underlying a commitment to free trade are the same principles that foster a commitment to free societies.

Before ascending to the Trade Subcommittee in 2005, Congressman Shaw was the Chairman of the Social Security Subcommittee. Since January 1999, Mr. Shaw has been one of seniors’ and Social Security’s greatest advocates, spearheading Congressional efforts to save our nation’s sacred contract between it’s citizens and their federal government. Clay Shaw is one of the leading voices in Congress for Social Security Reform. Through his leadership, the earnings penalty was repealed for working seniors, new opportunities for individuals with disabilities were created by removing return to work barriers and the House repealed the so-called Tier II tax on Social Security benefits. You can find out more about Congressman Shaw’s Social Security Guarantee Plus Plan (H.R. 75) by accessing the Social Security section of his website.

From 1995-1998, Mr. Shaw chaired the Human Resources Subcommittee where he authored the historic 1996 Welfare Reform bill. This piece of legislation is widely regarded as the most important social reform in a generation. In the seven years since its adoption, the chain of welfare dependency has been broken, and millions of Americans have been freed from the welfare rolls.

In addition, as the foremost House champion of Everglades Restoration, Congressman Shaw is devoted to seeing this national treasure protected and preserved for generations to come. Audubon Society of Florida recently named him their legislator of the year. In addition, Mr. Shaw is one of four Co-Chairmen of the International Conservation Caucus.

Prior to his congressional career, Congressman Shaw served the residents of Fort Lauderdale as their Mayor for three terms (1975-80) and as Vice Mayor (1973-75). He also served as a City Commissioner, Associate Municipal Judge, Chief City Prosecutor, and Assistant City Attorney. He is a member of the Florida Bar Association and formerly a Certified Public Accountant.

Congressman Shaw has a BS degree from Stetson University, an MBA from the University of Alabama and a JD from Stetson University.

Congressman Clay Shaw was the Chairman of the Florida Delegation  from 1996 until his retirement in 2007. He and his wife, Emilie, are both natives of South Florida where they have raised four children and spend their free time with their fifteen grandchildren.